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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
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    Melbourne
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    Default Woodfast 1968 Varispeed- belt tensioning

    Hey there everyone!!!

    I have a 1968 Woodfast Vari-speed (it's the one with the dial and the Reeves pulley set-up). Great unit, but started making some strange rumbling noises this arvo and I suspect its a belt tension issue. Any suggestions out there on the best way to test the tension- ie amount of acceptable lateral movement with moderate pressure!!! etc...that sort of thing? Or any other suggestions for that matter...!!! Going in for the 'big clean' tomorrow and WD40 etc...

    Thanks...David

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Tallahassee FL USA
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    Default

    The Reeves drive is pretty much self-tensioning. It's likely the pulleys are sticking on the shafts. The 'big clean' will probably fix it.

    Cheers,
    Joe
    Of course truth is stranger than fiction.
    Fiction has to make sense. - Mark Twain

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    South Africa
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    717

    Default

    Don't leave the lubrication up to the WD40, if you do need to use it as a solvent to clean things, use a proper oil afterwards, as WD40 doesn't lubricate properly. You might also need to clean any excess oil off the belt after you spin it the first time.

  5. #4
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    Jan 2013
    Location
    Melbourne
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    Default

    Thanks gents...appreciate your feedback. See below...

    Joe- thanks that’s good to know, but to be more precise with my question- the lower drive belt (from the motor) can be adjusted in the standard way for lathes by tilting the motor. How tight (or slack) should this belt be?

    Colin- thanks- good advice- WD40 is definitely only going to be used as a solvent.

    Cheers...David

  6. #5
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    Default

    I've seen only one two-belt system, and IIRC both belts were self-tensioning. I'd adjust the lower belt to the same flex as its partner.

    Cheers,
    Joe
    Of course truth is stranger than fiction.
    Fiction has to make sense. - Mark Twain

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Oberon, NSW
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    12,716

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    A rule of thumb for non-self-tensioning drive-belts: 1/4" of belt deflection (under light thumb pressure) per foot of separation between pulley centres.

    Better a tad loose than over-tight, though... one may wear out the belt prematurely thru excess slippage, t'other may chew out the bearings.
    I may be weird, but I'm saving up to become eccentric.

    - Andy Mc (AKA "Ghost who posts." )

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    4

    Default

    Thanks all

    Great advice. Did the ‘big clean’ and all humming along nicely again and adjustment is now a dream!!! , but still need to correctly tension the lower belt...will use the above to do so.

    Cheers...David

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