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Kenh

Snower belt replacement

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Kenh

I broke the Gates belt (A144) on my snow blower after only one year and maybe half a dozen uses.  I had been using Thermoid brand belts with good success, though they were a bit spendy!  The last one lasted three years.  Unfortunately Thermoid is no longer available in my area.  I went back to the place I  bought my Thermoid (used to work there) and they now carry Carlisle brand belts.  The price is right though I did get a discount 'cause I am good friends with the manager:)  $23.50 each plus shipping as they were not in stock..  $57 later I have two new belts on hand.  We'll see how they work out.  Mine are the Super Blue Ribbon Belts.  They have other varieties that may be more suitable for snowblower use????

http://www.carlislebelts.com/product/belts/heavy-duty-industrial-v-belts/super-blue-ribbon

 

Ken

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steve-wis

Hope you have good luck with the new belts.  I have found on some applications I can use a cheaper belt and it does ok, but for others it seems like buying the higher priced Simplicity belts just saves misery and money in the long run.  I know how hard it is to shell out what they want for a 147 inch belt!  Let us know how they do for you.

Steve

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PhanDad

Let us know how those belts work for you. 

I looked at the link you provided and the specs for the Super Blue Ribbon belt.  I was looking for Kelvar (a type of aramid fiber) fiber cords and a claim that the belt can withstand reverse flexing (backside idlers).  It's my understanding that the reverse flexing and use with backside idlers is what makes the Simplicity OEM belts "special".  The specs don't mention either but claims  length stability and has extra flexibility  so hopefully it'll give you a long life. 

I've been running this belt for 4 seasons without any issues:

https://www.vbelts4less.com/A144K--A-Section-Kevlar-K-Plus-V-Belts_p_12541.html

But here on the east coast we don't get that much snow, so I have no idea how many hours are actually on the belt.  

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Kenh
7 hours ago, PhanDad said:

Let us know how those belts work for you. 

I looked at the link you provided and the specs for the Super Blue Ribbon belt.  I was looking for Kelvar (a type of aramid fiber) fiber cords and a claim that the belt can withstand reverse flexing (backside idlers).  It's my understanding that the reverse flexing and use with backside idlers is what makes the Simplicity OEM belts "special".  The specs don't mention either but claims  length stability and has extra flexibility  so hopefully it'll give you a long life. 

I've been running this belt for 4 seasons without any issues:

https://www.vbelts4less.com/A144K--A-Section-Kevlar-K-Plus-V-Belts_p_12541.html

But here on the east coast we don't get that much snow, so I have no idea how many hours are actually on the belt.  

Had I known about these guys I would have ordered from them!  Kevlar belts for less than what I paid and shipping is reasonable also!  That website is now bookmarked.

 

I got a new belt installed today and tried it out a little.  Hard to find good snow to blow as it was 37 degrees today.  I hate that as I just got a good packed snow base to hold my rock in place so I don't blow it out in the grass.  Oh well....  Well the little snow I did blow came out the spout just fine.  So far so good

Ken

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BLT
On ‎2‎/‎14‎/‎2018 at 9:05 PM, Kenh said:

Had I known about these guys I would have ordered from them!  Kevlar belts for less than what I paid and shipping is reasonable also!  That website is now bookmarked.

 

I got a new belt installed today and tried it out a little.  Hard to find good snow to blow as it was 37 degrees today.  I hate that as I just got a good packed snow base to hold my rock in place so I don't blow it out in the grass.  Oh well....  Well the little snow I did blow came out the spout just fine.  So far so good

Ken

Another thing that's possible is your belt is not tight enough. If one side looks like a loose banjo string when running , that need to be tightened out and that will improve belt life. .I learned that the hard way.

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Kenh

Tightness is not an issue I think.  The flat idler pulley at the BGB was a plastic unit.  One of the flanges was chipped and I did not know that.  I think the chipped flange was cutting the belt as there were 8 or 10 cuts on the belt.  That and the belt had a couple of severe shock loads when the blower sucked up rocks large enough to stop the rotation.  

Ken

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gcbuckley

This was my experience with the last Simplicity blower belts.

When blowing about 6 inches of powder the belt broke, Grand traverse rubber is only about a mile from my house and  the Simplicity dealer is 4 miles away. so I jump in the car and run up to GTR and get a continental belt for around 20 bucks and I am back in business. About a week later the belt breaks again and I think that the blower is one place that I NEED to use a true simplicity belt, so i stop at Lark lawn spend around $50.00 get a Simplicity belt, put it on and start blowing and after about a hour it breaks. Now i am kind of upset it is about 10 minutes to 5 on Friday and both places are going to close and I want to play this weekend. So I grab the Simplicity belt that just broke ( the one i just paid 50 bucks for) and drive up to GTR to get a cheep belt and so the guys at GTR can see the simplicity number on the belt. I walk in the door and the counter guys know me and what I am up to so the one takes the Simplicity belt and is looking at it. 

