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Hi guys long time no speak, been busy with a 750 virago, decided now was the time to leave the old girl off the road this year do a repaint, have all the chrome powder coated and change the timing belts.

so now she's up in the air on my home made ramp, all boxes, fairing and front wheel stripped out. Tonight I removed the radiator and the fairing brackets, pulled the timing belt covers and lined up the marks. Now the interesting thing here is I was able to turn the engine over with the plugs in using the generator bolt, I'd forgot to take them out. Did have some resistance but not as much as i would have expected, will remove the plugs before moving onto the next step. so all the marks are lined up and I've ordered 2 new belts from Dave Silver, was going to use Ebay but all that was on offer was 2nd hand belts from the usa, cheaper to buy new in the uk.

My question is the old belts on the top run where there is no tensioner have about 1/2" up and down movement, is this normal or a sign they need changing, I'm only changing as this will my 10th year of ownership and whiles we've done less than 10k together over the years I think now is the time to stop pushing my luck and change them.

Gonna follow Octanes post on GL1000 belts changing as it does say 1100's are the same.
 

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if you're in doubt about the old belts then change them. engine temp will affect belt tention as a warm engine will expand.
 

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Vintage Rider
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Belt tension is almost impossible to describe because it is rarely accurately measured. The amount of tension will vary with how much force you put on the belt when checking it. Way back when, I had an '86 Kawasaki 454LTD with belt drive. It came with a tension gauge where you put one end of it in a small recess in the frame, and the other end against the belt, then adjusted the belt till the gauge read right. It looked a lot like a pencil type tire gauge.

Judging it by hand is like torquing a bolt by hand without a torque wrench. You just have to develop a feel for it. I rarely ever use a torque wrench, even though I have 3. When I replaced my belts, I just used my best judgement based on past experience with belts. I had never worked on a Goldwing before.
 

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Junior Grue
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As you're changing the belts anyway don't worry about the old ones, just tension the new ones by the book.

For the original question, no belts don't stretch giving you a warning.
The internal non-stretching cords just get tired after many years/miles and suddenly, without any warning break.
 

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......just tension the new ones by the book......
This might be the problem. I noticed YEARS ago that the 'book' I had was WRONG on how to set the tension. If your book tells you to set BOTH belts without moving the crankshaft, its wrong. When the belts are set that way you WILL have one loose.

.....For the original question, no belts don't stretch giving you a warning.
The internal non-stretching cords just get tired after many years/miles and suddenly, without any warning break.
I agree. Also, any 'stretch' allowed by the cords going bad is very minimal and not enough normally to notice by eye or even feel.


Bill
 

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The octane tutorial is very good and easy to follow whilst spannering. The retensioning was easy as the tensioners are sprung. Take them off and give them a spin and listen. Should sound smooth. They can be rebuilt and there are articals on this forum about this.

The main pig was getting the teeth to line up on rebuild and I ended up half a tooth out. No noticable difference to mine but there are plenty here who have got it dead on. The bike right one was the main swine.

I used Gates belts sourced in the Uk and were cheaper than David silvers.

The slack you spoke of is normal but not a guide of wear as mentioned previously.
 

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Just one more thing. I found that I had to sync the carbs. Its a small point but a useful tip. In essence any work on the timing means the carbs should be sync.
 

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Born in the USSR
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My question is the old belts on the top run where there is no tensioner have about 1/2" up and down movement, is this normal or a sign they need changing, I'm only changing as this will my 10th year of ownership and whiles we've done less than 10k together over the years I think now is the time to stop pushing my luck and change them.

Gonna follow Octanes post on GL1000 belts changing as it does say 1100's are the same.
If you are not sure about belts' condition you would better replace them. If I'm not mistaken the belts must be replaced after 50K or 7 year period (for all GLs). When I bought and engine for my GL1200 it had 20K only and the belts looked pretty nice but to be sure I replaced them with new Gates belts as well well as I put new tensioners.

Sergey
 

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The real bugger is the cams that put tension on the right side. This means the right side toothed wheel is under tension when you put the belt on (the valve springs cause it to rotate back about 4 teeth).

Thats the nice thing about the octane procedure. It shows you how the fixate the wheel while you put the belt on.

That 1/2 inch play sounds a lot like the belt was a tooth off at the top. The belt should just fit with about 3mm play up and down.

Also, make sure the tensioning springs are still good and the rollers are rolling free and silent. The springs are all you should need to tnsion the belts before tightening up.
 

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Vintage Rider
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If you've got the covers off, and the belts aren't brand new, replace them. I wish this wasn't an interference engine, but it is, and if the belt breaks there will be major damage.

As for the tensioners, that is another area of concern. Since my bike was 26 years old when I got it, I was concerned about them, I checked them very carefully, cleaned them up, and decided they were still good. They are not cheap, but I would have replaced them had there been any real doubts.

As for lining things up, one of mine was slightly off. But I reinstalled the belt one more notch over, and it was off way more. So basically where I had it was as close as it was going to get.

While belts do not stretch, they do have slack in them, and the more pressure you put on them the more deflection you are going to get, at least to a point. If you put a lot of pressure on them you will get more deflection than what the manual calls for, and pressure is hard to describe without a way to measure it.
 
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