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Thread: Starter issue

  1. #1

    Starter issue

    Hi All,
    I have a starter issue with a 1949 Jeepster.

    It was a weak crank and spotty turn over. I took out the starter and opened the housing. I found this pile of debris inside the case and am wondering what it is, if normal and how to replace? I dont see anything like it in the starter diagram. Now also the opinion is loose and floppy.15811061494608626205488823523686.jpg15811061826103448811196451983720.jpg15811062139317407561830624209372.jpg15811062139317407561830624209372.jpg

  2. #2
    I cleaned it up, made sure the brushes were snug and put it back together. Note the dust cover is currently off but has been on and will be back on after this bench test.
    https://youtu.be/naHwY-B24XI

  3. #3
    Well, she started. Several times. Still curious what that nesting was inside the starter.

    https://youtu.be/RiG63Wb-oCs

  4. #4
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
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    Wow I have no idea what that stuff was! Looks like the neighbor's cat got inside.

  5. #5
    Super Moderator LarrBeard's Avatar
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    It’s hard to tell what something is just by looking. When we work on old Jeeps, we usually look, feel, touch, smell and even taste(!) to figure out what “stuff” is. We can’t do that just from a picture, so we’ve got to make a best guess.

    It looks kind of fuzzy and fibrous. The field coils on those old starters were wrapped in the 1949 version of friction tape for insulation. If the armature had, for some reason, dragged on the field coils, it could have worn some of the tape insulation off the field coil. But, I am going to think that you looked the fields over and didn’t see any worn insulation or signs of abrasion.

    One thing we have discovered about those early push-in starters is that the lever needs to engage the bendix gear into the flywheel before the switch energizes the motor. If the motor spins up before the gear is engaged in the flywheel, you can grind some gear teeth - not a good thing. The button on the switch can be turned to adjust engagement if needed. On my ’48 truck, the switch was pretty well arced and burned up and I ended up replacing it even after the starter guy overhauled the starter. BMorgil ground some flywheel teeth until he discovered just what was happening with his CJ 3A.

    But, the fuzzy stuff you found - it could have been a field mouse nest or some other critter that moved stuff into the housing. If it keeps working and working well – claim credit for a fix and move on. If it happens again – go back and start over.

  6. #6
    I would normally say a rodent but that starter is sealed up so tight I dont think a mouse could even get in. It was a new one for sure but I tend to think there was a felt type paper tape that lined the housing like LarrBeard said.

    Either way I will take the W and move on to the next line item.

    Appreciate the help as always. As you can tell I'm no mechanic but I do love to learn.

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