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Discussion Starter #1
A little over a year ago I bought a powermaster 9100 to replace my stock starter.

Since the day I bought it, 50% of start ups it would grind against the flywheel without turning over. I installed a supplied 1/32 shim but it made no difference. So I just dealt with it.

A week ago I installed another 1/32 shim, hoping to rid the grinding. Instead, a few days later my starter cranked slower and slower, until the motor went out. (Did I do that?)

So yesterday I bought another powermaster 9100 starter and this one grinds too! Annoying!!

Before I shim this one I want to know if it'll fry it by doing so. Any thoughts?

Has anyone fixed this issue before?

Thank you
 

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A little over a year ago I bought a powermaster 9100 to replace my stock starter.

Since the day I bought it, 50% of start ups it would grind against the flywheel without turning over. I installed a supplied 1/32 shim but it made no difference. So I just dealt with it.

A week ago I installed another 1/32 shim, hoping to rid the grinding. Instead, a few days later my starter cranked slower and slower, until the motor went out. (Did I do that?)

So yesterday I bought another powermaster 9100 starter and this one grinds too! Annoying!!

Before I shim this one I want to know if it'll fry it by doing so. Any thoughts?

Has anyone fixed this issue before?

Thank you
I had to cut a shim in half and only shim one side. You need to measure the gap of the teeth with a paperclip.

https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQOaW07JCexl37i3931RwdRR3emoCBhdRO1oWcB-onrq6RtMDOX
 

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Discussion Starter #3
So I did that with the initial starter I bought and it didn't "need" a shim. Gap was measured at 30thou
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I also forgot to mention it mostly (90%) only does it after I've been driving.

It never does it in the morning. But after I fired it up and drive a couple miles, I can turn it off for only 30 seconds and try to fire it again and it'll grind.
 

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Three things.

The bolts might be just a little long. The starter warms up from headers and it shifts the alignment. When starter cools down, it goes back into alignment. It might be worth putting a washer on the bolts.

The second is similar, with heat soak of the starter.
I have a heat shield wrapped around mine. Exhausts/headers throw off a lot of heat. Do not use nylon zip ties or they will melt. Use steel zip ties.
https://www.summitracing.com/parts/the-14150?seid=srese2&cm_mmc=pla-msn-_-shopping-_-srese2-_-thermo-tec&utm_source=bing&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=Bing+Shopping+Ads&utm_term=4581664954069567&utm_content=Thermo-Tec

Is it possible that your grounds need cleaning?
 

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I had the same issue. Solved it by installing a relay to take the ignition switch out of the solenoid power path and a larger (#10 I think) wire to the solenoid. The solenoid just wasn't getting enough juice to engage the Bendix reliably.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the replies. When I get home I'm going to look into all the suggestions made. I'm going to order some factory GM shoulder bolts and a heat shield.

Speaking of of grounds, should I be grounding the starter? I assume it self grounds to the block.

Also, I don't need the resistor bypass with hei, right?
 

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Thanks for the replies. When I get home I'm going to look into all the suggestions made. I'm going to order some factory GM shoulder bolts and a heat shield.

Speaking of of grounds, should I be grounding the starter? I assume it self grounds to the block.

Also, I don't need the resistor bypass with hei, right?

You can clock that mini starter bracket if the starter motor is close to the header. Its grounded when you bolt it up. Also it should have came with two round shims to shim the motor gear.
 

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Yes, grounds to block. Check the large battery ground if it goes to motor. It should be big fat copper and no corrosion in cable near battery connection and near motor.
 

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On the starter bolts, you do not want them to bottom out and feel tight. This can happen with a bolt that is a fraction of an inch too long.
 

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I've had the same issue after trying three different mini starter. The last one is a Powermaster and I ended up with five shims on the inside bolt and four on the outside. Yes, it did engage correctly initially but only started grinding after about five starts. Also using knurled bolts and replaced the flexplate.
 

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It's got to be misaligned I have had the same starter on my 509 and had to put a 1/2 of a shim on one side. Bolts must be the correct length also. The only other thing bad battery/alternator not getting enough juice.:cali:
 

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Corrosion in the battery cables can also add to slow or non turning starter. I had a similar issue years ago on a military vehicle, and found bits of the batter cable under the cab that had developed additional resistance through corrosion of the copper wire in the insulated cable itself. Lastly, if there are any engine leaks, the could get in the the internals of the started and dim the amount of electric current the started can receive inside its housing.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thank you for all the excellent replies made. I didn't have time to do some digging yesterday, but I will today.

I'll let you know what I find.

Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
To update, I got underneath the car and realized there is no way in hell I'll be able to check the gear mesh without pulling the tranny and bellhousing. So I added .030 shim at a time and tried starting it. I'm at 3/32nds and it's still grinding.

And scratch what I said about it not doing it in the mornings, because it definitely is. So it's not heat related. I clocked my solenoid away from the block and manifold anyways.

I removed the internal circular shim to move the nose closer.

I cleaned all the grounds.

No voltage drop. It's getting full power from the battery

Today I may try shimming it more. I'll also installed the knurled shoulder bolts I bought.

I guess the flywheel could be "bad". It did this since the flywheel was new.




On an unrelated note, this car is on the market and I'm open to offers.
 

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Did you check the voltage for the solenoid and the voltage for the starter motor while cranking? It's obvious, but I'll mention it anyway, the voltage check has to be done when the starter gear is engaged, not grinding.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
The voltage for the solenoid while cranking is 11.31.

The voltage for the starter motor while cranking is 11.29
 
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