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SOLENOID and STARTER rebuild......finally

well i finally had to do it. i have been having the slow hot start issue and as i promised i am posting how to double the life of your solenoid, but while i was in there is decided to pull the starter apart too.

but first, when you start having the slow start problem, your car that is, there are some things you need to take a look at first.
make sure the battery is fully charged and then have a load test done on it. advance or autozone does it for free. if you want to do a check your self, measure battery voltage while someone cranks the car. voltage should not drop below about 10v.
next make sure ALL of your major power connections are clean and tight. most people dont think about the grounds but they are just as important as the positives. check the battery to the body ground and the body to the tranny ground that is under the car.
verify you have a good 12v on the yellow wire to the starter.

now onto the rebuild.
some soldering skills and tools are required. you dont need a big soldering gun but a solder sucker is a real bonus.

i this first pic i have the starter mounted in my vise and you can see the connections that need to be de-soldered in the 8 oclock and 2 oclock position. BTW, i am doing this without removing the solenoid.
you can see that the 2 wires are covered in black paint. this has to be cleaned off. i used a wire brush and a pic to clean it.




this pic i tried to show you how it looks after it is clean.



here i have heated the solder and as you can see, i am not using a very big soldering iron. the trick here is to be patient and to add solder to the iron between the iron and the solder you are trying to heat up. the reason for this is the heat is transferred to the solenoid through the melted solder you have added. basically, better heat transfer through the liquid solder.
i would have shown the solder being sucked away but my third hand was busy.




here you can see that i have removed all the solder from one terminal. the wire may still be stuck to the side, so just tack you iron and put it on the wire and push it away from that side when it melts.
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86 930 42kmiles [__] RUNNING:[__] NOT RUNNING: ____77 911S widebody: SOLD
88 BMW 325is 200K+ SOLD
05 BMW 330CI 130K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
08 VOLVO V70 190K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
90 B2200[__] RUNNING:[] NOT RUNNING:__2000 MER E320 WAGON [] WRECKED:[]RUNNING:

Last edited by T77911S; 09-25-2011 at 08:29 AM..
Old 09-23-2011, 05:20 AM
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to get the end off once the 2 terminals are de-soldered it is just a matter of removing the 2 screws and lifting the end off. as i said earlier, you may have to heat the terminals alternately to get the end off as the wires may still be stuck to the sides.
if you dont have a solder sucker you can try the old way of using wire to suck up the solder. what you do is get a long piece of stranded wire, some wire works better than others, heat up the wire and the solder, and with the iron on the wire and the wire in the solder, the solder should flow to the heat of the iron, then just keep moving the wire through the melted solder. the problem with this is you will need more than what my iron will produce.

here i have the end off and you can see how i had to bend the tab on the right up so i can unscrew it. you will also want to use pliers to unscrew the "washer" on the lug on the left.



this is the solenoid. this contact pushes against the 2 in the next pic connecting the battery to the starter motor. this is what you want to clean and if yours has pitting, you can rotate it to get fresh metal contacting the other 2 lugs.



here is inside the end of the solenoid. your goal here is to remove these 2 studs, clean them rotate them and put them back in.
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86 930 42kmiles [__] RUNNING:[__] NOT RUNNING: ____77 911S widebody: SOLD
88 BMW 325is 200K+ SOLD
05 BMW 330CI 130K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
08 VOLVO V70 190K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
90 B2200[__] RUNNING:[] NOT RUNNING:__2000 MER E320 WAGON [] WRECKED:[]RUNNING:

Last edited by T77911S; 09-25-2011 at 08:30 AM..
Old 09-23-2011, 05:32 AM
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this is with everything out.


and another showing the ends. these dont look as bad as some i have seen.



and one after i cleaned them up. i just used the wire wheel on my grinder for the lugs and a wire brush and sandpaper on the solenoid contact.


here i have put the end back on and the terminals are ready to be soldered. once again, cleanliness helps. one way to clean up the terminals before you put the end back on is to put some more solder on the them then remove the solder again. this makes for a cleaner terminal and should also open up the holes to allow the wires to go through.




