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 FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types

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oldsman105
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PostSubject: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Sun Feb 18, 2007 12:32 pm

The riviera has a unique supercharger belt size compared to the w/h-body cars. For those of you with a 3.4 or smaller what belt did you use. I am getting belt slip on mine and need to get a better one soon. Also what brand do you recommend.

Thnaks in advance
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99Rivman
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Sun Feb 18, 2007 12:55 pm

Not sure of the different sizes but I only use Gates belts, have found them more reliable than most over the years.
Years ago when I was an Automotive Service Manager, don't do that anymore, I stocked Dayco belts, I remember taking one off the shelf and breaking it as I put it on the pulleys, haven't used them since!
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AA
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Sun Feb 18, 2007 1:34 pm


_________________
'98 SC Riviera 281k miles 298 HP/370 TQ 0-60: 5.79s ET: 13.97 @ 99.28 4087 lb 20.1 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:30
3.4" pulley AL104 plugs 180 t-stat FWI w/K&N 1.9:1 rockers OR pushrods LS6 valve springs SLP headers ZZP fuel rails
KYB GR2 struts MaxAir shocks Addco sway bars UMI bushings GM STB Enkei 18" EV5s w/ Dunlop DZ101s F-body calipers
EBC bluestuff/Hawk HP plus SS lines Brembo slotted discs DHP tuned Aeroforce Hidden Hitch

^^^ SOLD ^^^ frown

'05 GTO 85k miles 0-60: 4.8s 16.9 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:26
Because fun


'70 Olds Ninety-Eight Holiday Coupe 116k miles 455 Rocket V8
Because cool


'95 Celica 152k miles 0-60: yes
Because free
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oldsman105
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Sun Feb 18, 2007 1:59 pm

Doh! how did I miss that scratch
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Jack the R
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PostSubject: Belt Size Revisited.   Sat Apr 07, 2007 9:20 pm

I posted this on RegalGS.org a few days ago, but I guess no one goes there anymore -

Quote :

I got a Gatorback 72.5" belt for the SC today and installed it. I thought you all might be interested in the results -



Summit has the 72.5" Gatorback listed as the replacement SC belt for 96's, 97's, 98's, and 99's.

It really looks like the 72.5" is the correct belt. Can those of you who have stock pulleys and the AC Delco 6K271/Gates K060271 do me a favor and take a picture of your alignment markings?

The only reply I got was from NatesRiv, who had a 72.05" (?!) Dayco which put his tensioner markings in the correct range. Given that installing the 72.2" Gates on my car was next to physically impossible, and fully compressed the tensioner (and when I mean fully, I mean I couldn't compress it anymore leaning on it with a pry bar), I'm going to assume the Dayco was actually 72.5" and 72.05" is a data entry error. A belt that is only 5 hundredths of an inch bigger than 72" makes no sense.

One more thing - how good is the quality on these Gatorbacks?
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Sat Apr 07, 2007 9:55 pm



i am partial to gatorbacks. they are exceptional belts and i sell tons of them and they dont come back which is a good thing.

on my gran dam, i had replaced the belt on there with a gatorback because the 1st belt snapped for some reason i didn't know at first. i put the gatorback on first and didnt actually fix the real problem. turns out the belt was rubbing hardcore on one of the bottem engine mount brackets that was missing a bolt (i did an engine swap and failed to replace that bolt) anyway that gatorback rubbed on that bracket for a while before i discovered it. the edge of the gatorback was worn away about 1.5 ribs in and i was gonna go exchange it but i figured id just wait and see how long it lasts. this was a couple years ago now and my friend now owns the car and drives it daily with that same belt. not so much as a slip or noise from it
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Jack the R
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Sat Apr 07, 2007 10:37 pm

Okaaaaay no problem with Gatorbacks then!
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Sat Apr 07, 2007 11:06 pm

I used 2 new gates belts when I changed my camshaft as everything was already apart. I had no issues with the belt, though I don't remember checking the alignment of the belt. How can a belt not be aligned properly anyway?
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Jack the R
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Sun Apr 08, 2007 1:38 am

Jason wrote:
I used 2 new gates belts when I changed my camshaft as everything was already apart. I had no issues with the belt, though I don't remember checking the alignment of the belt. How can a belt not be aligned properly anyway?

