What Are You Doing With Your Spare Time?

I’ve apparently been spending too much of my spare time watching YouTube, because I found this guy. He is exhibiting some of Canada’s finest backcountry engineering by taking an old lawn mower tractor and turning it into… something.

It seems like he turned it into a chain driven screw propelled vehicle. Possibly inspired by this bit of internet greatness:


It seems to me that these things are missing a much more efficient belt drive. Once they upgraded to that these could probably be used for lots of great things such as:

1. Bragging rights

2. Traversing the great white north

3. Youtube and internet fame

4. Spending all of your time and money on projects that can only end in a lifetime of loneliness

5. Vehicles for fighting the mole people

Automatic: Your Nerdy Mechanic

automatic driving tracker
automatic dongle
Hi my name is James. I am the V Belts Direct web guy (yes I know, all those slow pages and grey checkouts are my fault). I like cars, fixing things myself, and gadgets. Normally when I write one of these blog posts, I only get to focus on one of those things. Today they are all combined into one tiny little gadget!
In case you are unaware, Automatic is a small $100 little gadget that plugs directly into your car’s computer port. This enabled you to keep track of all of your car’s vital statistics including your mpg and more. Additionally you could track and resolve your car’s fault codes.
All of this is fairly nifty all by itself, but it got even better. It was added to IFTTT (If This Then That), and a whole bunch of recipes were created. IFTTT is a GREAT web service that lets you create recipes based on your gadgets. For instance, using automatic, you can automatically turn on your Nest thermostat when you are 15 minutes from home. Or it can add it to your to-do list when your check engine light comes on.
Now Automatic is partnering with a bunch of cool companies to make that little dongle do even more. It can coach you on how to become a better driver by cutting down on hard braking (guilty) and fast driving (guilty). It even has new settings to coach new drivers who are still learning and haven’t yet picked up my bad habits.
You can even automatically log your driving, track work trips, and mileage and submit fuel and car expenses. For me personally, I just like the fact that it logs all of my info into Google Drive spreadsheets.
There are a few caveats. First of all you need a smart phone. iPhone 5 or newer and most new Androids should work fine. Secondly, for some of the recipes and other apps, you do need the corresponding devices. Obviously you’re not going to be able to turn on your Nest Thermostat if you don’t actually have a Nest Thermostat.
I do have a coupon code for 20% off of the Automatic. I’m not sure if it is only good for one, or for multiple but give it a shot and see what happens!

Introducing The Part Cart

shop for belts at the part cart

shop for belts at the part cart

We at V Belts Direct are automobile enthusiasts. We sell power transmission belts, care about things like efficiency, speed, and power. Translation: we like fast things. If you are a regular customer, you may have noticed that at times our site can be a little slow. Boo.

So over the past couple of months we have been working on a little project. Not just some under the hood changes on vbeltsdirect.com, but a much bigger project. We are proud today to announce a brand new project: ThePartCart.com. The Part Cart has all the great belts that V Belts Direct offers and much much more. We are adding agricultural parts, lawn and garden, as well as name brand manufacturers.
We are using a completely different web site platform to give us greater speed from the ground up. ThePartCart.com is fast all the way through, from the home page all the way through checkout. From a personal perspective, the backend is much easier to handle and manage which will free up time for greater development and expansion in the future.
While the site is certainly still in beta, with a few tiny little bugs that need squashed, it is very very close to being ready to be launched. Until then, we wanted to give our v-belts customers the first opportunity to give it a test drive and kick the tires. We are looking for speed, reliability, and of course ease of use. We want the ease and convenience of the internet’s biggest shopping sites, but we really want the customer service of your local hardware. In fact we are even working on an even bigger project involving your local hardware and auto parts store (but we will have to keep that under wraps for the moment).
Why are we starting The Part Cart? We want to be better:
Better catalog
Better shipping
Better speed
Same great customer service (ok maybe it is a little better, too)
If you want to try out The Part Cart simply head over to the link below. If you run into any problems, whether technical, or are looking for something that you think we should have but don’t, please contact us and let us know at james@thepartcart.com

Gates Poly Chain: Among The Best V Belts

Gates Poly Chain

Gates Poly Chain

Gates Poly Chain belts are awesome. If you’re like us, you like getting under the hood of equipment and then making it better. Gates Poly Chain timing belts are the top of the line, best-in-class, no doubt about it choice. They are low maintenance (which we love). They don’t require lubrication. They don’t require tensioning. And the Gates Poly Chain belts are environmentally friendly. Obviously over time this brings some legitimate energy and maintenance savings.

