Custom Poly-V Pulleys

custom poly-v pulleys

Poly-v pulleys are one of the most common pulley systems, utilized in a light duty to heavy duty machinery in a multitude of industries.

In fact, you are probably quite familiar with some common pulley applications, such as power tools, lathes, drills, and milling machines. Poly-v pulleys are desirable, because they’re extremely efficient.

However, poly-v pulleys are only effective if they are suitable for the task at hand. In other words, a pulley with the wrong pitch for your application will not work efficiently – if at all.

From profile to the number of ribs, the proper pulley must be chosen for your application. The following content provides insight into poly-v pulleys, including the most common components, helping readers understand how to customize poly-v pulleys for their needs best.

Poly-V Belt Pulley Components

Poly-v belts are unique because they have multiple longitudinal ribs. When considering a custom poly-v pulley, it is important to understand each component. Below, we discuss two common mechanisms: grooves and mounting styles.

1. Grooves

Grooves are intended to guide the belt while it is in motion, preventing the belt from slipping off the perimeter of the pulley. When used in transmissions, grooves also transmit motion. There are several different groove profiles to choose from: H, J, K, L, and M. Each profile is also available in a multiple of ribs.

2. Mounting

Mounting is the method of connecting the pulley to the shaft around which the pulley will rotate. Once again, the mounting method selected will depend on your application. For example, a simple bore with a bearing allows the pulley to rotate freely, often used in idlers or tensioning applications. Keyway mounting, on the other hand, transfers torque between the pulley and the shaft.

Additional Poly-V Belt Pulley Considerations

Along with poly-v pulley components, three additional measurements should be considered when selecting the right pulley for your application: belt profile, number of ribs, and pulley diameter.

  • Belt Profile: the belt profile is the size of the groove on the belt. Smaller grooves are well suited for light duty applications, while larger grooves are best for heavy loads.
  • Number of Ribs: increasing the number of ribs on the pulley increases the load that can be transmitted in the system.
  • Pulley Diameter: to find pulley diameter, simply use a ruler to measure from the outside edge to the outer edge of the pulley. Though the metric is simple to find, selecting the proper pulley diameter for your project can be a bit complicated. Mechanical advantage, HP transmitted, shaft distances, and a variety of additional factors come into play during pulley selection.

Advantages of Poly-V Pulleys

Poly-v pulleys have certain advantages innate to their design. The reduced thickness of poly-v belts make them very flexible, allowing them to wrap around very small diameters. Additionally, Poly-v belts can achieve higher peripheral speed than V-belts.

Poly-v belts also offer the following advantages:

  • Compact dimensions
  • High flexibility
  • High peripheral speed
  • High efficiency
  • Low noise
  • Possibility of using flat pulleys, reducing the cost of the system

Poly-V Pulleys vs Round Belt Pulleys

Poly-v pulleys are sometimes confused with round belt pulleys. Which do you need? Although these pulley systems are not the same, they have similar applications.

What are the primary differences between both systems?

The first difference between poly-v pulleys and round belt pulleys is the shape of the belt. Round belt pulleys have a belt which is round, similar to a rope of cord, that is gently sloped between pulley grooves.

The sides of a poly-v pulley, on the other hand, are sloped inward, forming a “V” shape (groove angle). The belt is also flat on one side.

The second difference is the surface of the belt. Poly-v belts have a larger contact surface area than round belt systems. Thus, poly-v belts are known for their efficiency and reduced energy consumption.

How Can I Customize My Poly-V Pulley?

Unique applications require unique poly-v pulleys. Unfortunately, pulley manufacturers do not always have the precise pulley you need on hand. This forces many individuals to purchase a pulley and then pay to have the pulley customized for their specific application. This process can be costly and time-consuming!

At Illinois Pulley & Gear, we offer complete customization right away. Our customers provide us with the precise specifications they need for their poly-v pulleys, and we provide the precise piece of equipment needed. In other words, we are a one-stop-shop, eliminating the need for another middle-man to provide customization.

What specifications can we customize?

Groove profile, number of ribs, bore size (English or Metric), keyway, set screws, lightning holes, are only a few examples of the specific requirements we customize for our clients. Additionally, our poly-v pulleys can be produced from a variety of materials, depending on your specific application. Some of our most common materials include aluminum, steel, stainless steel, and plastics. In other words, we can create the precise poly-v pulley needed for your project!

Illinois Pulley & Gear: Custom Poly-V Pulley Manufacturers

At Illinois Pulley & Gear, we manufacture a large variety of high-quality poly-v pulleys, made on-demand, according to your specific needs. Select your material, belt profile, and the number of ribs, and we will produce the product with precision. 

