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Old 30-11-2011, 09:05 PM   #1
Bushbasher
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Default the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

What a friggin' nightmare!
I've just spent 2 hours today fighting with the starter motor to get it changed on my Fairlane. The top bolt is all but impossible to get to with anything short of specialist tools just for the job. My 1/2" drive ratchet and extension was too big to get in what little space there is in front of the starter motor and the 3/8" drive extension was too short but even if I had an extension the right length I doubt a ratchet of any size would have room to crank with all the bl00dy hoses, pipes and manifold right there. I ended up having to jamb my ham fists up over the starter and blindly feel for the top bolt with a 13mm ringy made doubly hard by the fact I was flat on my back under the car which was on ramps. Cracking the bolt was bad enough but getting the thing done up again tight enough so it won't rattle out in a weeks time was just horrendous, talk about an exercise in frustration. So does anyone have a better solution to getting the top bolt out and in without wanting to throw your spanners as far as you can and then burn the car to the ground cos if you do I'd love to hear it for next time.


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Old 30-11-2011, 09:07 PM   #2
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

Hahaha.. love it..!
I used to work as an Auto Trans specialist.. It was the worst part of the whole job...!!
I feel your pain...
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Old 30-11-2011, 09:13 PM   #3
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

i use a 3/8 drive 6 inch extension deep 13mm socket and rachet never failed
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Old 30-11-2011, 09:16 PM   #4
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

I just get a heap of extensions, and join them together so they reach the front of the engine... Makes it easy, haha...
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Old 30-11-2011, 09:27 PM   #5
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

Quote:
Originally Posted by xrghiawagon
I just get a heap of extensions, and join them together so they reach the front of the engine... Makes it easy, haha...
Are you saying you have a straight line of clear air from the front between A/C compressor and the back where the bolt is? Are we talking AU here or the EF-EL in your avatar? How can you see where you're going for a start and how can you keep control of what must me a fairly well sagging extension, not to mention having to be under the car to line up the socket to the bolt and up on top to crank the ratchet. Sounds just as frustrating to do to me or a 2 man job.


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Old 30-11-2011, 09:35 PM   #6
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

Kristo every time i drop my trans the first thing i do is remove the top starter bolt !

The rest is easy after that lol...

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Old 30-11-2011, 09:37 PM   #7
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

Quote:
Originally Posted by XR6menace
Kristo every time i drop my trans the first thing i do is remove the top starter bolt !

The rest is easy after that lol...

Ain't that the truth.. Makes it feel like a breeze after tackling the top bolt..
What I did with mine was shorten the bolt, so it had a few less threads holding it in.. Made it quicker to remove and re-fit..
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Old 30-11-2011, 09:43 PM   #8
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

Half-inch drive and 4" extension allows you to swing the ratchet behind the engine mount, easy as pie. Takes about 30 seconds to get it out
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Old 30-11-2011, 09:48 PM   #9
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

yep, top bolt first!...

i modded a spanner to give me more leverage... i was tempted to drill it out from the back as i didnt need the box hahaha
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Old 30-11-2011, 10:16 PM   #10
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bushbasher
Are you saying you have a straight line of clear air from the front between A/C compressor and the back where the bolt is? Are we talking AU here or the EF-EL in your avatar? How can you see where you're going for a start and how can you keep control of what must me a fairly well sagging extension, not to mention having to be under the car to line up the socket to the bolt and up on top to crank the ratchet. Sounds just as frustrating to do to me or a 2 man job.


Bushbasher

There was/is on my EF, but i've got an AU VCT engine in it... but I had no ignition leads in the way...

Long story short, it only took me 30 mins in/out to see if the motor was stuffed, or a relay had burnt out... Turns out smartlock was to blame for that one...
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Old 30-11-2011, 10:18 PM   #11
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

Aye , Lots of extensions straight under intake manifold onto top bolt . Very easy then . Always do this one first , and last ;)

I have an AU , no issues .
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Old 30-11-2011, 10:20 PM   #12
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bushbasher
What a friggin' nightmare!
I've just spent 2 hours today fighting with the starter motor to get it changed on my Fairlane. The top bolt is all but impossible to get to with anything short of specialist tools just for the job. My 1/2" drive ratchet and extension was too big to get in what little space there is in front of the starter motor and the 3/8" drive extension was too short but even if I had an extension the right length I doubt a ratchet of any size would have room to crank with all the bl00dy hoses, pipes and manifold right there. I ended up having to jamb my ham fists up over the starter and blindly feel for the top bolt with a 13mm ringy made doubly hard by the fact I was flat on my back under the car which was on ramps. Cracking the bolt was bad enough but getting the thing done up again tight enough so it won't rattle out in a weeks time was just horrendous, talk about an exercise in frustration. So does anyone have a better solution to getting the top bolt out and in without wanting to throw your spanners as far as you can and then burn the car to the ground cos if you do I'd love to hear it for next time.


