Is this belt too tight??

Old 01-05-2015, 10:25 AM
  #1  
Super Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Victorian Sweatshop Forum
Posts: 1,248
Default Is this belt too tight??

I'm having a heck of a time finding the right size belt for my 117.740 Kenmore. The 2 belts it came with were both too big. Using Jenny at Sew Classic's rolling method of measuring, they were 14 1/4". I bought 2 belts from Jenny but had to return both of them. One was too big, one was too small. She suggested I try my local shop which I did today. They sold me a 13 3/4" belt. Here are pics of it installed. I have the motor installed as close to the machine as I can get it. I've been googling for hours and can't find a definitive description of how tight the belt should be. I know too tight is bad, is this too tight? Thanks!!

1-belt.jpg2-belt.jpg
KenmoreGal2 is offline  
Old 01-05-2015, 11:18 AM
  #2  
Super Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Victorian Sweatshop Forum
Posts: 1,248
Default

Oh yeah, the man at the sewing machine center said I should measure the belt size needed using string with the motor at the half way point. Just did that and it's between 13 1/4 and 13 1/2 so theoretically this belt should fit. But I think the 13 3/4 measurement for the belt is the outside dimension, I measured what would be the inside dimension of the belt with the string.

Gosh, should it be this hard? It's not rocket science.

Oh yeah #2 - neither the machine manual nor the service manual say what size the belt should be. The service manual says it is part number 60020 but I can't find any reference to that part number to tell me what size that is.

Thanks again!

joan
KenmoreGal2 is offline  
Old 01-05-2015, 11:34 AM
  #3  
Senior Member
 
sews's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Issaquah, WA
Posts: 357
Default

I am having belt issues as well with my New Home/Janome and did exactly what you did with the same result. Have yet to return the 3 I got from Jenny....

My local Sm place was not near as helpful as yours. To determine the belt size, and whether they even have one in stock, they were going to send my machine in to the part supply location, where, I'm sure, they look at data and go find the darn belt if they have it. What would be the extra charge for this service, I wonder.....
I thought the run-around I'm getting was particular for Janome's customer "service", but I guess not. So I'm back to using the very tight belt the machine came with. The stretch belt I got doesn't work either, since it interferes with the bobbin winder.

Sorry I'm no help, we're in the same boat - but at least you're not alone ;-)
sews is offline  
Old 01-05-2015, 12:00 PM
  #4  
Super Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Victorian Sweatshop Forum
Posts: 1,248
Default

I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one that can't figure this out. I do have an update. When I went to my SM center I did not bring the part number from the service manual because Jenny said no database exists to make use of it. However my SM center said they did indeed have access to a database and if I had brought the part number they could have used it. So I called them back just now with the part number to see if the belt they sold me is the right one. They found a different belt which supposedly replaces the 60020. I ordered it but since it's special order I can't return it if they were wrong. That annoys me. This new belt is 14 1/4, the same as the 2 that came with the machine that were too big. But there's a difference between nominal measurement and actual measurement. Like a 2x4 is a nominal measurement but the actual lumber is not that size. So I'm hoping that this 14 1/4" special order belt is a nominal size and the actual size is smaller. What a pain.....
KenmoreGal2 is offline  
Old 01-05-2015, 01:01 PM
  #5  
Senior Member
 
sews's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Issaquah, WA
Posts: 357
Default

Originally Posted by KenmoreGal2 View Post
But there's a difference between nominal measurement and actual measurement. Like a 2x4 is a nominal measurement but the actual lumber is not that size. So I'm hoping that this 14 1/4" special order belt is a nominal size and the actual size is smaller. What a pain.....
Yes, I know, and that is why, I suppose Jenny has us measure the actual length of the belt, but now I'm thinking maybe measure the actual circumference with the belt removed..... Ugh. yeah, what a pain.... so confusing, and like you I don't get confused that easily.....
sews is offline  
Old 01-05-2015, 03:55 PM
  #6  
Super Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 8,092
Default

If you can play dueling banjos on the belt, it's too tight.
If the motor groans and whines and barely runs, it's too tight.
If the motor gets hot and looses power, it's too tight.

The rule of thumb for belt tension is: The belt needs to be just tight enough to not slip. No tighter.

