Author Topic: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease  (Read 1577 times)

Offline RogerSB

  • 1960 Golden Flash, Plymouth, Devon, England
  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Aug 2017
  • Posts: 692
  • Karma: 9
Hi all,


Today I put my Golden Flash up on my new plywood 'slot together' work platform for the first time to carry out some planned routine maintenance this week.


The first thing I wanted to do was to take off the timing cover to have a look and see what belt drive was fitted, check its condition and adjustment. When buying this particular GF the previous owner told me that the bike had been fitted with a dynamo belt drive when converted from 6v to 12v. He told me it was done by the owner before him, who was a HV mechanic, so he didn't know any more than that.


Well, I looked today and it looks to be an SRM kit and in excellent condition (see photo). And it's lovely and clean in there and I must admit I'm a bit reluctant to make it all messy!


I know SRM recommend packing their belts with grease to aid cooling. I've read some run it dry without any problem while others follow the recommendation.


As I value the expertise, experience and comments made here I thought I would ask for opinions to help me to decide whether to pack it with grease before I refit the cover.


1960 Golden Flash

Online bsa-bill

  • Wise & Enlightened
  • *
  • Join Date: Mar 2006
  • Posts: 5454
  • Karma: 62
Re: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease
« Reply #1 on: 29.10. 2017 21:56 »
no I wouldn't, no lubrication required and oil/grease may well degraded the belt.
Having said that my belt was for a while running through oil as the idler gear bush was wrong (wrong scroll so it pushed instead of sucked), came to my attention when oil came out via the dynamo cork, in this time it charged as normal
All the best - Bill
1961 Flash - stock, reliable, steady, fantastic for shopping
1959 Rocket Gold Flash - blinged and tarted up  would have seizure if taken to  Tesco

Online Rex

  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Apr 2017
  • Posts: 558
  • Karma: 2
Re: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease
« Reply #2 on: 29.10. 2017 22:51 »
Certainly not grease as such, but industrial bearing stockists sell a spray lube for toothed belts, although a small squirt of WD-40 would likely work just as well for your belt.

Offline kiwipom

  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jan 2011
  • Posts: 751
  • Karma: 8
Re: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease
« Reply #3 on: 30.10. 2017 07:15 »
Hi Roger, seem your bike was running no problem so: if its not broke don,t fix it,cheers
...p.s.you didn't know Phillip Allen down there in Portsmouth did you.
A10.G.Flash(cafe racer)Honda 250 vtr. Yamaha Virago XV920.

War! what is it good for?Absolutely nothing, Edwin Star.
NewZealand

Offline t20racerman

  • A's Best Friend
  • ***
  • Join Date: Feb 2011
  • Posts: 228
  • Karma: 7
  • Keep it nailed!
    • The T20 'Super Six' Suzuki website
Re: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease
« Reply #4 on: 30.10. 2017 13:27 »
I ran an SRM belt drive dry for about 10 years until it broke this year. I phoned up SRM for a replacement belt and they asked if I'd greased it. When I said 'no' they said 'no wonder it broke so soon'!
I heavily greased the new one. I'll let you know in about 2030 if it lasted any longer 😂
1961 A10 - somewhat modified :-)
1980 TZ350 - lunatic Classic Race machine
1967 T20 Suzuki - heavily modified Classic Racer
1967 T20 Suzuki - pretty standard road bike
2007 KTM 660 SMC - fast and furious supermoto
Triumph 675 Speed triple
Ossa 250 and yet another T20 racer in bits both being built up

"If I had all the money back that I've spent on motorcycles... I'd spend it all on motorcycles!"

Online bsa-bill

  • Wise & Enlightened
  • *
  • Join Date: Mar 2006
  • Posts: 5454
  • Karma: 62
Re: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease
« Reply #5 on: 30.10. 2017 14:59 »
Quote
I ran an SRM belt drive dry for about 10 years until it broke this year. I phoned up SRM for a replacement belt and they asked if I'd greased it. When I said 'no' they said 'no wonder it broke so soon'!

