advice on how to replace a starter

Discussion in 'Mechanic's Corner' started by Hank Eldridge, Jul 8, 2019.

  1. Hank Eldridge

    Hank Eldridge New Member

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    Would like to know how hard it is to replace a starter on a shamrock 85 FWC 20ft is it possible??
    Engine is a Ford 302 FWC

    What has to be removed not sure how to get to the starter bolts?

    Need some guidance on this
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2019
  2. fisherlady2

    fisherlady2 Well-Known Member

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    Can you post up the engine make/model?
     
  3. Gary S

    Gary S Well-Known Member

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    What model boat might help too. One with a center console will be harder than say a walk thru. Putting it back will prove to be much more difficult than removal because gravity will fight you all the way. Consider replacing the original with one of those new permanent magnet ones like an Arco they are much lighter.
     
  4. Hank Eldridge

    Hank Eldridge New Member

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    Thanks for the advice i will research on what type of new starter to get did not no about permanent magnets ones.
    The boat is a 20 ft cutty cabin engine is a straight shaft ford 302 center line not a center counsel. My question is there room to get to the starter or do you have to pull the fresh water cooler out to get to the starter??
     
  5. fishineer

    fishineer Well-Known Member

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    I have found a 9 to 12-inch section of all thread rod works like a third hand and helps with changing starters.
    First I disconnect the power.
    Then I remove the top bolt with a socket and extension and replace the bolt with the short section of all thread. Then I remove the bottom bolt and slide the starter forward away from the flywheel while the all thread supports the weight of the starter.
    To install the new or rebuilt starter I slide the starter along the all thread back into place, tighten up the lower bolt, remove the all thread, replace the top bolt and reconnect the power.
     
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  6. Salmonslammer

    Salmonslammer Member

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    I found it helped to put a mirror in the bilge shimmed with a piece of wood to see the bottom bolt... and you are going to need a long extension bar to get at it. 18" or so. I cut a V notch in a piece of 2x4 and shimmed that plumb so the extension bar had something holding it up.

    Make sure to check the teeth on the flywheel while you have it out... I had 3 in a row busted off.
     
  7. fourcs

    fourcs Well-Known Member

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    Hank I just did mine , 1985 cuddy 351 FWC . I removed heat exchanger and coolant tank and hoses . and I took exhaust manifold and riser off . I put the same OEM starter on $ 110 on Amazon , old one lasted 10 years. put new manifold and riser on , they were 10 years old too. If you just do the starter it's a bitch .
     
  8. Hank Eldridge

    Hank Eldridge New Member

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    I want to say thanks to all the advice tells me it is a bitch but it is a boat :) 20190615_120713.jpg 20190615_120713.jpg
     
  9. shorething

    shorething Member

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    It's not the worst, but the advice above is great. Yeah, you have to remove the heat exchanger in a fresh water cooled engine. You can leave the exhaust manifold and riser on, but if you have large hands and arms, you'll have a lot more room to work if you remove them, too. If you do remove them, try putting a 2x4, or something across the gunnels (gunwales) or taft rail if you have one, with a rope to support the weight of the manifold. I tried removing the manifold without anything to support the weight, and since it takes one hand to remove the last bolt, the weight is too much for the other hand/arm to hold it, and I got a bloody knuckle trying to 'catch' it with one hand. One trick that helps is to replace a front and rear manifold bolts with pieces of all-thread or studs to hold the weight when you pull out the last manifold bolt. Then, after you remove the last bolt, you can have both hands free to slide the manifold off the all-threads - this helps with putting the manifold back on, too.

    When you pull the starter, the advice above about replacing the top bolt with a piece of all-thread is great since that will support the heavy-ass starter when you pull the bottom bolt. Also, having done this a few times, the permanent magnet starter from Arco recommendation is good advice, for certain. You'll need a variety of socket extensions to reach all the way forward to the front of the engine as that's the only place you can get enough torque on a ratchet or breaker bar to loosen the bottom bolt. Lastly, regarding that bottom bolt, you can't see it. I found there are two things that really help getting the socket on the bolt head: first, if you get an LED flashlight with a magnet, and stick it on the side of the oil pan pointed at the starter so it has some light down there, and second if you can get a small mirror that you can put down there so you can see the bolt in order to get the socket on the bolt head. I used a 2" x 3" mirror with a 6" piece of copper wire I epoxied to the back of the mirror, and attached the other end of the wire to the bolt on the starter that was connected to the hot wire that you already removed. That way, you don't need four hands - one holding the flashlight, one holding the mirror, one on the socket extension in front of the starter fishing around for the bolt head, and one on the ratchet or breaker bar handle. The attached picture illustrates how a hands-free flashlight and mirror can help you visually find the bottom starter bolt head. Someone else (smarter than me) suggested replacing the bottom starter bolt with an allen head bolt since an allen head socket it won't slip off the bolt head as easily as a hex head bolt.

    Also, I did a write-up on my experience replacing a starter in my 1987 ConWalk here on message #10 - http://www.shamrockboatownersclub.c...endix-doesnt-always-engage.41505/#post-358434

    I hope this helps. I got a lot of great advice on this forum before I did this. The first time it took me all afternoon to remove and replace the starter. The second time it took an hour.
     

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  10. Hank Eldridge

    Hank Eldridge New Member

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    Thanks this will help out a lot will check out starters before i buy one again thanks too all.
     

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