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Old 04-20-2013, 11:03 AM
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Starter rebuild

I know a few of you were looking forward to this, and I'm here to temporarily disappoint. I just had to order a new solenoid, like I should have at the start. The old one crumbled when I tried removing cables. Local part houses don't have one in stock, so I just placed an order. Sadly, that actually holds off a good rebuild, but I will be posting pics a little later for current progress. The internals look good, so there shouldn't be any problems.
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Old 04-20-2013, 04:50 PM
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Okay, here's the pics. After getting it back together and cleaned up it was time to spend some time with the kids. So, without further delay, here's the rebuild/cleanup.

Starting off was quick and easy, I had the starter out in about 10 minutes.



But, that was where the fun stopped. Trying to remove the feed wire from the solenoid caused the solenoid to break apart. All well, can't fix that part.




Come to find out, I couldn't get the solenoid off without taking the housing apart, as one of the screws was causing me problems. So, quick inspections begin.

Armature is good. No arcs or extreme wear.


Teeth are all good. A bit of metal dust and old grease, but serviceable.


This is the screw that gave me problems. Phillips stripped out, square drive stripped out, Dremel and standard screw driver prevailed, but only just.


Brushes look surprisingly nice.


Actually, they look too good. This starter must not be that old.


I really didn't do much to it. It seems like a really really new starter, I've only had the truck for close to 10K miles. I replaced a couple of bearings, and the shift lever, as they came in the kit. I'm keeping the brush set for a later day. It would have been more work than necessary on otherwise good brushes. It can be done with a little patience and a soldering gun though.

Here's the nee shift lever on the left of the old lever. The new one seemed a little beefier in the contact spot, which is the sole reason I changed it.


I did a quick sand on the armature just to give a nice fresh face. 320 grit, made it look pretty. Cleaned everything up with Simple Green and contact cleaner. Conservatively greased the teeth, and got it all bolted together.

There are proper ways of doing the following, this does not fall into that category. I just wanted to see if I could make it work, and I did. I used a socket to spread the brushes, then just slid the armature right into place with minimal manipulation or headache.



Got it all bolted back together and brought some rags to the trash. I almost stepped on this little guy. He was chilling in the driveway right next to my tire.

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Old 04-20-2013, 05:05 PM
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Until a new coil comes in, I won't know if I put it back together all proper like, but it's all back together, and I didn't have spare parts. One thing of note is that the two pieces of the nose have 4 bolts holding them together. Three of them are blatantly obvious, the forth one is in the forth pic up top. It's beneath the armature. I beat the armature out with the handle of a screwdriver on the gears. It doesn't take much to knock it out, and the plastic handle ensured I didn't hurt the teeth.

I really could have done better picture taking over all, but as you can see in a couple of pics, my hands are filthy. The flash makes them look much cleaner than they are, and I even washed them a couple of times during this. It's a dirty, greasy part, but working on it is quite easy. If you have that need for whatever reason, don't be afraid to did in and make things happen. Unless the housing is cracked, you can replace any part in there.

The parts I used I bought from Alternator & Starter Parts Wholesale. I haven't dealt with their customer service, but I ordered on a Sunday and parts were here on Wednesday. The right part even. They were kind enough to wrap using the brown paper I used as a clean mat. Worked nicely, kept more oil spots off the pavement. I don't have a proper workbench, so I sat back in a fold up chair and worked on the ground. The only two "special" tools you need are two that any decent garage should have anyway; Bearing puller, and a soldering gun.

To put on the new bearings I went cheap and just drilled a hole in a 4x4 I hadn't split for kindling yet. Worked like a champ.
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Old 04-27-2013, 03:05 PM
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"I like turtles."
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Old 04-27-2013, 03:37 PM
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My girls wanted to keep it. "No" - "But it's so cute!!" - "No" - "But, but, but" - "No".

