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toomuchtorque
04-12-04, 10:51 PM
My brother has a 86 vette coupe and hes been experiencing some problems recently. He said about 3 out of 20 starts the car either would crank hard for a bit, then start, or not crank at all and not start. Once he knocked on the starter a couple of times, it would start. If I'm not mistaken, the starter was replaced about a year ago. He took it to a mechanic who said he'd need to replace the starter and flex plate. With labor hes asking for $750. Does this sound reasonable? And just out of curiousity, what is the function of the flex plate?

Edmond
04-12-04, 11:16 PM
Try to clean off the connections to the starter first and see what happens. Also, make sure the bolts on there are torqued correctly. I believe the specs call for roughly 22 lbs. on the starter bolts.

I can't answer the question on the flex plate but I do know that you can get a Bosch starter for about $180 or so. There are only two bolts holding the starter on. It's really a 1 hour job max to replace the starter.

toomuchtorque
04-13-04, 12:36 AM
I think I may just end up doing the work myself. Are you sure that its 22lbs for the starter bolts?

Edmond
04-13-04, 05:59 AM
I think I may just end up doing the work myself. Are you sure that its 22lbs for the starter bolts?

Yep, pretty sure it's 22 lbs. for the starter bolts. I'll check the manual just to be 100% sure though. Don't forget to pick up a package of shims; I didn't pick up shims when I did it and the car wouldn't start. Forgetting that little $2.00 package of metal can keep your car from starting! :eyerole

jmccloud
04-13-04, 07:04 AM
Often your symptoms are due to a poorly contacting solenoid. Gotta remove the starter to replace it but it's a lot cheaper than the whole starter.
Clean all terminals first per Edmond (Battery, interconnections, starter and especilly the ground at the motor/frame points). If it's dirty terminals, all the new parts won't help.

spyysee
04-13-04, 11:26 AM
fire your mechanic!

Edmond
04-13-04, 11:39 AM
fire your mechanic!
Ditto!:L:L:L

tnovot
04-13-04, 02:01 PM
He took it to a mechanic who said he'd need to replace the starter and flex plate. With labor hes asking for $750. Does this sound reasonable?
Probably. A reman or new starter will cost more than a cheap rebuilt but IMHO is worth it. Then there's the cost of a new flexplate. Changing the flex plate will require removing the transmission which requires removing exhaust, beam, etc. Shouldn't need to be changed unless there is damage to the teeth on the ring gear due to improper starter engagement. I'm guessing the labor for this is about $500 of the total estimate

And just out of curiousity, what is the function of the flex plate?The flex plate is the AT counterpart of the flywheel for the MT but without the weight. 1. It bolts to the rear of the crankshaft and couples the engine to the transmission by giving an attachment point for the torque converter. 2. It also gives a place for the starter gear to grip (ring gear with teeth) and rotate the engine for startup.

toomuchtorque
04-13-04, 09:11 PM
Thanks again tnovot, edmond, and jmccloud. You've all been very helpful.