this shows the terminal after i soldered it. i like to use thin, solid core solder and a paste flux. i just dip the end of the solder into the flux then apply it between the iron and the terminal. keep the iron on the wire and the terminal because both need to be heated. again, this helps in the heat transfer. the solder may first turn into a ball, but keep the heat on. when the terminal is hot enough, the solder will flow into the hole and around the wire. notice how the edges flow or blend into the terminal at the edges. also notice how it flows into the wire. that is what you want to see. mine still has flux on it, i should have cleaned it for the pic, sorry.
go back and look at the pic of me de-soldering the terminal. see how the solder is in a "ball". part of that is because of extra solder i put on but it is also not a good joint, it would likely turn into a cold solder joint.
you can get by without flux, but since this is such a dirty area, the flux can help.


both terminals are soldered and you can see that i also cleaned the "washers" that hold the lugs on.


that is it for the solenoid. really not much to it, just some soldering is the hard part. the end only goes back on one way, since it is keyed, and the short lug goes to the start side.
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86 930 42kmiles [__] RUNNING:[__] NOT RUNNING: ____77 911S widebody: SOLD
88 BMW 325is 200K+ SOLD
05 BMW 330CI 130K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
08 VOLVO V70 190K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
90 B2200[__] RUNNING:[] NOT RUNNING:__2000 MER E320 WAGON [] WRECKED:[]RUNNING:

Last edited by T77911S; 09-25-2011 at 08:30 AM..
Old 09-23-2011, 05:52 AM
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now for the starter.

this pic may help for referance.



to get to this point, first remove the solenoid. flip the starer over and remove the 2 screws from the other end you were just working on. these are a pain to get off. this is where i wish i had one of the tools that has a screwdriver bit on one end and you hit the other end with a hammer and it turns the screw at the same time.
lift solenoid up off the arm. then remove the 10mm bolt that goes thru the arm. on the bottom of the starter there are 2 screws on the outside edge of the starter. remove those 2 screws. the front housing will now come off. you will have to remove the rubber grommet so the arm can come out. notice how the arm is attached to the
remove the 2 small screws holding the end cap on then remove the cir clip and wahsers. the armature of innereds of the starter will slide out.
i had to use a screwdirver to knock the big endcap off the main start housing. this covers the brush assymbly. use a screwdriver and remove the 2 springs that hold the brushes in that are attached to the windings so you can remove the brush assy.
it should now look like this.



after pulling my starter apart, other than the solenoid, i could not see any other reason for slow starting other than dirty brushes and commutator. the motor itself did not seem to be binding, the busshings do not seem to wb excessively worn, although if i could get them, i would like to replace them.

here is my commutator before.


i used some 600grit sandpaper and cleaned it up. try not to put any groves in it.
here it is after.


my brushes still had lots of meat left on them so i just cleaned them up too. sandpaper and a wire brush. i tried not to disturb the curve in the brushes as best i could.


notice the orientation of the springs in this one, curved part against the brush.
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86 930 42kmiles [__] RUNNING:[__] NOT RUNNING: ____77 911S widebody: SOLD
88 BMW 325is 200K+ SOLD
05 BMW 330CI 130K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
08 VOLVO V70 190K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
90 B2200[__] RUNNING:[] NOT RUNNING:__2000 MER E320 WAGON [] WRECKED:[]RUNNING:

Last edited by T77911S; 09-23-2011 at 06:54 AM..
Old 09-23-2011, 06:32 AM
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now that everything is cleaned, its time to put it back together.
i suppose there are several ways to go about it. i put the brush assy back on then slid the armature in and worked the brush assy on by alternately pushing the brushes back. but now that i think about it, it might be easier to put the armature in, then put the brush assy on just having the deal with 2 brushes, then put the other 2 brushes on after the assy is on.
just take note of the springs. they can go on 2 ways. the curved side of the spring goes against the back of the brush.

another option is to put the nose assy together first, then slide the main housing over the armature then put the brush assy on last.

the only other real hard part is getting the solenoid back on the lever arm. this is where i actually am at. i had to stop to go to a bike race.

