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Link Belts - Are they any good?

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Forum topic by brianinpa posted 1237 days ago 2342 views 0 times favorited 39 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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brianinpa

1809 posts in 2322 days


1237 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: question link belts

I have a bunch of vintage belt driven tools that are mounted on a table top design that fits onto a mobile base and the base has a motor mounted on a hinged lower shelf. With this design I am able to run all of my tools with the same motor. When a tool is not being used I store it on a shelf in the corner of the garage.

The problem I have is finding the correct length belts for each tool. I have been looking at link belts for quite some time but am hesitant because of the costs and I have also read some reviews that vibrations are higher than normal with the link belt.

So my question is, for those that do use or have used link belts, are the belts worth the money and do you notice any increase in vibrations?

-- Brian, Lebanon PA, If you aren’t having fun doing it, find something else to do.


39 replies so far

View Sawkerf's profile

Sawkerf

1730 posts in 1667 days


#1 posted 1237 days ago

Link belts are well worth the money. I put one on an old Craftsman TS and could almost pass the nickel test.

-- Adversity doesn't build character...................it reveals it.

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knotscott

5369 posts in 1974 days


#2 posted 1237 days ago

I agree with Cessna. Link belts shouldn’t increase your vibration. They usually reduce vibration if you a bad or questionable v-belt, however there’s not always a noticeable improvement if your current belt is good. They’re fairly easy to change lengths with, and are easy enough to use. Harbor Freight tends to have good prices on them, and I’ve read that they’re good quality too.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

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brianinpa

1809 posts in 2322 days


#3 posted 1237 days ago

I saw the HF offering and contemplated the purchase. Are these comparable to the the belts bought at Rockler or Wood Craft?

-- Brian, Lebanon PA, If you aren’t having fun doing it, find something else to do.

View bigike's profile

bigike

4031 posts in 1887 days


#4 posted 1237 days ago

have you tried looking for v belts at the automotive store? You might be able to get the right sizes from them. Other than that link belts are great to use. I’m in the process of upgradeing my unisaw to link belts and machined steel pulleys.

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop, http://www.icombadaniels@yahoo.com

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brianinpa

1809 posts in 2322 days


#5 posted 1237 days ago

Autozone is one of my favorite toy stores. It is to the point where the belts stretch over time and as I get more toys, I mean tools, I need to get more belts. Just looking at the possibility of only one or two belts.

-- Brian, Lebanon PA, If you aren’t having fun doing it, find something else to do.

View NBeener's profile

NBeener

4806 posts in 1773 days


#6 posted 1237 days ago

I’ve heard NOTHING but good things from anybody who has ever swapped over to link belts.

Truly.

While some say Fenner are better, most seem to think that the “Jason” ones, from Harbor Freight, are great, and great deals.

-- -- Neil

View TheWoodNerd's profile

TheWoodNerd

288 posts in 1790 days


#7 posted 1237 days ago

I swapped my jointer over to a link belt. And went right back to the regular belt. The link belt was way, way louder.

-- The Wood Nerd -- http://www.workshopaholic.net

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NBeener

4806 posts in 1773 days


#8 posted 1237 days ago

Dang.

Now I can’t make that statement, again ;-)

WoodNerd: remember which brand ?

-- -- Neil

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brianinpa

1809 posts in 2322 days


#9 posted 1237 days ago

Noise isn’t that big of a deal for me because I have my ear muffs on any time one of the tools is running. That is a habit I picked up while working next to jet engines. I would also be interested in the brand belt you had.

-- Brian, Lebanon PA, If you aren’t having fun doing it, find something else to do.

View knotscott's profile

knotscott

5369 posts in 1974 days


#10 posted 1237 days ago

The link belts aren’t as aerodynamic so they do have more wind noise, but they should be quieter than a bad v-belt that’s thumping and vibrating.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View lew's profile

lew

9945 posts in 2354 days


#11 posted 1237 days ago

Brian,
There was some discussion about this http://lumberjocks.com/topics/24420.
I stand by my original post. These belts made a tremendous difference on my table saw.

Lew

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

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Resurrected

671 posts in 1291 days


#12 posted 1237 days ago

I have only one link belt and it works good. I think the oppisite there is less vibration but negligible IMO. There great at adjustment and you don’t need to worry about the wrong size. Either or its your preference.

-- Who can I block now???????????????????????

View lilredweldingrod's profile

lilredweldingrod

2495 posts in 1706 days


#13 posted 1237 days ago

This os one item that good old Harbor Freight can save you some money on. Their belt looks, feels and works as good as the one I bought out of Canada, and HF was half the money. I will be buying more of these at HF.

View TheWoodNerd's profile

TheWoodNerd

288 posts in 1790 days


#14 posted 1236 days ago

It’s been a couple years, I don’t remember the brand. I think I got them from WoodCraft. Maybe …

On a decent machine with a good belt, there is no reason to go to a link belt. Supposedly they will help isolate vibrations from being transferred from the motor to the tool, but I think that’s a moot point on most machinery. If your belt’s a bad one, I’d say just get another belt. I can’t remember exactly what they’re called or why they’re recommended, but I’ve been buying the ones with a notched inner edge.

-- The Wood Nerd -- http://www.workshopaholic.net

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TheWoodNerd

288 posts in 1790 days


#15 posted 1236 days ago

Ah, I remember now. They’re called cogged belts.

-- The Wood Nerd -- http://www.workshopaholic.net

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