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Old 12-05-2011, 07:21 AM   #1
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Starter

It's winterization time so I wanted to take the old girl out for a run up and down the river to heat up the oil for changing.* B**ch didn't want to start.* A few sharp raps with a hammer on the solenoid and starter convinced her otherwise.*

Here's the symptoms:* One loud click when the key is turned and then nothing.* Tried a few times.* Maybe held the key on "start" too long and got a puff of smoke (by now I have the floor up checking connections, etc). Hammer time!* She starts.* She always lights off within 2-3 seconds once she starts spinning.

No "chattering" of the solenoid/starter, just the one click.* So I'm thinking starter, not solenoid, switches or low batts.* I'll do the routine of jumping the connections to isolate the switch and solenoid later. But I'm fairly sure it's the starter.* This has been a problem since day 1 but she always did start after a few tries.

If it is confirmed as the starter is it worth the trouble to try to get it repaired or does it make more sense to just swap out for a new one and never worry about it again?

It's a FL 120.* If I want a new starter is American Diesel the place to go for one?

Thanks

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-- Edited by BaltimoreLurker on Monday 5th of December 2011 08:22:00 AM
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Old 12-05-2011, 09:19 AM   #2
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RE: Starter

The new ones are smaller and a bit stronger. When mine did the exact same thing, I did both. I repaired and rebuilt the old one plus bought a new one as a spare. The only problem I have now is that I think the shop that sold me the new one may not have caught that I have an anti-clockwise engine. I brought it home this weekend to test it, but it's been too long to try and return it. I may just have to sell it and buy another one.
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Old 12-05-2011, 09:24 AM   #3
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RE: Starter

Let me start this with a disclaimer, I have no FL specific experience.** If you got your heart set on a new starter, and your wallet is suffering from excess bloat, American Diesel can surely help you out.* If the desire for new is bigger than the wallet though, I would get a price from them first, then check prices with an Agco and/or New Holland farm equipment dealer.* The FL was used in quite a bit of farm equipment in its day.

There isn't much about a starter that isn't rebuilable though.* My guess is your problem is either the solonoid or starter motor brushes.* The fact you get a load click then nothing makes me suspect the brushes.* Brushes wear down with use,* At some point, they become too short for the spring behind them to push them into contact with the armiture, or, they are just sticky.* The rap with the hammer jars them enough that they make contact.* A good autumotive/industrial/commercial electric shop should be able to get you going for minimal dollars.* Rebuild parts such as brushes and bearings are pretty generic so parts should not be an issue.* That would be the route I would go.* But then again, my wallet is bloated.* If you need with your wallet bloat, you can make a generous contribution to my wallet, I'll find room.

Good Luck.** And, if you need to how to add it my wallet, PM me.
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Old 12-05-2011, 10:24 AM   #4
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RE: Starter

Quote:
Capn Craig wrote:
If you got your heart set on a new starter, and your wallet is suffering from excess bloat, American Diesel can surely help you out.
I wish I had that problem, I'd just buy a new boat!

But, as it is, it sounds like the best course of action is to pull the starter and take it to a shop and see what's what.

A couple bolts, a couple wires to R&R - that's in the range of my skills.

Thanks!

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Old 12-05-2011, 06:44 PM   #5
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RE: Starter

I don't know your FL starter but if there is a solenoid on the side of the actual starter motor, the contacts and bridge inside of the solenoid may be burned. There may be a contact disc that is meant to bridge those contacts and they all burn. This is normal. On some starters the contacts and bridge are easily replaceable. If you have this type then generally the rest of the starter is worth several replacement intervals for the contact set. The single large click each time you operate the key or button is typical.

Eventually though the rest of the starter, brushes, commutator, bearings, etc., need some work and then it's time to re & re the starter.

As suggested check a couple of sources. Check AMerican Diesel and one or two local starter/alternator rebuilders in your area.

Don't wait to much longer though as it sounds like you could have a no start one day if you have to go to those lengths. The rap isn't that uncommon but it sounds like you had to do a lot more than that.

The rap can work on failing brushes and failing solenoid contact.
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Old 12-06-2011, 04:44 AM   #6
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RE: Starter

The solenoid on many can be taken apart and the contacts simply cleaned , although solenoids are aviliable without the starter attached.

Before doing any wrenching I would measure the voltage first at the key fed terminal when attempting a crank.

I would also measure the voltage AT the starter to the block while cranking.

My preference is to have the vessels volt gauge measure the start terminal V at all times.

And actually monitor the V as the engine is started each time.
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Old 12-06-2011, 05:26 AM   #7
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RE: Starter

I would take it out and go to a local shop and have them go thru it. It is likely the starter relay and/or solenoid, but they can check it all out for you.

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Old 12-06-2011, 05:42 AM   #8
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RE: Starter

Quote:
FF wrote:
The solenoid on many can be taken apart and the contacts simply cleaned , although solenoids are aviliable without the starter attached.

Before doing any wrenching I would measure the voltage first at the key fed terminal when attempting a crank.

I would also measure the voltage AT the starter to the block while cranking.

My preference is to have the vessels volt gauge measure the start terminal V at all times.

And actually monitor the V as the engine is started each time.
I agree with FF. Make sure when it "click"s or spins that you have a minimum of 9.5 volts at the key switch terminal and a minimum of 10.5 volts at the battery cable terminal on the starter.
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