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Thread: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

  1. #1
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    Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    Before I ordered this 'Gear Reduction Starter' from Ebay I would like to get the forums thoughts on it be they good or ill.
    This is the link .

    Thanks to all,
    Jim Lee

    1959 T3a Black Beauty
    1959 TR3A
    TS50550L
    S50715E

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    Jedi Hopeful trglory's Avatar
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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    I bought one from this vendor for my TR3 several years ago. I liked it so much that I bought another one for my TR6.
    Joe

    '58 TR3A TS33077L
    '75 TR6 CF37629U
    www.cptc.org

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    Jedi Knight
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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    Interested in the replies to this thread as I need a starter. Just found my starter has a bent shaft.

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    Great Pumpkin TR3driver's Avatar
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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    Looks like the same unit I got from TRF back in 2000. Worked well for about 10 years, then started becoming intermittent. Just every once in awhile, wouldn't crank at all. When I pulled it apart to look for any problems, I found that the bearings that carry the motor armature were ruined. Apparently the heat from the nearby exhaust pipe had cooked all the grease out of them. (That bulge with the gold cap in your photo is the actual motor. When installed on the car, it hangs down so it is actually much closer to the exhaust than the stock starter is.)

    But it was easy enough to replace the bearings, and it still works today. I fashioned a very crude heat shield out of some roofing tin I had handy, which might possibly help the new bearings last longer.


    The actual starter motor is a very common Japanese starter (designed by Hitachi but often cloned by others), so any "auto electric" shop should be able to change bearings if you don't want to do it yourself.

    Oh yeah, I don't think the bearings were the cause of the "no crank" problem. I also discovered that the quick connect for the solenoid was just a tiny bit loose on the tab, so I think it was sometimes not making good contact.

    One other thought : I didn't want the main current for the new starter going through the original solenoid (which had lost some of it's smoke), but I also didn't want to lose the rubber button on the original solenoid. So I rearranged the heavy cables at the original solenoid so the new solenoid on the starter gets power all the time, and ran a new wire from the old solenoid output to control the new solenoid. I'm very happy with that setup. Here's a shot where you can kind of see how I moved the starter cable up to the top post, and the new brown wire to the new solenoid from the bottom post.
    Randall
    56 TR3 TS13571L daily driver
    71 Stag LE1473L waiting engine rebuild
    71 Stag LE2013LBW waiting gearbox rebuild

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    Luke Skywalker mrv8q's Avatar
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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    Hey, is this Dr. Marty's company? This link might have "free" shipping:

    http://www.britishstarters.com
    Best, Kevin Browne
    '59 TR3A #TS58370L
    Look for The Curse of Oak Island on The History Channel

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    Moderator Mickey Richaud's Avatar
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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    Had one on the TR3 I owned several years back. Solved lots of starting problems, but it did have one issue: The bolts that hold the case together backed out over time and I had to remove it and retighten them. I remember that it was a fairly common issue at the time. If you get one, you may want to check them and maybe reinstall with some Loc-Tite.

    Mickey
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    Jedi Trainee Kleykamp's Avatar
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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    I've been pleased with mine. Got it from same place. As Randall mentioned this is a common starter with the bracket added. I'd say if someone could find out which starter it is, it could be replaced much cheaper if needed in the future by buying it through a local auto parts store and changing the bracket out yourself. But this seems to be cheaper than the big British car parts places sell them for anyway.

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    Jedi Trainee TR3TR6's Avatar
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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    I put one in my TR3A a number of years ago, it really spins the engine and I would highly recommend this upgrade. I don't have to sit there and crank and crank to start it.
    Terry

    76 TR6

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    Yoda martx-5's Avatar
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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    Quote Originally Posted by mrv8q View Post
    Hey, is this Dr. Marty's company? This link might have "free" shipping:

    http://www.britishstarters.com
    I bought the starter for my TR3 right from Dr. Marty, as he lived here on Long Island. I also bought some other TR parts from him. I don't think he owns British Starters any more. Rumor had it that he sold it a few years back. Dr. Marty is a real doctor (pain management), and he was always interested in British sports cars and even raced an MGB and GT6. He started selling parts as a way to help with his school costs and just continued afterward.
    Art
    '58 TR3A TS236xxL
    '92 Mazda Miata -- Supercharged
    '07 Mazda RX-8
    '11 Mazda CX-7

  10. #10
    Great Pumpkin TR3driver's Avatar
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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    Quote Originally Posted by Kleykamp View Post
    I've been pleased with mine. Got it from same place. As Randall mentioned this is a common starter with the bracket added. I'd say if someone could find out which starter it is, it could be replaced much cheaper if needed in the future by buying it through a local auto parts store and changing the bracket out yourself. But this seems to be cheaper than the big British car parts places sell them for anyway.
    I believe the gear is a special, too. In fact, it is different even for the TR3 application, depending on whether you have the pre- or post-50K flywheel. As noted in the eBay auction referenced above, if someone claims the same starter fits TR2-TR4, you should run away!

    Another nice thing about the gear-drive starter is that it allows use of aftermarket TR4 headers on TR2 - early 3A. Some of them will hit the stock pre-50K starter, as it sticks out farther than the later one.
    Randall
    56 TR3 TS13571L daily driver
    71 Stag LE1473L waiting engine rebuild
    71 Stag LE2013LBW waiting gearbox rebuild

  11. #11
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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    I have been running mine for about a year now with no issues at all. I have two original bomb starters under the bench wanting rebuild or if some one needs an anchor for their bass boat PM me. I wired just as Randal has described leaving the original solenoid in place. I also left the control box in place with dummy wiring when I went to an alternator. No longer concours but very reliable motoring now.

