Gates Belts & Applications - Tips and guidelines written by Gates Industrial Engineers

Minimum Pulley Diameters: How small is too small

Monday, November 18, 2013

posted by Tony at 11:28 AM

As technology advances and systems get smaller and smaller so too does the desire for smaller drive pulleys.  Though size can be decreased, it is important to ensure that none of the drive pulleys fall below the minimum recommended diameters given this can result in shortened belt life, premature belt wear, and overall poor drive performance. Below are the minimum pulley sizes for both V-belt sheaves and Synchronous sprockets.

It is still important however to check with the motor or gearbox manufacturers to ensure that these small pulley sizes do not result in excessive shaft load or fall below any NEMA (National Electric Motor Association) standards which could prove to be detrimental to the drive components. For any additional questions feel free to contact us at or 303-744-5800.


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