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  #1  
Old 12-22-2011, 07:04 PM
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Starter grinding only as I start it, shims? Something else?

So I juuuuust finally finished my tranny swap! Went from a C6 to an Np435 behind a 400. Everything, unbelievably, seems to be working first try!

The sole issue is a common one I know, but I'm not sure how to diagnose it, as I've never experienced it before.

My starter grinds as I start the engine. It powers up, engages instantly, turns strong, and then disengages just as quickly as it always has. The engine then runs fine, and without noise. The issue though is that just aaaas I engage the starter, and while it's turning the flywheel, it grinds pretty bad, erratically.

I know you can shim your starter, but is that the only possible issue??

The teeth of both my starter and the flywheel were fine when installed.

Could the starter be too far out sideways from the wheel, or too close in? And if it iiiis just the usual too far forward or back (depth into the tranny), why does that produce a grinding noise??

AleX
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79 F150 4X4. 408. Np435, the clunk. Np205. 9" + HPD44, 3.50's. 31" BFG A/T's. True duals, flowmaster 44's. Full custom interior. 5 color primer and weld on patches!

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Old 12-22-2011, 07:55 PM
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I think you might need to swap the starters. As I remember with my swaps, always manual to auto, but I thought the starter was a different length from the bolts to the nose cone on 4 spd to auto starter. I had to use shims on my conversion till I got a new starter for an auto then I didn't need them anymore. I'm sure someone will add to this, especially if it is wrong, but I remember 2 different starters for the autos and manuals. It might be worth looking into.
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Old 12-22-2011, 08:03 PM
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It sounds like it is setting too deep to me .I have never heard of shimming a ford starter before .. may need a different starter ...The only other thing it can be is if it is not catching the flywheel completely (slipping) that is unmistakable ...
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Old 12-22-2011, 11:54 PM
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Ya it just flat out wasn't slipping, it was turning over well. Warhorse, I'm not sure about what you say exactly, but in all the research I've done I've found the starters to be the same.

Too deep was my instinct, but I'll just pop it off tomorrow and look for what side of the gears, if any, is damaged. That'll tell me alot.
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79 F150 4X4. 408. Np435, the clunk. Np205. 9" + HPD44, 3.50's. 31" BFG A/T's. True duals, flowmaster 44's. Full custom interior. 5 color primer and weld on patches!

Henry Ford, puting bow ties out of style since 1903!
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Old 12-23-2011, 05:51 AM
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You can also put some "prussian blue" on the face of the starter clutch; the next time you pull it it will show where it is rubbing and transfer that mark onto the flywheel for easy viewing.
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Old 12-23-2011, 10:20 AM
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Ok maybe I was thinking of something else. Do you have the piece of tin that goes between the angine and bell housing? I have seen those not used before and everything worked fine but the starter went too deep and ground. I fixed this with a shim before.
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Old 12-23-2011, 12:49 PM
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Yup I've got that (I always called it the dust shield, but not sure). It did get bent a little right around the starter during installation, but the bolts pulled it right in flat. Haven't gotten a chance to just pull the starter yet, but I'm planning on it right after lunch today, so that'll say alot.
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Old 12-23-2011, 05:15 PM
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I've really gotta focus on one window at a time. Just refreshed this page before hitting post......

Anyway, starters off, and daaaaamnit, I have a damaged flywheel. The most idiotic part of it all is the damaged teeth are rusted on the broken surfaces, meaning I bought and instaaaaalled an already damaged flywheel.

The teeth aren't very badly damaged, 3/16" at most off the corner of a few, and many are still fine, and the starter gear's teeth are fine.

I did notice though that the starter isn't engaging as deeply as it could. Only about 3/8" contact with the ring gear or less, on the very end of the starter gear. I had the idea of getting it in deeper by modifying some stuff, but would that even solve my problem??

Even if that would work, the "stuff" that I would be modifying to get it in further would be either the locating rim, and the ears, of the starter, OR the part of the dust shield that that rim locates against.

Both of those make me nervous as that rim looks like it probably helps the ears aLOT to keep the starter facing straight on. If the starter wasn't supported all around, I *could* see it pivoting itself right off the teeth of the ring gear. What do you guys think about that?? I mean that dust plate isn't anything too strong..... not sure how much actual support it provides.

What do you guys think about all this?
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Henry Ford, puting bow ties out of style since 1903!
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Old 12-23-2011, 05:42 PM
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-Just take your starter out and put a common hardware store FLAT washer between the starter and the plate and bolt back on, no problem, this is done all the time.
The manual trans starters and auto matic trans starters ARE slightly different lengths in the nose.
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Old 12-24-2011, 01:03 PM
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Nono see the issue isn't that I need to shim it OUT, I need to get it deeper in.
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Henry Ford, puting bow ties out of style since 1903!
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Old 12-24-2011, 05:42 PM
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I have had the same problem for.like 3 months now.

If you look at the thread call wrong starter. i have a few picture. You most likely have the wrong flywheel for the tranny. i am swaaping mine in the next few day. when you pull your starter. you will see. the casing and the starter teeth are all chew up. Measure the distance how far it is damaged. this is how much you need to shim until.you get the right flywheel. i will let you know how i am doing this week. read the thread call t3 vs t19
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Old 12-24-2011, 06:44 PM
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Well, good luck I was sure the starters were different, and not interchangeable.
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Old 12-24-2011, 07:02 PM
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Old 12-24-2011, 11:44 PM
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Well look this is really bugging me. I read the page from that link, and it was interesting, but that's just not the case with my flywheel/flexplate.

My old flexplate has a ring gear that begins almost exactly at the same depth (difference of hairs) as the ring gear on a spare flywheel I have. This flywheel is identical to the one I have running now. With these being the same depth, and using the same starter with a nearly identical dust plate, and the tranny being just a flush to the block as the old one was, the starter should work exactly the same. The only difference I can see is that the teeth on the flywheel I'm running are damaged somewhat at their fronts, so my theory is still that the starter isn't engaging as deeply as it needs to, and is slipping off of some of the more damaged teeth.

Today I ground the retaining lip, and a matching depth on each ear, so that the starter would seat a little more than 1/8" deeper. This seemed to help, but I only had time to throw it in and try it once, and it was a little visibly crooked, so I wasn't surprised when it just locked up. Tomorrow I'm going to throw some shoulders on the starter so it sits perfectly straight in the hole, and mess around with shimming it out very slightly if I need to, or creating just a tiny bit more clearance for the nose cone.

I'll let you all know what I come up with. Merry Christmas everybody! Let's hope I can start my truck and get it out of the driveway before the family shows up tomorrow........
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Henry Ford, puting bow ties out of style since 1903!
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Old 12-24-2011, 11:44 PM
 
 
 
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