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I am considering getting a belt drive conversion for my T100 for safety reasons. It seems to me that a broken belt would be less likely to lock the rear wheel or damage the engine than a broken chain.

Any relevant experiences out there?
 

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:)Modern chains are incredibly tough and, under normal usage, as long as basic maintenance is carried out, would be highly unlikely to break. Belts, on the other hand, snap far more frequently, due mainly to small stones getting trapped between belt and pulley. This doesn't happen with a chain.
 

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:knockknockPlease don't take this the wrong way, but I think that mod would be a TOTAL waste of time and money. Keep your chain clean and adjusted and you won't have and problems. I don't think these bikes would look right with dare I say a rubber belt in place of a chain. THIS IS JUST MY OPINION so flame away all you guys and girls that already did this mod. :beerchug
 

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I am considering getting a belt drive conversion for my T100 for safety reasons. It seems to me that a broken belt would be less likely to lock the rear wheel or damage the engine than a broken chain.

Any relevant experiences out there?
Odds of breaking a properly maintained modern o-ring chain are virtually zilch, particularly, with what, 60 hp pulling on it? The toothed belts have their own issues, such as trapping a small pebble between the belt & pulley may cause wheel lockup and/or a snapped belt. I'm on a H-D Forum and hear about it happening occasionally.

You also have to maintain a fairly high tension adjustment on the belts, and the Triumph's final drive sprocket may not be designed for that much constant tension. (overhung load)

The modern chains on our bikes can handle 8 or more times the HP we make and still not break. Now... in the olden days, it was a different story.... Not trying to discourage you, but the belts are not a 100% solution either.

Cheers,
BLIGHT
 

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Well let's ask - anyone on here ever have (or even hear of) a chain break on a Hinckley Triumph?
 

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Chains all my life till i got the Tbird 5-6 months ago. I will never again have a chain if i can help it !!! Seriously, it's so much nicer, and as a bonus on the Tbird at least, gates developed an new belt and pully coating that supposedly means your final drive will last as much as 3 times longer than belts normally last. We're talking life of the bike probably, or even more. no lube, hardly ever needs adjustment and when it does it's easier. To me at least there is zero comparison.
 

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I'm puzzled by the "belts break" stuff; they just don't. HD belts generally make it past the 100k mark. That said, I woudn't bother. Big issues in a chain-belt conversion would be--

1. will it fit? belts are wide. Belt-to-chain conversions are not unusual in the HD world for this reason.
2. HD incorporates lots of guards to keep crap off the belt; it would have to be fabbed up on a Triumph.
3. Tension; already been mentioned, but worth mentioning again. Belts start out snug and get tighter.
4. No such thing as splicing a belt, like you can a chain.


Does someone actually market such a conversion? why?
 

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Very true about the guards. If it looks like that pic you may wanna consider passing or find a way to fab some guards. Belts can get holes from rocks so there are guards all around them on bikes that come stock with them. Whoever is marketing that system above should be providing guards.
 

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:) There was a lot of coverage in the bike press last year, of belts snapping on Buells, here in the UK. I think a lot of it was due to owners removing the top and bottom belt guards for a "sportier" look.
 

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I guess anything to be fashionable.....
And to lose HP...
I recall reading that belt final drives loses RWHP compared to a chain final drive...
True?
Chain drives are part of the Zen and Art of Motorcycle Maintenance...
 

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I am considering getting a belt drive conversion for my T100 for safety reasons. It seems to me that a broken belt would be less likely to lock the rear wheel or damage the engine than a broken chain.

Any relevant experiences out there?
With all due respect IMHO here is my take (40 continuous years riding/racing experience);

1. Safety. Don't do it for this reason. Just maintain the proper tension and lubricate your chain. The ONLY time I witnessed a rear wheel lock at speed was with a rider that didn't secure a sleeping bag on the back of a seat, it rolled around got WEDGED between the fat rear tire (NINJA 1000) and the swingarm, and locked the rear wheel at 120 kph. I have never seen a chain break first hand. It is not even on my radar screen as a concern. (By the way, the rider SAVED the bike, and produced the longest skid mark I have ever seen) 10+++++ on the Seat Vinyl Tensionometer. Underwear could not be saved.
2. Looks. ????? Totally up to you. Personally I think it suits a cruiser (Speedmaster) more than a roadster (Bonneville)
3. Maintenance. Less maintenance, no lubrication, and very little if any rear wheel cleaning (verses a chain). Infrequent adjustment required.
4. Strength. Belts are incredably strong (but so are properly maintained chains
5. Noise? I couldn't really comment unless I rode the same bike with a chain and with the belt conversion.

My thoughts and humble 2 cents (CDN)
 

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It's good to see a post from you, Daz, and that's a good lookin new bike...well, good lookin for a cruiser, that is.:D:D
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks for the responses!

Thanks for the responses!

My only concern was safety. I have heard of chains breaking and abruptly stopping the driving sprocket (with resultant engine damage) or even locking the rear sprocket. I did not know how common this was. I also did not consider that chains have undoubtedly improved over the years.

I have never broken a chain in many thousands of miles of motorcycling. I replaced one once because the bike sat out the winter in a car port and the chain got a little rusty. It was probably OK but I try not to take chances with equipment.

I maintain my bike and don't push the machine to extremes so I guess I'll just stop worrying about it.

Thanks again, guys.
 

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chains and belts

Haven't heard of a chain snapping for years. Back when they did or more precisely came undone when the clip was put on incoorectly or the wrong way round the chains just unwound on to the road. Free wheeling out of a corner might not be fun. I imagine a belt would generally do the same. Just look at the chains that are used on race bikes they are lighter than some road bikes mind they get changed regularly. So check regularly and maintain properly cant foresee an issue.
I did read that belts are quieter and that was why Harley went that way to meet drive by noise tests. Never heard noise from a Harley belt cant think why!!!!
 

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Another aspect I like about my chain is that it only takes ten minutes to take the guard off and put some lube on it. This makes it incredibly easier if you have a center stand to do this on but the other aspect is that you are looking over things as you take care of your chain. Maintenance is a good thing and it is never a bad idea to do the "once" over on your bike. Plus, like it has already been pointed out, there has been some considerable changes for the better in regards to how chains perform and endure.
 

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HI i had the chain snap on me!!! some idiot from kwikk fitt!!!! had a punture on my 1200 bandit 134rwhp. he didnt know that you need to find the tight spot for adjustment and he did it to half and inch movement!!! it was tight! but i didnt check! so my fault really any way i was rideing for children in need with the royalnavy motorcycle club and came out of a round about and gently accelerated and ping! and the rev's flew round! i looked down and the chain had snapped and come forward and hit the front sprocket case. the case was cracked but that was it! thankfully i was carrying a spare link with me and a local guy lent me his angle grinder/tools and we were away again but i changed the chain when i got back. Bandit 12's are bad for tight spots on chains. especially ones riden enthusiastically.
 

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And to lose HP...
I recall reading that belt final drives loses RWHP compared to a chain final drive...
True?
Chain drives are part of the Zen and Art of Motorcycle Maintenance...
I totally agree . I confess that I was interessted in a belt-driven conversion for its (nearly) maintenance-free conditions. At the other hand, I never had problems with my chains, I clean them regulary and use a topbrand chain-lube. When I clean and grease my chain it sticks to my hands and it smells like.............perfume, and it feels that I am taking care of my Bonnie.
For the looks my feeling goes to chains because when I look to my Bonnie I want to see metal, and no synthetics and plastic materials you see on Tupperware bikes. Did I see the light ????? Maybe:)
 
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