Belt Drive Improves Pump Reliability And Saves Power

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Updated: May 8, 2019

Spitwater, Australia’s largest manufacturer of pressure cleaners, claims significant improvements in pump-drive reliability and performance as a result of the use of a belt drive.

In line with continued product improvement, Spitwater replaced a conventional gearbox drive on its range of petrol- and diesel-driven industrial pressure cleaners with a more flexible, less expensive and a much simpler-to-maintain ‘Oz-Tuff’ belt drive. “At full throttle, engines operate at around 3600rpm while industrial high-pressure pumps operate at around 1000rpm to 1750rpm, hence a need for a reduction drive,” said Milo Gajin, Branch Manager of Spitwater NSW.

“With a gearbox fitted to the pump, the engine’s crankshaft is connected to the gearbox by a solitary keyway which can’t be locked down. Very simply, the entire load of the engine is ‘carried’ by the keyway, often resulting in premature wear to the crankshaft or the pinion in the gearbox. When this happens, usually one to two years after the machine purchase, we are talking big dollars in repairs.”

To overcome this, Spitwater replaced the gearbox with two different sized, grooved pulleys, to give the correct drive ratio. With the pulleys fitted to the engine crankshaft on one side and the pump crankshaft on the other, keyways to both pulleys are locked down with grub screws. This ensures the pulleys become an integral part of their shafts and are not able to move and cause damage. Connecting the two pulleys, the Spitwater Oz-Tuf f toothed rubber belt is 30mm wide and has a diameter of approximately 200mm. It connects the two pulleys directly, ensuring smooth drive transmission from engine to pump.

With the pump fitted to the base of the machine on slotted holes, it can be easily moved to achieve optimum belt adjustment. For safety, the belt is completely protected by a metal belt cover. As a result of the simplicity of its design, the Spitwater Oz-Tuff belt drive is totally maintenance-free.

The new design also brought some additional benefits. During testing, the Spitwater engineers discovered the new drive is actually more efficient than the gearbox, requiring up to 2.2kW (3hp) less power. This offers direct benefits, including fuel savings.

“It’s a very smart, superior and cost-effective way of getting the power on an engine-driven pressure cleaner from the engine to pump,” continued Milo Gajin. “This is why Spitwater is Australia’s leading manufacturer of pressure cleaners.”

For more information visit www.spitwater.com.au