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Discussion Starter #1
hey, so my mechanic traveled before the pandemic and while he was out of the country the whole corona thing happened and they closed the airport. So now he can't come back in plus garages aren't allowed to be open and my starter needs replacing. So I'm trying to do things myself.

Luckily I've seen my mechanic replace my starter twice, the first time was when he replced my OEM one with a lightweight one. That time he removed the airbox for access and did the swap.

The second time he swapped a lightweight starter for another of the same kind, that time he didn't remove anything and just slid the starter out from under the airbox and out from near the ignition system.

So today I attempted to remove it myself since there isn't anyone that can do it for me. I know exactly what I need to do but every single bolt is either hard to get to or very awkward to unscrew.

Took me over an hour I think to remove the airbox because of the 4 screws holding it from underneath were so awkward to get to.

Then I managed to remove just one bolt from the three holding the starter to the car and I don't even know how I could possibly remove the other two.

I feel like I need to remove the carbs to get to everything properly but I've noticed one cable and one tube I would have to remove to be able to pull it out and I'm worried I might finally fix the starter but end up with another issue with the carbs so decided to stop work and get some tips.

Can you guys tell me what you removed to be able to swap the starter and more importantly, any tips on how to get to the bolts?

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Hi Mark, I haven't done this in quite a while others who have more recently should chime in. From memory you will need a long extension bar on your socket with the ratchet and a ring spanner. From where you can see the bolts, line up the socket your handle will be up at the end towards the radiator. it is tight but it is doable, make sure you have disconected the battery and probably the accelerator bell crank. Better to use a 3/8 drive socket than the 1/2" drive, the 3/8 drive is easier to manipulate and work with in this tight space. may take you an hour to get it out but then it will be easier next time getting back in.
Tim
 

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Mine doesn't have an airbox (it has pancake K&N filters), but I would imagine that removing the airbox would help give you more room and help to see what you are doing. Disconnect the battery for sure as the terminal on the starter is live. I remember working with various length extension bars with my arms under the carbs to get to the 3 bolts. When I took mine off, a lump of the bell housing came with it - not ideal!!! but explained why it wasn't engaging. I would suggest checking for cracks on the bell housing - around the centre shoulder bolt. Good luck
 

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Discussion Starter #4
"long extension bar on your socket with the ratchet"

I like this idea cuz i scratched up my arm trying to shove my hands under the carbs, this could be a good solution
 

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Mark,
I see you’re going for about your 3rd or 4th new or rebuilt starter....there’s got to be something else at play here. Did you seek out that woven copper earth strap discussed in your other thread?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Mark,
I see you’re going for about your 3rd or 4th new or rebuilt starter....there’s got to be something else at play here. Did you seek out that woven copper earth strap discussed in your other thread?
Hey, no, i was looking for it yesterday but couldn't find it so figured maybe once i remove the starter it will show. Thing is I'm working on the car in my buildings underground basement and it's pretty dark even with my portable light. I'm hoping to at least get the car started and then I can take it to my friends place since he has a lift in his home garage and much more lights.
 

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Hi Mark, I am not convinced that the spacer plate installed is the correct one. My recollection is it is a thicker spacer than what I see. If others agree or not chime in, let's get Mark back on the road.
To my eye it appears to be a spacer that only covers the aperture for the starter, which is not factory design, the correct spacer must go all the way around the bell housing motor interface. when this spacer was installed can you confirm the engine and gearbox was separated to install the spacer.
If that is what you have OK. If not, I urge you to investigate this. If you can;t find the earth strap under the car then make one get some cable find a place under the car and make an earthing point, it is not too hard, temporary if you like then order the correct one from the shop.
Tim
Tim
 

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Discussion Starter #9
hmmm, well when I got the car it originally didn't have a spacer plate and after the second starter died i got this plate from Classic Alfa. I didn't have to separate the engine and gearbox to install it, this is how it looks: EL068 STARTER MOTOR PLATE - 3 BOLT STARTERS
 

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We feel for you in that dark basement Mark. As in your other post, get a generic cable type earth lead if necessary, but you will need one. On the starters, the one you tried on the bench did have a strong earth and it still didn't spin as it should. So either you have had horrendously bad luck with 2 dud (new/rebuilt) starters, or something in the fitting process is causing them to drag and burn the armature, commutator or field coil. You could open one up and check perhaps. With the next one, check it on the bench first, make sure it has the right number of 'teeth' to suit your ring gear and that the fitment is on the money.
 

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Your earth strap looks like this. Perhaps a bit hard to see when covered in dirt.
It’s near the back of the RH wheel well, from engine block to body.
506AD802-41A9-49C4-BD97-C805668C1E9D.jpeg
 

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Discussion Starter #12
So I found a pictures I had previously taken from underneath the car and from near the starter area and I don't see a strap. I already have a carb earth strap which I'm going to install and I'm ordering the engine earth strap today from classicalfa with a bunch of other things but if anyone can please send me a picture of where the strap should be located that way I can install it once i get it. or maybe even draw on one of my photos on where it should go.

thanks everyone for the help as usual!

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I think if you remove the carburetors it will be a much easier job. (I know it looks like a daunting job but it isn't) I had to do this a number of times because of poor planing on my part. Once to change out the starter and once to install "start" cable on the webers. I modified a couple tools seen below. On my last go around I did it in 30 minutes even with my 78 yr. old fingers. You get pretty good after a bit of practice. :)
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Discussion Starter #14
hahaha that's amazing, **** i ordered some tools yesterday I should have thought about a curved wrench!
 

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ha , i have just been informed by a knowledgable gentleman that they should be 12mm nuts on carbs - not 13mm. as in picture above That would explain why the ring spanner gets interfered by the carb body with 13mm and needs gringing down. Change to 12mm
 

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Correct. Took my carbs off this afternoon. 12mm. Straight forward job, before pulling the throttle lever arm to renew the bushings.
 

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Me thinks that all you guys should check before you start grinding on the wrong tool.
As Italian tradition holds true, "when building something, use anything that fits."
 

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Discussion Starter #20
So just a quick update, I still didn't get my new starter, it finally arrived to Kuwait but just waiting for it to be delivered. In the mean time I finally was able to remove the current starter (Thanks for the ratchet extension tip it helped). I connected it to the battery so I can check and see what was wrong with it and looks like the gear inside isn't jumping out


I'm guessing that's good news? Since this issue is different from the first issue I previously posted of the first starter, I'm assuming this has nothing to do with the car electrical and instead points towards the brand of starters not being very reliable? Below is the video again of my first starter so you can compare to my second one above. Hopefully the rebuilt OEM one I'm getting will solve this problem I'm having once and for all.


One thing I'm concerned about is fitting in the new starter once i get it. I managed to squeeze this lightweight starter out from the the little opening to the left of the carbs, the OEM starter though is larger so that might not work. Will see once I get it.

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Oh one more thing before I forget. I found a bit of oil on the starter plate and near the bell housing. Is that normal? I just wanted to double-check that.

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