With my original ownership of a Flash in 1961 I went through three chains in about two years so ten years is more than good.
I have an SRM belt that's been on for around 15 years of admittedly light use but I cannot recall any instructions as to lubricating the belt by SRM
All the best - Bill
1961 Flash - stock, reliable, steady, fantastic for shopping
1959 Rocket Gold Flash - blinged and tarted up  would have seizure if taken to  Tesco

Offline Sluggo

  • Serial Hoarder, or Eccentric Collector depending on viewpoint
  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jun 2017
  • Posts: 639
  • Karma: 11
Re: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease
« Reply #6 on: 30.10. 2017 17:25 »
I have no personal insights into SRM or what Belt or lubricant they are advocating. (Fair disclosure)  But I am interested in the topic as I am considering one of their kits for some of my projects.

I Have done a lot of research into belt drives (I worked in manufacturing and engineering work in Industrial applications and much of the machinery is either belt or chain drive and a hot topic in certain circles) but I like belt drives in general on motorcycles.  (I have a number of Buells that run a belt final drive, and have fitted a number of belt drive kits on primaries on Nortons and Triumph)

Belts on auto applications are almost entirely the norm anymore for timing instead of chains,,,The service lives of belts in those apps continues to climb.  (used to be rather short in the 1980s,, Fords 4 cyls were frequent casualties)  But while they are specced to run dry they do get exposed to a lot of oil mist, residue and occasionally full contact.

Unlike a chain, a belt runs tighter and tighter the hotter it gets, so keep that in mind.  As Marino from MAP cycle told me " A cool belt is a happy belt".   I have used a lot of MAPs belt drive kits and I strongly endorse their quality.

I would be very interested in what TYPE of belt they are using (There several types of materials use as well as types of construction) As well as what type of lubricant they are advocating

Admittedly I have not read much in the last couple years, But I spent a lot of time reading industrial trade literature on this topic and kept up with it for years, but one of the worlds leading resources is Gates corp.

They have a wealth of info accessible on their website for auto/motorcycle apps, as well as Industrial, and anyone who wants to know more could gain a lot of insights into this. (Nothing shuts down a dispute with a dept manager or cranky customer than a trade publication outlining the tech aspects with certain portions highlighted) 

See: http://www.gates.com/catalogs-and-resources/resources

See: http://www.gates.com/catalogs-and-resources/automotive-resources?&page=1&result=12&resourceCategory=Automotive+OE

See: http://www.gates.com/catalogs-and-resources/automotive-resources?&page=1&result=12&resourceCategory=Automotive+Aftermarket

See: http://www.gates.com/catalogs-and-resources/industrial-resources?&page=1&result=12&resourceCategory=Industrial+Belt+Drives

Design your own system, choose tooth type and pulleys, Belt materials, and use their software to do so.

See: http://www.gates.com/catalogs-and-resources/all-resources?&page=1&result=12&resourceType=App

And lastly,,,,," Welcome to "GatesFactsTM" About Belts, a technical library on the selection, maintenance and replacement of power transmission products. The library is a collection of technical bulletins, white papers and trade magazine feature articles dealing with subjects ranging from synchronous belts to stepcone sheaves. Browse through document categories below, or search all (160+) documents to find what you're looking for. All documents are in PDF format and viewable using the Adobe Acrobat Reader. (NOTE: .pdf format requires Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you have problems opening the PDF file, or need a copy of the reader, you can download a free copy from the Adobe Acrobat site."

See: http://www.gates.com/catalogs-and-resources/resources/repository/engineering-business-applications/gatesfacts-collection

One basic fact that I have come to embrace in the whole belts vs chain debate is a failure on a belt system is rarely ever terminal or catastrophic, Chains?  Usually terminal and catastrophic.  From a strictly liability and safety aspect in application and design Belts are a clear winner.

(*I am in the USA, land of prolific and tenacious litigants )
Remember that any advice received on a free internet forum is generally worth about 1/2 of what you paid for it.
We overcharge every 3rd customer to pass the savings onto you.
You can have High Quality, Low price, and fast turnaround. Pick any 2, Never all 3 at the same time.

Offline RogerSB

  • 1960 Golden Flash, Plymouth, Devon, England
  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Aug 2017
  • Posts: 692
  • Karma: 9
Re: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease
« Reply #7 on: 30.10. 2017 21:20 »
Thanks for all your replies. All very interesting and, as expected, with various opinions and experiences.


Sluggo, attached is a photo of the printing on the belt. It's mumbo-jumbo to me but you may be able to make sense of it.


Also attached is SRM's fitting instructions where packing with grease is mentioned (last sentence, para 3).


