We’ve encountered a number of riders who’ve been having tuning issues with their sled that have been caused by nothing more than a worn drive belt. We know that it is simple, but sometimes the simple things are what gets overlooked. It seems like some riders think that if the belt is still in one piece and not burned, it must still be good.
If you are experiencing problems with your clutching, eliminate the obvious and make sure you are using a new drive belt. Drive belts wear over time and as they do, the belt-to-sheave clearance and the belt deflection will increase. The belt may visually â€œlookâ€ good, but it can easily be worn (narrowed) to the point that it causes the system to act like it is starting out in â€œsecond gearâ€. One easy way to monitor this is to track the belt width. As the belt wears, the low end will become “soft” and the sled may struggle to pull peak rpm. Top speed will decrease and overall response will be reduced. Far too often tuners are running well-used drive belts and trying to tune the rest of the system to this worn component. Clutch and driveline tuning should always be done using a drive belt that is in very good (like new) condition. Otherwise, it could easily be a waste of your time and effort.