    Frank D......
    59 TR3A TS42756L (plus OD but not in the VIN)

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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    One other thought : I didn't want the main current for the new starter going through the original solenoid (which had lost some of it's smoke), but I also didn't want to lose the rubber button on the original solenoid. So I rearranged the heavy cables at the original solenoid so the new solenoid on the starter gets power all the time, and ran a new wire from the old solenoid output to control the new solenoid. I'm very happy with that setup. Here's a shot where you can kind of see how I moved the starter cable up to the top post, and the new brown wire to the new solenoid from the bottom post.
    [/QUOTE]

    Randall, Thanks for addressing the TR3 Push-button solenoid, I am in process of doing the same. My car came with a TR4 solenoid and I want to get back to the TR3 style with the button. I installed it and the button did not work. I am looking at your picture and trying to determine how you have it wired, I didn't want to start "testing" connections as that never turns out well. I have a wire from my gear reduction starter that currently connects at the small control terminal, is this the wire that you re-routed to the lower post? Everything works fine through the dash button, but nothing at the solenoid.

    Bill B
    TS30800L

  13. #13
    Great Pumpkin TR3driver's Avatar
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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    Quote Originally Posted by BigCountryBritish View Post
    I have a wire from my gear reduction starter that currently connects at the small control terminal, is this the wire that you re-routed to the lower post?
    Yes, that's it.

    Something else I didn't mention before; the gear-drive solenoid draws a LOT more current than the original solenoid does. Something like 12 amps instead of 1 amp (don't recall the exact numbers offhand). So preserving the lifetime of that funky starter button is another advantage of using the old solenoid to control the new one.
    Randall
    56 TR3 TS13571L daily driver
    71 Stag LE1473L waiting engine rebuild
    71 Stag LE2013LBW waiting gearbox rebuild

  14. #14

    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    Can't blow up that picture Randall posted because it was originally hosted on Photobucket.

    Considering getting one of the gear reduction starters and like the idea of retaining the original solenoid but giving it some protection. If I understand correctly, I would move the bottom cable on solenoid (coming/going to starter) to top terminal on solenoid allowing full battery voltage to starter all the time. Then add a wire from bottom terminal of old solenoid to the spade connector on the gear reduction starter solenoid. Is that it? Anything else to do? What gauge wire would you recommend from old solenoid to new one? 10 gauge about right?

    Cheers, Mike
    Webmaster Ottawa Valley Triumph Club (www.ovtc.net)
    73 TR6 - CF727U (www.triumphowners.com/to-car/tr6-200/)
    56 TR3 - TS11537 (www.triumphowners.com/to-car/tr3-9/)

  15. #15
    Great Pumpkin TR3driver's Avatar
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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    Perhaps this will work better.


    https://i.imgur.com/8HqZ3OV.jpg

    Anyway, your description is correct. I used 10 AWG but you could go smaller if you want. It only carries about 12 amps.

    FWIW it may advantageous to add a simple heat shield to protect the starter from exhaust heat. My first one failed after 10 years apparently because the grease dried out and the bearings got rusty.
    https://i.imgur.com/TBxNC5v.jpg

  16. #16

    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    Thanks Randall. Is there room to swivel the starter on its faceplate to gain more clearance from the exhaust? I believe I read that it can be rotated a bit and that those bolt are prone to coming slack and should be treated with a drop of thread lock n any case. Cheers, Mike
    Webmaster Ottawa Valley Triumph Club (www.ovtc.net)
    73 TR6 - CF727U (www.triumphowners.com/to-car/tr6-200/)
    56 TR3 - TS11537 (www.triumphowners.com/to-car/tr3-9/)

  17. #17
    Great Pumpkin TR3driver's Avatar
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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    I could not find any other orientation that would work on my TR3. It might have been possible to add more holes in the adapter plate and find a better spot; but didn't appear likely and I didn't try that.
    Yes, Loctite is a good idea IMO. Mine came with both Loctite and lock washers, never had a problem, but I guess not all of them do.

  18. #18

    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    Thanks again Randall. Appreciate the help. Cheers, Mike
    Webmaster Ottawa Valley Triumph Club (www.ovtc.net)
    73 TR6 - CF727U (www.triumphowners.com/to-car/tr6-200/)
    56 TR3 - TS11537 (www.triumphowners.com/to-car/tr3-9/)

  19. #19

    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    Quick followup question. Received my new starter and plan to wire as suggested by Randall. The connector on the solenoid is designed for a snap in connector. I could use an ordinary spade there, but thought using a “proper” connector might be a better idea and avoid a potential poor connection later. My local parts guy can’t source one. Anyone found a source or part number that might help find one locally? British Starters said they just use a spade, and suggested contacting a local Toyota dealer for a connector. Cheers, Mike
    Webmaster Ottawa Valley Triumph Club (www.ovtc.net)
    73 TR6 - CF727U (www.triumphowners.com/to-car/tr6-200/)
    56 TR3 - TS11537 (www.triumphowners.com/to-car/tr3-9/)

  20. #20
    Jedi Trainee Merlin63Tr4's Avatar
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    Re: Need opinion on gear reduction starter for TR3A

    Don't sweat it, a spade connector works just fine.

    M.

    P.S.
    I know it is obvious, but i forgot to point out that I'm using the original remote mounted starter relay to control the new starter's solenoid.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Merlin63Tr4; 11-16-2017 at 01:55 PM. Reason: added info
    Merlin the '63 Tr4.... it grows younger !

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