Such is the life of having kids that love animals. They want to keep every animal they see.
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Old 04-30-2013, 12:57 PM
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Well, I was too quick to praise the companies service. Solenoid came in today, 4 days after expected, 1.5 weeks after ordering. Installed, and the truck starts great. It actually turns over faster than it did before, so I think my regreasing helped a bit.

About their Customer Service... I placed the order on a Sunday, got the shipping notification on Wednesday, expected the part on Friday. I got home from work on Friday, no part. So I check tracking numbers, UPS is showing they never received it. Dang it. Contact company, asking if UPS's system is just messed up, or if something else was holding back shipping. They said it shipped as planned. Ugh. Contact UPS, nope, they don't have it. They tell me to contact the company and have them talk with UPS to resolve the issue. Okay, what ever. Emailed the company back asking them to contact UPS to figure it out. I didn't get a response, but it was end of the day anyway, so no biggy. About an hour later I check UPS site again, and the part is now in the system and is being shipped as it should be, scheduled delivery of today (two business days). Cool, problem solved. I got an email back from the company yesterday telling me I'm SOL because once it's in the shippers hands, it's no longer their problem.

A day late and a dollar short on that one, but it's quite possible that an inexperienced individual was manning the CS department at that time. I replied back that I asked them to contact the shipper, as that's what the shipper asked me to do. I also told them that everything was showing up as it's supposed to, so everything's gravy anyhow. No reply back on that, but whatever. If I need alt or starter parts in the future, I'll try finding another distributor before using them again. I don't ask for much, but I don't like companies blowing smoke up my rear. I don't know if it was a UPS screw up or the companies, but I'll venture to say that the box got set on a shelf and forgotten about until I made contact. It was a small box, so I can see that happening.

All the parts are good so far. Everything I received was the right part, and nothing showed up damaged. I didn't like that I had to buy a 50ct bag of the solenoid hold down screws, but the distributor likely does most of it's business with actual rebuilders, so I don't hold that against them. They were cheap enough and I'm sure I'll find a project to use the left overs on.
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Old 07-30-2013, 09:57 AM
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And I just replaced the starter proper like. The rebuild did nothing more than postpone the issue. Instead of changing it our in my driveway, I had the pleasure of changing it out in a parking lot. After walking 3 miles round trip for a new starter. So, note to all, you *can* rebuild it. It just might work great. You just might end up broken down inconveniently.

Also worth note is that it's starting up better than ever with the new starter. I thought it was doing good after the rebuild, but it turns over like a gasser now.
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Old 07-30-2013, 11:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Macon View Post
And I just replaced the starter proper like. The rebuild did nothing more than postpone the issue. Instead of changing it our in my driveway, I had the pleasure of changing it out in a parking lot. After walking 3 miles round trip for a new starter. So, note to all, you *can* rebuild it. It just might work great. You just might end up broken down inconveniently.

Also worth note is that it's starting up better than ever with the new starter. I thought it was doing good after the rebuild, but it turns over like a gasser now.
Man, that's a kick in the balls!!
I will take that to heart and just buy one or have it rebuilt then mine is ready. I just want to avoid the local auto parts "lifetime warranty" starters, my dad has replaced 3 in 4 years!
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Old 07-30-2013, 01:52 PM
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Yep. It's something to keep in mind. Worked like a champ up until it didn't. I got the cheap $180 remanned unit. We'll see how it does. Didn't see the "Made in China" sticker until I was back under the truck.
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Old 07-30-2013, 03:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Macon View Post
Yep. It's something to keep in mind. Worked like a champ up until it didn't. I got the cheap $180 remanned unit. We'll see how it does. Didn't see the "Made in China" sticker until I was back under the truck.
Man, it would be hard to do in your situation but that alone would make me either not buy it or take it right back to the store!! I buy as little as possible chinese crap!! It was awesome to see that the PHP Hydra chip was made in the USA, big selling point for me..
Good luck with it !
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