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Starter Swaps for the 250's, 200's, & other Small Six'es

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bubba22349
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Starter Swaps for the 250's, 200's, & other Small Six'es

Post #1 by bubba22349 » Sat Mar 14, 2020 6:59 pm

Recently there was a discussion on the big six forum on using the newer small case Motorcraft or aftermarket gear reduction starters in place of the big case old style starters. These newer starters have lots of advantages like smaller diameter cases for more header clearance, less weight, faster starting, to name a few. So thought I would also share some of highlights from mine and others posts here in the small six forum as it also applies to our 250's, & low mount 200's, and many other Small Ford Sixes that uses a 2 bolt starter. Latest Update (05/16/20020) a site member recently found that the 2nd & 3rd Genteration Motorcraft two bolt starter cases (1988 to 1995) or (1996 to latest as of this post) aren't clocked correctly to be able fit (was to close or hits the block so these newer style starter aren't going to fit on any of the two bolt high mount blocks and bell housings this includes all the 144's, 170's, and most all 200's blocks (exception is the rare later model 200 low mount blocks plus all 250's 240's and 300's / 4.9's). So both of these newer starters are not likely to fit on any of the high mount starter blocks and bell housings without doing some custom work (see note).

Note Here is a yet unproven idea, if you were to unbol the two through case bolts so rear tail piece can be removed and turned to reclock it in the same position as a 1st Gen two bolt (144, 170, or a 200) starter is clocked. Then It may be possable to fit the 2nd or 3rd Gen starters, by drilling and tapping two new holes for the case through bolts and also grind a new small notch for case clocking pin. Other than trying this to find out the best way right now is to buy a new aftermarket PMGR Mini starter. So these newer Motorcraft 2nd & 3rd Gen starters will only bolt onto all the 250's, 240's and 300's / 4.9's. And for the time being unless someone wants to do an experiment only the orginal 1st Gen starter fits the high mount blocks and Bellhousing, unless you go with one of the Aftermarket PMGR Mini Starters that are known to fit (only ones that the case can be clocked). To see the full topic go here. viewtopic.php?f=2&t=80786&p=627549#p627549

As for for the other small six'es 200's, 170's, 144's', with an auto trans and that use a 3 bolt starter your going to run into the same thing, using the stock starter or going with the aftermarket Mini starters. These 3 bolt starters are based on the Ford FE V8's (332, 352, 360, 390, 406, 410, 427, & 428). Update 5/16/2020 All 3 bolt OEM starters Ford ever made for these engines have a large case, the other choice if you want a smaller starter is getting an aftermarket PMGR Mini starter that's made to fit an FE Ford V8 with an auto trans (it must be one that case can be clocked) to be able to fit a 144,170, and 200's high mount blocks and Bellhousing. Fords have two starter drive depths 3/8 or 3/4 inch. Measure from the face of your bell housing where the starter bolts on to the ring gear to determine your depth. Generally a Manual Trans bell uses a 3/8 inch depth starter and an Auto Trans has a 3/4 inch depth.

Their are some commonly available aftermarket gear reduction starters can be used if it's for the same application. Plus there are two late OEM Ford Motorcraft starters one is a smaller case and one is a PMGR Mini HI Torque starter that can be used. I remember that many of the starter rebuilders and new manufactures use a base number to ID starters for an application (not sure the correct number in this case but think it's 3157) but these particular starters will fit many Ford engines like the rare late model big bell 200's, plus all the 250, 240, 300, 4.9, 3.8, 289, 302, 351 W's & C's ect.

Econoline wrote:The indexing hub of the starters is also slightly different based on application, m/t vs a/t. The Manual 2 bolt starter has a slightly larger hub and won't fit in the bore on an automatic trans. Conversely you can bolt up an automatic starter in a manual, but you would notice the loose fit in the bore.


Econoline brought up a great point in his above post. I have seen people use shims and spacers to adapt the wrong starters and have just wondered why. When you use the right tail piece on the starter you get the right starter drive depth and it fits into the starter mounting hole as it's supposed to. This has been a constant throughout on the Ford starters, the starter motors are the same the tail piece for an Auto trans needs to be used for an Auto trans Bell Housing and a Manual Trans tail piece used for a Manual Trans Bell Housing.

