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Offline dholvrsn

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belt tensioner
« on: June 30, 2012, 07:38:20 PM »
I'm running running a late '80s 2.3 serpentine belt setup on Wee Beastie. The alternator and power steering belt seem to be slipping. I'm wondering if the spring in the tensioner is going week after ~25 years. Is there any way to check them with a torque wrench or anything? Thanks!
'80 MPG Pony, '80-'92
'79 porthole wagon, '06-on
'80 trunk model. '17-on
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'98 Dodge Ram 1500
'95 Buick Riviera
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'57 Studebaker Silver Hawk
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Offline oldkayaker

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Re: belt tensioner
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2012, 04:01:12 AM »
I checked the 86 and 92 manuals and found nothing about checking the belt tensioner spring force.  If the belt length wear indicators on the tensioner are in range, the belt tension is suppose to be good (assuming I read the manuals correct this time).  My 86 5.0 with ~200k milage is still working good with the original tensioner spring.  Of course this is just one data point and your tensioner history is probably different. 
 
Guesses at cause and solutions:
New belt that has not seated in yet - may fix itself.
Contamination on belt - clean belt.
The new larger alternator is being spun too fast - larger alternator pulley (need longer belt for this).
 
That 6G alternator is a nice upgrade.  Good luck with the problem.
Jerry J - Jupiter, Florida

Offline dholvrsn

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Re: belt tensioner
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2012, 07:25:28 PM »
Okay, thanks!


I've went out and measured alternator pulleys and discovered that the 6G had a 2" pulley and the old alternator had a 2-3/8" pulley.


I'll probably start with getting a 15/16 or 24mm wrench and swapping pulleys.
'80 MPG Pony, '80-'92
'79 porthole wagon, '06-on
'80 trunk model. '17-on
-----
'98 Dodge Ram 1500
'95 Buick Riviera
'63 Studebaker Champ
'57 Studebaker Silver Hawk
'51 Studebaker Commander Starlight
'47 Studebaker Champion
'41 Studebaker Commander Land Cruiser

Offline dholvrsn

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Re: belt tensioner
« Reply #3 on: July 03, 2012, 02:14:08 PM »
I swapped pulleys today. I will see if that helps. I got the alternator nut as tight as I could but not as tight as I wanted too. I need to borrow an impact wrench and do that thick cloth glove and impact wrench thingie....
'80 MPG Pony, '80-'92
'79 porthole wagon, '06-on
'80 trunk model. '17-on
-----
'98 Dodge Ram 1500
'95 Buick Riviera
'63 Studebaker Champ
'57 Studebaker Silver Hawk
'51 Studebaker Commander Starlight
'47 Studebaker Champion
'41 Studebaker Commander Land Cruiser

Offline oldkayaker

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Re: belt tensioner
« Reply #4 on: July 04, 2012, 09:49:24 AM »
I used a 1/2" impact to loosen them up and the same for assembly, just hoped for the right torque.  I wrapped the external fan with a towel to hold on to it.  Not sure how to do those with no external fans.  The '92 manual shows dissassmbling the alternator and putting the rotor in a vise while torquing the nut (sounds like work).  Remember to recheck the tensioner wear indicator to be in range with the larger pulley.  I will keep my fingers crossed that pulley swap fixes the problem.
 
 
Jerry J - Jupiter, Florida

Offline dholvrsn

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Re: belt tensioner
« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2012, 12:14:55 PM »
You're making me reminisce about Renz (and probably Pratt and others) at Grandpa Skow's old Allis Chalmers dealership who would hold the alternator pulley with a thick cloth glove and hammer away on the nut with an impact wrench. And generators too. They'd fix stuff going way back to the WC days.....


Anyway, I was fooling with a belt tension gauge this morning and discovered that the gauge only goes up to 50 lbs and both belts are way above that. So a Pintkurstang is a way different animal than the Siemens ElectroCom DBCS994.... Even with that pesky DIOSS or CIOSS upgrade....  ::)


I did take a torque wrench to the AC and Alternator tensioners this morning. It takes about 15 ft-lbs more to move the AC side, so I'm guessing that it's Saint Henry's way of telling me that the alternator tensioner is all worn and wimpy.


Anyway, I've just bought a NOS replacement with pulley off eBay for $45.


Since the lower outlet on the radiator started leaking, that's been pulled and in the shop. And when it goes back in, I'm 99% likely to replace my no-name electric fan with an 8-blade thermo-clutch fan out of an '80s-'90s Ranger. I picked that up for $5 at a swap meet two or three (or maybe more) years ago for just in case.
'80 MPG Pony, '80-'92
'79 porthole wagon, '06-on
'80 trunk model. '17-on
-----
'98 Dodge Ram 1500
'95 Buick Riviera
'63 Studebaker Champ
'57 Studebaker Silver Hawk
'51 Studebaker Commander Starlight
'47 Studebaker Champion
'41 Studebaker Commander Land Cruiser

Offline oldkayaker

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Re: belt tensioner
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2012, 03:44:18 PM »
Never thought of checking the tensioner spring with a torque wrench.  So got curious and went through some old ones and got the ft-lb numbers below.  This was done with the bracket in a vice and the torque wrench on the pulley nut.  The range is from the start to the end on the wear range indicator.  One did not have the indicator so did not measure that one.  Also below is a jpg of the 92 manual page on the wear indicator that I am talking about (hard to describe).
AC side:          alternator side:
13-17              14-18
15-22              16-23
15-23              17-25
17-24
Jerry J - Jupiter, Florida