Beyond customization, our team is known for outstanding customer service. We are always happy to answer the phone, answer your questions, and provide helpful solutions. Do you have a question about a quote, pitch diameter, or the right material for your application? Get in touch. We would love to help.

You can reach our team at 847-407-9595 or via our online contact form.

What Are the Different Types of Gears?

what are the different types of gears

Gears are one of the most common, useful, and varied tools in machines. Simply speaking, gears are utilized to transfer motion between separate components. Depending on the unique characteristics of a gear, various kinds of motion and torque will be produced. Gears mesh together via carefully produced teeth. Most often, gears are mounted to a shaft.

Because gears are the building blocks of motion and torque, dozens of varieties have been created with unique advantages. For example, gears created for transmissions may not be optimized for another piece of machinery.  

What type of gear do you need for your project? If you are unsure, this blog is a great place to start! In the content below, we discuss three characteristics that differentiate gears, then dive into a list of gear types.

Gear Characteristics

Before diving into gear varieties, it is important to outline a few important characteristics that define each gear.

Gear Shapes

Gear shape seems rather self-explanatory at first consideration. Most gears are circular, right? While that is true, gears can be found in numerous shapes, including elliptical and triangular. Various shapes are designed for unique purposes. For example, circular gears produce consistent gear ratios – the output and input ratios are the same. If your project requires consistent torque, a circular gear is the best option.

On the other hand, uniquely shaped gears produce variable torque ratios. One industry resource writes: “Variable speed and torque enable non-circular gears to fulfill special or irregular motion requirements, such as alternatingly increasing and decreasing output speed, multi-speed, and reversing motion.”

Shape radically impacts gear functionality.

Gear Teeth

While in use, gear teeth interlock. Gear teeth are designed and constructed with unique characteristics.

For example, some gears are designed with teeth built into the gear body, while others are designed with inserted teeth that can be replaced as needed. Additionally, gear teeth may be added inside or outside the gear body. This is referred to as “internal” or “external” tooth placement. While one is not better than the other, internal vs external tooth placement will impact the motion of the gear. Finally, the tooth profile – or the shape of the teeth – will impact and influence the gear’s functioning characteristics, like speed and friction. Involute, trochoid, and cycloid are three of the most common tooth profiles.

Beyond design, gears can be acquired with various numbers of teeth and tooth angles. The customization capability of gear teeth is extensive.

Gear Configurations

There are three gear axes configurations: parallel, intersecting, and non-parallel/ non-intersecting.

Gears with parallel axes resided parallel to each other, one shaft rotating in the opposite direction of the other. Gears with intersecting axes intersect on the same plan. Non-parallel/ non-intersecting gears, such as screw gears, have axes that cross on differing planes. This configuration is not as efficient or fast as the other two.

Different Types of Gears

The following list will be explored utilizing the gear characteristic terminology discussed above.

Spur Gear

spur gear

Spur gears often operate on parallel shafts. Additionally, this gear runs with a single line of contact between teeth, meaning only one tooth is in contact with another at any given time. Single contact makes spur gears noisier than their similar counterparts, such as the helical gear. Regardless, spur gears are the most common type of gear because of their simplicity and precision.

Helical Gear

helical gear

Helical gears are designed similarly to spur gears and can be used to drive parallel axes or non-parallel/ non-intersecting shafts. Additionally, helical teeth are oriented at an angle, causing multiple teeth to be in contact with another at any given time. This produces a quieter, smoother operation.

Bevel Gear

bevel gear

Bevel gears operate on intersecting axes, specifically at 90 degrees. Like helical gears, bevel gear teeth are designed at an angle, causing multiple teeth to be in contact at once. All bevel gears are cone-shaped, but a variety of different bevel gears can be acquired, including: spiral bevel gears, straight bevel gears, and crown bevel gears.

Screw Gear

Screw gears resemble bevel gears. However, screw gears operate with a 45 degree twist angle on non-parallel/ non-intersecting shafts. Though important for specific circumstances, screw gears do not have an extensive load carrying capacity.

Worm Gear

worm gear

Worm gears are found in pairs, often comprised of a screw-shaped gear and a circular gear. Worm gears operate smoothly and quietly and produced large amounts of friction. Finally, they are used solely for non-parallel/ non-intersecting axis configurations and ideal for high-shock load applications.

Rack and Pinion Gear

rack and pinion gear

Rack and pinion gears are also found in pairs, comprised of a cylindrical gear and a gear rack. They are used for parallel axes configurations. Due to their design, rack and pinion gears produce high friction and stress.

