Lathe belting blues…

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  • #48680
    tmac1956
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    • Topics Started: 171
    • Total Posts: 1259

    All:

    Not being very good at creating a heated joint in plastic lathe belting, I got the bright idea that I would buy an adhesive and give that a try. After all, if they can join O-rings together in such a strong way, it just has to work with plastic lathe belting right? Hmmm…

    Well, after a little searching I ran up on a promo video by the LocTite company where the “Glue Guy” glues a piece of plastic hose to a bowling ball and proceeds to sing the praises of their LocTite Gel Super Glue formulated specifically for rubber and plastics while bouncing the ball around to demonstrate just how strong that product is. I think he should have held the thing over his head as it would have been more of a test, but… Well, I’ve never used a LocTite product before, but I’ve heard too many good things about their anaerobic thread locking products to think anything but good of the company. So, off to Lowes I go to pick up a bottle.

    After trimming the belt ends square and cleaning them, I followed the directions and placed one drop on one end, and held them together for ten seconds (actually, I went 20 just to be on the safe side). I guess you can see where this is going…

    The blasted belt just fell apart under its own weight. So, being ever the optimist, I tried it again just to be sure I didn’t screw it up the first time – same result. Not being deterred, I tried it once more. (What is it they say about repeating the same thing over and over expecting a different result…)

    So, now it’s back to the old heated joint. What a perfectly good waste of five bucks. 😡

    Just thought I’d share.
    Tom

    #53921
    arutha
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    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    Hi Tom,
    I tried exactly the same thing with all sorts of different glues, I think one of the super-glues held out the longest, lasted for a whole 15 minutes :)
    I have been told by a few people there is a knack to joining the plastic belt, hold a blade in a vice and heat it until it is red hot, slowly slide both ends of the belt over the blade cutting as straight as possible then hold the ends together for a good twenty seconds. I tried and tried and just couldn’t seem to get it but my friend seems to have no problem with it and uses the stuff on a multitude of machines. In the end I bought a leather belt kit from the US e-bay for my watchmakers lathe, it came with glue, instructions and enough belt to do 3 lathes. It works wonderfully and means I wont have to worry about offering sacrificial blades to the gods of belt joining for a long time :)
    Paul.

    #53922
    tmac1956
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    • Topics Started: 171
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    Arutha:

    The leather belt sounds like good advice. I remember my mom inherited an old foot powered Singer sowing machine that had a leather belt that was stappled together (I think). That thing lasted until I was in my teens and my mom finally bought an electric one. The old foot powered thing must have been over one hundred years old back then and that was 45 years ago.

    Here’s a question…

    When I set up my belts I used the middle size pulleys to set the length. However when I go down to a smaller pulley combination the belt is sloppy, and when I go to the largest size comdination, the thing is way too tight. How do you handle that?

    Thanks!
    Tom

    #53923
    arutha
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 85
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    Hi Tom,
    my motor is set up on a plate with oval slots so just by adjusting the motor position and tightening it down again it adjusts the belt tension. If you have some form of speed control, i.e a dimmer light switch or a foot pedal you wont often have to change the belt position anyway.
    Hope that helps :)
    Paul.

    #53924
    david pierce
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 90
    • Total Posts: 1360

    Tom, Paul Hi,
    Thought I would throw in my two cents worth. I have never seen a belt glued by anybody, ever, that I was happy with. Years ago I switched to urathene O-Rings that I purchase from MSC. To install them I take the spindle apart, put the belt in and then reassemble the spindle. Someone on the NAWCC forum suggested putting in extra belts when the spindle is apart but I do not do this. I feel that it is a good idea to take the lathe apart, clean and adjust it every once and awhile and when the belt wears out it is probably a good time to do this. The O-Rings are less streachy than the green endless material and seem to transmit power better than the leather belts. The best thing is, I don’t have to listen to the clack, clack, clack sound that the glued belts produce.
    david

    #53925
    tmac1956
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 171
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    David:

    Would you mind sharing the MSC model number with us?

    Thanks!
    Tom

    #53926
    arutha
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    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    Thanks for that David :)
    The leather belt I have is square in section, it was cut at angles and glued together, I have no idea what glue it was and yes it used to make a slight “clack” sound at first but now it is silent, it certainly runs as smoothly as a plastic belt, I know this because my previous lathe had a plastic belt and I certainly don’t have any problems with slippage. I wonder if this could be down to the type or softness of the leather used as I have seen some leather belts which are quite hard and smooth, this one is quite soft and almost rough cut. I have been using it like this for the past 5 years and so far so good :)

    I certainly agree with servicing the headstock spindle on a regular basis, if you want it to last for any length of time and keep its accuracy I think it is essential. I also keep it very well oiled, another thing which is often overlooked.
    Paul.