make sure the "shift lever" is engaged in the slots on the armature. that is what pushes the starter gear into the flywheel.

to get the solenoid back on, remove the 10mm bolt and pull the arm out, take a screwdriver and push the spring back on the solenoid and slide it over the arm, then screw the solenoid back on.

here is a pic with the armature back in and the brush assy on.


there really is not much to these starters. if a winding goes bad, you would have starting issues all the time. the bushings on the ends can wear out but i dont know if that would cause hot start issues, perhaps the starter gear might not engage the flywheel. the brushes can wear out, again, not a hot start problem. it really comes down to the solenoid.
while the solenoid is off, you can push the plunger in and out to make sure it moves freely.

here are 2 other pics i took.
in these 2 pics, with the solenoid unscrewed but connected to the arm, you can move the gear in and out to make sure you have the arm connected to the armature.



the more i think about it the more i think putting it back together starting at the nose might work better. i stopped at putting the solenoid back on and was having a hard time. i think i need to remove the 10mm bolt so the arm can come out some more so i can get the solenoid back on.

so the only 2 hard parts of the starter are the brushes, getting them back on, and the solenoid. other than that, make sure all is clean and moves freely.
i have not looked for any parts for the starter, mainly the 2 bushings, but if you replaced those and the brushes are good, you have a new starter.

some times i prefer the older original parts, so if i can rebuild it or repair it, and save some money, i will. another thing, if it is already broke, i cant make it any worse by taking it apart.

i hope this helps.

its back in. the cold starting in MUCH faster now. i have not gotten it hot to check that yet.
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86 930 42kmiles [__] RUNNING:[__] NOT RUNNING: ____77 911S widebody: SOLD
88 BMW 325is 200K+ SOLD
05 BMW 330CI 130K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
08 VOLVO V70 190K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
90 B2200[__] RUNNING:[] NOT RUNNING:__2000 MER E320 WAGON [] WRECKED:[]RUNNING:

Last edited by T77911S; 09-25-2011 at 08:42 AM..
Old 09-23-2011, 06:53 AM
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I could not see the commutator enough to observe the mica in between the copper segments.
My only comment in your fine description would be to make sure the mica separators are below the copper segments for proper action.
I use a piece of hack saw blade to undercut the mica (carefully) and then polish the copper again to get rid of the slight burr that occurs when under cutting.
Bob
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Old 09-23-2011, 07:06 AM
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Very Nice Write Up and with pics to Boot

I did a similar thread but no pics because I was staying focused on the re-assembly.

So how many more miles or months do you think your re-fresh gave your starter?

Jim

OH yeah, please keep us posted if the re-solder helpd with the hot slow start.
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Old 09-23-2011, 07:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HawgRyder View Post
I could not see the commutator enough to observe the mica in between the copper segments.
My only comment in your fine description would be to make sure the mica separators are below the copper segments for proper action.
I use a piece of hack saw blade to undercut the mica (carefully) and then polish the copper again to get rid of the slight burr that occurs when under cutting.
Bob
good point, as in the commutator is worn down i take it. i really did not look that close at that. you can see it better in the before pic of it if that helps.
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86 930 42kmiles [__] RUNNING:[__] NOT RUNNING: ____77 911S widebody: SOLD
88 BMW 325is 200K+ SOLD
05 BMW 330CI 130K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
08 VOLVO V70 190K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
90 B2200[__] RUNNING:[] NOT RUNNING:__2000 MER E320 WAGON [] WRECKED:[]RUNNING:
Old 09-23-2011, 08:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DRACO A5OG View Post
Very Nice Write Up and with pics to Boot

I did a similar thread but no pics because I was staying focused on the re-assembly.

So how many more miles or months do you think your re-fresh gave your starter?

