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Discussion Starter #1
I am having a tremendous difficulty in getting the drive belt to play nice. It has ended up tracking right up against the drive sprocket (left hand edge - as viewed from the rear). Due to the lockdown I thought, why not try adjusting it? Mmmm.
Please look at the photos below - this is the belt tracking correctly, at the right tension - just look at the position of the adjuster nuts and make some sensible observations please...
I've tried to follow the procedure given in the manual.
585412

585413

585414

585415

585416

585417

585418

585419
 

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my belt tracks towards the outside.
It does this when I follow procedure, it does it when the dealer removed or adjusted belt.
In the beginning, I've spent a many of minutes trying to get it centered to no lasting avail..
I'd say as long as you think the wheel is straight as per your measurements, and the bike tracks straight, and the belt isn't rubbing hard, not to worry about it.
 

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JM2C. I’d start over. I wouldn't think there’d be they much disparity between the R and L. If you get the tension correct, look on the belt side and see which mark you are on on the swingarm. Replicate that on the other side and see where the belt rides? I surveyed the new bikes at my IM dealer and none were riding in the center. Ive found even after getting it “perfect,” the belt moves either R or L after a few rides.
 

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Yep the belt won't ride in the center. Make sure the tension is correct and the wheel is aligned properly. And you should be good to go. Indian put out an advisory years ago to dealers that the belt won't ride in the middle. But they never spend the money to change the manuals.

What you an others have found, to get the belt to ride in the middle, the wheel must be crooked.
 

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Same here - impossible to get it right! :mad: With the axle nut loose, you can adjust it perfect (according to manual) it's a breeze, but once you start tightening that nut down, it kind of twists "whatever" and it's badly off, rubbing one side. :eek::sick::unsure::poop: Then it's also different spinning the wheel forward and reverse. :oops: Almost drove me nuts and after many quick rides with nut tight, stopping, opening nut, fine tuning, tightening and test riding, I got it to a point not touching either side and just settled for it. (y):cool:(y) Funny thing is, like @Jonty03, my mark/5 notches on that square thing is off by a bit over a notch comparing left to right - not as bad as yours @Jonty03, but enough to get me worried in the beginning. But when letting the handlebar go, my bike runs absolutely straight (y) so I just forgot about it until I saw your post. My advice: If it runs straight, just make sure your belt tension is correct and your axle nut torqued tight! Safe riding!
 
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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks to all you guys...basically forget about making the belt track and choose to make the adjustment nuts equal on both sides
 

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...basically forget about making the belt track and choose to make the adjustment nuts equal on both sides
....with the main focus on the the bike tracking straight (!) while the belt is not rubbing hard on either side of the pulley.
 
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Thanks to all you guys...basically forget about making the belt track and choose to make the adjustment nuts equal on both sides
Pretty much..
The problem with belts is that if they are not absolutely consistent, they will always wander.
For example if there is a spot on the belt where the "outside" section (in regards to position on bike) of the belt has a spot that has more stretch, it will be "looser" on the out side face, and tigher on the inside. When that inconsistency exists, which with belts, it does, it will walk in a direction of its preference. Even if the hard parts are absolutely perfect and true.

Let us not forget.
A belt, is a glorified rubber band. It will never be precise. It is made to forgive. that is why they are smoother.
Smoother, and less maintenance is their sales point...

Make sure you hard parts are in line, proper tension on belt, ride on!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Excellent common sense..thanks again. Both my brother and I have owned Suzuki LS650s, belt driven, much cheaper than the scout, never a problem!
 

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Thanks to all you guys...basically forget about making the belt track and choose to make the adjustment nuts equal on both sides
I strongly disagree. The index marks on the axle plate are only a very gross guide. Belt should not ride hard on either flange. If you can see teeth on both sides, you're good. Real test is if the bike rides straight on a flat road (no crown) when you coast with your hands off the bars and sitting straight without having to lean.

