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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
squeaky belt drive

my belt squeaks (like squeak, squeak pause then starts again) as it releases from the top of the rear pulley. i think it happens on each revolution of the pulley.

the belt is hard up against the outside edge of the pulley. if i spray a small amount of silicone on that edge the noise disappears until eventually it dries out.

happens every time the dealer adjusts the belt tension. the dealer says the belt must be up against the pulley and definitely not in the middle.

As I'm 250k from the dealer i end up taking the bike to another local bike mechanic who moves the belt a few mm's away from the edge. All okay until i go back to the dealer for service.

can someone tell me what Triumph recommend regarding positioning of the belt on the rear pulley.
 

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Like i've said recently, i think there are issues with the design. When the alignment of the wheel is perfectly straight, the pully should be properly adjusted too. But as you noticed it's hard against the edge and starts to shred. I had mine warranted due to this. What i've finally done is align the wheel straight, then back off the left adjuster a few turns. The wheel is no longer lined perfectly, but it's close enough and while the belt still looks hard against the pulley flange, I know pressure is relieved. If i still see a lot of belt dust i go another turn or 2. I think this design will be tweaked in time by triumph till it's better. But for now we just have to make due with little fixes like I did.
 

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Recently had my rear tire changed at the dealer. I asked them specifically to be sure the tension and alignment were set correctly so I would not have the chattering! Got the bike back, and on the first long ride the noise from the belt was so loud it was embarrassing! When I got back home, loosened the rear wheel, tightened both adjuster bolts by a half turn, checked the belt within proper tension according to the service manual and voila! No more chattering... I tend to think the dealers are all overly cautious about setting the belt too tight, rather than getting it set to specification? Sure seems like this is a common occurrence with dealers across the country based on the posts I've seen here..... :eek:
 

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I've learned that alignment and tension work together to cause squeaking. In other words, if the alignment is right, the belt can be somewhat tight or loose w/o squeaking. If not, it will be overly sensitive to tension and tend to squeak much easier. If the belt is not adjusted very tight and you have squeak, you can be sure it's way out of alignment. It's amazing how out it can be w/o realizing it unless you have a accurate way to align.

I would bet that in the future (if they haven't already) triumph will make some sort of change, maybe a spacer at the font or rear sprocket or some such thing along those lines, that will cause the belt to gravitate away from the outer flange when the wheel is aligned perfectly. I have put so much time, thought, and energy into getting this right, and at this point i really believe it can't be made right as is. Could be that some bikes can and some can't due to any number of things including possibly engine alignment in the frame due to the frame adjusters that situate the engine in the frame properly.
 

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They need to go to thier belt supplier and get a belt that fits the width of the pulley. Does anyone know the width of the pulley and dimensions of the belt?
 

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I think it's like that on purpose for several reasons. One being that when riding, turns will cause the bet to change it's position on the pulley. If it fit right up to the flanges on both sides the edges would be wearing extremely fast. The problem here is the wheel alignment doesn't jive with pulley alignment, at least on some of the bikes. Ideally the belt would have a tiny gap at the outer flange, but that doesn't happen when the wheel is properly aligned. Instead it is riding hard against the flange causing a lot of wear. You can tell because the wheel gets loaded with belt dust and even shreds of rubber will come off. So like i said, you just turn the left adjuster 2 turns or so so that the axl moves towards the engine a bit. That then buts the wheel out of alignment but takes the pressure off the belt/flange. But i don't feel thats right because if the wheel isn't perfectly aligned then the belt and pulley relationship isn't either. It keeps the belt edge from riding hard against the flange, but it upsets the alignment of the belt teeth to the pulley grooves they ride in. I feel thatss not right either, but if i have to take one of the two i prefer that over the edge of the belt wearing hard against the flange. anyways, thats why i feel it's a flawed system, but probably only because the wheel or pulley needs to go more right. spacers between the pulley and the hug i bet would do the trick. And if so, the triumph would probably eventually rectify it by changing the thickness of the pulley's hub area.

If i'm off here i'd be happy to hear why because i hope i am. But if i am i also hope theres a way to adjust it so this issue doesn't exist somehow, tho i just can't see how.
 

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I told ya Daz,add that third nut on the inside of the left adjuster.Belt tension is set by the right adjuster,alignment is set by the left adjuster.That third nut will align and hold the wheel in place.Then torque the axle nut and recheck everything.If it still isn't 100%,loosen the nut,then tweak it until it is.Then torque it again and recheck it again.Mine has been fine ever since I did that.I believe I have cracked the code as it's been 6000 miles since I changed that rear tire and no squeak,no chirp,no belt noise, period.lol Dave!!!
 

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I've checked it after tightening and down the road a ways and it's holding alignment so thats not it. The only issue with that was when tightening it, but once i started only going from 12:00 on down it stays aligned.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the comments, seems to be a common complaint. Will take it to my local bloke and get him to slacken off left tension nut 1-2 turns and see what happens. in mean time will keep using a bit of silicon spray, assuming it will not stuff up the belt.

have another query re side stand switch but will put it on a separate post.
 