I've found:
>that most black V-belts will feel loose when they are just right.
>that the amber / orange cogged belts need to be tighter than the black V-belts. They tend to slip more.
>that sometimes the amber / orange cogged belts will not work on some machines. You simply cannot get them tight enough.
>that the amber / orange cogged belts tend to slip more than the black V-belts.
>that newly manufactured belts seem to run a bit smaller than the old ones. Sometimes from stretching, sometimes cos they are shorter.
>measuring the belt length with the string method doesn't always work. Like you said it measures the bottom of the pulleys, not the top where the wide part of the belts ride.

Joan - Sabine,
Did your machines have a belt on it when you got it? A good sewing machine shop should have a belt measuring tool, mine does. It's a miniature tool like the car parts places use to measure engine belts.

Joan,
Is that motor spring loaded?
From your picture the belt does look too tight to my eyes, but it's hard to tell cos I can't reach through the screen to squeeze it myself.
I wish I could help more, but I have no idea what belt that machine might take. I checked on the Sears parts site and they don't carry that belt any more.
It's gonna be a case of try and test till you find one that works. And it might not be the one you think it is.


Joe
J Miller is offline  
Old 01-05-2015, 04:23 PM
  #7  
Super Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Victorian Sweatshop Forum
Posts: 1,248
Default

Originally Posted by J Miller View Post

Joan - Sabine,
Did your machines have a belt on it when you got it? A good sewing machine shop should have a belt measuring tool, mine does. It's a miniature tool like the car parts places use to measure engine belts.

Joan,
Is that motor spring loaded?
From your picture the belt does look too tight to my eyes, but it's hard to tell cos I can't reach through the screen to squeeze it myself.
I wish I could help more, but I have no idea what belt that machine might take. I checked on the Sears parts site and they don't carry that belt any more.
It's gonna be a case of try and test till you find one that works. And it might not be the one you think it is.


Joe
Thanks for your help Joe. I bought this machine about a month ago on Craigslist. It had a belt and a spare, both 14 1/4" measured using the rolling method. Those belts were too loose. I could see that they were not contacting the motor post and I had to start the machine using the handwheel every time. I do think the belt in the picture was too tight, seems you tend to agree at least on sight. I'd feel better if my motor wasn't as close as it could go, I'd prefer some wiggle room. The motor is not spring loaded, in fact not even sure what that is! It's bolted to the machine, no springs.

Right now I'm making do with a stretch belt. This is my dedicated FMQ machine and having to start it by hand all the time makes it difficult to maintain a nice stitch because I only have one hand to hold the fabric steady. I hope the new belt works out. It is not the one I would have chosen, so maybe it is the correct one after all.
KenmoreGal2 is offline  
Old 01-05-2015, 04:32 PM
  #8  
Senior Member
 
sews's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Issaquah, WA
Posts: 357
Default

Originally Posted by J Miller View Post
Joan - Sabine,
A good sewing machine shop should have a belt measuring tool, mine does. It's a miniature tool like the car parts places use to measure engine belts.

Joe
This got me thinking - what is a "sewing machine shop"? LOL We have only the chains here and I already tried the one we have in town which represents the rest of them, and JoAnn... < chances are very slim..... But you encouraged me to dig deeper, and yes, there seems to be such a store in another town near here and they have belts! So, I'll take the sewing machine there tomorrow. Thanks, I needed the extra nudge :-)
sews is offline  
Old 01-05-2015, 04:35 PM
  #9  
Super Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Victorian Sweatshop Forum
Posts: 1,248
Default

I'd take my machine in to the shop too but I don't think it's been removed from it's cabinet since it was manufactured in 1956. I'm a bit scared that one of the screws won't come out right or I won't be able to get it back in correctly or whatever.....
KenmoreGal2 is offline  
Old 01-05-2015, 06:45 PM
  #10  
Super Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Utah
Posts: 1,650
Default

Usually, you just have to loosen the 2 screws under the back hinges, and they come out and go back in pretty easy. Or, you can always take the whole cabinet in. If you were to take it to the shop where I work, we have a whole wall full of different size belts. We'd measure the belt that's on it, and maybe try a couple different ones. Set the belt tension. It's a pretty quick thing, so we'd probably only charge you for the belt. It shouldn't be too painful. :-) I think taking it to the shop is the best way to go. You've got the whole size selection that way, and you're sure to get the right belt.
quiltedsunshine is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
Dolphyngyrl
General Chit-Chat (non-quilting talk)
0
10-06-2012 09:04 AM
quiltwhisperer
Main
12
02-21-2012 09:10 AM
Quilt4u
General Chit-Chat (non-quilting talk)
4
12-17-2009 01:46 PM
dillysnana
Main
38
09-30-2007 12:16 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


FREE Quilting Newsletter


SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.