I'm referring to the tensioner being out of it's operating range. You can see the marks in the pics I posted - those are there for a reason. I'm sure you'd agree that a belt that is too loose is a bad thing. What about a belt that is too tight? Probably it will either fail, have a decreased life, or cause one or the other of those things to happen to the pulleys.

But anyway, you probably had a smaller SC pulley, since you were doing a cam and all, when you put the Gates on. You wouldn't have had the problem this thread is about.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Sun Apr 08, 2007 3:28 am

Jack, thanks for posting this info. I measured my original GM SC belt a while back and came up with 72". The specified measurement (according to dealer) for OEM is approx 72.2" (metric). I didn't measure the Gates (Napa) when I put it on, but I assumed it was close. It fit perfectly. I am wondering if a particular belt's thickness rather than length could cause it to fit with more or less tension?

I have never understood the logic in Gatorback's design. Basically, Goodyear wants me to believe a belt with less surface contact on the pulley (grooved = air gaps) is supposed to grip better than 100% contact. As with street tires vs. slicks, perhaps this would be the case if the pulley were to become wet, but really... come on. I'm sure the Gators are quality product, but I must wonder if the grooves really help, or could they create a weak link in the belt's integrity?

Here's what I know about Gates: Most I ask recommend them. Napa sells them, a source I generally trust for quality. I last changed my belts at about 40k miles, using Gates for both. Since that time I had a pulley frag while driving, throwing the SC belt off but somehow not damaging it. I'm now past 130k miles on those same Gates belts! Both belts are starting to crack, and they need changed soon, but damn it, I'm impressed. These belts have been through nearly 100k miles, some of it high RPM abuse, without failure. I know what I'll be using for replacement.

I actually want to replace them soon, as I am eager to measure their lengths. Everything thing seems nice and tight, but I really want to know. As soon as the weather changes...

_________________
'98 SC Riviera 281k miles 298 HP/370 TQ 0-60: 5.79s ET: 13.97 @ 99.28 4087 lb 20.1 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:30
3.4" pulley AL104 plugs 180 t-stat FWI w/K&N 1.9:1 rockers OR pushrods LS6 valve springs SLP headers ZZP fuel rails
KYB GR2 struts MaxAir shocks Addco sway bars UMI bushings GM STB Enkei 18" EV5s w/ Dunlop DZ101s F-body calipers
EBC bluestuff/Hawk HP plus SS lines Brembo slotted discs DHP tuned Aeroforce Hidden Hitch

^^^ SOLD ^^^ frown

'05 GTO 85k miles 0-60: 4.8s 16.9 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:26
Because fun


'70 Olds Ninety-Eight Holiday Coupe 116k miles 455 Rocket V8
Because cool


'95 Celica 152k miles 0-60: yes
Because free
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Jack the R
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Sun Apr 08, 2007 5:01 am

AA wrote:
I am wondering if a particular belt's thickness rather than length could cause it to fit with more or less tension?

NatesRiv asked the same question. I took my old SC belt and the Gates out and compared them to the Gatorback. If anything the gator is the smidgiest smidge thinner than the other two belts. But it's such a small difference my eyes may be deceiving me. I don't see how it could be an issue.

AA wrote:

I have never understood the logic in Gatorback's design. Basically, Goodyear wants me to believe a belt with less surface contact on the pulley (grooved = air gaps) is supposed to grip better than 100% contact. As with street tires vs. slicks, perhaps this would be the case if the pulley were to become wet, but really... come on.

I thought it was to make the belt quieter? I don't understand the engineering behind the design, I bought it because it was the first 72.5" belt I found.

AA wrote:

I'm sure the Gators are quality product, but I must wonder if the grooves really help, or could they create a weak link in the belt's integrity?

See turtleman's post.

I'm not trying to argue you out of using Gates belts - obviously your pulley system is far from stock. But as a recommendation for a new Riv owner looking to change belts on a stock pulley setup, I would recommend the Gatorback over the Gates K060271. It's not an issue of quality, I think the K060271 is the wrong size belt. You've seen how it fits my car now, don't you think that's wrong?

