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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I had a little adventure coming home from the PA/NJ MN12 meet the other day. I was a few miles from home, accellerating from a stoplight at about 1/2 throttle when I heard what sounded like pebbles in a tin can. I immediately thought it was detonation and let off the throttle. Next I heard the sound of metal breaking and grinding and the car had a trail of smoke pouring out behind it as I went down the road. The motor lost all power and I figured I blew the short block. I put the trans in nuetral and costed into a parking lot that was luckily right next to the road.
When I lifted the hood, I was happy to find that it was only the belt that had shredded to pieces and caused all the smoke. But upon futher investigation I found that the bearings in the pulley on the blower bracket failed, and the pulley siezed up and broke. That in turn is what shredded my 8 rib belt. The were tiny metal pieces and dust all over the engine bay.
By the time I got the car towed home I didn't have time to pull things apart because I was already a day late in getting back up to school. I don't think is that bad, but untill I get things apart, I won't know for sure.
Does anyone know if that pulley is made to come off the bracket when the bracket is unbolted from the engine. I am hoping maybe the pulley is made to be replacable in the event that it fails.
Its defintely better then rebuilding the shortblock:tongue:
Since I am away at school, there is no rush to get the car fixed and up and running anytime soon. This will give me time to pull things apart and check some stuff out. Probably won't be started up untill spring/summer.

Pic: The pulley that seized and broke is the one on the bracket to the right of the blower, and under/slightly left of the alternator. Sorry, no pics of its current status.
 

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call Joe Maneiro in the morning. 561-588-6630. He is usually on the phone with suppliers but if you catch him, he is easy to work with. Also, if you cant contact Joe, ask for Mark, his dad.

joseph
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the names and numbers. I am going home Thurs. to pull the blower/bracket off, then when I know exactly what is broke and whats not, I'll give them a call. I appreciate it.
 

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Looks like the standard Vortech idler, bearing failure is quite common. You do need to take out the bolts holding the blower bracket to the engine so you can move it forward, out of your way to get a new pulley in there. This really isn't that hard to do.
Buy 2 of them, it will happen again. I had typed up a long response about how to retrofit the new style that will fix this, but looking at the picture again, with the way they have lowered that blower down in the bracket, I don't think there is room for the new style.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Thanks KD. That makes me feel a lot better. My father had mentioned to me that he had seen a lot of similar bearing faliure while working for the railroad and that it should be replacable.
This is good. Very good.

BTW - is that something I have to get from Vortech, or can I get that at a Vortech retailer? You know, for a better price.
 

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Jack K said:
Thanks KD. That makes me feel a lot better. My father had mentioned to me that he had seen a lot of similar bearing faliure while working for the railroad and that it should be replacable.
This is good. Very good.

BTW - is that something I have to get from Vortech, or can I get that at a Vortech retailer? You know, for a better price.
Any Vortech dealer should be able to get what you need Jack.
 

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I just lost the idler pulley off it's bearing for the second time. The first occurance was the original pulley which came on my tensioner. I bought a plastic one at that time, which lasted for 8k miles.

The amazing thing is that both times the belt stayed on. The first time I noticed when checking the oil at a gas station. The belt was totally in tact and I didn't have any clues of a problem before seeing it.

This past weekend my A/C seemed to be making a noise. Thought it was coming from the dash for a few minutes. Turns out that I lost 4 of my 6 ribs on the belt. I stopped and checked the engine on the side of the Interstate. Managed to get the car to go another 12 miles to the nearest parts house. It's amazing to see a 2 rib belt running on a little bearing! An hour later and $50 I was back on the road.

Wish I had a digital camera with me at the time.
 

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Yeah, I lost 5 of my 6 gatorback ribs due to a mis-alignment issue when I first got my new engine running. It got me where I needed to go though. Talk about a shoe-string save.
 

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chadg said:
Yeah, I had one snap last week when I let off the throttle in manual 2nd at 7000rpm's. It just snapped in two. But I had my spare in the trunk too. :)
:eek: dude thats sick.

joseph
 

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Jack,
I had that same issue on my first Vortech.
The fix I used was to go to the local bearing supplier and buy the replacement bearings. there is a C-clip that holds them. Used a socket as a press point in a vise to remove and replace. Try to get the highest rated ones you can. If I remember right it has two bearings butted up together to fit. I think its like an 18mmx25mmx8mm bearing.

If you want the better fix, the upgrade idler set is around $150 from Vortech. It puts another small triangle bracket on with a 3" plastic idler. This does slow the effective pulley speed relative to the little aluminum one and helps to preserve bearing life.

rm
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for the heads up on the bearings. I'll look into that. I don't have the cash right now to upgrade (college sucks ya dry,) so I'll have to replace it with the normal pulley. The car won't really be driven untill spring, so right now I just want to get the car running so I can move it and get it ready for storage. Sounds like an oxymoron huh? Get it running just to store it, LOL.
 
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