The Advantages of Multi-Rib Belts

A multi-rib belt, also known as a serpentine belt, is a single, continuous V-belt whose width is made up of “ribs” according to the power requirements of the application. As the term “serpentine” implies, these belts are highly flexible and can easily weave in and out of various parts and accessories. Allowing for excellent power transmission and high flexibility, multi-rib belts are often used in engines — such as alternators, power steering pumps, and air pumps — as well as various other general applications, such as washing machines, exercise machines and power tools. Depending on the specific application, multi-rib belts may be guided by an idler pulley and/or a belt tensioner.

At Megadyne, we offer two types of highly efficient multi-rib belts — a rubber model and a polyurethane model — each with its own unique features and benefits.

Megadyne’s Multi-Rib Belts

Rubber Multi-Rib Belts

rubber multi rib beltRubber multi-rib belts are ideal for applications requiring high speed ratios (up to 60:1). Effectively eliminating belt turnover, these belts offer much greater flexibility than banded V-belts in situations with compact drives and small pulley diameters. Plus, the superior belt rib-to-pulley contact allows for better power transmission in less space. These belts can be used in virtually all applications requiring a compact drive.

Conforming to ARPM Engineering Standard IP-26 as well as ISO 9982, Megadyne Multi-Rib rubber belts are constructed of a polybutadiene compound and polyester tensile cord. Additional rubber covers are available with a maximum thickness of 1/8 inch.

Below are some of the key advantages of these rubber multi-rib belts.

  • Great flexibility
  • Elimination of belt turnover
  • Reduced noise and vibration
  • Superior lateral stiffness
  • Multiple available profiles
  • Low stretch
  • High power capacity

Polyurethane Megarib® Belts

polyurethane multi rib beltOur polyurethane Megarib® belts are manufactured with high-tension cords, allowing for the same flexibility as flats belts with the superior power transmission of V-belts. Megarib® belts can be used with small pulley diameters and are ideal for a wide range of applications — including food processors, electrical tools, woodworking equipment, washing machines, domestic power tools, and high-precision linear positioning.

For special applications, Megarib® belts can be made with semi-elastic tension for fixed center drives. This construction permits the elimination of a tensioning mechanism and allows for significant cost savings.

Standard Megarib® products are offered in a wide range of rib pitches and lengths to meet specific requirements.

Key benefits of our polyurethane Megarib® belts include:

  • High dimensional stability
  • Great flexibility
  • Excellent, water, oil, and ozone resistance
  • High-speed capability
  • Ease of use with small pulley diameters

Multi-Rib Offerings From Megadyne

Megadyne has been manufacturing industry-leading belt products since 1957, and we’re proud to offer cutting-edge multi-rib products for use in various industries and applications. Allowing for high flexibility and excellent power transmission with reduced thickness, these belts are ideal for drives with high speed ratios, drives requiring minimal maintenance and upkeep, and drives functioning in noise-sensitive settings. We offer a wide range of stock belts and can provide customization options to meet specific requirements and application needs.

Spin Casting of a Dual Durometer Polyurethane Belt for the Reverse Vending Industry (recycling of PET bottles)

In PET bottle recycling machines, a bottle is brought into the machine along an infeed conveyor belt. This belt grabs the bottles and protects the user from getting too close to the crushing mechanism. For one manufacturer the welded endless extruded urethane belting they were using in their machines was not as high performing as they had expected.

To achieve the performance and long service life that they required, they needed a belt with better stability and friction to move the bottle consistently. As leaders in innovative belting solutions, at Megadyne Belt Corp, we were able to engineer a product to meet their exact requirements.

During the development process, we provided the client with a selection of higher quality materials and samples to choose from. Once material selection was complete, the re-engineered belting solution was constructed through spin casting and slitting. The finished product is composed of a dual Durometer polyurethane material with dimensions of 24″ in length, 1-½” in width, and 1/8″ thick. With better tension and an increased surface coefficient of friction the performance of the machine was significantly improved.

Megadyne Belt Corp improved on the existing design by providing this client with a belting solution that increased and improved the machine’s functionality and performance. Our expertise and knowledge enabled us to exceed the client’s expectations. To learn more about this project, please feel free to contact Megadyne Belt Corporation of America today.

  • Company using an extruded urethane belt that is welded endless to receive bottles into machine; required improved efficiencies
  • Client needed a truly endless belt that had better friction and stability
  • The Megadyne Belt Corporation of America solution was a spun cast, dual Durometer belt that had better tension and increased surface COF.

Product Description

Used in bottle recycling machines to grab the bottles to begin the process.

Capabilities Applied/Processes

Engineering – Material Selection, Sample Products
Spin Casting

Overall Part Dimensions

Length: 24 in
Width: 1-1/2 in
Thickness: 1/8 in

Tightest Tolerances

+0 / – 0.0005″

Material Used

Dual Durometer Polyurethane

In process testing/inspection performed

Dimensional Inspection

Industry for Use

Reverse Vending – Bottle Recycling

Delivery/Turnaround Time

8 Weeks for Research & Development
1 Week for Production

Delivery Location


Standards Met

Customer Specifications, 2D CAD Drawing

Product Name

Infeed Conveyor Belt

Why did you choose this project to show case?

To demonstrate our company’s solution focus and how our engineers can improve on existing designs.

Product Description

Used in bottle recycling machines to grab the bottles to begin the process.