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Old 02-17-2015, 05:19 PM   #1
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Spring loaded emergency starter. Must have...

I have often wondered how to start a diesel without electrical power....and finally found this device which is a replacement starter. Remove the electrical starter, replace it with this starter, then wind up the spring, release the spring and the diesel should spring to life....

http://www.springstarter.com/uploads/2012%20Range-1.pdf

Watch this video on this page:

Spring starter from Kineteco how Spring Starting works
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Old 02-17-2015, 06:16 PM   #2
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Excellent info! Thanks for posting this. Great item to have in the trick bag!
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Old 02-17-2015, 06:29 PM   #3
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Sounds/Looks Good: Video will not play for me. In WWII types of plane engines were started via 12 ga shot gun shell. I think some PT Boat engines were also.
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Old 02-17-2015, 07:35 PM   #4
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When I worked for the Forest Service in 1967 we had a diesel generator out behind the big house. We started the Diesel engine by hand .... a crank. We'd engage the compression release and begin the cranking.

The engine was one cylinder. It was horizontal and looked much like a bottle shaped cannon. It probably had a 3" bore and a 5" stroke. The engine was about 30" long and rested on a rectangular cement base.

Back to cranking. I was about 25 years old and frequently needed several attempts the get the thing going fast enough to start. The time it took to stop cranking and reach over to trip the compression release was critical. If you cranked fast enough and managed to engage the compression quick enough ... the old thing started.

Then we had power in the house.



I don't see any reason a wind up starter couldn't be applied to the fwd end of the crankshaft. Some lawn mowers have wind up starters. The starter I envision would have a stout spring and a very low geared crank that may take considerable time to "wind up" the spring. Would be easy to make one commercially and I'm sure all the components could be found off the shelf.
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Old 02-17-2015, 08:38 PM   #5
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I got the video to play... simple, neat!
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Old 02-17-2015, 09:20 PM   #6
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In WWII types of plane engines were started via 12 ga shot gun shell. I think some PT Boat engines were also.
True. I never used a 12 ga. to start one, but I used a 12 ga. on one that didn't start one time.
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Old 02-17-2015, 10:01 PM   #7
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True. I never used a 12 ga. to start one, but I used a 12 ga. on one that didn't start one time.
12 ga. "slug" will instantly stop nearly any regular sized engine. Goes through the block. Past experience...!!
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Old 02-18-2015, 01:16 AM   #8
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Wow, that's pretty cool.

For those that can't run that video, just search on YouTube and you can find some videos of that spring starter.
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Old 02-18-2015, 07:18 AM   #9
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12 ga. "slug" will instantly stop nearly any regular sized engine. Goes through the block. Past experience...!!

Not through but will crack a bit of cast iron, there is an exotic 12 gauge round that does a bit better then the 1oz lead slug, see video 2.

The Box O' Truth #54 - Busting an Engine Block The Box O' Truth

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Old 02-18-2015, 07:20 AM   #10
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The nicest crank start setup I have seen was on a Brit Enfield diesel, used to mix cement.

The truck was until there was enough oil pressure the valves could not close.

This was done more to protect the unit from union "workers" that could not be bothered to check the oil.

Low oil, no operation so the morter would be hand mixed , seemd to work well.

Crank fast enough by hand ,the valves would operate and chug chug chug!
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Old 02-18-2015, 09:38 AM   #11
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Lucas made spring starters and they've been around for years and I've used them to start cranes/excavators/pumps and site trucks.
I posted on here some time ago of the benefits of having one in the spares locker.
Great to see the idea taken up.


I just can't believe you guys never took out the slug from the shell ! !
I've used them on the Lysander radial aircraft engines and Field Marshall tractors and they worked perfect.
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Old 02-18-2015, 09:41 AM   #12
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modern diesels often require power to open fuel solenoid or run common rail injectors. The days of mechanical diesels seem over.
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Old 02-18-2015, 09:51 AM   #13
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Not through but will crack a bit of cast iron, there is an exotic 12 gauge round that does a bit better then the 1oz lead slug, see video 2.
Scott - In 1971, hitting a 1960 383 cid Chevy engine. 12 ga. slug - went through side of the block, stopped it cold.

