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Sourcing a 10 - 12" v-belt pulley/ sheave without purchasing

So, I have finally bought a Barley Crusher and want to motorize it. I know that I have a million sources on the internet to buy one, but I’m cheap. Anyone know of equipment uses this type of pulley?

snow blowers, washing machines, riding mowers, industrial fans, etc.

However, looking online, a 12" pulley is only about $35 and you would be able to pick shaft and pulley size rather than have to drive all over town and make use of what you find.

How did you find out what size pulley you needed? There must be an RPM calculator, right?

Yep, divide the size of the pulley on the motor by the size of the pulley on the mill. Then, multiply that number by the rpm’s. Mine will be 1.5"/10"= 0.15, then 0.15 x 1725 = 258 rpm’s


I’ve seen people turn their own out of everything from aluminum to plastic breadboards with tools ranging from CNC mills to cheap lathes and chisels. Personally, I got four zinc sheaves from 1 3/4" to 8" of different shaft sizes, plus two belts, for ~$50 from I’m all for DIY, but sometimes the time spent just isn’t worth it.

But that would reduce the beer budget. My cordless drill works just fine, so if it takes a little while to find one it’s no big deal. My brother is a mechanic and can hopefully get me one.


barliman, how are you mounting your motor and what material are you using to connect your pulley? Linkbelt, rubber, what?

Eventually, I’m going to bolt it to a metal service cart. For now, it’ll be bolted to a piece of countertop so it will be more portable because I’ve been brewing more with the brew club than at my house. The motor will connect to the mill with a 32" rubber v-belt that came with the electric motor (repurposed from a bench grinder).


I think you’re going to end up needing a longer belt for a 1.5" to 10" sheave, let alone a 12". Mine is about that long for an 8" sheave and I’m riding the line with a cogged belt. Keep in mind that the larger sheave will eat up a lot of your belt length and that putting them too close will mean very little wrap angle on the smaller one (meaning much less friction and a lot of slipping).

There’s a calculator here that will give you an idea of the relationship between the sheaves, center-to-center distance, and necessary belt size:

Good point. The sheave on the motor right now is only 6". So, now my plan is to salvage a belt and make the spacing between the mill and the motor after I have that.


Over the weekend, I procured (sounds much cooler than found) a 1/4 HP motor, a piece of Formica to mount it on, and a metal cabinet with casters. Spoke to my brother and he says that it will be pretty easy for him to get a 10-12 inch sheave and ~45 inch belt for me. I need to do a little cleaning and painting on the motor and cabinet and it’ll look pretty nice when finished.


So awesome! Where did you find the motor?!

There is a second hand thrift store that is only open about one weekend a month that always has lots of guy stuff. I paid $6.50 for this portable bench grinder that I took the motor off of.

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