Kiwipom, I wanted to fit new primary and rear chains, dynamo brushes, etc. and was curious to know what dynamo conversion was fitted by a previous owner and what condition it was in.  I didn't know Phillip Allen. My home town is Plymouth (where I am now) but I spent a lot of time in Portsmouth when serving in the Royal Marines. Was Phillip Allen in the RM? I know a lot of former Royal Marines emigrated to your part of the world.

1960 Golden Flash

Offline kiwipom

  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jan 2011
  • Posts: 751
  • Karma: 8
Re: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease
« Reply #8 on: 30.10. 2017 21:46 »
hi Roger, P.Allen was in the Navy down there don,t know as what but i think `writer`was mentioned, his son Jeff was in the S.B.S. Phil is my brother-in-law and lives in Lee-on-Solent, cheers
A10.G.Flash(cafe racer)Honda 250 vtr. Yamaha Virago XV920.

War! what is it good for?Absolutely nothing, Edwin Star.
NewZealand

Offline Sluggo

  • Serial Hoarder, or Eccentric Collector depending on viewpoint
  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jun 2017
  • Posts: 639
  • Karma: 11
Re: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease
« Reply #9 on: 30.10. 2017 21:54 »
It looks nicely made and very promising, To decipher the specs is fairly simple with a internet search.  Typically all manufacturing these days is a step up or down from available stock.  For example bolts and hardware start with common machine bar stock and you machine them to specs based on available sizes.

At one time manufacturers made all kinds of one off fasterners and it was hard to figure out threat pitch, and dimensions. But now days we have all kinds of established global standards and everything is based on that.
I would have ask my wife again what the current stds are  but used to be ISO, now its something else.
(She was logistics lead but now master scheduler for a machine shop manufacturing company)
See: http://www.enochmachining.com/

Looking at the printing on the belt it comes right up...
See: https://www.alliedelec.com/m/d/97f19c347d70db2ee358ced7ad5e3349.pdf
-or-
See: http://www.beltingonline.com/at3-gen-iii-synchroflex-timing-belts-4593

" SYNCHROFLEX® Timing Belts deliver high
outputs thanks to their high-grade components.
The excellent bond between the
hard-wearing polyurethane teeth and the
constant-length galvanised steel tension
members is the basis on which the high
power output potential is built.
ContiTech Timing Belts SYNCHROFLEX®
SYNCHROFLEX® Timing Belts
Advanced technology which stands out because of
its excellent product properties
The very flexible production process is particularly
suitable, for example, for manufacturing
double-sided belts and rear cams with
a high degree of dimensional accuracy. The
range of compounds available also enables
operation at low temperatures, in clean rooms
and in the food industry"

" Page General Information
4 Synchroflex manufacturing processes
5 Polyurethane Timing Belts
6 Antistatic SYNCHROFLEX® Timing Belts
7 The “E” tension member
8 The new GEN III
34 Tolerances

AT high performance Timing Belts
10 AT 3 GEN III
11 AT 3
12 AT 5 GEN III
13 AT 5
14 AT 10 GEN III
15 AT 10
16 ATP 10 GEN III
17 ATP 10
18 ATP 15
19 AT 20

T standard Timing Belts
20 T 2
21 T 2,5 / T 2,5-DL
22 T 5 / T 5-DL
23 T 10 / T 10-DL
24 T 20 / T 20-DL

Imperial Timing Belts
25 M (MXL)
F Flat Belts
26 F / AF / BF / CF / DF

Timig Belts with special tooth profiles
27 K 1 / K 1,5
28 V (incl. Imperial)

I am not going to read the whole manual/catalog today but it would be interesting to see what they recommend for lube.

There are a few kits out there intended to run in oil,,,  I once had an Iron Head sportster and was surprised when servicing it that there was a belt drive primary kit installed and it ran wet in the oil bath.  (I had no idea it was in there and seller did not mention it)  MAP cycle and others sell an economy Primary belt kit that does not have sealed bearings and intended to run wet.  I have not used those as I have always got the premium kits with sealed bearings as that was an important feature to me to eliminate oil leaks.
Tony Hayward in the UK offers wet belt kits, I have spoken to him on the tele years back and worked on a customers bike with one of his kits fitted,, Theres a lunatic (In a good way) in Australia that makes parts under the LYTEDRIVE name  and he makes all kinds of stuff but he has a lot of experience with belt drives.
My friend Dave met him in person and the loon was flogging a Matchless and make quite an impression.

