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post #1 of 7 Old 06-26-2018, 10:22 AM Thread Starter
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F725 eating pto belts

Hello,

I'm a new member. This is my first request for help. I hope this hasn't been asked before. I tried searching, but am still getting an error when I do and there are waayyyy too many posts to try and hash through (which is a good thing)!?!

Anyway, I have a F725 mower that has been in the family for quite a few years. I picked up a another F725 mower over winter. I am having problems with it chewing through PTO belts. There are two of them and I have them routed correctly. There seems to be an unusual amount of belt vibration in the "long side" of the belt loop.

I suspect the previous owner may have had issues with this because the plates that hold the idlers together was a bit bent, as if he may have tried to make an adjustment.

I have a third "donor" F725, so I took the idler assembly off and put it on the second mower. The two idler wheels spin freely with no noise or noticeable issues. The deck blades all spin freely too and make no noise. I just replaced the blades, so they are all new/balanced as well.

The last set of belts (the second "new" set I put on were kevlar reinforced ones and they lasted for about an hour of mowing. All the mowers are showing about 1000 hours on the meter.

I like the F725 mower, but this belt issue is testing my resolve!?!

Any insights are appreciated.

Thanks,
Bob
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post #2 of 7 Old 06-26-2018, 11:07 AM
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Re: F725 eating pto belts

I had a similar issue with mine. The belt was vibrating to the point it was slapping the metal of the deck and it had rubbed a black mark across it.

I replaced the deck idlers, bushings, and tension spring. No luck. It took rebuilding the spindles for me. Not sure if I had a bent idler on a spindle, or the spindle itself was bad. But it fixed my issue.

EDIT: Scratch that thought. I re-read and see you are talking about pto belts, not deck. I did also replace my PTO idlers and one of my plates was bent too. IIRC, there is a set amount of tension for the PTO belt. I think there is a set distance the nut needs to be from the end of the cap screw that sets tension. I can look in my service manual tonight, if you want.
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post #3 of 7 Old 06-26-2018, 12:15 PM Thread Starter
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Re: F725 eating pto belts

TWG1572,

It would be much appreciated if you get that nut distance information for me.

I was also wondering how much the composition of the belts or the belt manufacturer comes into play. The pto belts are 56 inches. Many sellers claim to have "replacement belts that fit". However, some seem to be a more black "rubbery" type of material and others are a more brownish-white "composite" (kevlar reinforced) material.

I am wondering if one type of material is more prone to vibration or if it is all a matter of tension and/or alignment.

It would seem some of these belts would "stretch" more than others when tension is applied?

- bob -
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post #4 of 7 Old 06-27-2018, 09:46 AM
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Re: F725 eating pto belts

Sorry about the slow response. I kept getting a database error when trying to login to this site last night.

The procedure is a bit simpler than I remember. It just states that the nut has to be to the end of the threads on the cap screw that tensions the belt.

I know many on this site, myself included, are believers in the JD belts. I know there are lots of "will fit" Kevlar belts out there, but things just seem to work better and smoother with the OEM belts. I can't explain it, but maybe trying a set of JD belts would help?
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post #5 of 7 Old 06-27-2018, 10:48 AM
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Re: F725 eating pto belts

Just to interject on JD belt vs. other brand.
I have a 332 which has a front PTO and the drive belt going to the deck makes a few 90 degree twisting turns.
A local shop told me to only use the original JD belt for this particular use otherwise I would be shedding belts right and left. He said other belts most likely were not made to handle the twisting and would eventually flip in the pulley or come apart.

Made sense to me and I have used the JD belt and get long service out of it. Anyway, just me 2 cents!
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post #6 of 7 Old 06-27-2018, 12:34 PM Thread Starter
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Re: F725 eating pto belts

As they say in The Sandlot, "You're killing me Smalls..."

I'll pony up and try the OEM route. I truly hope that fixes the issue, because I'm not sure what the next step will be, but I do know it isn't going to be an easy one!?!

For anyone referencing this post in the future, AM108054 is the part number for the pto belt(s) on the F725. There are 2 of them and should be sold as a set - 56 inches in length.

In getting the kevlar belts, I thought I was "upgrading" to something better, but as in all things - Your Mileage May Vary...

I'll post back after I get them installed and try them out for a spell.

Thanks for the input!

- Bob -
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post #7 of 7 Old 07-16-2018, 07:38 PM Thread Starter
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Re: F725 eating pto belts

Okay, so I went with a set of OEM belts -- lo and behold, they are holding up just fine. I have about 6 hours of mowing with them -- which is 5 hours longer than the kevlar reinforced ones lasted!?!

I have had no issues with the OEM belts and they are showing no signs of wear.

The OEM belts are shaped slightly different than the Kevlar reinforced ones that were labeled as an "exact fit / replacement" for the OEM. The kevlar replacements might have been the same length, but the proof is in the performance!?! I never would have guessed it, but I hope this saves someone some misery (and money) in the future.

Once again, I am talking about the 2 pto belts, than spin around the same pulleys, directly under the machine.

I am not talking about the drive belt or the deck belt. Whether OEM belts are needed there, or whether a replacement belt will work, remains to be seen...BUT OEM seems like the safer bet.
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