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Cord style belting

Started by Roger Holmes, November 24, 2022, 12:21:57 PM

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Roger Holmes

I have started to re-furbish a model 31 and wonder if anyone knows where I can obtain some of the cord style belting - I am in Alberta, Canada.


McMaster-Carr has round leather belting but I forget what their shipping policy to Canada is (I always get them and Grainger Supply confused—there are Grainger locations in Canada but I don't think they sell to individuals).

A Google search for "round leather belting" reveals many hits, including ones at It also indicates that a place to try might be a sewing machine specialist. The old-style treadle-operated sewing machines certainly used the same belting as the Linotype, and it might still be available from such stores.

The hard part with the Google search is weeding out all the false hits on polyurethane belting, which would probably not work as well and is harder to join.

That all being said, I don't know what the OEM belts are made of. They might be leather or they might be cord/rubber composite like modern V belts. If I remember to I'll check one of the older parts manuals (the older manuals contain part names/descriptions absent from newer manuals) to see if they have any hints on belt material and size.


I have found that the round solid polyurethane belting  works well. The hollow belting less so. OK for larger pulleys such as the distributor drive belt. On smaller pulleys such as the keyboard belt the inserted joining clip tends to split the belt.

To join the solid polyurethane belt we use a modified electric soldering iron by removing the head and attaching a thin piece of metal to heat the belt ends. We also make a joining block out of wood. With a groove the same size of the belt we are joining. Cut another groove across the belt groove very slightly wider than the metal tip on the modified soldering iron. Once the belt has melted carefully pull out the iron and push the belt together. This is a two man job. Let it cool, trim off the excess.

Remember some of the belts have to be joined on the machine. I have not had to replace the matrix delivery belt, or main drive belt. Someone had replaced the assembler drive belt, on a model 8, we are working on with a rubber belt. This made it impossible to stop the assembler by pushing the assembler belt shift rod in.
George Finn (Mechanic)
Gold Coast

Roger Holmes

Thanks for the good thoughts - the comment on the metal clasp pulling out is what happened to my assembler belt on a closer look it is a type of v-belt on my model 31 - yesterday i found a small v-belt 3/8 at a local hardware store that i was able to get a size (after 3 trips to the hardware) that i could get on the wheels - it seems tight and i am not sure i will be able push it off to  the idler wheel and stop the assembler - i don't yet have power to my machine so can't test that yet - thanks for the thoughts
i am very happy to have found this forum

Dave Hughes

Quote from: Roger Holmes on November 25, 2022, 02:42:06 PMI am very happy to have found this forum

Thanks Roger, I hope you continue to find it useful during your restoration project.

Let us know how you get on!
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Yesterday I looked at our museum's Linotype and both the keyboard and distributor belts seemed to be narrow V belts, quite possibly 3/8" (size 3 IIRC) wide at the top.


While discussing with Dave Seat the cause of my Model 31 throwing it's drive belt on cold days (old grease = resistance), Dave mentioned a very useful appendix in a Star Parts catalog which has spec on every belt diameter and length.

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