So, there's many ways to skin a cat, but not ALL belt types are suitable for motorcycles.
Remember that any advice received on a free internet forum is generally worth about 1/2 of what you paid for it.
We overcharge every 3rd customer to pass the savings onto you.
You can have High Quality, Low price, and fast turnaround. Pick any 2, Never all 3 at the same time.

Offline RogerSB

  • 1960 Golden Flash, Plymouth, Devon, England
  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Aug 2017
  • Posts: 692
  • Karma: 9
Re: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease
« Reply #10 on: 30.10. 2017 22:46 »
Thanks Sluggo, I've been looking at the info in the links you supplied. I had no idea drive belts was such a high tech product until reading some of it. It's late now here in the UK but I'll read some more tomorrow. It's comforting to know that SRM have used such a high quality belt. You could say it's the make or break of the product !!

1960 Golden Flash

Offline mikeb

  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Dec 2014
  • Posts: 551
  • Karma: 12
Re: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease
« Reply #11 on: 30.10. 2017 23:29 »
i double checked with srm when i fitted theirs, and also asked if i should use a low temp melting grease as i'd read that the belt just cuts a channel through standard grease so gets little lube/cooling. they said use standard grease so i did. only 1 or 2 years ago but it still works.

its an A10 not an aircraft... maybe it doesn't matter that much?
New Zealand
'61 Super Rocket  - '47 B33 -  '18 Triumph Street Triple RS

Offline Sluggo

  • Serial Hoarder, or Eccentric Collector depending on viewpoint
  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jun 2017
  • Posts: 639
  • Karma: 11
Re: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease
« Reply #12 on: 31.10. 2017 01:52 »
"its an A10 not an aircraft... maybe it doesn't matter that much?"

I hear that sort of thing frequently and perhaps correct, after all its use is for an engine that is prone to squirting oil all about and inevitably everything gets an oily sheen, but keep in mind that many materials degrade significantly when exposed to petroleum products.  Best to check compatibility.  Some years back I had a couple years with O rings that leaked and failed prematurely. Cost me loads of labor and grief,,, The vendor who supplied them knowingly offered them for British bike engine applications but they had poor resistance to oil and failed in short order.
These O rings were supplied to most British bike wholesalers and dealers worldwide. So even though a known source sometimes we get bad products.
But sometimes its the wingnut at the end of the spanner who is the cause.
Remember that any advice received on a free internet forum is generally worth about 1/2 of what you paid for it.
We overcharge every 3rd customer to pass the savings onto you.
You can have High Quality, Low price, and fast turnaround. Pick any 2, Never all 3 at the same time.

Offline mikeb

  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Dec 2014
  • Posts: 551
  • Karma: 12
Re: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease
« Reply #13 on: 31.10. 2017 02:19 »
Quote
sometimes its the wingnut at the end of the spanner who is the cause.
yep, i am that wingnut. I definitely agree that knowing your materials helps make better choices. i'm no srm fanboy but i do assume they know more about it than i do so sometimes following instructions is probably the best things to do. (despite piles of s**t parts getting sold etc)

and, as its not an aircraft, it will probably make it home rather than fall from the sky
New Zealand
'61 Super Rocket  - '47 B33 -  '18 Triumph Street Triple RS

Offline RogerSB

  • 1960 Golden Flash, Plymouth, Devon, England
  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Aug 2017
  • Posts: 692
  • Karma: 9
Re: dynamo belt drive - to grease or not to grease
« Reply #14 on: 31.10. 2017 06:36 »
Thanks mikeb and sluggo. I must agree with you both. Of course you should listen to advice, especially from the people who are in the position to know, but then we ourselves need to be careful we are doing the right thing. My thought was exactly yours mikeb and that was won't the belt just cut a channel in thick grease.


Sluggo, you mentioned that you were considering a dynamo belt drive kit yourself. Have a look at Dynamo Regulators Ltd as they do a comparable kit, which I know a lot of people on here have fitted and are well pleased with. Mike Hutchings is also a forum member, a really helpful and knowledgeable chap and does ride an A10. Also in his advert's description he says his kit increases the dynamo speed ratio by 20% and the belts he uses can be run in either oil or grease but he doesn't emphasise that it's necessary. http://www.dynamoregulators.com/.

1960 Golden Flash