Hypoid Gear

Visually, hypoid gears resemble bevel gears. Unlike bevel gears, they operate on non-intersecting shafts.

Illinois Pulley & Gear: Pulley Stock Manufacturers

At Illinois Pulley & Gear, we manufacture an extensive variety of high-quality timing pulley stock. Our stock is made on-demand, customized to the precise specifications of the customer. Pick your material, tooth profile, and the number of teeth, and we will produce the stock. 

If you are unsure of the precise gear you need, we would love to answer your questions and guide you in the right direction. Feel free to get in touch with our team of experts at 847-407-9595 or via our online contact form.

Automation in Agriculture: Maximizing Efficiency in Production

automation in agriculture: maximizing efficiency in production

Did you know that the world population is predicted to grow to 9.7 billion people by 2050? That spike in population means the demand on our food supply will be higher than ever, necessitating a change in the way our agricultural processes work. Revolutionary advancements are crucial to keep up with the worldwide population boom— more specifically, automated technology.

Automation in agriculture optimizes the way traditional farmlands operate in terms of growing and harvesting crops in a sustainable way, so they’re able to boost worldwide food production by 70% to feed the anticipated population over the next several decades.

Custom equipment components are essential in this new industrial age. Things like pulleys, gears, and other parts maximize efficiency and precision in agriculture and farm automation. This style of “smart farming” allows traditional farming companies to adopt revolutionized techniques into their conventional processes to increase productivity, crop yield, and ROI!

Automation in Agriculture

Automation technology in the form of tractors and robotics make tedious tasks and heavy labor even easier. Optimal equipment efficiency is critical to producing and harvesting more crops in less time, in the smartest, most sustainable way possible.

Choosing custom components for automation in agriculture contributes to farming and harvesting success because of how tailored it is to fit specific demands and needs! Listed below are reasons why custom components trump stock parts for automated agriculture machinery:

  • Made-to-order parts fit exact customer specifications
  • Fitting ultra-specific needs make it easy to get precisely what you’re after
  • No wasting time, money, or energy on modifying stock parts separately
  • Anything is possible with custom components and parts, from stainless steel and plastics to custom teeth and bore size

Stock parts may be challenging to find and fit into your fleet of automated technology. Utilizing custom components in agriculture industries not only makes it incredibly easy to suit specific requirements, but it also helps your machinery run seamlessly and boost productivity.

Now that we’ve discovered how specialized parts optimize equipment efficiency, let’s explore why optimal equipment efficiency is as crucial as it is for farming and harvesting.

Why Optimal Equipment Efficiency is Critical in the Era of Automated Agriculture

Farming and agriculture machinery face demanding working conditions day in and day out. Such heavy-duty equipment requires reliable components to keep things running efficiently, especially as the industry continues to evolve. To keep up with such innovative technology, one must equip each piece of machinery with excellent parts.

Reliable, state-of-the-art components can help keep the following machinery running at top performance.

Tractors and Machinery

It’s no surprise how crucial tractors and other labor-intensive machinery are to a farm setting. We’re seeing a shift to autonomous driving technologies to promote self-sufficiency and productivity without human need.

Automated tractors require the right timing belt pulleys to support changes in belt direction or movement, especially to keep them operating smoothly. Creating a made-to-order component ensures a synchronous, non-slip transmission of movement in all of your automated machinery.

When tractors operate at peak efficiency with quality parts, they’ll significantly improve ROI for farmers, so they’re able to do things like continuing to work during harsh weather conditions and collect important data related to the soil.

Farmers can make decisions that are well-informed and most beneficial to the farm when they have optimal equipment efficiency thanks to specialized parts.

Seeding Equipment

Automated seeding and advanced equipment quickly cover more ground to reduce laborious work for humans.

Like tractors, seeding and planting equipment require an autonomous operation that can be ensured by using custom components like pulleys, belts, and gears. Opting for an innovative stock selection lets you craft your part according to your specifications and makes certain that your machinery runs as efficiently as possible.

Peak operational efficiency allows seeding equipment to determine an accurate and precise seed number for planting without wasting any in the process. Farmers can then harvest a maximum crop yield with the most precise seed information while conserving their resources.

Robotic Harvesting

In order to meet the demands of the ever-growing population and the subsequent boost in food production, harvesting practices benefit considerably from automation. With this type of technology and machinery, custom components are key.

Customized timing pulleys ensure equipment runs as seamlessly as possible to efficiently harvest crops because the parts are customized exactly how you need them.

With optimal equipment efficiency, harvesting happens more quickly, precisely, and consistently, thus increasing product and profit margin. Peak-performing machinery operates with fewer errors and fewer breaks.

