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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have put 4 starters in 2 days on my chevy small block, its built but not enough a factory starter cant handle. I finaly noticed something i didnt like a whole lot, one of my bolts wiggle ever so slightly when i thread it in by hand without the starter and it think its enough to make the starter kick away from the flexplate enough to allow the starter gear to slip. Is that a posibility and if so whats a good way to get that bolt to hold beter?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
They are right damn close but never really had and issue before on other motors. Its an 86 gmc shortbed pickup. Would a mini starter be a good solution.....arent they more heat resistant?
 

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Do you have the CORRECT factory supplied starter bolts. The CORRECT ones are knurled ... to help prevent the starter from moving. GM also has a front brace for starters ... to help with that same issue.

Here are the bolts ...



Here is the starter front bracket




I have found these two items to eliminate most of the problems you are experiencing. :thumbup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yes sir i have the right bolts brand new but that raises another question....a buddy of mine told me to check and make sure my block took standard 3/8 thread bolts or metric bolts but i have a 2 piece rear main and i was told that was pre-metric era but is there a chance they are metric holes? I will definatly try the rear bracket and see if that helps. Thanks alot.
 

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Are you tightening them up enough? I see everybody talking about having to have those knurled bolts, but the starter on my race engine doesn't have them and I've had zero starter issues. Can anybody tell me what the knurled bolts are supposed to do? Not to hijack the thread.
 

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Deuce is on the right track here. Also, where are you buying these starters? If yu're getting them at some Pep Boys type of store, there's a good chance you're buying junk. There's a big difference in remanufacured and reconditioned. There's a big difference in Jobbers that supply these services. There's a good reason for those useless warranties they throw at you to get you to buy their crap. Try a Napa or if there's one in your area, a rebuild shop. I will not buy alternators, starters, any bolt on items frm the crap stores that push their junk. Save those stores for waxes, air freshners, oil.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The knurled part of the bolt goes in the block just a little bit and of course still in the starter and help hold the starter centered is all ive been told but i also found that im using a 3510m which is a metric starter so i have slop around my standard bolt. Im gonna get the right one tomorow and no i agree with you on the auto zone style starters i wouldnt use one for a boat anchor cuz it prolly wouldnt do that right haha. Who knows whats goin on the next one i put on is geting loktite and lock washers and a rear brace ill be damned if it will move again.Thanks for the replies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Ok ive wraped the headers but a new flywheel on and a new starter and it was grinding right off the bat. Taking a closer look i saw the starter gear is only coming in contact with half or less than half of my flywheel and is chewing the flexplate and the starter gear up sometimes lasting 3 or 4 days or wont even start it 1 time. Its almost like my flexplate is too far towards the motor or the starter is too far back. The round bearing looking thing on the end of the bendix gear shaft is siting right in the middle of the flexplate so i know the bendix gear cant come out far enough to cover the whole teeth surface. What would cause the the starter to not be in the right place?
 

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try another nose cone

no shims

have corect bolts already then that will be not a cause of the problem

if it were me i would just snag a good working original untouched starter from another car or truck large style non metric one with the same size flywheel or flexplate

168 tooth for staggered boltsnose cone

153 tooth for straight across bolts nose cone

and no shims

and it will work fine

unless there is an issue with the bolt holes in the engine block

i never buy new starters

always are junk

remanufactured garbage

i only find and use old stock untouched ones

and RARELY does one ever go bad

new isnt always better or good.

especially these days now.

good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I put my truck up on a lift and fired the starter gear out without it spining so it would just jump out to the flywheel and with no shims at all, the starter gear isnt meshing with the flexplates teeth but half way. I understand to have appropriate alignment the starter should mesh with the flexplate so that you can only get a paperclip in between the teeth but i can almost fit a small nail and its allowing the starter to jump off my flexplate. Ive been told to grind down the 2 parts of the starter that mate to the block but that didnt do it either im still not grabing much of the flexplate. What are the odds that the block was messed up in casting or something but being a 0010 block from 1970 it should have been a problem for a long time but i know the motor ran for 4 years no problem with a plane jane 3510 starter but now that its been built i cant find a starter to grab the flexplate right. Im getting highly pissed aggrivated and dont know what else to do. Its not heat the headers and starter are wraped, its not a compression issue its bout 10-1, its a stagard bolt starter and 168 tooth flexplate, the flexplates on right, using factory knurled bolts and support bracket from the starter to block, everything i could think of is right. Ive even tore the teeth off a high torque starter but it wont a mini but still an expensive ******* up. HELP ME
 