Slug you show on video would suffice too, I'm sure.

When the heavily armored and superior weaponry bank robbers were fighting cops in LA several years ago I wondered why the cops did not simply begin hitting their armor protected heads with 12 ga. slugs?? Even if the armor had been tough enough to thwart penetration the slug would have knocked them off their feet and the impact-shock would probably have knocked them out! At minimum the slug would have greatly disoriented their coordination and reasoning functions. Talk about getting a concussion! - LOL
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Old 02-18-2015, 09:56 AM   #14
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Most of the solenoids actually shut the fuel off.
There are literally millions of mechanical boat engines out there still working and while the benefits of a common rail are well known I wouldn't have one in a boat for love nor money. I've seen too many twin and single engine boats (mostly, but not all Volvo powered) towed back into harbour for me to place any trust in them until they become bullet proof.
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Old 02-18-2015, 09:58 AM   #15
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Scott - In 1971, hitting a 1960 383 cid Chevy engine. 12 ga. slug - went through side of the block, stopped it cold.

Slug you show on video would suffice too, I'm sure.

When the heavily armored and superior weaponry bank robbers were fighting cops in LA several years ago I wondered why the cops did not simply begin hitting their armor protected heads with 12 ga. slugs?? Even if the armor had been tough enough to thwart penetration the slug would have knocked them off their feet and the impact-shock would probably have knocked them out! At minimum the slug would have greatly disoriented their coordination and reasoning functions. Talk about getting a concussion! - LOL

I think only Jack Bauer can make those head shots in a running gun fight in the streets.
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Old 02-18-2015, 10:03 AM   #16
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I think only Jack Bauer can make those head shots in a running gun fight in the streets.
Those crap-head-robbers were calmly walking and firing their superior weapons much of the time. Armaments they wore made it too heavy for them to move very quickly. It would have been easy to hit their heads with 12 ga. slug. Three police officers, each firing 12 ga slugs... the jerks would have much sooner been stopped; IMHO. That crazy gun fight went on for too much of a long, long time!
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Old 02-18-2015, 10:18 AM   #17
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modern diesels often require power to open fuel solenoid or run common rail injectors. The days of mechanical diesels seem over.
True, but it requires very little electricity to operate the fuel system. You could very easily be in a situation where your batteries are strong enough to run the engine, but not strong enough to start the engine. That's where something like this could be a life-saver.

The problem I see is that this thing needs to be mounted on the engine in place of the traditional starter. So, in an emergency you have to break out the tool kit, remove the normal starter, and mount this in its place. That ain't gonna happen any too fast! Either that or you leave this permanently mounted and ALWAYS have to start the engine manually.

It would be nice to have something along these lines that could be mounted IN ADDITION to a normal, electric starter, rather than instead of one. Then if the batteries are too run down to start the engine, you could just start it up with this, but in other cases use the electric starter.
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Old 02-18-2015, 12:53 PM   #18
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Many long distance cruisers have multiple battery banks and one or two ways to charge batteries...and possibly have a small inexpensive booster battery charger aboard to boot.

While the spring starter is tempting as a good idea...I think I am more likely struck by lightning and killed than not have the possibility of starting my engine eventually due to low battery power.

Now if I am going to carry a spare starter due to my cruising style and distance from help....I will seriously contemplate it then...
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Old 02-18-2015, 02:26 PM   #19
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Many long distance cruisers have multiple battery banks and one or two ways to charge batteries...and possibly have a small inexpensive booster battery charger aboard to boot.

While the spring starter is tempting as a good idea...I think I am more likely struck by lightning and killed than not have the possibility of starting my engine eventually due to low battery power.

Now if I am going to carry a spare starter due to my cruising style and distance from help....I will seriously contemplate it then...
I would sooner carry a spare regular starter. At least that way once I change it I don't have to change it back. And with multiple battery banks the likelihood of not enough cranking power is fairly low as ps stated.
Then again I usually anchor on a hill just in case
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Old 02-18-2015, 02:37 PM   #20
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I would sooner carry a spare regular starter. At least that way once I change it I don't have to change it back. And with multiple battery banks the likelihood of not enough cranking power is fairly low as ps stated.
Then again I usually anchor on a hill just in case
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