Link Belt lifespan

Anybody have any idea what the useful lifespan of a Link Belt as used on a contractor's TS?
Also, will it take a "set" if unused?
Thanks a heap, -Zz
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On 1/6/2013 9:48 AM, Zz Yzx wrote:

Years; for a homeowner/hobbyist probably lifetime (as w/ a regular quality v-belt as long as it's not abused/run out of line, etc.)...

What's to "set"???? -- they're just interconnecting links.
They are, imo, mostly a fancy who's only real value is that they do allow makeup of arbitrary lengths onsite. I've never seen any need for them for the so-called vibration control touted in the ads.
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On 1/6/2013 10:56 AM, dpb wrote:

Obviously someone who doesn't know, since you don't have.
The vibration reduction is so real that my drill press went from a piece of trash to WOW. After that I outfitted every tool with it.
It makes a huge difference.
It can not take a set, lifetime is unknown.
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On Sun, 06 Jan 2013 11:12:12 -0500, tiredofspam wrote:

One certainly made a huge difference in a Chiwanese contractors saw I used to own.
I suspect that someone who used a belted tool every day might not have any belt-related vibration to be cured, since the solid belt wouldn't take a set from non-use.
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On 1/6/2013 12:38 PM, Larry Blanchard wrote:

Agreed ... my PowerMatic jointer routinely thumps a bit after start up if it hasn't been fired up for a while.
I'm pretty sure it is "set" in the belt because it always warms up out of it after a dozen or so seconds.
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On 1/6/2013 12:44 PM, Swingman wrote:

I can only think if it's so much that a "set" in a 4L or smaller v-belt is noticeable it can't be much of a piece of gear.
On the PM 66 TS it's a matched set of 3 and there's no difference whatever whether it's 10F or 100F or whether it's been 5 minutes or 3 months. Same for the jointer/planer/bandsaw--I see/hear no thump/nor vibration from the any of them--and never have.
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On 1/6/2013 1:17 PM, dpb wrote:

My Powermatic 54A "piece of gear" (jointer) was made by the same company that made your Powermatic table saw. :)
I don't expect a three belt system, like found on our cabinet saws (mine's a Unisaw), to necessarily exhibit that behavior. Not saying it isn't impossible, but just not in my experience.
So, what would be your next guess as to that described "thump" (thump, being overkill as a description because is barely discernible, and only noticeable because I've had the machine many years, am keen on sounds "that weren't there before, and know what set in a belt sounds like)?
And yep, on my ToDo list is to, one of these days, change the belt, and hopefully NOT rule that out as the cause. ;)
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On 1/6/2013 1:35 PM, Swingman wrote:

Dunno...imagination, maybe??? :)
All I know is it's never been anything I've noticed and just have a hard time given that at 3450 rpm it takes <20 msec for a revolution that any residual "set" in a belt as low in cross section as a 4L would be discernible. If it were, one would expect a set of three to be 3X the problem; they're all sitting in the same place.
I don't know the 54A, specifically, I have used old 54's. I know that everything I have is a minimum of 35 yr old and most is over 40 and that even PM isn't what it once was. How much, if any, of that is a contributory factor I don't know, either.
I do know that on some the farm equipment (particularly the older v-speed drives on the combine) it can be quite noticeable. But those are _MUCH_ heavier belts than on any ww'ing gear of the size talking about here.
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You should know better than that by now. :)
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On 1/6/2013 1:17 PM, dpb wrote:

FYI there are different type belts. Typically a woodworking machine that uses an single belt uses a common "industrial" type belt. These belts will take a set until they get many many hours of use. Then they are about wore out.
For the equipment like your PM66, my JTAS10l, and or Swingmans Unisaw "matched sets" of belts are used. These matched sets are normally NOT industrial type belts rather they are "automotive" style belts. These type belts are much more accurately made and designed to operate under more strenuous conditions. Basically they are a much higher quality belt and do not exhibit the same characteristics as a standard industrial belt. Still better and being used more on larger TS's are the "V" grove/ Serpentine style belts which are the more common belt on modern vehicles.
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On 1/7/2013 8:43 AM, Leon wrote:

A bit more on the nature of a belt. Common industrial V belts are designed to become wider/spread out in their mid sections between the top and bottom surface as they bend. The mid section spreads out to provide better grip when bending around a pulley. When this sets up and becomes cold it holds it "set" until it warms up. The thumping on a cold belt is this part of the belt that was bent around the pulley. Until it warms up this section of the belt will remain wider than the rest of the belt and you will hear the wide part of the belt thump as it enters in to a pulley.
To help combat this better automotive V belts are made with the cut out cogs on the bottom surface. These cut outs reduce the amount of widening that happens as the belt enters the pulley. This is especially helpful on small diameter pulleys.
Still to combat this further V grove/serpentine belts are used. These belts are typically wider than the belts that they replace and have the added multiple "v" groves to increase contact area with the pulley. Because they are much thinner top to bottom but have the equivalent surface area contact but there is much less bulging in the sides of the belts and being thinner they warm up much faster.
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On 1/7/2013 8:43 AM, Leon wrote: ...

Well, isn't that a revelation...manufacturers make more than one belt for different purposes--amazing!!!!
That a belt may have some residual shape when removed is certainly true--that it is a big deal in operation/startup just isn't so imo.

...
"Automotive" vis a vis "industrial" for a conventional v-belt basically is the cross-section and power-rating(s) not some nonsense about "better"; they're designed for different pulley configurations and loadings and minimum sheave diameters amongst other things.
There are matched sets available for various profiles; the matching simply provides a tighter tolerance on the lengths of those sold in a set than the general population of belts manufactured to the same nominal length so that in a multiple-sheave configuration they pull uniformly. Used to be that was a physical measurement/sorting operation; now most manufacturers can meet the spec's in the actual process so don't need the extra step, but it's still the only difference between a set and the individual belt.
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On 1/7/2013 9:16 AM, dpb wrote:

Thought you might appreciate learning that.

And so shows your experience or lack there of with the subject. If you had more experience with this you would know that the noise/vibration is a real condition with a cold belt.

Wrong, industrial type belts tend to be lower quality and much cheaper to produce than the better automotive style belts. I have inventoried and sold both. You could always substitute an automotive belt for an industrial but not the other way around if you expected the belt to last. Substituting an industrial for an automotive was a temporary fix. Substituting an automotive type belt for an industrial belt is a good but more costly solution.

Matched sets were cut next to each other and kept together vs. cut and dumped in a bin and package identified as they came out of the bin.
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If not used it will just sit there. It is designed for conveyor belts.
I have link belts on my wood and metal lathes been on both for 10 and 12 years. Light duty on lathes compared to industrial lines working 24/7.
Once worked in - and re-set - they keep on running.
Martin - using 2 sizes on the two lathes.
On 1/6/2013 9:48 AM, Zz Yzx wrote:

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