C&P belt issues

Recently I purchased a 12x18 C&P. The belt supplied with it was too long (motor is attached to the skids) and so I cut and re-laced it (I have done this a few times before but never with a press this large). The tension is quite tight when the belt is attached, but will not keep the rhythm of the motor and slows down after a few rotations. I have applied a bit of grip tape and it is behaving the same way with or without it.

Any suggestions would be appreciated. The current belt is in rough shape and I am expecting new urethan belting within the next few days hoping that it will be the solution.


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Perry Tymeson sent me these pictures of the drive setup on Mary Mashburn’s C&P. I think it is also a 12x18.

Her press is run using a direct drive setup— no need for a belt at all. I think he said the drive stub was urethane and purchased from McMaster-Carr.

Just something to think about…

Daniel Morris
The Arm Letterpress
Brooklyn, NY

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Hi! How do you tighten the belt!? I have had SUCH trouble—there is too much slac in it and I don’t seem to see any way to remove it. Had to print a 500 card order by pushing the flywheel. Need major help. Thanks so much! Elizabeth

try moving the motor back, that’s what i would do, but be careful to keep it straight or the belt won’t stay on. good luck dick g.

Has anyone else converted a letterpress to a direct drive?

This seems like a nice solution. It would be nice to hear if there are any problems with a direct drive set-up.

elizmcc- I bought alligator lacing from McMaster-Carr (http://www.mcmaster.com/), cut off the old lacing (and the excess belt length) and started over. It is very easy!

Turns out the problem was in the electric… The electrician hooked the power up to 110 instead of 220. Not exactly enough power to move a 12x18!

Thank you all for your suggestions!

Thanks for everyone’s suggestions! AFTER SO MUCH HEARTACHE—I have a solution! Belt dressing. Got it at my local hardware store. I applied a thin layer and the belt isn’t making that hissing/slipping noise. If that works for good, I will be AMAZED, but it works now!

Thanks to Norman at Hick’s Brothers for even mentioning belt dressing! (I have another can coming from Amazon, so if someone need’s one, I’ve got it!) :)

belt dressing is a temporary solution, it usually only works for a little while, you can usually buy it a any local hardware store. good luck dick g.

A question for everyone who commented here: What motor horsepower, speed and approximate belt pulley sizes are you using?
I’m looking to replace a 1926 1/2 HP motor (on my new style C&P 12x18 - not quite ready yet) with a new one. The original one looks like a 3 HP motor today and I’m looking for some reassurance that a new 3/4 HP will have enough reserve for speed control.