Cracked My Block... Sorta

SHARKBITEATTACK

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I get in my car to go home last night from work and as I'm starting the car I hear a loud thud. I turn the key again and all I hear is grinding from the starter/flywheel.

I figure the bendex drive on the starter is shot so I have 2 people "push start" the car for me, I pop the clutch in second and I'm able to get the engine running. I drive it home and get in on my lift.

Today I get around to unbolting the starter motor and to my surprise it's not what I thought it was. Turns out that both the ear tab on the starter motor and the threaded part of the block where the starter motor bolts to both cracked off. FML. Anyone else had this happen?



 

HILROD

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I've seen this happen before. Usually one bolt comes loose and it does that or brakes the starter. It can be welded back on. Maybe even in the vehicle if there is room. I've fixed them before.
 

SHARKBITEATTACK

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Well I replaced the starter with a heavier duty one from a GM truck and then fabricated a bracket that shares 2 bolts with the bell housing. There's a guy on the internet that sells a similar bracket but he charges $370 for what's basically $10 in scrap metal welded together!

I used some 1/2" and 1/4" steel plate to make the bracket and then had a buddy MIG weld it together for me. Making this thing was a real PITA and it took alot of trial and error to get it to fit. I used a 4" cutoff wheel, sawzall, bench grinder, belt sander, drill press, a couple taps and some zinc spray paint. I also upgraded to grade 12.9 socket head cap screws with lock washers and used some lock tite.

All in all it cost me $10 for the fasteners and $150 for the starter.




 

P40E

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Nice fabrication. That starter is like 1 1/2 lbs . . Probably either loose bolts caused this , or over tightened and cracked it and it finally broke .

I would spin the engine and see if the flex plate is damaged . If the starter was loose it could have ground down some of the teeth .

You have the piece , pretty sure it's cast , you could have tried welding it back on and re tap. The re-tap should be easy or none , since the piece looks like it will go right back into place .

A drop or two of jb weld or super glue to keep it in place , then weld it on the sides. :D
 

Mr_Roboto

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EXCELLENT fab work and problem solving skills.
 

SHARKBITEATTACK

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Nice fabrication. That starter is like 1 1/2 lbs . . Probably either loose bolts caused this , or over tightened and cracked it and it finally broke .

I would spin the engine and see if the flex plate is damaged . If the starter was loose it could have ground down some of the teeth .

You have the piece , pretty sure it's cast , you could have tried welding it back on and re tap. The re-tap should be easy or none , since the piece looks like it will go right back into place .

A drop or two of jb weld or super glue to keep it in place , then weld it on the sides. :D
There's all kinds of theories as to why it happens but in the end it just comes down to a poor design. http://ls1tech.com/forums/general-maintenance-repairs/1259228-starter-motor-mount-block-broke-11.html

I probably should have followed up with [MENTION=148]HILROD[/MENTION] to see if he could of fixed it with the engine still in the car. But after going to an automotive machine shop and NicKey they both told me they wouldn't do it unless the engine was out. NicKey even told me they wouldn't be able to guarantee it... That's kind of when I said to myself I wasn't going to accept defeat and decided to take on the DIY challenge.
 

Dirty Vegas

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Same thing happened to my 99 LS1 motor during a backfire on startup. No one would try to weld it in the car.
 

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