I think this is another case of somebody entering the wrong value into a computer, and because our car is so rare the error never got caught. It wouldn't be the first time I ran into the problem on this car - NAPA tried to sell me a pulley that was VERY CLEARLY the wrong pulley, to replace the one that's down in the motor mount bracket. The guy behind the desk didn't have a clue that it was the wrong pulley either, and my NAPA guys are knowledgeable. The parts guy at the Chevy dealership was similiarly clueless. And then we've got your experience with the Addco bushings. Companies don't do enough Riv business to bother getting it right. Maybe the K060271 is the right belt for a GS/GTP/SSEI. I don't think it's the right belt for a (stock) Riv.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Sun Apr 08, 2007 5:14 am

Yeah, I hear what you're saying. I didn't realize that Gates didn't make a 72.5".

_________________
'98 SC Riviera 281k miles 298 HP/370 TQ 0-60: 5.79s ET: 13.97 @ 99.28 4087 lb 20.1 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:30
3.4" pulley AL104 plugs 180 t-stat FWI w/K&N 1.9:1 rockers OR pushrods LS6 valve springs SLP headers ZZP fuel rails
KYB GR2 struts MaxAir shocks Addco sway bars UMI bushings GM STB Enkei 18" EV5s w/ Dunlop DZ101s F-body calipers
EBC bluestuff/Hawk HP plus SS lines Brembo slotted discs DHP tuned Aeroforce Hidden Hitch

^^^ SOLD ^^^ frown

'05 GTO 85k miles 0-60: 4.8s 16.9 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:26
Because fun


'70 Olds Ninety-Eight Holiday Coupe 116k miles 455 Rocket V8
Because cool


'95 Celica 152k miles 0-60: yes
Because free
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Sun Apr 08, 2007 11:31 am

I have never understood the logic in Gatorback's design. Basically, Goodyear wants me to believe a belt with less surface contact on the pulley (grooved = air gaps) is supposed to grip better than 100% contact. As with street tires vs. slicks, perhaps this would be the case if the pulley were to become wet, but really... come on. I'm sure the Gators are quality product, but I must wonder if the grooves really help, or could they create a weak link in the belt's integrity?

Most of the material that makes up a serpentine belt is used to maintain its rigidity. Although its an entirely different situation, think of it like a high performance brake rotor (slotted). The same concept is being used of removing material that would otherwise be used to brake or grip in the case of the belt. Unfortunately this is not one of the products that I had a vendor meeting for so I can't tell you anything cool but I have had nothing but great experiences with them. Gates are good belts but I don't see any way they are exceptional. But if it gets er dun, I guess who cares. A belts job is pretty simple. I still have the original delco belt right now and it works fine.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Sun Apr 08, 2007 3:06 pm

AA wrote:
Yeah, I hear what you're saying. I didn't realize that Gates didn't make a 72.5".

For all I know they do. When I took it to NAPA though they didn't recommend the next-size-up Gates belt, they wanted to sell me one like the old belt for $45. I was left with the impression that figuring out the part number for the theoretical 72.5" Gates wasn't possible. Maybe I got the wrong idea though and could decipher their numbering system with a little internet research. But what I did was search Summit to see what belts they had listed - and there was the 72.5" gatorback. I needed to order from Summit anyway, so my belt search ended there.

If anyone knows the part # for a 72.5" Gates, it'd be a worthwhile addition to our knowledge base.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Tue Feb 19, 2008 8:53 am

Came across this while looking for another post.

Aaron - the Gatorbacks grip the pulleys better because the little nubs effectively pinch toghether and grip the pulleys better. On a regular belt the rubber compresses but in that compression does not help to grip the pulleys.

Albertj
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Tue Feb 19, 2008 2:26 pm

I'm picking up both Gatorback belts at Autozone today, 4060725 for $21.99 and 4060940 for $29.99. Also ordered a Dayco SC tensioner assy and a few PF52's from RockAuto yesterday. Filters were $4 and $50 for the tensioner. My oem has a very "sticky" movement from stop to stop, so I'm going to just replace it this spring instead of trying to lube it. Looks like Dayco uses a metric bolt instead of torx.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Tue Feb 19, 2008 2:30 pm

Has anyone reported long-term durability of a Gatorback? I know from personal experience the Gates will last 100k miles, but not sure about the Gator. Dave, I guess you will let us know!