    #53927
    digitaltripper
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 17
    • Total Posts: 102

    Hi all…

    First off, sorry I have not been on the forum in awhile. I hope everyone is well.

    I have created a video on using/installing fusible belt on my peerless lathe. It should work for other lathes as well. Also here are the instructions that I used in the video. It works perfectly for me and it will work for you too !!

    I am using 4mm belt on my lathe. I purchased this belt on eBay.

    Search “12 Feet Transmission Belt for Watchmaker Lathe” on eBay

    Fusible Belt Instructions

    1. Measure and cut the belt using the lathe pulleys as a guide. Belt should be tight with no slack. ENDS SHOULD BE
    SQUARED!!(Use a pair of diagonal cutters)
    2. Place belt around headstock pulley.
    3. Using my portable vise, I placed an old butter knife standing up in the vise. (Don’t use one your other half will miss…)
    4. Heat the knife with a torch but NOT glowing hot. Temp approx 575 degrees. (Just to red then let cool a bit…)
    5. After heating, place each end on one side of the hot knife.
    6. Slide the melty ends off the blade together and push / wiggle / twist a bit to remove air.( Try to keep ends
    even…Takes practice)
    7. HOLD IN THIS POSITION TILL COOLED A BIT!!(Then let cool a bit more..)
    8. Trim flush using small diagonal cutters or nail trimmer. (Very important. If you do not trim flush, belt breaks…I am not
    sure why but it does…)

    Put your new belt on and RUN IT!!

    This is the ONLY method of fusing that worked for me!! I tried making it melty with a lighter, heating till both ends were liquidy, and all of that failed. The knife melty works great!! Again, get the knife hot but NOT GLOWING!!

    Video can be viewed here: http://youtu.be/UOOQSaT0qZI

    Jim B.
    Cedar Ridge CA.

    #53928
    tmac1956
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 171
    • Total Posts: 1259

    Jim:

    Thanks – I’ll take a look!

    Tom

    #53929
    arutha
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    I have just had to replace the belt on my drilling machine using the green 4mm belting. Those instructions were great Jim, I used a Stanley knife blade held in a vice and heated it until it was red hot and then slid the belt down the cutting edge holding both ends at the same time, as they came away from the blade I held them together for 20 seconds and then left it to cool, then just trimmed the join. That is the first time I have ever managed a successful join :)
    Thank you :)

    #53930
    catskillpainter
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 2
    • Total Posts: 33

    @digitaltripper wrote:

    Hi all…

    First off, sorry I have not been on the forum in awhile. I hope everyone is well.

    I have created a video on using/installing fusible belt on my peerless lathe. It should work for other lathes as well. Also here are the instructions that I used in the video. It works perfectly for me and it will work for you too !!

    I am using 4mm belt on my lathe. I purchased this belt on eBay.

    Search “12 Feet Transmission Belt for Watchmaker Lathe” on eBay

    Fusible Belt Instructions

    1. Measure and cut the belt using the lathe pulleys as a guide. Belt should be tight with no slack. ENDS SHOULD BE
    SQUARED!!(Use a pair of diagonal cutters)
    2. Place belt around headstock pulley.
    3. Using my portable vise, I placed an old butter knife standing up in the vise. (Don’t use one your other half will miss…)
    4. Heat the knife with a torch but NOT glowing hot. Temp approx 575 degrees. (Just to red then let cool a bit…)
    5. After heating, place each end on one side of the hot knife.
    6. Slide the melty ends off the blade together and push / wiggle / twist a bit to remove air.( Try to keep ends
    even…Takes practice)
    7. HOLD IN THIS POSITION TILL COOLED A BIT!!(Then let cool a bit more..)
    8. Trim flush using small diagonal cutters or nail trimmer. (Very important. If you do not trim flush, belt breaks…I am not
    sure why but it does…)

    Put your new belt on and RUN IT!!

    This is the ONLY method of fusing that worked for me!! I tried making it melty with a lighter, heating till both ends were liquidy, and all of that failed. The knife melty works great!! Again, get the knife hot but NOT GLOWING!!

    Video can be viewed here: http://youtu.be/UOOQSaT0qZI

    Jim B.
    Cedar Ridge CA.

    Excellent instructions – thank you !

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tmac1956Lathe belting blues…