How can optimal equipment efficiency play a role in successfully providing more abundant, affordable, and sustainable food to the population?

It’s not far-fetched to attribute successful farming and harvesting to specialized components within automatic machinery, robotics, or other technology-based equipment. To better understand how optimal equipment efficiency contributes to feeding the growing population, it’s important to recognize how automation in agriculture benefits the industry as a whole. Some benefits include:

  • Increased yield rate, thus lowering the cost for consumers
  • Reduced labor costs
  • Reduced ecological footprint
  • Decreased use of pesticides and fertilizer
  • Lower greenhouse gas emissions

As you can see, automation processes in agriculture help both laborers and consumers in the long run. Not only do specialized, custom parts contribute to optimal equipment efficiency, but they also aid in providing consumers with more affordable, abundant food products.

Choose Illinois Pulley & Gear for Custom Components in Agriculture Automation

At Illinois Pulley & Gear, we understand the needs and demands of the agriculture industry. As a client-oriented company, we listen to and comprehend your specialized requirements to provide innovative solutions to add to your fleet of farming machinery.

If you’re searching for a high-quality timing pulley stock manufacturer, you’ve come to the right place. Together, we’ll customize or recreate your component to make sure it’s the precise part you need.

 To experience dedicated customer service and the finest quality products, give us a call at 847-407-9595 or complete an online contact form. How can we serve you best? Let’s talk!

Get The Data You Need From Timing Belt Pulley Pitch Diameter Charts

Timing belt pulleys are one of the most commonly utilized mechanisms for machinery in a wide variety of industries – from aerospace and robotics to wire processing and automation.

However, when a new timing belt pulley is needed, finding the right mechanism can be challenging! Most pulley manufacturers utilize timing belt pulley pitch diameter charts to display available options.

Understanding how to read these charts and extract data is not always a simple process. In the content below, we seek to guide customers in comprehending timing belt pulley pitch diameter charts.

1. Select the Proper Pitch

The first step to properly reading timing belt pulley pitch diameter charts is straightforward: select the right chart! Most timing belt pulley pitch diameter charts are organized by pitch.

Timing belt pitch is simply the distance between one tooth and another. Some timing belts have profile or pitch etched into the rubber. However, some don’t! If you’re unsure of the pitch of the belt you need, simply measure from the crown of one tooth to the crown of the next tooth in inches or millimeters.

2. Choose the Proper Pulley

Once you know the pitch of the pulley you need and have identified the proper chart, you can search the chart for the proper item needed.

Timing belt pulley pitch diameter charts contain three primary data points: number of teeth, pitch diameter, and outside diameter (OD). Knowing the number of teeth, pitch diameter, and outside diameter needed is critical for knowing the requirements of your timing belt drive system.

  • Number of Teeth: this number indicates the number of teeth on the pulley.
  • Pitch Diameter: is a rather technical measurable. In essence, this number measures the diameter of the timing belt in each groove (i.e. the distance between the pitch and the timing belt pulley). As mentioned, the pitch of a belt is the distance between teeth. Pitch diameter can be found with a simple calculation: (pitch x number of teeth)/ Pi (3.14159).
  • Outside Diameter (OD): outside diameter is also known as OD. OD is simply the distance from one edge of the pulley to the other. To identify OD, simply lay the circle of the pulley flat and rest a ruler along the top.  For best measuring results, use a micrometer.

What Other Factors Should You Consider When Purchasing Pulleys?

Navigating timing belt pulley pitch diameter charts is the first step in identifying the proper timing belt pulley for your application. You may know precisely what material you need the pulley to be fashioned from. Once you have selected the proper size, you are ready to purchase.

In some cases, determining the size is only your initial step in project planning. We wrote a guide on timing belt pulleys, including how to choose the best one for your project! Below, we’ll summarize our findings.

Environmental Concerns

Consider the environment your pulley will operate in. Depending on the industry and application, your pulley may need to be food-safe or anti-static. If your environment is hostile, certain materials should be chosen as well.

Is your environment extremely hot or cold? Will the pulley be bombarded with large dust particles or debris? If the pulley will be exposed to grease or oil, a urethane belt is often the best option.

In short, select the best material for the work environment of the pulley.

Material Considerations

Environmental conditions will impact the material chosen for your pulley system. A few of the most common pulley materials are aluminum, steel, and plastic. Each are best suited for differing environmental circumstances.

  • Aluminum is light, durable, and utilized most often in high horsepower drive systems. Aluminum can withstand extreme temperatures.
  • Steel is also excellent for extreme environmental conditions, such as extreme heat or cold. The strength of steel allows for heavy load capacity.
  • Plastic is lightweight and affordable, often utilized in neutral environments. Plastic should be used for light applications and does not require extensive maintenance.