Jim

OH yeah, please keep us posted if the re-solder helpd with the hot slow start.
i would think it would be years. the main problem is the contacts in the solenoid get corroded, clean them, and it should keep on working.
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86 930 42kmiles [__] RUNNING:[__] NOT RUNNING: ____77 911S widebody: SOLD
88 BMW 325is 200K+ SOLD
05 BMW 330CI 130K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
08 VOLVO V70 190K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
90 B2200[__] RUNNING:[] NOT RUNNING:__2000 MER E320 WAGON [] WRECKED:[]RUNNING:
Old 09-23-2011, 08:31 AM
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update:
hot starts and cold starts have been much better. the engine turns over much faster than it use to. i think this could also help in my vapour lock issues when hot....i hope. i replaced the check valve a while ago, but have not checked residual pressures in a while.

its kinda nice to get back to repairing something instead of just replacing it. like at my work as an electronics tech, so often it is just replace a circuit card or module, so when i have to, or get to actually T/S and replace a componet, it is rather nice.
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86 930 42kmiles [__] RUNNING:[__] NOT RUNNING: ____77 911S widebody: SOLD
88 BMW 325is 200K+ SOLD
05 BMW 330CI 130K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
08 VOLVO V70 190K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
90 B2200[__] RUNNING:[] NOT RUNNING:__2000 MER E320 WAGON [] WRECKED:[]RUNNING:
Old 10-07-2011, 08:04 AM
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Great pics and description, looks like i'll be doing something similar on mine, not looking forward to the G50 side of the deal though!
Cheers
Old 05-14-2013, 03:04 AM
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cleaning the commutator and the solenoid contacts is the goal. use very fine sandpaper on the commutator
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88 BMW 325is 200K+ SOLD
05 BMW 330CI 130K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
08 VOLVO V70 190K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
90 B2200[__] RUNNING:[] NOT RUNNING:__2000 MER E320 WAGON [] WRECKED:[]RUNNING:
Old 05-14-2013, 06:10 AM
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Brilliant post well done and thank you.
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:51 PM
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Thanks for sharing. I need to do some work on mine so will be referencing this for sure!

Great job indeed !!
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Old 05-16-2013, 01:03 AM
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Thanks for sharing. I need to do some work on mine so will be referencing this for sure!

Great job indeed !!
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Old 05-16-2013, 01:03 AM
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Many thanks for the posting and especially for sharing the hard core pictures...

P-Folks with G50 will need to lower the engine/gearbox ~ 15 cm to accees the upper bolt/nut

I am planning to rebuild my '89 starter (found a NOS solenoid on eBay) and would appreciate if someone can point to a source for parts / kit (brushes, etc).

Also, can anyone share the parts numbers for starter or rebuilt kit (?)

Thanks MUCH!
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Old 08-09-2013, 06:02 AM
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It took a little digging and sorting through lots of confusing (mis)information so let me share with you the 'Visual Identification – Starter Motors'


http://www.bosch.com.au/car_parts/en/downloads/Visual_ID_Starters_A.pdf

Cheers,

J.
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Old 08-09-2013, 06:31 AM
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thats really cool. i will post it on my links thread.
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88 BMW 325is 200K+ SOLD
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Old 08-09-2013, 10:55 AM
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Just got mine apart and had planned to buy a Hi Torque version from our host but now have decided to give this a go. Mine is only 3 years old and looks okay but its gotten to the point of only barely turning over and I have a new battery. Ive also bypassed the switch/yellow wire and same issue. I have mine apart but am confused about where the "tabs" from the y shaped yoke/lever go. Do they go into the "slots" visible in the collar in post 4 or into the cutouts on the collar?
Thanks
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Old 01-19-2015, 07:35 AM
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yes, that is what pulls the starter gear into the flywheel and back out.

if i remember correctly that part is kind of tricky to get back together. that is trying to hook the solenoid back on. i think i left the bolt out of the pivot and connected the solenoid then put the pivot bolt back in.
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86 930 42kmiles [__] RUNNING:[__] NOT RUNNING: ____77 911S widebody: SOLD
88 BMW 325is 200K+ SOLD
05 BMW 330CI 130K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
08 VOLVO V70 190K:: [__] RUNNING: [__] NOT RUNNING:
90 B2200[__] RUNNING:[] NOT RUNNING:__2000 MER E320 WAGON [] WRECKED:[]RUNNING:

Last edited by T77911S; 01-20-2015 at 02:36 AM..
Old 01-20-2015, 02:31 AM
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