Yes, it is wicked hard to get right, but that's what makes it feel so good when you do. Get tension right and then adjust tracking on other side.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Nope, it just doesn't work...I either have the correct wheel alignment with incorrect belt tracking or the other way round. I'm a reasonably competent home mechanic and I cannot get it to work according to the book. It's a puzzle.
 

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My scout (2018) tracks perfectly straight when the axle plate marks are lined up and the bolts are the same length. However, the belt makes noises and belt rubber dust gets everywhere. When the belt is adjusted reasonably, the bike drifts right -- not bad, but no hands off riding, and the marks are off almost a full division. Apparently, assembly tolerances create differences (from bike to bike) in chassis vs belt alignment. It could be as simple as loosening the frame bolts, and then tightening them with some pressure on the frame and swing arm to change the chassis alignment. I'll live with mine as it is. The chassis alignment should be the priority, but you can't destroy the belt either.

It came from the dealer optimized for neither alignment, resulting in belt dust and a hard pull to the right. When I had the latest set of tires mounted, the shop lined up the marks and the belt suffered.

If someone discovers the cure and it's simple enough, I'll fix mine. Anyone find a tracking (belt and chassis) difference when they changed their airbox, or did something else that required frame disassembly?
 

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Nope, it just doesn't work...I either have the correct wheel alignment with incorrect belt tracking or the other way round. I'm a reasonably competent home mechanic and I cannot get it to work according to the book. It's a puzzle.
Have you measured swing arm lengths from bolt center to axle center? Use a bent coat hanger or something else rigid. They should be the same. The idea is to have the axle perpendicular aiming straight ahead.
 

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Afterthought... Is it possible you have a bent frame? If its a used bike, no way to know what its been through. If new with you, have you hit anything hard? Its really just geometry; belt and bike should track straight if adjusted properly (and no bent frame). Is it possible the wheel pulley is not mounted properly or bent? They pull it when changing tire...
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Yep. I measured the distance from the swing arm pivot to the centre of the axle pin - same both sides. Seems as though the wheel runs true. There is no undue scraping or binding; no undue wear on the belt either. The bike has never been through any trauma...certainly nothing significant enough to bend or warp the swing arm. It did have a tyre change and it's possible the pulley may not be mounted accurately...not sure...it looks flat against the rear wheel. I did install a Zipper air filter which required removing the upper frame bars but I was very careful about supporting the engine block and all the bolts went back into their respective mounting holes without incident.
 

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If the pully does not wonder in and out as you manually turn the wheel, it should be OK. I also changed my own tires and got it all back together OK, but one or both of your beads may not have seated correctly... Did you hear it pop twice when you inflated after tire change? You might want to break it down and reinflate... but that is a HUGE PIA for a long shot fix. Sorry I don't have a magic bullet for you... sounds like you know what you're doing and are doing everything right. There is another "string" method of checking wheel alignment you might want to try. Basically, you wrap string around the real wheel and bring it forward and measure against front wheel. It too is a bit of a pain and I'm not sure how accurate it is. Search for "string wheel alignment".
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Big thanks for all your suggestions, you've put some thought into it - I've seen the string trick before,YouTube if memory serves - I've decided to draw a line under this. I don't believe anything serious is wrong, after all there is no unreasonable belt wear, no strange noises and no imbalance when riding. I'll keep an eye on it...
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Just for reference - if anyone is reading this thread down the line - these two photos are my final belt position on the rear pulley and the front sprocket with correct belt tension and the rear wheel correctly aligned. Best I can do.
586013


586014
 

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Way back when I still had the Kenda tires I did the wire clothes hanger measure trick. Swingarm pivot to axle, equal. Axle measuring plates off by more than one mark.
Hard pull to the right with hands off the grips. Empty saddlebags.
Always carry from 5 to 10 pounds in the left saddle bag now, right saddle bag empty so I can put my jacket into it when I stop somewhere.

After the Michelin Commander II tires were put on at the dealership it tracks fairly straight. Sometimes straight, other times still goes right. Just not bad at all.

Belt is OK but it doesn’t stay on the wheel side (right).
I leave it alone, only giving it a look once in a while to make sure it’s not loose or tight.
 
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