Bushbasher
When I had to do mine, I called rag top - his long skinny arms made the job easy (still took 30 mins or so though).
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Old 01-12-2011, 12:42 AM   #13
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

long skinny arms/ Uni joint-wobble joint/extension. and lots of patience
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Old 01-12-2011, 01:20 AM   #14
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

I jammed my fat hand in there. In the process I dug some of the insulation away. By the end I was covered in the fibre off the insulation and my whole torso was red and itchy.

Great fun that one.

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Old 01-12-2011, 01:28 AM   #15
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

Yep, im still scratching!

but mine was falling apart!
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Old 02-12-2011, 06:41 PM   #16
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bushbasher
Are you saying you have a straight line of clear air from the front between A/C compressor and the back where the bolt is? Are we talking AU here or the EF-EL in your avatar? How can you see where you're going for a start and how can you keep control of what must me a fairly well sagging extension, not to mention having to be under the car to line up the socket to the bolt and up on top to crank the ratchet. Sounds just as frustrating to do to me or a 2 man job.


Bushbasher
i have a little trick for the sagging socket universal if that`s what your asking, grab your roll of insulation tape and do several runs around the universal part, grab hold of your wobbly and give it a bend/feel, if it`s not stiff enough go around a few more times, till it will bend with a bit of pressure but not flop.

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Old 02-12-2011, 07:03 PM   #17
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

I give that rant a 6.5 out of 10.

What I do is pay someone else to fix the job for me.
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Old 03-12-2011, 02:28 AM   #18
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

that is the best way Shav , i give my young brother a hand on his supra to remove the donk a while ago, there is a nice difficult bellhousing bolt that just makes your blood pressure go up, guess who got that good job .

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Old 03-12-2011, 10:38 AM   #19
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

the angle grinder?
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Old 03-12-2011, 03:30 PM   #20
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

no grinder , but oxy came to mind .

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Old 03-12-2011, 04:21 PM   #21
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

Hahahah... We couldn't get the tail shaft out of my brothers Audi, so we cut it in half loo
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Old 03-12-2011, 09:13 PM   #22
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Default Re: the (damn) starter motor top bolt!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mik
that is the best way Shav , i give my young brother a hand on his supra to remove the donk a while ago, there is a nice difficult bellhousing bolt that just makes your blood pressure go up, guess who got that good job .
Yeah ... have experienced that one ... and not fun ... a hell of a lot of extensions needed for that one too.

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Old 19-11-2012, 08:28 PM   #23
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Default Re: the f@#%!&* starter motor top bolt!

ha, knew id find something by googling: 'ford au top starter bolt'. and here it is. i just cut down 2 different 1/2" ring spanners in hope that one may fit. no go. luckily you guys were saying try a heap of extensions and the 3/8 socket. ill give it a whirl tomorrow. if it was as easy as punching a hole in the firewall i would have done it. (done that before). It may even be an option later. just punch a hole through for access, also drill out the thread on the bellhousing. easier to hold a nut from the tricky side and crank the bolt from inside the cab. could even weld a nut to some kind of a small plate that will sit on the tricky side. Im just mulling this over at the monent... if it looks easy ill do it and post the pics. the hole could be plugged up with a rubber grommet... only hassle would be removing the carpet on the passenger floor... just my opinion!
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Old 28-10-2017, 07:55 AM   #24
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Default Re: the f@#%!&* starter motor top bolt!

Had to do this yesterday on bf2 ute. What an absolute **** design

Got it done using car rsmps on gravel driveway

Bolts are m8 40mm long

Cant upload pic of tool setup on iphone. Will do on pc later
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Old 28-10-2017, 12:08 PM   #25
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Default Re: the f@#%!&* starter motor top bolt!

hahaha
your complaining on doing the starter motor on these v8's
have a giz at the Toyota landcruiser v8 starter motor repair/replace job
https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q...71&FORM=VRDGAR
and you think the ford one is in a sh!tty place
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Old 26-06-2018, 06:24 PM   #26
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Default Re: the f@#%!&* starter motor top bolt!

Just a question, are the V8 starter motors as hard to remove? One of mine is making a bit of a weird noise so I’m planning on pulling it out to have a look. Just wanted to know if they are as much fun as a 6 cylinder one.
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Old 26-06-2018, 07:47 PM   #27
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Default Re: the f@#%!&* starter motor top bolt!

V8 starter motors are not as hard to remove 3 x 13mm bolts and wiring - easily done.
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Old 28-06-2018, 01:44 PM   #28
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Default Re: the f@#%!&* starter motor top bolt!

Did the job yesterday, no problems at all with the V8 starter removal compared to a 6. I gave it a clean and a grease and no more weird noises on start up now.
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Old 28-06-2018, 01:49 PM   #29
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Default Re: the f@#%!&* starter motor top bolt!

Metrinch deep socket and a heap of wobble bar extensions with poster putty at all the wobble bar joins to keep them together.
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Old 15-09-2021, 01:10 PM   #30
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Default Re: the f@#%!&* starter motor top bolt!

Go in from the top - way easier. Take the air filter and associated ducting off.
Remove the top half of the air manifold intake (its in 2 parts). Put a small stool in front of the car and a blanket across the engine and then climb up and lie flat across the engine and you can see and access the top bolt from the very back of the engine with a standard ratchet. Way less niggly.
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