Just like there is a direct interchange between the old large case two bolt starters and the late model small case starters used on the 1988 up EFI engines like the 4.9, 240 / 300, 5.0, 3.8 ect. As an example my orginal starter on my 1994 F150 4.9 (300) / 5 speed (small case hi torque stater) went out one day. I had a 5.0 V8 starter in the garage it's the same starter except it was for an auto trans car so I just swapped my tail end piece (starter drive section) off my 300 starter on to the 5.0 starter and popped it in worked great and the pickup was back in service in about 1 hour. Good luck :thumbup: :nod:
A bad day Drag Racing is still better than a good day at work!

I am still hunting for a project car to build but with my current low budget it's not looking so good. My Ex- Fleet of Sixes these are all long gone! :bang: 1954 Customline 223 3 speed with O/D, 1963 Fairlane project drag car with BB6, 1977 Maverick 250 with C4, 1994 F-150 a 300 with 5 speed.

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Re: Starter Swaps for the 250 Small Six'es

Post #2 by bubba22349 » Sat Mar 14, 2020 7:02 pm

There are two main flywheels or flex plates with tooth counts 157 & 164 plus another 141 that was used only in the sub compact cars. The 157 is then most common size its found in cars like mid 60's up Falcons Mustamgs, Fairlanes, Torino's, and their Mercury counterparts, etc, it measures 13.280 inches in Diameter. The next one with 164 tooth flywheels or flex plates being mostly used in the F series trucks, E series Vans and some bigger Ford or Mercury cars lake a Galaxy it measures 14.240 inches in diameter. There is a third size a 141 tooth flex plate (no fly wheels) it measures 11.94 inches in diameter that was used in the 1975 to 1978 Pinto's, Bobcat's, and Mustang II's with a 302 V8 and C4 / C3 trans. All of these 6 bolt bell blocks (250, 240, 300, (6's) and SBF V8's mid 1965 289, 302, 351 W, 351 C, (to name a few) all have the ability to use any of these three tooth counts by their intended transmission use. :thumbup: :nod:
A bad day Drag Racing is still better than a good day at work!

I am still hunting for a project car to build but with my current low budget it's not looking so good. My Ex- Fleet of Sixes these are all long gone! :bang: 1954 Customline 223 3 speed with O/D, 1963 Fairlane project drag car with BB6, 1977 Maverick 250 with C4, 1994 F-150 a 300 with 5 speed.

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bubba22349
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Re: Starter Swaps for the 250 Small Six'es

Post #3 by bubba22349 » Sat Mar 14, 2020 7:22 pm

woodbutcher wrote::hmmm: I noticed from Bubbas posts,that the hi torque starters are direct drive.Would there be any re-wiring required for those starters?Maybe Bubba could post a bit of a schematic for the re-wire?Again,thanks to all who have posted. The provided information has been most helpful.
Good luck.Have fun.Be safe.
Leo



wallen7 wrote:All you have to do is add a jumper from the battery cable terminal to the solenoid terminal and it will work like the old starter. No rewiring. It will just engage 2 solenoids, the original when you turn the key and the one on the starter when power is applied to the starter terminal.



HI Woodbutcher, there is no rewiring needed when using the first Ford MotorCraft small case starter (EFI 1988 to Aprox 1995) see link to picture of example. The wiring diagram is for these starters it's essentially the same as for the older larger case starters used from 1956 up to about the end of 1986 or 87 (am not sure of the ending year). These First Gen Starters weight a hefty 16 pounds. The wiring diagram was still basicly the same with these first smaller case starters used from 1987 or 88 until the 1995 Fords. There have been some different looking solenoids used over the years and the ignistion coil full 12 volt boost wire (I terminal used during starting) was eliminated with the advent of EFI its newer Ignition system being controlled by the CPU, see link for examples but the rest of the starter wiring was still the same. This is as simple of a swap as unbolting your old large case starter then bolting in the new smaller MotorCraft starter the wiring stays the same check out all pictures in links below.

Starter circuit wiring diagram used through 1995.
https://wiringforums.com/ford-f-150-sta ... -f150-4-9/

Pictures of different Ford Solenoids
https://wiringforums.com/ford-f-150-sta ... g-diagram/

Picture Showing the Size Difference of a First Gen Ford Stater and an Aftermarket PA Performance PMGR Starter
http://www.mustangandfords.com/how-to/e ... allery/#10

Example of First Ford small case starter 1988 to 1995
https://www.autozone.com/batteries-star ... 0_853758_0

For the Aftermarket Gear Reduction Mini starters and the Ford Motorcraft 1996 up these are the smallest case (Mini) starters there are some wiring differances see below links for pictures of examples of these starters. As an example the aftermarket PA Performance PMGR Ford starter only weighs 8 pounds. Since both of these will have the solenoid mounted on their smaller case starters, the old fender well mounted solenoid that was used with the large case starters could used or now even be eliminated. It's not too big a deal though and a few ways it can be done.

