Rope Drive - Type Advantages and Disadvantage

Rope drive (do not mistaken with round belt) is used where a large amount of power is needed to transfer for a long distance (more than 8m). The rope runs over a grooved pulley.
There are two types rope drive Fiber Rope and Wire Rope.

Advantages of the rope drive

  • Significant power transmission.
  • It can be used for long distance.
  • Ropes are strong and flexible.
  • Provides smooth and quiet operation.
  • It can run any direction.
  • Low-cost and economic.
  • Precise alignment of the shaft not required.

Disadvantages of the rope drive

  • Internal failure of the rope has no sign on external, so it if often get unnoticed.
  • Corrosion of wire rope.
Fiber ropr-Wire rope images

Fiber ropes

These ropes can use at a distance up to 60m. Fiber ropes are commonly made of hemp, manila, or cotton. The ropes made from hemp and manila are not flexible and have inferior mechanical properties compared to the cotton. In order to occlude moving of fibers during bending and thus protect it from wear, manila and hemp belt are lubricated with tar or graphite. It also makes rope waterproof.
Cotton ropes are smooth and flexible, so the lubrication is not necessary. It may lubricate to reduce the wear.
Advantages - Smooth and quiet, no precise alignment required, high efficiency.
They are further classified into
Vegetable fiber (hemp, manila, cotton, jute..)
Synthetic fiber (nylon) - They are stronger than vegetable fiber and can use in moister conditions.

Wire ropes

They used for power transmission over a large distance (they can transmit power over 150m). These are usually employed in an elevator and cranes. The wire ropes are made from twisting steel wires (other alloys used for special application).
Advantage - Withstand shock loads, durable, low cost, silent operation, reliable, high efficiency.

Difference between Rope Drive and Round Belt
Timing belt - advantages and disadvantages
The materials used for belt drive

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