Starter grinds

Discussion in 'Troubleshooting & Diagnosis' started by Jake Stein, Nov 21, 2017.

  1. Jake Stein

    Jake Stein New Member

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    Nov 21, 2017
    So I've had this 350cu engine on my car for a couple years. The built 400 turbo behind it for many more years. And this starter for probably five. I didn't have an issue until one day I abused the car pretty hard (it happens from time to time) the next day I went to start it. It was a hard start. Figured I lifted a head ( but didn't) but after a good couple minutes of cranking- and almost firing all of a sudden the starter starts to grind (Real Bad).

    So afterward I threw in a new starter figured she got hot, same issue. Decided it was time to pull motor and freshen it up anyway and probably find the issue inside. Well I can't find anything out of the ordinary. The flow plate doesn't show a crack, the bearings all look good no water in the cylinders. This motor probably only had 500-1000 pretty hard miles on it. Everything looks good

    Before I throw parts at it I was wondering if you guys can shed some light on something I must be missing thanks in advance. Jake
     
  2. Rdobbs1977

    Rdobbs1977 Huge Guns N Roses Fan

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    Dec 1, 2014
    Nashville
    a lifted head would not cause this problem. water in cylinders would not cause this problem. putting a new starter in there was an ok move, but it appears your 'old' starter was doing its job. i'd be looking at these possibilities: loose flex plate bolts, flex plate bent, starter gear engaging too far.
     
  3. SRGN

    SRGN Veteran Member

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    Feb 20, 2009
    Central NJ
    Bolt the starter onto the engine while its out and check the alignment to the flexplate. If that is good, engage just the solenoid and look at the mesh.
     
  4. Plant Engineer

    Plant Engineer Veteran Member

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    May 17, 2017
    Washington State
    Theres other things that will cause and engine to start hard. Warped block, bent crank etc. Ive blown up the best of them. Theres all kinds of stuff that can deplete your bank account.

    Could just be loose connections or bad cable ends.
     
  5. tom3

    tom3 Veteran Member

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    Aug 1, 1999
    ohio
    Hard to diagnose without hearing it. Advanced timing can cause hard starting, starter drag and noise.
     
  6. larrylarry

    larrylarry Veteran Member

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    Dec 22, 2011
    San Antonio Tx
    Look at the timing chain,might of stretch. Could cause timing to change. Im guessing.
     
  7. Jake Stein

    Jake Stein New Member

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    Nov 21, 2017
    *update* I have the engine out and on the stand. I have the motor stripped to the long block. I bolted the starter on and cranked it and I see a slight wobble in the flex plate, but the gear is tight as can be in the flex plate and shimming it in and out to no avail. The starter gear most of the time won't disengage it's so tight. I don't see any cracks in the flex plate and I don't see and issues with the starter mounting area. Any ideas?
     
  8. Plant Engineer

    Plant Engineer Veteran Member

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    May 17, 2017
    Washington State
    If youve got the pan off pull all the center main caps leaving the front and back and put a dial indicator on the center main . Turn it over by hand and see if you get the main moving around much.

    You shouldnt need more than one shim pretty much ever. A paper clip should fit between the top of the starter pinion gear and the teeth of the ring gear its nested in.
     
  9. larrylarry

    larrylarry Veteran Member

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    Dec 22, 2011
    San Antonio Tx
    Putting a shim on the mounting bolt close to the crankshaft side will pull the gear away from the flex plate. I used a handful of different thickness washers as a shim. Should be able to slide a paper clip between the two. To save a little bit of weight I used a starter for a S-10 with a V6. It’s about 7 lbs. less an isn’t as close to headers as that old big ass starter is.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2017

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