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Thread: 2011 R1200 GS - Is the alternator belt directional?

  1. #1

    Question 2011 R1200 GS - Is the alternator belt directional?

    As a preventative measure, I just changed the alternator belt on my bike at 45,000 km, using the adjustable wrench technique that I saw on a youtube video. I have driven about 400 km since, and so far, so good.

    What I am kind of wondering about however is the following statement, excerpted from the BMW Repair Manual DVD for the bike:

    "If it is not correctly installed on the pulleys, the belt will suffer irreparable damage within a very short space of time.

    Make sure the belt is installed right way round."
    Emphasis mine.

    I am wondering what they mean by "right way round"? I mean...the belt isn't directional (like a tire) it? I couldn't find any marking on either the original belt (which, upon removal, looked to be in perfect condition by the way), or on the replacement belt, that would indicate that it is supposed to rotate in one direction or another.

    Are these belts directional?


  2. #2
    FUKENGRUVEN SURVIVOR akbeemer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Ribbed side in. Would be hard to get it wrong.
    Kevin Huddy
    Tm Pterodactyl MT Outpost

  3. #3
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    In the state of Misery for now.
    [QUOTE=AKBeemer;835140]Ribbed side in. Would be hard to get it wrong.[/QUOTE
    After many years of dealing with people, I am under the impression getting it wrong is NEVER too hard.

    you can not make things idiot proof, only idiot resistant.

    Belt is non directional


  4. #4
    Registered User mneblett's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Fairfax, VA
    Quote Originally Posted by ragtoplvr View Post
    you can not make things idiot proof, only idiot resistant.
    As an engineer, our take on this was:

    "If you make something idiot-proof, they'll build a better idiot."
    Mark Neblett
    Fairfax, VA

  5. #5
    Polarbear Polarbear's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    This is meant!

    The belt MUST be seated all the way, non directional. Some may have and it can be SET in place with a (1)rib OFF the pully, destroying it soon after. To make this mistake, would be very obvious to most,BUT? BMW tries hard to accomodate the most ignorant wrenches among us. No offesne, just the real world, not everybody being born wrench friendly. Randy, BTW, I too, have made my share of blunders, so to speak of myself, as a lifelong tool guy in hand.

  6. #6
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Wilmington, NC
    Agree- its pretty easy to get it on a rib out of place. Do be sure to inspect it is fully on.

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