Steve Saunders Goldwing Forums - View Single Post - 5 year old "New" Timing Belts For GL1500

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post #30 of (permalink) Old 08-17-2019, 12:20 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA
Year: 1999
Make: GL1500 SE
Posts: 5,541
Originally Posted by dnagardner View Post
This issue flirts with being a myth. The fact that a broken belt will wreck a motor is true. However, I have been monitoring this issue for about 20 yrs and there is no credible evidence that a belt will break with reasonable care. Now I expect there will be several replies where someone knows someone who lost a belt...... I can accept that and still the maintenance frequency question persists. It is also true that organic materials will deteriorate with time and use under stress is another vector to break a belt. So In the past I came up with what I thought to be a reasonable and prudent way to judge the need for changing belts.
The formula for when to change a belt (is) = No of years old the belt is + Number of miles on belt/10,000. (XB = YR OLD + Miles/10k)
If the number for when to change a belt gets to 10 then you change the belt to provide reasonable care. Here is an example: I changed my belt in 2014, ie 5 years ago, and I have ridden 30,000 miles since the belt change. So; XB = 5 + 30,000/10,000, therefore XB = 8. Eight is less than 10 so the next belt change will be in 2 years if I do not ride the bike or sooner if I ride the bike many miles. Granted I still don't know the statistics for when a belt will break however I believe that using the formula will provide you with near 100% confidence that you are getting the value out of the belt without posing a threat to the engine.
It is a gamble. Would you bet $35 against $3500 on a long shot? Here is an exceptionally bad vehicle.


Worked on the "big rigs" for 45 years now just riding my Wing whenever I can. Gets cold in Wisconsin.
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