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Shimming just the outboard bolt swings the starter gear deeper into mesh with the ring gear. I have parted out GM cars from the 70's to the 90's that have had almost 1/8" of shim on just the outside starter bolt that appeared to be factory or done early in the cars life. My Dad as a mechanic in the 60's and 70's said it was a regular thing to have to shim a starter and every auto parts store/garage carried the shims. I have noticed that most of the mini starters I've installed come with shims and directions on how to determine if they are needed or not.

Any discrepancy is in the starter nose cone or flexplate and not the block.

I have also seen reports lately of replacement flexplates being slightly too small in diameter(chinese), even SFI approved race stuff.
 

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Here's a conscideration, check the "thrust" on the crank. How far can you move the crank "in-and-out"? It may take a long prybar, or it may not. It's more common to see an engine lose it's thrust on stick shift/clutch cars-trucks. Some 30 years ago, my sisters 68 Camaro with a 327, had a similar problem with starter motors grinding, not engaging, and eventually needing replacement. After a major overhaul, with a new crank, those problems went away.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks for clearing some of the "hear say" ive been getting from other people on wether or not the block is messed up ericnova72 that makes me feel alot beter and as far as shimming just one side, how does that affect the knurled part of the bolt, will it still go in the block some like im told its suposed to? I realy think ur on the right track and have heard to do that but ive also heard the starter has to sit flush with the block but to hear it was common to see that back in the day im a lil more confident in trying it. And for junior stockers comment, that was the first thing i went over with the guy that built the motor. Its only ran maybe 8 miles and that was to the gas station and back cuz the truck aint street legal yet but i automaticaly assumed the crank wont in right or had play in it and pulled the motor and double checked it and thankfully that wont it after all its a brand spankin new motor but thanks for the tip. Im gona try a few other things this weekend but any more advice im all ears to it. I was also told to try a starter for a manual transmission because the cones were longer and closer to the flywheel to fit inside the bellhousing of a manual trans. Another guy told me to use a starter with straight across bolt pattern cuz they were more common in those years and the straight across bolt pattern will work on either 153 or 168 tooth flywheel where the stagard bolt pattern only works on 168. Any truth to that? Im just trying to cut down on the 90 dollars a week on starters issues. Thanks again for all the help.
 

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A factory straight pattern starter won't work with the larger 168 tooth flywheel/flexplate. The only straight pattern starters that will work with both are the aftermarket mini-starters that have a dual straight bolt pattern.

It would take a lot more shim than you are ever going to need before you need to worry about the knurl, the knurled section of the bolt is nearly 3/8" long, and if you have to go more than 1/8" shim to get the correct clearance then I would suspect the starter nose is flawed or the flexplate is too small diameter/cheaply made.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Well ive managed to stump 2 engine builders, a few drag racing guys, a shop owner and a automotive electric shop owner today. We tried a new flexplate, older used but in perfect shape factory gm flexplate, automatic starters, starters for manuals, straight bolt patern and staggard bolt pattern starters and still nothing. I got the truck starter 4 or 5 times on a combo we thought was gonna work but then it started to slip too. I even measured distances of the bolt holes in all angles and compared them to another 010 block and they all came out the same yet when i bolted the starter to the other block the bendix gear stop round thing at the end of the shaft was past the flywheel and the shaft was alot closer to the flexplate. I dont understand it only thing it can be is the bolt holes have to be missdrilled somehow. Last resort is put all my internals into another block unless anyone has found anything.Thanks for the help.
 
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