_________________
'98 SC Riviera 281k miles 298 HP/370 TQ 0-60: 5.79s ET: 13.97 @ 99.28 4087 lb 20.1 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:30
3.4" pulley AL104 plugs 180 t-stat FWI w/K&N 1.9:1 rockers OR pushrods LS6 valve springs SLP headers ZZP fuel rails
KYB GR2 struts MaxAir shocks Addco sway bars UMI bushings GM STB Enkei 18" EV5s w/ Dunlop DZ101s F-body calipers
EBC bluestuff/Hawk HP plus SS lines Brembo slotted discs DHP tuned Aeroforce Hidden Hitch

^^^ SOLD ^^^ frown

'05 GTO 85k miles 0-60: 4.8s 16.9 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:26
Because fun


'70 Olds Ninety-Eight Holiday Coupe 116k miles 455 Rocket V8
Because cool


'95 Celica 152k miles 0-60: yes
Because free


Last edited by AA on Tue Feb 19, 2008 2:30 pm; edited 2 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Tue Feb 19, 2008 3:31 pm

Jack the R and turtleman seem to have already given them good grades, back almost a year. Maybe they can give an update? I don't put a ton of miles on the Riv, so I don't expect to see wear for some time. Not even sure I'll do the swap this spring/summer or hold off for a while.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Tue Feb 19, 2008 6:56 pm

I put incredibly little mileage on the Riv, not even 5000 mi in the 3+ years I've owned it. It'll be a long, long time before I get any significant wear on the gatorback.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Tue Feb 19, 2008 7:22 pm

i am running one gator and one gates belt. (gates on the s/c) and i havent had a problem with either one. neither make noise or seem to slip or fit loose. i dont have many miles on them, nore do i drive it much, but i will let you know if either one breaks wink
i have a feeling i will loose one due to a pulley exploding long before the belt actually wears out. i have always used gates in the past b/c of the warranty, but the last time i got a gator b/c i happen to be at autozone when i needed one wink

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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Tue Feb 19, 2008 8:24 pm

I inadvertently stopped at Advance Auto, thinking that was where I found the Gatorback belts online. No go, only Gates there. Headed out to what USED to be an Autozone, only to find that it is now Advance Auto instead also. Drove by a Goodyear store, who I'm pretty sure the Gatorbacks come from??? But they only had Gates belts. WTH.

Went home and looked up AZ in the yellow pages, found 2 stores, called closest one and phone was disconnected. Called other, farthest one, and they are in fact the only AZ in Fargo now. Not surprised I guess. So I'll run by there sometime this week and get the G/B's.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Tue Feb 19, 2008 9:11 pm

Try Sears!

_________________
'98 SC Riviera 281k miles 298 HP/370 TQ 0-60: 5.79s ET: 13.97 @ 99.28 4087 lb 20.1 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:30
3.4" pulley AL104 plugs 180 t-stat FWI w/K&N 1.9:1 rockers OR pushrods LS6 valve springs SLP headers ZZP fuel rails
KYB GR2 struts MaxAir shocks Addco sway bars UMI bushings GM STB Enkei 18" EV5s w/ Dunlop DZ101s F-body calipers
EBC bluestuff/Hawk HP plus SS lines Brembo slotted discs DHP tuned Aeroforce Hidden Hitch

^^^ SOLD ^^^ frown

'05 GTO 85k miles 0-60: 4.8s 16.9 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:26
Because fun


'70 Olds Ninety-Eight Holiday Coupe 116k miles 455 Rocket V8
Because cool


'95 Celica 152k miles 0-60: yes
Because free
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Tue Feb 19, 2008 9:31 pm

Really? I wonder why Sears didn't show up in a Google search. I don't find them searching on Sears site.

Summit has them, but about 5 bucks higher then AutoZone, plus their $10 handling charge.

I see Checker Auto carries Goodyear as does Bearings & Drives, a vendor of mine... smile Wonder what kind of deal they'll give me.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Wed Feb 20, 2008 6:43 am

get the Gates belt, they're the best! (IMO)

I think the gatorbacks are a waste.

edit: to back things up, I've been using gates belts exclusively for 20 years, have never had a failure, and even ZZP posted something about S/C pulley slip and that gates outperformed gatorback in their test!


Last edited by deekster_caddy on Wed Feb 20, 2008 6:46 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: Serpentine Belts - Brands and Types   Wed Feb 20, 2008 2:27 pm

Well I grabbed the Gatorback belts at Checker Auto at noon. $51 for the pair. My parts vendor doesn't stock them, and was much higher priced to bring them in for me.

Also found on Goodyear's site there are 2 length measurements to these things, Effective Length and Outside Length. The SC belt is 72.5" Effective, and 73.25" Outside length. May account for Jack's measurement oddities, if measuring on the outside surface.
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