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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 68 'vert with a 454. It has about 550 ft-lbs of torque. :D I bought a high torque starter and couldn't adjust it so I sent it back. Then I bought a regular GM starter from the local parts store. It worked fine but sounded a bit bad. I shimmed it and it worked great. I left for Korea for a year and left my wife instructions to start the car every couple of weeks. I came back 10 months later and she hadn't started it in 9 1/2 months. She said the starter sounded weird and it wouldn't turn over. I went out and sure enough it was grinding on the flywheel and was completely out of whack. (I primed the motor first and blew out the fuel lines and rebuilt the carb before trying to start it:() Anyway, I re-shimmed the starter and it worked great again for about 2-3 starts and then started grinding again. Still starts, but sounds terrible. I made sure the bolts were tightened, etc. Any ideas how to keep it from doing this? As much as I love working on the car...this is getting a bit ridiculous! Appreciate any ideas.
 

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Are you using the correct shouldered bolts? or regular non shouldered bolts. Should look like these. Diagonal mounting are the long ones and the other set is for side by side mounting. Normally the shims aren't needed, at least I've have never had to use them.
 

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Lyle 1969 Camaro Convertible
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also check bolt length. Older starters used longer bolts and they get tight when they bottom but the starter might still wiggle around. A quick fix is a washer between the starter and the bolt head, the correct fix (if this is the case) is the right shorter bolts.
 

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sounds like you're just using regular bolts and not the specific starter ones.
 

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Ya know,,,, maybe there's more going on here.
Brian, how often does the car start properly? I'm wondering how much torque it takes to actually roll over your engine. A good loose BBC should require about 40-60 ft pounds to move. It's easy to check with your torque wrench on the front crank snout bolt.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I'll check the bolts. You might be correct that they are not the knurled/correct shoulder type. And I definitely don't have the brace on the back of it. The starter doesn't move once they are tightened down that I can tell...until it moves enough to come out of alignment after a few starts. Fred, I will check the torque tonight if I get the chance. Appreciate the inputs!
 

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Are there any fasteners holding the mounting block/nose case to the motor section? I had a high torque starter doing what you are describing in addition to failing to engage when I turned the key every few tries (it was that annoying grinding sound when the pinion doesn't engage the flywheel). After numerous attempts to re-shim with tempoary success, I happened to wiggle the motor portion and found that all three bolts holding it to the mounting block/nose section were backed out, allowing the motor and thus the gear to engage at random clearances.

Only other thing I can think of, is the pinion possibly over-engaging (i.e. too far into the flywheel)? Seems like this would push the starter away every time you started it, until it mis-aligned, and wouldn't show up as you re-shimmed because the pinion would be retracted at that point (because the key wouldn't be on "start").
 

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you will get weird starter engagement issues if the bolts are bent...


and if a car is going to sit, don't start it every 2 weeks... or every 2 months... or even every 2 years- just let it sit with no fuel in the carb and the battery disconnected until you want to actually drive it.. it's harder on it to start it and let it idle for a little while than it is to start it and run it, mostly due to unburnt fuel getting in the oil and water from the combustion process sitting in the exhaust because the mufflers don't get warm enough to evaporate it..
 

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I'll check the bolts. You might be correct that they are not the knurled/correct shoulder type. And I definitely don't have the brace on the back of it.
There's your answer - doesn't matter which big bolts you use, if you don't have the starter brace, it's going to come loose and become misaligned at the flywheel interface. The brace is there for a reason, to manage the cantilevered load from the starter's weight while also managing the torque reaction when it cranks. Get the right knurled mounting bolts and the brace and you'll be in business. :thumbsup:

:beers:
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Ok. I got the right bolts...they were not correct. Replaced them. Car started like a kitten...roared like a tiger. Then the cat got stuck in the fly wheel the next time I tried to start it! Out of alignment again. I pulled the shim that had been in there out with the same results. Just not engaging correctly. I checked the torque as Fred suggested and it is about 65-70 ft lbs. I dont have the brace for the back of the starter. I will get one and see if that makes a difference. And Novaderrik...hopefully it wont be sitting anytime soon...assuming I can get the damn thing started!!!! But I appreciate the info! More to follow, I'm sure!
 
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