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Old 03-10-08, 07:15 PM   #1
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Belt Driven bikes....

Whats this about these belt drives instead of chains?
I'm reading a magazine that had an article about it.
What do you all think about this? I don't like the thought of belt drives, belts snap and can get all chipped up and can also strip down.
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Old 03-10-08, 07:23 PM   #2
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They're about 2-3 times as strong as chains, and last like 7 times longer, these are already used on car secondary drive systems, lawn mowers, helicopters, etc.

I strongly favor the internal hub gearing which is neccesary for this system, Internal hub gear is far superior to cassette type. They never became super popular because older models were trash and had a limited gearing range. But new ones have made enormous improvements over the old internally geared hubs.

I always thought that chains were slightly primitive (yes, i know they have alot of physics and engineering aplied to them) and am amazed at the potential (yet enormous) improvements to gearing through internally geared hubs.

Im fairly optimistic about it.
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Old 03-10-08, 07:28 PM   #3
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A belt is also stiffer is it not? That would make it harder to pedal.
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Old 03-10-08, 08:11 PM   #4
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A belt is also stiffer is it not? That would make it harder to pedal.
I don't beleive a stiffer belt or chain would make any difference in pedaling efficiency. I may be wrong, but I'd say you'd want a stiffer chain or belt to prevent chain slap from occuring.

I also agree with the fact that belts are superior to chains. The main points have already been made, but they definitelty should last long and seem as if they are easier to maintain. However, not enough research has gone into bicycle belt drives, and theres not much selection, so I'm refraining from buying one.

It seems like the current offerings are perfect from commuters, however.


CMIIW

EDIT- Crap, I'm agreeing with Elf. Now I'm sure I'm wrong.
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Old 03-10-08, 08:15 PM   #5
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A belt drive system that approaches the efficiency of a chain drive system has get to be discovered.
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Old 03-10-08, 08:16 PM   #6
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A belt drive system that approaches the efficiency of a chain drive system has get to be discovered.
Just wondering, do they use chains or belts on most sport (motor)bikes? The guy at my LBS has a chain driven system.
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Old 03-10-08, 08:21 PM   #7
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i believe harleys and buells have belts.
with a mtb, though i think that dirt/mud would be a problem.
road bikes maybe?
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Old 03-10-08, 08:24 PM   #8
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i believe harleys and buells have belts.
with a mtb, though i think that dirt/mud would be a problem.
road bikes maybe?
It seems like a belt would actually be better off in the mud. You know, know little notches to get clogged, et cetera. If efficiency was truly a problem, than a road bike is better off with a chain.
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Old 03-10-08, 08:27 PM   #9
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Just wondering, do they use chains or belts on most sport (motor)bikes? The guy at my LBS has a chain driven system.
When the power available is in the range of hundreds of horsepower, the inefficiency caused is negligible, especially when the tires would break grip from the ground before all the horsepower is used. In a bike, with a human as the 'engine', the circumstances are quite different.
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Old 03-10-08, 08:28 PM   #10
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They're about 2-3 times as strong as chains, and last like 7 times longer, these are already used on car secondary drive systems, lawn mowers, helicopters, etc.
Please explain why engine timing chains can usually last the life of the engine, while timing belts need to be replaced regularly, say every 60k miles.
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Old 03-10-08, 08:30 PM   #11
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Please explain why engine timing chains can usually last the life of the engine, while timing belts need to be replaced regularly, say every 60k miles.
Obviously the chains are enchanted with LVL4 HARDENING.
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Old 03-10-08, 08:33 PM   #12
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It seems like a belt would actually be better off in the mud. You know, know little notches to get clogged, et cetera. If efficiency was truly a problem, than a road bike is better off with a chain.
belt will have notches.
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Old 03-10-08, 08:36 PM   #13
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Obviously the chains are enchanted with LVL4 HARDENING.
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Old 03-10-08, 08:37 PM   #14
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belt will have notches.
I mean, the area in between each link. I know the belt will have notches, but it won't get clogged.
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Old 03-10-08, 08:47 PM   #15
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I suppose it would depend on the profile of the belt, but it seems like mud getting between the belt and the pulleys would be a problem, since there's less room for the mud to squish out...?
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Old 03-10-08, 10:46 PM   #16
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I read an article in one of the bike mags, Bicycling I think, that said belts and internal hubs are being tested in hybrids and will transfer to road and MTBs if they can assure durability and reduce their weight. I think the derailers days may be numbered.
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Old 03-10-08, 11:53 PM   #17
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Personally, it's the way foward. Nicolai also seem to think so and have started using them on their G-boxx bikes.