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This was a recurring problem. Had it in to the dealer for recall and the belt started squeaking/chirping faintly the night before. Had the dealer adjust it. Picked it up as shop was closing, w/in 5 minutes it was 10x worse. Next day they it was my fault because I hadn't aligned the belt. This was less than 500 km after my 1st warranty service. Suggested I drive it about 30 km to wear off the rough edge. Thought what a load of crap but played their game. Went for 180 km run and it got progressively worse. They adjusted it - went away for about 250 km. They wanted to charge me for re-adjusting it. Apparently they don't get it that a belt shouldn't need to be adjusted every couple of hundred km. Took it back one more time. On a 3 day cruise, it happened again at end of first day. Next day and day after it was gone and hasn't happened again for a couple thousand km (now at 8,700 km). Don't know if it's a break in period for the belt or what but keeping my fingers crossed.
 

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THESE BELT PROBLEMS ARE A PAIN! I have had it in once again and they fixed it, replaced tire last week and hey presto back it comes. for someone whos not mechanically minded (like me) they ought to sort this out! Triumph - you hear us??
 

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Discussion Starter #12
i rang hinkley last friday spoke to a technical bloke. He said, as did my dealer, that the belt and pulley are designed so that the belt runs against the outside of the pulley. if its not then the wheel is not aligned correctly and the belt will wear quicker. he said harley belts also squeak, both made by same manufacturer "Gates" - check any harley forum and theyre full of comments.

he suggested get some anti belt squeak spray. i am trying too check with Gates to find out what spray to use. have used selleys 808 silicone spray before but unsure if it will bugger the belt.

Don't see why i should have to carry this. Have now managed to get the belt 1-2mm off outside of pulley - no squeaks and it can stay there stuff the extra wear. The squeak makes it too embarassing to ride the bike down the main street.

if i'd heard a new TB making loud noises like that i probably wouldn't have bought one.

am also going to buy the belt tension tool ($37Au) and the manual alignment tool - both harley products that my dealer uses (triumph do not have them on their parts list).
 

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I've been thru this for 2 years and talked to triumph's USA fleet manager who they consider the best of the triumph techs, (also works on HD and victory) and the USA reps and several dealers and read tons of remarks online from owners and also looked at HD guys and what they do. My take is this.... like was said the belt should run towards the right flange. However, it should have a very slight gap between the belt and the flange if you look carefully. It should also be looser than triumph's spec in the service manual, that even according to the fleet manager.

that said, the final and very important thing i found is this.....the wheel cannot be aligned 100% correctly or the belt will rub too hard against the right flange. I truly have come to believe this is a defect in the design. So what i do is align the wheel (and do NOT do that with the alignment marks, they are off) perfectly then check tension. If thension is off turn BOTH sides equal amounts till it's right. Once tension is set and the aligment is correct, adjust the left side a couple turns so that the axl is now further in towards the engine. That would mean loosening the nut. This will now put your wheel slightly out of alignment but the belt will now run right but not hard against the flange. If you notice any shredding on the edge of the belt in time, adjust the nut on the left in even more. Or as out resident belt fanatic Dave does, and this is a good idea, (tho haven't got around to it yet myself) but the bike on a lift once the tension and alignmet is set, then turn the back wheel and loosen the left adjuster till you see a slight gap start to open between the right flange and belt. Stop right there and that should be the best belt alignment even if the wheel isn't aligned perfect. Thats why i say i believe the design is defective....because it's impossible for both the wheel and belt to be aligned perfectly simultaneously. However, getting the tension right, IE: a bit looser than spec, then aligning it like this will eliminate squeaking totally and for good as long as you keep using this method. I haven't had a squeak in a long time since i started doing it this way.
 

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These will squeak when brand new and factory clean. It's the adjustment because mine squeaked many times before i got it sorted and every time iw went away after some form of adjustment. I imagine dirt may aggravate it and cause it to squeak when out of adjustment to a lesser degree than it might when clean, but adjustment is the essence of the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
thanks Dazco your comment re tension and alignment makes sense. My belt is now about 1mm off the edge and the squeaking has stopped - hoo bloody ray.

how do you set the initial perfect alignment, do you use the "notches" or a measurement. The alignment tool the blokeat Hinkley told me about is not made for the TB it is a harley tool and harleys apparently have holes on the swing arm to accomodate the tool.
 

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I have a Harley Night Rod Special and that is belt-driven also. Wash the belt in soapy-water! that will sort-it.
This gentleman is quite correct.If the belt gets enough dust or crap from the road stuck on it,then it won't move back and forth as it's supposed to,no matter how tight or loose it is.KEEP IT CLEAN,[wash or atleast rinse the belt thoroughly when ya wash the machine]and as long as it's atleast close to alignment,it won't squeak.I posted this recently on the other site,[which BTW seems to have disappeared],and got all kinds of flake about it.My belt DOES NOT MAKE NOISE,but THERE'S DOES.

