belt drive - pros cons- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    belt drive - pros cons

    I am willing to try new things - those of you who use them - tell me the pros and cons of Nelson vs Hanson. Wait, Damn yankees vs Bon Jovi - no! wait....

    belt vs the old tradition of chains...

  2. #2
    Drinking the Slick_Juice
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    here is one: if you want to change the gear ratio from more than like 4 teeth you have to buy a new belt . with a chain you just break out the chain breaker
    "If women don't find handsome , they should at least find you handy."-Red Green

  3. #3
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    this has been discussed to death, it depends on the person mainly, I ride 2:1 pretty much everywhere I go, i usually only change my gear when I am out of shape or know I have a brutal ride coming up, I pretty much suck at remembering to lube my own chain (I'm a mech so I do it everyday for all my customers but never remember on my own bike) I like quiet bikes and like off the wall parts.

    if I changed my gearing as much as my underwear, always maintained my bike and liked the run of the mill normal stuff I would have a chain bike.

    I tried it to see how it works and haven't regretted my choice since. I was stuck with 2:1 at SSWC but what the hell "Run Whatcha Brung"
    Quote Originally Posted by thefuzzbl
    aluminium has a tendency to fail when you need it most. i.e. you end up with a bad day.

  4. #4
    Ovaries on the Outside
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    I'd suck either way, but if I had a belt drive maybe other riders would talk to me.

  5. #5
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    Pros:
    It works
    it's quieter
    it's cleaner
    it's lighter
    less moving parts on your bike

    Cons:
    restricted choice of ratios - not a problem if you get the right one.
    cost - more expensive at the moment
    life expectancy unknown
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
    Latitude: 5736' Highlands, Scotland

  6. #6
    Single Speed Junkie
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    Pro:
    Quite longer
    Creek crossing possible w/o relubing.

    Con:
    Chain line (belt line) Must be spot on.
    Belt tension requires higher quality hubs.
    Lowered GC with larger chain rings.
    Lowered GC increases rock strikes which can damage belt.

  7. #7
    trail rat
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    Search, there are hundreds of posts here on that over the last two years.
    "The physician heals, Nature makes well" - real fortune cookie

    CCCMB trail work for trail access - SLO, CA

  8. #8
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    Requires a larger chainring/cog for the same ratio. This reduces chainstay clearance so that reduces tire clearance, so to get it back it will require longer stays. I think it would work better on road SS's.

  9. #9
    Out spokin'
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    Pro chain, con belt:
    I already have a few chain-driven singlespeeds, so no cost outlay to stay with what I've got.
    No problem with what I've got, so why seek a solution to no problem.

    Pro belt, con chain:
    Can't think of anything.

    --Sparty
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    We don't quit riding because we get old.
    We get old because we quit riding.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schmucker
    Requires a larger chainring/cog for the same ratio. This reduces chainstay clearance so that reduces tire clearance, so to get it back it will require longer stays. I think it would work better on road SS's.

    Schmucker,


    From one graph I read I was under the impression they were the same.
    Is there a table that converts Chain Drive rings and cogs to Gates rings and cogs??

    Im wanting the equivelant of a 32-20T in Gates....any ideas?
    "Be the Gear..."

  11. #11
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    Can't a belt be cut with a knife out in the woods in case you need a tourniquet?

  12. #12
    Out spokin'
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    That's a good reason not to go tubeless, too.

    --Sparty

    Quote Originally Posted by ernesto_from_Wisconsin
    Can't a belt be cut with a knife out in the woods in case you need a tourniquet?
    disciplesofdirt.org

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    We get old because we quit riding.

  13. #13
    Ovaries on the Outside
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    Quote Originally Posted by ernesto_from_Wisconsin
    Can't a belt be cut with a knife out in the woods in case you need a tourniquet?
    I just ride with a hacksaw and a branding iron.

  14. #14
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    rubber belts are incredibly INTOLERANT of trail damage.
    If steel is real then aluminium is supercallafragiliniun!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by -Muz R-
    Schmucker,


    From one graph I read I was under the impression they were the same.
    Is there a table that converts Chain Drive rings and cogs to Gates rings and cogs??

    Im wanting the equivelant of a 32-20T in Gates....any ideas?

    the closest that you get is roughly a 32-19.5 (half tooth??) from the stock gearing that comes on the Spot Longboard. It is a Gates 46t front and 28t back using a 122t belt. To switch to a 25t rear cog, you have to use a 118t belt.


    one word of advise if you get one, do not buy the belt whip tool that they sell. It is simply just a rubber strap wrench which you could purchase at a hardware/auto parts store. I snapped mine the first time I used it. my lockring was on a bit tight.