www.carbondrivesystems.com/

www.nicolai.net/
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Old 03-11-08, 03:11 AM   #18
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Ah the ole Belt/Internally geared/G-boxx discussion, always a forum favourite for the tech heads.

Personally, i think it's only a matter of time until the major manufacturers start developing and releasing easily accessible, servicable, strong and long lasting internally geared hubs, it is by far the way of the future. The question is not if but when.

Yes, yes, the Rohloff and G-Boxx still exist now, but are uber expensive and not as easy to get parts for as your chips and salt Shimano/SRAM cassette drivetrain.

If I had the money, my DH bike - soon to be replaced - would run Rohloff. But it won't.
I will leave my speel there.
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Old 03-11-08, 08:21 AM   #19
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Please explain why engine timing chains can usually last the life of the engine, while timing belts need to be replaced regularly, say every 60k miles.
Its really a completely different matter, engine belts do not drive by using teeth (the ones iv seen anyway) they drive by having a tight contact (friction) with the pulleys on either end, so combined with the flap due to the size of a timing belt (versus the size of a bike belt) more flap is created creating wear on the belt, bike belts work off of teeth, so this problem is negated.
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Old 03-11-08, 08:29 AM   #20
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Its really a completely different matter, engine belts do not drive by using teeth (the ones iv seen anyway) they drive by having a tight contact (friction) with the pulleys on either end, so combined with the flap due to the size of a timing belt (versus the size of a bike belt) more flap is created creating wear on the belt, bike belts work off of teeth, so this problem is negated.
Engine timing belts do have teeth, how else would the cams stay in time?
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Old 03-11-08, 01:03 PM   #21
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Engine timing belts do have teeth, how else would the cams stay in time?
Maybe im thinking of something else then, im no car mechanic. Either way its been tested on bikes, they last 7x longer.
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Old 03-11-08, 01:36 PM   #22
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Please explain why engine timing chains can usually last the life of the engine, while timing belts need to be replaced regularly, say every 60k miles.
Do you know how many bike miles would translate to 60k car miles? I don't know if anyone would live long enough to wear out such a system on their bike. Compare that to the constant maintenance bikes require: chain lube, deraileur adjustment, chain and gear replacements, etc... Bikes are VERY maintenance intensive compared to cars. I routinely go 7500 miles without doing any maintenance on my car, and it probably has 1000x the moving parts count as my bike.

To answer the question, timing chains can last the life of the engine because they live in a very benign environment, sealed away from dirt, dust, and grime.
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Old 03-11-08, 01:55 PM   #23
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Do you know how many bike miles would translate to 60k car miles? I don't know if anyone would live long enough to wear out such a system on their bike. Compare that to the constant maintenance bikes require: chain lube, deraileur adjustment, chain and gear replacements, etc... Bikes are VERY maintenance intensive compared to cars. I routinely go 7500 miles without doing any maintenance on my car, and it probably has 1000x the moving parts count as my bike.

To answer the question, timing chains can last the life of the engine because they live in a very benign environment, sealed away from dirt, dust, and grime.
The system wears out more quickly on bicycles because we, as human engines, are much less tolerant of inefficiency in the drive train. It would be nice if there were bike drive systems that were as long lasting as IC vehicles but I don't think any of us would appreciate the piss poor efficiency of ~20-30%.
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Old 03-11-08, 02:59 PM   #24
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I know ATV's don't have belt drives.
They stick with chains.
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Old 03-11-08, 05:13 PM   #25
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I sincerely hope that the belt-drive/internal hub gearing system replaces the chain/deraileur system, if for any reason that it would make riding in the mud so much less maintenance intensive.
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