You'll know you have a problem when the belt ends up in pieces or the machine is not operating properly. The leather belt on my hemstitcher machine stretched out over time and my machine was not going as fast as it should. It was time to shorten the belt.
- 3/32nd drill bit
- Scrap wood
- Utility knife (not pictured)
- Belt clips (not pictured)
One more note. There is a special tool designed to punch a hole in the leather belt for the belt clip. It's expensive. It doesn't work well (from what I'm told) and you don't need it. A drill with the right drill bit works really, really well.
Next, determine how much to shorten the belt. It won't be as much as you think. If you make the belt too short, the belt won't fit or the belt will exert too much tension on the machine causing the machine to work harder than it should. Using the utility knife, I only shortened the belt 1/4".
About 1/4" from the cut end, drill a hole through the center of the belt. Be sure to drill the hole on top of some scrap wood so you don't damage your work table! You do need your other hand to help steady the belt as you drill, but I was taking a demo picture by myself. All other safe tool handling rules apply.
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