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Brian Dougherty

Replacing an old leather flat belt

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Posted (edited)

I was working on a part for a friend this weekend when I finally broke the ancient leather drive belt on my lathe.  I considered this belt to be on its last leg 15 years ago when I rebuilt the lathe, and got away with it for all this time so I can't complain.


The lathe is a South Bend "Heavy 10" from about 1941.  I don't know how old the belt is, but I'm sure it has been on this earth longer than I have.  I started to order the stuff to make a new one from McMaster, but I was going to have quite a bit of money wrapped up in it by the time I bought the belt material at $11/foot, and then paid another $20 for a length of alligator lacing.

I called the local bearing/hose/belt supply place this morning to see if they still make leather belts.  After the guy stopped laughing, he said they don't mess with that anymore, but took the dimensions and said they could get me fixed up.  I ran over at lunch time and for all of $16 they had this ready for me:


It just goes to show you that you can't afford to stop learning in this world...



Edited by Brian Dougherty
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Leather belting hasn't been cost effective for many years now, the leather

belt on my old Logan broke and I replaced it with the same material..

I replaced the lathe with a gear head model a few years back......................

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