This is when I try to listen to the belt guys and learn some helpful info. The guy asked me if all my pulleys are turning and said that the belt looked like it got hot on the backside of the belt. It got hot enough that the Simplicity number tag had melted a little but we could still see the OE number but it was peeling some. So as he was trying to cross the OE part number I am standing there playing with the Simplicity tag and it peeled off and you will NEVER guess what was under the OE tag??? it was a  continental belt. In fact it was the same belt number that I had bought the week before.

So now I do not know what to think. I know that I have to use a OE belt from the mule drive to the mower deck and BGB to transmission (or I have tried to use cheep belts with no luck) and a bad idler pulley bearing on the snowblower will break over $100 in belts a week. But going to the dealer and paying 30 bucks for a orange Simplicity tag on a $20.00 belt is just crazy and I might try some from Tractor supply 

Any more thoughts ??

Gene 

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PhanDad

 

1 hour ago, MARK (LI) said:

So it was the pulley that caused the breaks?

I would say this statement says yes:

10 hours ago, gcbuckley said:

a bad idler pulley bearing on the snowblower will break over $100 in belts a week

I also don't think the Simplicity belts today are as good as the belts from say 10-15 years ago.  Many older belts has a casing wrapped around the belt which many of the newer belts do not.

And as to BGB to Hydro drive pulley, I've never had an issue with a non Simplicity belt there.  If the belt's the correct length, there's not a lot of "back bend" in the belt.  

I have also tried a Kevlar belt from vbeltsforless.com on the PTO to 48" mower deck.  So far so good.

I have learned over the years that usually repeated belt problems have a cause other than a bad belt.  Finding the cause isn't always easy. 

In late spring I gave my daughter on of my 75th Ann tractors and with it the only functioning 48" deck.  So I put back together the first 75th Ann deck I had disassembled years ago to repaint.  Used it for several months and then the arbor belt started to come off the pulleys (not breaking) occasionally and the tension spring was always popped out of the deck groove that holds one end of the spring .  Kept putting it back on.  Started doing it a little more frequently.  Figuring the the spring was the problem since isn't in the best shape,  I added a screw to to make sure the end stayed attached to the deck.  Not much change in behavior except the spring end was still in the groove.  Then this fall during leaf duty, it would only stay on for 10 minutes, maybe less.  I had enough and decided, even though the belt looked OK, the belt must be stretching under cutting load so I put a new belt on.  And..... same issue.  So while putting the belt back on, I think I notice the deck drive double pulley moving.  I wiggle the pulley, it's loose, bad bearing I think - I know I should have changed the bearings before I put it back together but the bearings seemed OK.  As I sit there on the lawn next to the deck thinking of the job ahead (and the leaves everywhere) I notice there's not a bolt in the top of the arbor shaft.  Grab the pulley, not only does it wiggle, it raises up away from the deck easily.  Problem solved.  Put the old belt back on and a washer and a bolt to hold the pulley on and no more belt problem.  I might have unloosened the bolt during deck disassembly in anticipation of bearing replacement.  I'll never know.  Moral of the story - there's a problem somewhere.

Edited by PhanDad

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gcbuckley

Yeah I think the bearing the was the real issue, not the belts. I also totally agree with Bill on both of what he said.

1 hour ago, PhanDad said:

I also don't think the Simplicity belts today are as good as the belts from say 10-15 years ago

And 

 

1 hour ago, PhanDad said:

Moral of the story - there's a problem somewhere.

If I am having belt issues I need to really check things out 

Thanks 

Gene

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Kenh

The center PTO to blower belt routing is as "wrong" as you can get.  It does everything to shorten belt life that you can do to a belt.  Severe back bends, sideways bends,  twisting, long run and no doubt "contamination" with snow and who knows what else to help the belt slip and make heat.  I ran my new belt for only a couple minutes under no load to check the tracking on the new idler.  When I touched the belt (after the tractor was shut off) it was warm to the touch.  I can't imagine how it would be under a heavy load.

 

Ken

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MikeES

Over 20 years ago I bought a 1979 917 with snowthrower, the PO said all the belts were original (so assume Simplicity).  I live in NW Wisconsin so it gets many hours of use.  The belt is the original, it is glazed and cracked but still works great.  One of the things I do is run the tension tight, the book says to have the swing arm in the forward red area for the snowthrower.  I also check pulley alignments and bearings each year.

So they CAN last for many hours and years.

Before the 917, I used a 712 with the front clutch hitch.  The first year I went through 2 belts, the next year I lost 3 belts in 1 hour.   Recheck alignment (not obvious with the pivoting pulley and spring tensioner).  I bent one of the arms to make the alignment better, and never replaced  the cheap belt after that (ran it many years before I bought  the 917).

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