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Old 06-16-2015, 09:04 PM   #1
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1977 Ford El Dorado (alternator belt keeps breaking)

My alternator belt keeps breaking every 5-10 miles. I have replaced the fan clutch, water pump and alternator. It has a 460 for a motor.

I think it is my harmonic balancer. I took it to a auto shop today to have them take it off and hopefully put a new one on (I don't want a used one put back on).

When they take it off and get the part number if the dealer can't get one does anyone know where I could find one? None of the auto part stores can find one.
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Old 06-16-2015, 09:22 PM   #2
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I am not sure if you are in a super big hurry but I found one for you here

Harmonic Balancer Assembly 1977 Ford F-350 460 7.5 Liter F-250 - Belts, Pulleys, & Brackets

I also tried Rockauto.com the only thing i found was a harmonic balancer repair sleeve?

Not sure if any of this helps

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Old 06-16-2015, 10:17 PM   #3
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Thank you CoolRV! I will see what numbers the original has on it and then hopefully can order one based on them.

This is my first RV, I just bought it two weeks ago for $1500 and drove it 300 miles home. Put in a new toilet, 6 gallon hot water tank, a new water pump for the water system and ordered a new custom matress for above the cab. It's in awesome condition.
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Old 06-19-2015, 07:19 PM   #4
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1977 Ford El Dorado

Sounds like you have a serious pully problem. I am extremely knowledge with auto mechanics. Usually if one of your pulleys is freezing up, it is not uncommon to experience a belt break. You can take the belt off and check to see to see all of your pulleys
Spin freely by hand. If you have even one pulley that's seized up, that would be you culprit. Autozone has parts available for these older rvs. During the summer, the heat can take a toll on engine parts. If you have the 460 v8, then you already know these older motors have a lot of heat issues the can make parts and old pulley barrings on the belt drive go bad quickly (alternator, power steering, AC, water pump, etc) i have a Dodge 440 and it gets hot under normal operating conditions. You want to get this problem permanently solved as quickly as possible. Repeated belt breaks can cause serious damage to the crank shaft in your engine and would eventually lead to engine failure. A bent crank and your not going anywhere. So it is worth taking time to find out what's wrong so you don't risk serious damage to your engine.

1979 Dodge Tioga Class C 24 foot. 1987 Fleetwood Bounder 34 Foot.
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Old 06-19-2015, 09:09 PM   #5
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Well I got the RV back from the shop today and everything is solved. Turns out it was not the harmonic balancer.

The alternator belt was almost 260 degrees (HOT) and the power steering belt was only 105 degrees. It turns out the pulley on the crank shaft was bigger than the alternator and water pump pulley so things were turning at different speeds causing the belt to get hot and making a horrible loud noise.

They put a second pulley on a new alternator and put the belt on the far outside pulleys, problem solved. Also had them replace the fuel pump and put a new fuel filter on. Horn relay was bad so fixed that and put a new horn on. New radiator hoses also.

All I have left is new tires next week and I will probably just put a new caborator on in the near future.

Has anyone put Firestone destination ht tires on there RV? I have 16.5" rims and those are the only tires I can find. They are 10 ply tires.
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Old 06-26-2015, 01:35 PM   #6
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Congrats Earthly. It sounds like a great RV and looks great in pictures too.

As far as tires, you might want to consider looking for 16" wheels (you'll need 7 - spare)

The extra cost of the wheels could be paid for with lower priced ( and very available) tires.

Either way, 16.5 tires aren't going to be around much longer so you're going to have to switch those wheels one day.

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alternator, ford

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