While getting ready to finally install the turbo I have removed the front engine covers and intake manifold to look around and make sure everything is still looking good after the rebuild I did about 10-15K miles ago. I found one intake manifold stud broken (top one furthest to the front) and two nuts missing. I also found the timing belt to be really loose, even after adjusting the tensioner to the tightest position it still flexes a little more than I would like. I cheaped out and got the Autozone Duralast belt, but want to go with something better this time. I am at least looking at the standard Gates belt or the Gates Racing blue belt. I do not rev over 7500 rpm and only see one or two track days a year. 949’s website mentions that the blue timing belt can be noisy onstartup and in the cold, but how loud is that for the guys that daily with theblue belt?
My only concern is the additional noise mentioned on the 949 site. I don't want to have a newbie belt squeel every time I start the car on a cold day. Other than "Racing is always better", what other reasons are there to run the Blue belt on the street.
From experience, racing is not always better on the street!
My blue belt doesnt seem to make noise on startup.
I know its never been reported in miata's but on subarus supposedly the blue paint wears off the belt and onto the idler/tensioner pullies and increase the pulley diameter and eventually cause the belt to fail. Probably not a big deal.
I always figured the necessity for the Gates belt to be relevant to the demands likely to be placed on it. Is this going on a built motor that will see significantly elevated power levels? i.e. beyond stock rod strength, if not, then it's very unlikely that the belt will do more for you than add to the color pallet of your engine, as your rods should give well before the belt. Also, isn't a little belt flex within factory spec (and dependent on current cam position)? It was my understanding that if you adjusted all the flex out of it, then it would be too tight, causing advanced wear on the belt/ tensioner and idler bearings.
I'm curious about you intake manifold stud and nuts. That's extremely unusual. Is your torque wrench properly calibrated?
I had a broken one when I took the manifold off this winter, and I broke a 2nd one trying the double nut method to remove. And I didnt even get to the loosening step of the double nut method, just started tightening the nuts together than the stud broke inboard of both nuts.
I have the blue belt, its not crazy loud. Had a fairly loud whine when it was new, but a few hundred miles later, it was dulled down quite a bit. Now i can only hear it when in high RPM's or revving at a stop. Its nothing to be worried about... unless you are one of those people who wants your car to be dead silent all the time like a hybrid. lol
I put the blue kevlar belts on everything, and I don't even carry the standard belts in stock. If the noise bothers you, I would suggest covering your ears, although you might have to put your purse down first
I never noticed any additional noise from mine. I really can't even imagine what noise it would make if it were to make a noise since it's not like it's going to slip or anything. The blue one is a lot prettier.
I don't mind noise, I just hate a belt squeel when cold almost as bad as brake squeel. Makes you look like an idiot. I am only shooting for a 200whp max goal and a factory spec engine (just refreshed and ported) no upgraded rods, pistons or anything so I am wondering if I will need any of the benefits of going to the blue belt.
The intake stud was found broken. It did not break during installation or removal. The fracture surface looked more like a fatigue crack/break. I have one of the thin thermal gaskets installed between the manifold and the head, don't know if that caused anything. I am thinking the manifold nuts hat to be retorqued after some period of settling or gasket compression because all the other nuts were prette easy to breake loose. I am going back with the standard metal gasket.
Supposedly they are the same construction as the standard Jesel belts, Fiberglass core, HSN material, nylon jacket. But 'our' people at Gates didn't know what I was talking about when I asked about the blue GatesRacing belts, so who knows.
EDIT: I'm talking about the timing belts. Accessory belts may be constructed from different materials, and probably are.
Typical of big corporations. People on this side of the hall don't talk to the people on that side of the hall.
I've been running on the same Gates blue timing belt for 2~ years now and its been totally silent until just recently when the temps got down closer to freezing at night. It makes a little noise for 10 seconds or so on start and then it goes back to being totally silent. Will probably buy again when the time comes.
I am only shooting for a 200whp max goal and a factory spec engine (just refreshed and ported) no upgraded rods, pistons or anything so I am wondering if I will need any of the benefits of going to the blue belt.
Again, unless you're just color conscious, I'd say no.
That's not to say that the Gates racing belt isn't a great product, but to answer your question, NO.
I've used both. The standard gates black belt, and their blue belt.
Neither made noise. The black belt did and is still doing fine in another car at 250hp. No noise, works fine.
The blue belt i put on my car works just as fine with no nose at all. It also works up to and past 8000rpm. The one other reason i put the "blue" one on was that extra sense of security for the high RPM's.