Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Flaking / Dusting From Poly Chain® GT® Carbon Belts

Poly Chain® GT® Carbon belts are sometimes observed to generate flakes or dust soon after they are initially installed. This is not abnormal, and a basic understanding of the belt construction will help to explain why.

The heavy nylon jacket covering the teeth of Poly Chain GT Carbon belts is coated with a very thin layer of polyethylene material that gives the belt teeth their distinctive blue color. This polyethylene layer not only provides belt identity, but also serves a very useful purpose in the manufacturing process. During molding operations, the liquid polyurethane material encapsulates the nylon jacket material, but must be constrained from contacting the mold. The thin polyethylene layer serves this purpose by acting as a barrier.

After Poly Chain GT Carbon belts are installed and placed into service, the blue polyethylene layer has already served it's useful purpose. As belts operate, this thin polyethylene layer may slowly wear away in the form of dust and even small flakes. The rate of wear will vary from application to application depending on a variety of factors. The potential for debris will be greatest initially and then decline rapidly as belts wear in over the first 24 to 48 hours or so.

While the appearance of debris from new Poly Chain GT Carbon belts may be concerning, it is a very normal part of their initial run in period and nearly always declines considerably after a short period of operation. If belt flaking or dusting continues, feel free to contact Gates Product Application Engineering at 303-744-5800 or ptpasupport@gates.com to discuss your belt application in greater detail.

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