  16. #16
    skillz to pay billz
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    spanner wrench works good for this

  17. #17
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    This

    This is what I am liking...

    http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes...istrictcarbon/
    Attached Images Attached Images

  18. #18
    SS or Die
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    Quote Originally Posted by mothgils
    the closest that you get is roughly a 32-19.5 (half tooth??) from the stock gearing that comes on the Spot Longboard. It is a Gates 46t front and 28t back using a 122t belt. To switch to a 25t rear cog, you have to use a 118t belt.


    one word of advise if you get one, do not buy the belt whip tool that they sell. It is simply just a rubber strap wrench which you could purchase at a hardware/auto parts store. I snapped mine the first time I used it. my lockring was on a bit tight.
    Thanks for the tip. if the 46-28T combo gives 47.64 gear inches ( 32-19.5 ) then I think the new 39-24T combo will get closer at 47.12 gear inches.

    A 32-20T chain drive is 46.4 gear inches.

    My main concern is whether Gates rings and cogs are dimesionally the same so as to give the same mathematical gear inch equation. For example, is a Gates 32T the same as a standard 32T ring?
    "Be the Gear..."

  19. #19
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    stick with chains, for completely biased reasons.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by ISuckAtRiding
    stick with chains, for completely biased reasons.
    I can see you making Gates rings and cogs in about 3 years from now.....LOL!

    It wont happen over night....but neither did suspension forks, hydraulic discs brakes and tubeless tires. I never thought I'd see Tubular Singles on Mtb's either until I witnessed multiple XC Elite Men racing on them at the recent UCI World Champs in Canberra Aust.
    "Be the Gear..."

  21. #21
    aka baycat
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    They do not come in colors to coordinate with your frame. Big con for me.

    KMZ might make some purple, blue and red ones.

  22. #22
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    belted

    biggest con is the proprietary frame needed for the belt drive.
    PROFESSIONAL THREAD KILLER!



    Quote Originally Posted by FoShizzle
    Maybe I will just start hanging out in the "Recycle Bin" forum.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by crux
    Pro:
    Quite longer
    Creek crossing possible w/o relubing.

    Con:
    Chain line (belt line) Must be spot on.
    Belt tension requires higher quality hubs.
    Lowered GC with larger chain rings.
    Lowered GC increases rock strikes which can damage belt.
    Couldn't a bashguard be mounted to prevent most impacts from actually contacting the belt?

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by -Muz R-
    ... snip ... My main concern is whether Gates rings and cogs are dimesionally the same so as to give the same mathematical gear inch equation. For example, is a Gates 32T the same as a standard 32T ring?
    In a word. No.

    When I was researching the belt I'm pretty sure I ran across an app on Gates' website that provided conversions from standard chain drive systems to an equivalent belt drive system. Might have to do some digging to find it. I can't remember where it was.

    FWIW, I'm sticking to chains too. Seriously considered the belt drive but decided I just don't like the idea of not being able to repair it in the 'field'. I plan on doing at least one very long race/ride & the thought of having to carry multiple belts just doesn't excite me. YMMV.
    Last edited by Sometimes; 10-12-2009 at 11:43 PM.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by totally_fixxated
    biggest con is the proprietary frame needed for the belt drive.
    Not necessarily.

    There's someone on MTBR that's successfully modified standard frames very cheaply.

    And, it's also possible to fit a coupler to a seatstay. Kinda spendy though. Couplers alone are expensive to begin with, plus the added cost of installing it would make it hard to justify. But for those folks getting custom frames made it wouldn't be that much more expensive to include a coupler in the frame build.

  26. #26
    SS or Die
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    I was fortunate that my new Blacksheep frame will except the Gates belts without even thinking of it, the adjustable chainstay pulls apart just enough to feed the belt in....bonus!
    "Be the Gear..."

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sometimes
    Not necessarily.

    There's someone on MTBR that's successfully modified standard frames very cheaply.

    And, it's also possible to fit a coupler to a seatstay. Kinda spendy though. Couplers alone are expensive to begin with, plus the added cost of installing it would make it hard to justify. But for those folks getting custom frames made it wouldn't be that much more expensive to include a coupler in the frame build.
    If you have the right shape of dropout, it's easy to make a coupler with hand tools. That's what I have done on my conversions.

    I reckon most of the fancy couplers we are seeing are poor design, especially the Trek one. The big companies are all trying to come up with a proprietary (read patentable solution) rather than use a simple effective and light pin joint.

    I would like to get my hands on a carbon fibre frame where the seatstay is pinned to the dropout. I think that could be easily modified to separate. (Usually the joint is hidden by filler). However I have spent enough on my experiments for now, so it can wait until a suitable frame crosses my path cheaply.
    As little bike as possible, as silent as possible.
    Latitude: 5736' Highlands, Scotland

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sometimes
    Not necessarily.

    There's someone on MTBR that's successfully modified standard frames very cheaply.

    And, it's also possible to fit a coupler to a seatstay.

    http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=518332
    PROFESSIONAL THREAD KILLER!



    Quote Originally Posted by FoShizzle
    Maybe I will just start hanging out in the "Recycle Bin" forum.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by totally_fixxated
    biggest con is the proprietary frame needed for the belt drive.
    perfect excuse to buy a new frame
    Quote Originally Posted by thefuzzbl
    aluminium has a tendency to fail when you need it most. i.e. you end up with a bad day.

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