So what are the advantages? According to the Gates website:

  • Maintenance-free, clean solution for roller chain drive conversion
    • Significantly reduces maintenance costs
    • Equivalent capacity to roller chain drives in the same width
    • Easy rust-free wash-down with Gates Stainless Steel hardware
    • Fast drive conversion payback
    • Quieter than roller chain drives
  • New construction provides up to 55% more low-speed capacity than the original PCGT construction and 30% more than PCGT2.
  • Gates curvilinear tooth profile provides high shear strength, noise reduction, and improved load carrying capacity.
  • Robust carbon tensile cord combines minimal stretch with extraordinary strength and load carrying capacity, while absorbing shock and surge loads.
  • Durable polyurethane construction resists chemicals, oil, pollutants, and abrasion.
  • Nylon tooth facing reduces friction and eliminates the need for lubrication.
  • Fully operational in temperature extremes of -65°F to +185°F (-54°C to +85°C).

If you’d like more info or to buy one of these, check out the Gates Poly Chain belts at our sister site Gates.Belt.Center.

Snow Blowers Are Awesome

Replacement for GXH47846
Keep your snow blower running when you need it most.

It may seem like cars get a lot of the headlines around here at V-Belts. As the internet’s best and (probably) most beloved seller of all kinds of power transmission belts, we like all kinds of power tools.

But there has been one power tool that has been on the hearts and minds of Americans these days. I’m talking about snow blowers. We want to be the number one place for you to find your snow blower belt. Fixing a snow blower belt is fairly straight forward but like fixing a leaky roof, you usually don’t know that it needs fixed until it is really important. Good thing we offer over-night shipping, just don’t blame us if the delivery guy can’t make it up your un-plowed driveway.
But what if you don’t have a snow blower? You’re in luck! All this week we will be highlighting and feature some of the best deals from around the web on the best and most reliable snow blowers. Sure, some parts need regular replacement or maintenance (like snow-blower v-belts), but aside from that, these blowers have great reviews.
But before we send you off to the internet to buy your new snow blower, I think we should all just take a moment and watch this particular snow blower chop through 100 pumpkins. This is the real reason we sell belts.


The Best Snow Blower Deals We Could Find (So Far)

Big Belt News From The Best In The Business

ptx cross

Do you know who we really like? You! We love our customers and will do whatever we can to make sure that you get the belt you need at the best price. We know that finding the right belt can be especially difficult and it is very hard to know if a belt that you found on the internet is what you are actually looking for. The original manufacturer may have discontinued the belt for your lawnmower but does anyone else still make it? What if they have a different number for the belt? What if another company has a similar number, is it possible that it is for a completely different belt? Why does it seem like some belts cost so much more than others?

Today, V-Belts Direct is proud to announce that we have partnered with a brand new reference site for belts called PT Cross. These innovative guys have come up with a great tool for finding any belt you’re looking for. If you have the belt number simply type it into the search bar and it brings up manufacturers who have the belt. If you are a subscriber to the site it also has a button to show all the matching products even if they are numbered differently! Here is a short video showing how it works:

While a casual do-it-yourselfer may not want to subscribe but anyone who buys belts on a regular basis could more than make up the subscription price in savings with access to every matching belt. If you are a hardware store or repair shop you could pass those savings on to your customers. If you fall into that category then PT Cross is offering a free trial to new members. This is a great deal and a great what to avoid buying the wrong belt and going through the hassle of returns.

verify dimensions

So what do we get out of it? I’m glad you asked! We have embedded PT Cross’s comprehensive information for each belt into the “Verify Dimensions” tab on our entire catalog of over 75,000 belts! While this is definitely a new project and there are still some belts that are not in their system the vast majority are and they are working hard to add new belts every day. On the flip side, they have some belts that are not yet in our system that we are working to add to our stock as soon as possible, allowing us to have the absolute best catalog of v-belts, timing belts, and more available anywhere on the planet!

If you have more questions or would like to find out more about PT Cross simply head over there by clicking HERE. But as for our loyal customers, thanks for shopping at vbeltsdirect.com and enjoy the new “verify dimensions”  tab full of v-belt goodness!