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Bad starters on a 400 chev small block

 
Kassee11
I love my Chevy Chevette!
Posts: 1
Joined: 05/11
Posted: 05/01/11 06:21 PM

i have a 400 smal block and i am constantly going through starters. if i turn the starter a certain way and tighten the bolts it will b ok for a while but eventually it wont start. it is also breaking the head off the starter..... r they selling me the wrong one???? Confused  

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waynep7122
I mow my lawn and find Chevys
Posts: 1130
Joined: 08/09
Posted: 05/01/11 08:22 PM

chevy starters come in conventional... like a 3510... and a 3510 M....  the 3510M starters have the smaller solenoid.. and 10MM bolt holes where the starter mounts..


do your starter bolts have 6 stripes on the top.. or numbers like 10.9 or 12.9...  

with the starter off... stick the bolt through the starter in a normal direction until the knurled section sticks through... is it a tight fit or a loose fit...  

warning... DO NOT TRY TO THREAD METRIC bolts into a PRE 82 block that is threaded to SAE size.. you WILL split the block at the starter mount....

so... which size bolts  do you have....   3/8 probably...    and what starter numbers are they giving you....  

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waynep7122
I mow my lawn and find Chevys
Posts: 1130
Joined: 08/09
Posted: 05/01/11 08:28 PM

does your knurl fit tight in your starter at the upper mounting face where it contacts the block... if not.. you have problems...

Chevystarterboltfit

Chevystarterbracket


if you look at your block.. you will notice the holes where the starter bolts go in are also counter bored... so the knurl fits into the block slightly... so the starter can be exactly centered on the knurls...

if you are running a micro starter... and the bolt holes are 10 mm... some alternator and starter shops have shims they sold with some alternators to make a 10MM alternator hole fit nice on a 3/8 bolt... the difference is 0.020...  so the wall thickness is 0.010....   i used on one... a 3/8 thin wall k-line valve guide liner...   but i just happened to have those in stock for repairing GM throttle body injected throttle shaft bores...

but that was just a fix.. not the proper way to do it...

Spiral  

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redneckjoe69
I mow my lawn and find Chevys
Posts: 2337
Joined: 03/10
Posted: 05/02/11 01:07 PM

i went through a similar problem years ago and it was a crack in the block, where the starter outside bolt threads are.    it used to snap the aluminum on the starter often.    also try useing the bracket to hold the weight of the starter to the block in the front.   i forget what you call it, i make my own.    tourqe bracket?  

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Pontiacman2
Moderator
Posts: 8956
Joined: 09/08
Posted: 05/02/11 01:20 PM

+1 I through a 305 block away a month or two ago because of the same problem and I found the block to be cracked.  
Pontiacman2
Pontiacman2

Professional Hi-performance engine builder

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zman123
Everything in my driveway’s a Chevy
Posts: 537
Joined: 06/08
Posted: 05/03/11 06:59 AM

There are also shims available for chevy starters to get the proper clearance. I broke a couple of starters too before I figured this little item out.  

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