1. The old starter cable is disconnected off the back (starter) side of the old solenoid post and reconnected so that it now goes direct from the battery side of the solenoid down to the new starters battery cable largest post. This repurposes the old solenoid to operate in tandem with the new starters Solinod and is used as a stud mounting to conect the battery cable and starter cables together.

2. Then you have the starter trigger wire from the old starter cable side down to the starter thermal use a 12 to 10 gauge wire for that. That's about all there is to it (Note this) if you have a point type ignistion system or a Mallery Unilite distribtor, in that case you will need a diode (there are wire kits for this or you can make your for about 5 cents plus some wire up to coil) to allow a full 12 volts to coil during starting / cranking you can ask me if you need help with this.

3. if you also wanted to remove the old solenoid and clean up the looks a little more under the hood, then that can be done with just a little more work using a longer (Posative) battery cable. The wiring diagram would be kind of like what was used on the old 1955 up into 1990's Chevy's and other GM models of the era (see below link for a basic wiring diagram). A Bosh type Relay hooked to battery post and the old starter wire from ignistion switch is then used to trigger the relay a 12 to 10 gauge wire goes down to the starters solinod second largest post (check out the Tipical Chevy / GM wiring diagram below for some hints. See also the above Note if still using a point type ignistion.

As wallon7 posted you could link the two solenoids as in 1. & 2. so they operated together (see below link modding the Stock Ford Starter Solinod Wiring Diagram to Power the Newer Style PMGR Starter). There are also some old posts on the PowerMaster PMGR starters showing were people looped a jumper wire from the starters battery (largest) post to the second (largest) post this is a big no no and causes the starter to stay engaged with flywheel for a few seconds. Good luck :thumbup: :nod: Edited

Aftermarket Gear Reduction Mini Starter
https://www.summitracing.com/parts/tff-13124/make/ford

Motorcraft OEM Later style EFI the Smallest Case Ford Starter with Solinoid these can vary by application and year of use Aprox 1996 up
https://www.autozone.com/batteries-star ... 002_0_3498

Modding the Stock Ford Starter Solinod Wiring to Power the Newer Style PMGR Starter
http://www.garysgaragemahal.com/pmgr-st ... iring.html

Or Also Like This
http://cdn.wildhorses4x4.com/downloads/ ... -12-09.pdf

Tipical Chevy / GM starter wiring diagram
http://chevy.oldcarmanualproject.com/el ... 55car1.jpg
A bad day Drag Racing is still better than a good day at work!

I am still hunting for a project car to build but with my current low budget it's not looking so good. My Ex- Fleet of Sixes these are all long gone! :bang: 1954 Customline 223 3 speed with O/D, 1963 Fairlane project drag car with BB6, 1977 Maverick 250 with C4, 1994 F-150 a 300 with 5 speed.

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bubba22349
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Posts: 9834
Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2010 4:46 pm
Location: Flagstaff, Az. 86005 near the old Route 66

Re: Starter Swaps for the 250 Small Six'es

Post #4 by bubba22349 » Sun Mar 15, 2020 8:26 pm

sdiesel wrote:This all sounds like a dandy but of news for the engines with headers. Does a newer style starter allow more room between the header and the starter?


Yes for sure it gives you more room or clearance around the headers as you can see the differences between the First Generation (1960's to 1980's starters) and the Third Generation Motocraft starters (1996 up starters) in Econolines great Pictures in below post. All we need now is a Picture of one the Second Generation Motorcraft starters used in 1988 to 1995 to show its size In between those two. :thumbup: :nod:

Econoline wrote:I found these picture I took comparing the size of the old style vs the new style starters on my aod

Image

Image
A bad day Drag Racing is still better than a good day at work!

I am still hunting for a project car to build but with my current low budget it's not looking so good. My Ex- Fleet of Sixes these are all long gone! :bang: 1954 Customline 223 3 speed with O/D, 1963 Fairlane project drag car with BB6, 1977 Maverick 250 with C4, 1994 F-150 a 300 with 5 speed.

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