IPG: Custom Pulley Manufacturers

At Illinois Pulley & Gear, we emphasize customer service and quality parts. Part of our customer service promise is helpful transparency – we are quick to answer questions and assist in finding the right part for your needs.

Unable to find the pulley you’re looking for on our pitch diameter charts? No problem! We are here to help you. Give us a call at 847-407-9595 or complete our online contact form! We regularly help customers identify which pulleys they need, often crafting customized pulleys according to precise specifications.

Specialty Automotive Pulleys for Racing Applications

specialty automotive pulleys for racing applications, blurred raceway

The anatomy of a race car is complex, each component built for speed, power, and veracity. From roof strips and windshield clips to body panels and a TV camera, each piece plays a role in the vehicle’s ability to function as it should.

The engine is one of the most important elements of a vehicle built for racing. One automotive resource writes, “The engine in the NASCAR race car is probably the most crucial component. It has to make huge amounts of power for hours on end, without any failures.”

Beyond the powerful possibilities of a car built for racing, many street-car drivers long for a boost of power. In response, specialty automotive kit manufacturers create superchargers, built to “level up” the average street-car experience.

Below, we’ll dive into the individual components of a centrifugal supercharger, touching on the importance of specialty automotive pulleys for manufacturing kits. We’ll also explain the benefits of working with a custom pulley manufacturer to produce high-quality, reliable automotive kits.

Specialty Automotive Manufacturing Kits: Superchargers

In recent years, superchargers have grown in popularity. Vehicle owners are drawn to the concept of significant power gains via a simple addition to their current automobile.

Homeowners searching for a new piece of furniture for their home – like a dishwasher or bathroom sink – look for the best option within their budget. The same goes for cars! People prize their vehicles, and selecting a trustworthy, high-quality automotive kit takes time.

What Are the Main Components of a Supercharger?


The impeller is one of the most important components of a supercharger, located directly in the center of the system. One supercharger manufacturer writes, “The impeller pushes air into the blower and builds the pressure that translates directly into positive manifold pressure, also known as boost.”

Impellers are built with utmost quality and durability because they must withstand intense environmental conditions within the supercharger for extended periods of time.


Once more, the diffuser is extremely important. This component is designed to convert energy into pressure. All built-up kinetic energy is transformed into velocity at a gradual, controlled pace.


The transmission must be capable of handling intense impeller speeds. “Additionally,” the supercharger manufacturer continues, “The transmission contains bearings to support the shafts that are attached to the internal gears. Bearings are used throughout the system to help parts move smoothly and reduce friction and wear.”

Compressor Housing (Volute)

A volute is unique to a specific to centrifugal superchargers. This specific supercharger uses air to increase pressure in the engine, burning more fuel at a higher level of combustion. The volute collects airflow and transfers it to downstream pipe.

The Importance Of Customizable Pulleys

For the supercharger to run smoothly, a high-quality timing belt system is required. However, automotive belts have a unique tooth profile. To work properly, the pulley must fit this exact profile. Unfortunately, this is a difficult task for many pulley manufacturers, making it challenging for automotive kit companies to find a high-quality product customized to exact specifications.

Specialty automotive kit manufacturers often have to make two stops when purchasing pulleys for their kits.

First, the manufacturer has to buy however many timing belt pulleys are needed. Then, if the pulley company does not customize the pulleys to precise specifications, the manufacturer must take the pulleys to a company who can customize the pulleys.

To save time and resources, automotive kit manufacturers can purchase from a pulley company that customizes the product on-demand, delivering exactly what the kit manufacturer needs right away – a one-stop-shop.

For Specialty Automotive Manufacturing Kits, Quality is Critical

High-powered vehicles require reliable components. Companies selling automotive manufacturing kits, such as superchargers, need every element to be trustworthy – all the time. To create an excellent final product, each building piece should also be excellent.

IPG always delivers high-quality automotive timing pulleys for racing applications at market value. Although we may not be the cheapest option, the adage is true: you get what you pay for. Don’t compromise on quality.

Illinois Pulley & Gear: Automotive Pulleys for Racing Applications

At Illinois Pulley & Gear, we produce made-to-order timing belt pulleys to exacting customer expectations. Our experience working with specialty automotive kit manufacturers has allowed us to understand the unique requirements of this industry. We customize our products and processes for the good of each client.

We are known for our high-quality product and superb customer service. We would love to get in touch. If you have any questions about our customizable timing belt pulleys, give us a call at 847- 407- 9595 or complete our online contact form. Let’s talk!