And even though I'm pretty stupid,DUH!!,I must be doin somethin right cause I'm NOT havin half the problems that others seem to be havin with their T BIRDS!! Dave!!!
 

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Dave, your nut on the INSIDE of the adjuster on the left is w/o a doubt the best thing you've ever suggested. I don't want to cut myself out of the glory because i did think of doing that but never got around to it, but i plan to because now I have realized even more just how absolutely necessary it is. And heres why in an explanation of belt adjustment that i now know is the proper way as far as alignment. I think everyone needs to read this and Dave, i know you;ll agree.

About a week ago i spent another long session with the belt trying to adjust it right. There is absolutely no longer any question about alignment and how that needs to be. It's simple....perfect wheel alignment leaves you with IMPERFECT belt alignment. That is a fact. Fact 2, with the wheel perfectly aligned the belt run hard against the outer pulley flange and wears and even damages the belt. Fact 3 is that in order to keep it from wearing the belt you want it to run so that the belts right edge has the slightest gap between it and the flange that you can get. At that point you have what it the best adjustment because it is not wearing the belt, and it is putting the wheel alignment out of perfect alignment, but only by the minimal amount possible while keeping the belt from wearing against the right flange.

that said, heres why the nut is necassary. If dave's mention of this wasn't clear to anyone, what you wanna do is to pull the axl so you can remove the left side adjuster and put a nut on it that will remain on the inside or the engine side of the end of the swingarm. This is to keep the axl in place. The reason for this, and it because incredibly obvious when i did my adjustment experiments recently is that the left side adjustment goes out of whack by itself when you tighten the axl or possibly even while riding after the axl is tightened. So you adjust the wheel for the alignment i mentioned and by the time you are riding it has moved. And heres the problem....even tho it's slight, i found that getting the alignment just right so that there is a slight gap between the right belt edge and the pulley flange is incredibly touchy. Once it's there the slightest movement of alignment so that the left side moves backwards it will then move the belt even further away from the flange. Now thats GREAT for the belt because it's running more in the middle and far from rubbing on either side. But it also means the wheels are more out of alignment than they need to be. It's ok to leave it like that but it's not the perfect alignment and also i imagine bad for the belt because the teeth and the grooves in the pulley they ride in will not be as lined up parallel to each other as possible and may damage the teeth in time. That part is an assumption on my part, but in any case with the belt riding more in the middle the fact is thats not the best option due to the wheel being out of alignment more than it needs to be to keep from having belt wear.

Anyways, having that nut on the inside will allow you to get it perfect and insure after you tighten the axl and ride nothing changes. on a side note, Dave finds adjusting it with the bike on a lift by turning the wheel to see where it runs then adjusting till the gap is perfect didn't work for me. I had to adjust, ride a few blocks then come home and adjust again till i got it right. I believe that with the nut there i will be able to do it as Dave does. But till then i have to do it the way i mentioned.

Dave and I have spent a lot of time working this out and it seems we both came to the same conclusion, so i believe this is valuable info for those who haven't because this has been a confusing subject for everyone since the bike came out. And by the way, tension adjustment is pretty simple and straight forward, and again Dave's idea of running it looser than triumph spec is a good idea. Even my mechanic who does all the work on triumphs press fleet said the same. And once you get a feel for that you don't really need a tension adjusted. But the fact is, while dirt can contribute to squeaking, the reason for 99% of squeaking is adjustment, and i have found both alignment and tension can contribute to it.
 

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Why "THANK YOU SIR" for the plug.Now who do I send the check to.lol lol
SEE!!! I'm not as dumb as I look!! lol lol
And after all the frustration and countless hours of trial and error attempts that both Daz and I have gone thru to get to this point,I believe that the code has finally been broken.Plus,since I have never owned a belt drive motorcycle in the 50 years I've been riding [the last five were shaft drive,chain drives before that] this was a new and challenging experience for me also.

Now just a couple things to add,if I may Daz.When the belt is over to the right of the rear pulley,you'll note the the belt is dead center on the front pulley and the belt has to be able to move side to side when under accel and decel, traveling to the left on accel[hence the reason for the replaceable thrust ring on the inside of the rear pulley],and back to the right on decel.Now if the belt is dirty from dirt dust,etc.from everyday use,it can't do that.So that means it needs to be cleaned,washed or atleast rinsed thoroughly every so often.I just figured that out this past weekend when my belt started to make noise and everything looked ok back there.and I haven't touched it for over 8,000 miles.So I took my hose and thoroughly rinsed both the belt and cogs,moving the machine ahead each time I rinsed the belt and cogs until I was sure i had gotten them clean.Well guess what?? No more belt noise and now the belt can travel back and forth like it's supposed to.Does everyone understand that and the "WHY"?????

And I have a question for ya Daz.What happened to the other site??????? Dave!!!
 
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