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Starter is locking-up engine


Luke Skywalker
The engine wouldn't turn over on the TR3 I got a few weeks ago. It had been turning over fine after we had unlocked it -- we thought it was a little rust on the pistons, but evidently it's the starter!

The starter wouldn't engage (just the solenoid,) and I couldn't turn it over by hand.

I removed the starter, and voila, the engine turns.

Now does anyone know if the starter can be fixed easily, or should I just get a high torque one for my '60, and put the stock one in this '59? (both are post 60,000 cars.)

Andrew Mace

Staff member
Country flag
If it were mine, I'd take it to a local electrical shop and let them decide if it's worth rebuilding. Nothing against the hi-torque replacement starters, but a quality rebuild locally probably won't cost nearly what a new hi-torque one would, and chances are it'll last another 40 years or so.

Paul Johnson

Jedi Warrior
If the starter is physically locking the engine, then have a close look at the drive and matching teeth on the flywheel. Very likely they're damaged.


Luke Skywalker
I looked at the teeth on the starter gear and they are worn badly.

Of course, now I'm at the position of trying to figure out the best way to remove the starter from the car -- through the top or bottom!?!?

I suppose I'll just remove the carbs, rather than try to loosen the exhaust. The exhaust flange bolts always seem to be frozen.


Luke Skywalker
Heck, who needs a starter anyway. I have a hand crank!!! /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif


Luke Skywalker
I just looked at the topic from a couple months ago about taking out the starter. Of course, it was mentioned that the post-50,000 cars can get the starter out through the bottom. On my car, this isn't the case. The exhaust is in the way. So, as Sir Paul McCartney said way back on his second solo album: "it's coming up, like a flower, it's coming up."


Luke Skywalker
Country flag
Hey, Sam, I had a local, well regarded electrical shop look at my (functioning) starter just last month... They went through it, and it cost only $80. Wow, what a difference from pre-build! The owner said he'd have no trouble getting parts, if needed.

I also took off the carbs first, instead of the exhaust. It gave me a lot of room to look at other issues... Now you'll be set up to add Joe Alexander's heatshield, if needed!

Best, Kevin '59TRA #58370
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