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Old 05-02-2010, 11:48 AM
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Y Block starter

I am in the midst of a rebuild on a '57 Ford 292 Y Block and am starting to look at the starter/generator etc.

I bought the engines (I bought two, on to use as a mule for mounts etc) and don't haven't a clue as to what the starter is that came with it.

Is there an easy way to ID it? For example, I know the engines were typically used in 6v +ve ground vehicles so I am wary about hooking it up to a 12v battery to test it and frying it! I don't see any casting/model numbers on it and so don't also know how to ascertain whether it is 6v or 12 and the wiring (there is a single lug on the side, nothing more!).

Any help much appreciated...

Thanks,
Paul

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Old 05-05-2010, 10:51 PM
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starter

Most 12 V starters were stamped 12 V on the case near the cable connector lug. We used to put in a 6 V 55 ford Y block starter in 12 volt cars so we could get them to start when it was cold. I could get my car started when it was 40 below zero. when using a 6 V starter you only crank it for 30 seconds max then let it cool for 3 or 4 minutes before trying again. I always kept it in good tune--- good plugs , wiring, good points and dwell set.,timing set etc. . and it usually fired within 5 seconds. 56 and newer were 12 V Neg ground, the 6 V positive ground work ok and turn the right direction. pos battery cable to the inner fender mounted starter relay. then starter cable , relay to the starter.

Last edited by timothale; 05-05-2010 at 11:02 PM.
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Old 05-08-2010, 04:08 PM
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Thanks for the reply.

I took a few photos and you can see there are NO markings on it anywhere. It is a mystery...

So from what I am hearing it is 'OK' to hook up either a 6v OR 12v starter to a 12v battery with the caveat that the 6v (if that is what I have) shouldn't be allowed to run for too long in case it burns out.

I have done a quick test, hooking a 12v -ve terminal to the body and the +ve to the lug. It span fine with no odd smells or sounds. The issues is, it span but the teeth didn't move forward to engage....?

You can see in the images that the body of the starter has a weld seam running the length of it. I don't know if this means a) it was repaired or b) this is how they used to be 50 years ago!
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Old 05-08-2010, 06:46 PM
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starter

The weld in the case is the way the factory made them. You should check the bendix-gear drive to see if it will slide on the shaft. might need some WD 40 or penetrating oil to free it up. When the starter spins the inertia causes it to lag on the spiral and move toward the housing and engage the ring gear teeth, the spring pulls it back into the end position when the engine starts.
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