I will show you how to make a belt for your pants with a belt from your car. We will take a belt you no longer wear, and a belt your car no longer wears, and make a new belt you can both be proud of.
What is a timing belt? It is the belt that connects the crankshaft to the camshaft on many vehicles. Unlike your alternator or power steering pump, the crank and cam must rotate precisely in time with each other. Hence the name 'timing belt.' If the cam and crank are not in time, due to an incorrectly installed belt, a missing tooth, or a broken belt, very serious engine damage may result. Any car that has a timing belt lists the recommended change interval in the owners manual.
What is a belt? This is not the part where I explain the function of the belt that goes around your waist. I will point out that while the consequences of this belt failing are not costly, they can be very embarrassing.
Step 1: Getting Started
Below is the list of items I used to make this project. A drill will with proper bits is an acceptable substitute for the leather punch, though the holes will be a bit rougher. The sewing awl might not be needed at all if the epoxy is strong enough, but I didn't want to risk it. I wanted to make my own "tab holder" (the part that holds the remaining length of belt once it has been threaded through the buckle), so I used some steel rod and various pliers and vice grips. You can probably make the belt with no tab holder at all, or your donor belt may have a suitable one. A very sharp heavy duty razor knife may work in place of the Dremel, but I found the Dremel much easier to use on this heavy duty material.
To procure a timing belt just visit a local mechanic shop or dealership. If you own a car, now would be the time to check if it needs a timing belt replacement. Otherwise, make sure you are clear that you want an old belt for a non-automotive related project, they might hesitate to give you one if they think you are going to put a used belt on a vehicle. You should take your donor belt with you to make sure the hardware will fit the width of the timing belt you get.
Used timing belt (the kind for your car)
Old belt (the kind for your pants)
*steel rod to make tab holder
Dremel or similar rotary tool
Leather Punch or Drill
Heavy duty scissors or knife
Clamps or a bench vise
*bending tools to make tab holder from steel rod
*these are only needed if your donor belt does not have an acceptable tab holder