starter problem - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 10th, 10, 02:59 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: little ferry n.j
Posts: 5
starter problem

just got a 454 for my 69 it has 168 tooth flywheel in good shape x owner said he had stock starter in it I've tried 3 different starters can't seem to get it to engage properly i've shimmed up, down,left & right Now trying to install high torque ac delco confused:
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 28th, 10, 08:45 PM
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Re: starter problem

1) Make sure you don't have a neutral balance flywheel with a weight behind it. This isn't so common, but it happened to me. It's hell to figure out. Not many starters will stretch to meet that wheel.
2) I don't think you need full gear mesh. If you get half of the starter gear on the wheel it can be good enough
3) When checking fit, make sure you twist the starter gear a little by hand as you pull it out to check fit. Otherwise it will just bang against the flywheel, which doesn't happen when the starter is under power.

just a few things I thought of, since you haven't provided much detail.

1969 Camaro 383
2.02/1.63 & 234/244 Vortec
TH350 / 12 bolt 3.73
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 29th, 10, 07:32 AM
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Re: starter problem

The balance of the flywheel has no bearing at this point.

It's either a 151 or 168 tooth gear and the right starter needs to be matched with the right ring gear. You can worry about the balance after the engine cranks.

Assuming you are using Chevy parts, for the 168 tooth gear, make sure you have a small nose starter (iron, same size starter bolts, if the bolts are different sizes, you have the wrong starter) and the gears have to mesh better than halfway so that the teeth aren't broken off. Some folks unbend a large paperclip to establish a .060 mesh depth between the gears. Measure at the valley of an enmeshed gear pair.

Aftermarket starters use same size bolts too, but mount the starter in different holes for alignment (consult with aftermarket starter manufacturer)

If you are using the right (Chevy) starter, you may want to inspect your ring gear for missing or worn teeth.

Last edited by mahunt; Jun 29th, 10 at 09:26 AM.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 29th, 10, 08:31 AM
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Re: starter problem

Also install a starter nose brace if it does not have one. The factory installed it for maintaining proper housing alignment to the flywheel.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 29th, 10, 10:41 AM
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Smile Re: starter problem

> Maybe this isn't your case, but I'll bring it to the table anyway. This Guy wanted me to work on his 76 C10 p'up, with 350 / 350TH combo. He complained that for more than a year he was trying to solve a bad starter grinding problem, and for that reason he wasn't interested in finishing his project. He replaced the starter 3 times without good results. Well, he took the c10 to my small shop, and after checking good engagement, and a starter brace, the problem persisted. I asked my wife to start the engine while I was under the car, to look at the starter engagement. (this with safety in mind, like tire chocks, jack stands, and safety goggles)
Well, to my surprise, I noticed that the engine turned correctly for a second or two, then the flywheel turned backwards abruptly, making the nasty grinding noise. The culprit? Excessively advanced ignition timing. A trusty timing light and the problem was solved for good. He's now one of my best clients, and not bad at all that he's also a small body shop ownner.
Hope this helps you or another member, but sometimes we forget to check the easiest areas first.

"Our affair with Camaros is a life sentence without the possibility of parole".
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 29th, 10, 03:01 PM
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Re: starter problem

I believe BB and 168 tooth flywheels use the starter with the staggered bolt pattern. Only other thing is the flywheel is damaged.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old Jul 13th, 10, 09:29 PM
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Re: starter problem

RE: The balance of the flywheel has no bearing at this point.

The balance does matter if it is being achieved with a separate weight that is installed behind the flywheel, hence jogging it out by almost the thickness of the flywheel again. Then most starters don't reach. Mine didn't.

1969 Camaro 383
2.02/1.63 & 234/244 Vortec
TH350 / 12 bolt 3.73
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starter issue

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