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Old 11-09-2008, 06:07 PM
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belt drive or timing chain?

traditional timing chain for a street 383 or go with a $800 belt drive set up? to me the belt drive seems like it would be nice. but how long is that belt going to last? waste of money to use belt drive on a street engine?

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Old 11-09-2008, 06:31 PM
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For a street machine a timing chain is the only way to go. Use one of the high dollar timing sets from Cloyes, Edelbrock, Milodon, etc. And you won`t be dissatisfied with the results. Belt systems are used on high dollar racers who are only going to use it once or twice before replacing it.
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Old 11-09-2008, 06:35 PM
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yeah thats what i was thinking as well. thanks
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Old 11-09-2008, 07:08 PM
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go with timing chain. how many timing chains you hear of snapping? belt driving cams if they break, and they will will cause alot of damage bent valves ect. so what would you gain with a belt?????????????????????????????
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Old 11-09-2008, 07:34 PM
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i dont think you would notice much gain performance wise in a street engine with a belt drive, these are used to eliminate harmonic transfer from crankshaft to valvetrain. As far as reliablility, I have never used one but im sure they could last a long time, most modern engines use a belt, an i realize the wear out, but the're easy to change. and as for chains breaking... im in the process of replacing a broken timing chain on a 97 sunfire, so it does happen. but anyway.....go with the chain, lol.
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Old 11-09-2008, 07:57 PM
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i'm a mechanic by trade and i no that chains brake, but i stay buisy at work with broken timing belts not chains. i have never had a broken chain in the shop in 12 years but had 6 timing belts in the last 2 month. do the math. and most modern timing belts need changing on a regular basis.like most Toyota's are 90k, Subaru's 105k some Honda's 60k.they break and need to be changed before they break, but if you break one on a small block chevy you will need to replace valves too because they will bent if belt breaks. stick with chain!! you will gain nothing with a belt on a street motor!!!!
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Old 11-09-2008, 08:04 PM
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um... gear drive???

and while belts break, chains stretch- usually not catastrophically but still an issue. gears wear too, but not as badly.
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Old 11-09-2008, 08:09 PM
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no gear drive, if you want the sound...buy a blower
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Old 11-10-2008, 05:34 AM
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Jesel Belt Drives

Jesel belts last a season or maybe two. 10-15K miles. Very easy to adjust cam timing and service. Plus you can see the condition.

Ask yourself these questions, do I have the tools to bring crank to TDC and accurately rotate to a set degree mark, the tools to measure and bring the cam to .050 lift on a lobe, the knowlege to set them according to a reading off a cam card? Can you make a timing pointer for your system, can you remark your balancer to align with your new timing marker? Can you measure and set the endplay on your camshaft accurately?

If any answers are no, use a timing chain with dots on the stuff to semi align....

A belt drive costs about as much as some guys spend to rebuild their complete SBC... and requires a tad more knowledge, plus the accurate tooling to properly set up.
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