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Old 08-15-2012, 01:05 AM
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1989 Ranger 2.9 starter issues

So, the farm I'm working on runs a small fleet of Rangers. Two of which run the 2.9 and both have had to have their starters replaced this summer. Not too unusual. The problem is that both starters were replaced because they busted the bushing out of the nose cone and would no longer engage the ring gear.
Ranger #1- replaced the starter- starts but the starter sounds horrible.
Ranger #2- replaced stater- started a couple times (cranking but with a horrible grinding sound)- now the starter spins but doesn't engage the ring gear.

Ranger #2 has had 4 starters in the last 3 years and it sounds like the bushing is the common problem. The starter had been working loose before but is tight now. I've had it off multiple times and all that I can see is that the ring gear is at about 50% life. But I've measured and the starter drive should fully engage the full depth of the ring gear. Plus, the previous starter engaged it before just fine.... when it was tight...

Anyone have any ideas what is going on here? I find it extremely odd that both the Rangers we are running with 2.9's have the same/ very similar issues....
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Old 08-15-2012, 03:24 AM
g_k50 g_k50 is offline
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Try Ford starter.
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Old 08-15-2012, 06:47 AM
f5fordgirl f5fordgirl is offline
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You didn't say auto or std, but is 50% width left on the ring gear in just one spot or all the way around? If its in just the place you saw, there will be 3 or 4 places where there are practically no teeth left, sounds like a new flywheel is needed.
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Old 08-17-2012, 10:05 PM
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Sorry it took me a while to get back, I was having computer issues.

Yes, they are manuals. The ring gear was 50% in the worst spot and the wear pattern seemed normal. The last starter chewed up the tops of all the teeth so now I'm thinking it might need a ring gear.

I'd seen on one other forum that someone mentioned using a starter with 10 drive teeth instead of 9. That would increase the diameter of the drive and make it engage deeper......

My boss is a cheap stake so only the minimal will be done. As it is, the stater was off for a month and a half before we started getting parts. That's just because he wants it out of the shop so we can pull other stuff in...
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Old 08-17-2012, 10:34 PM
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I had issues with the starter motor grinding badly on my 87 2.9 Bronco II..........Until I noticed the starter had almost oval, oversized mounting holes, after forcing the starter inboard towards the flywheel with a large screwdriver, the problem never returned.
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Old 08-19-2012, 10:28 PM
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Thanks for the idea, Old93. I looked at it and sure enough, one bolt was significantly smaller than the whole it went through the starter (I think the other has been stripped out before and replaced). I decided to cheat it a little and took a round file to the wholes in the nice aluminum nose housing. When I installed it, I held it toward the engine with a pry-bar and tightened it down. When I hit the starter, sure enough the gears meshed and it cranked. I'm not sure if it is enough and didn't really pay attention to how it sounded because the damn relay stuck again. With how many times it has stuck recently, I dare not try it again until a new relay is installed.
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Old 11-25-2012, 11:45 PM
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Finally got around to working on the thing again. The starter quit meshing with the ring-gear again and we'd just parked it. Dropped the trans and the ring gear didn't look horrible but we replaced it. The bellhousing bolt right above the starter was missing and the other top 3 only stuck through the trans flange only 3/8" without the spacer plate . I just got the trans back in place with longer bolts, stuck the starter back on and cranked it over with a remote starter. So far, it sounds great. Hopefully it won't be too long before another rainy day stops corn harvest so I can finish it
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Old 11-25-2012, 11:45 PM
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