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6.9 Starter woes etc....................

Started by Bandolero, 10 May 2006, 07:13 AM


Hi all.
It all happened about 2-3 weeks ago on a Saturday afternoon.
Pulled the 6.9 up at the local oval and when I put the car into park, the starter decided to have a mind of its own and tried to start the car even though the motor was already running!...expensive noises!!!!!!!
Worked out that on ignition only, the starter would try to start the car without moving the key to start....bugga!!!

$$$$$$$ signs flashed before my eyes.

Car was towed to the local garage and left there till Monday.
Monday comes and I went to see the beast and was informed that the start wire was "hot" meaning power was there all the time. They had no idea how to fix it.
We started the car and disconnected the start (solenoid) wire so that I could drive it to an auto-electrician.
He said he would check the wiring which should be no problem, but he was more worried about the "tinkling" noises coming from the starter as the pinion was touching the ring-gear.
After he pulled the starter off, he discovered that the pinion was in 2 bits....more money!!!!
No problem, I said, will get a second-hand one. Rang Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney, no second-hand starters...bugga again!!

That night rang Styria, yes, he had one with a busted solenoid, no problems, will just use the pinion.

Meanwhile I was told by a friend of mine that the probable reason for the wiring problems was the neutral/park/reversing lights switch on the auto had become u/s. To cut a long story short, he was right. New switch...$170, reasonable price.

Remember the starter?, just swap the solenoid???....WRONG!!
The starter was different. 12mm larger diameter and the shaft was a different size.
They reconditioned the starter I bought and put a new solenoid onto it. (Solenoid cost $90)....BEA wanted about $500 for one.
Starter now fixed and with the new switch everything works...Great!!!!
I must thank Styria very much for the starter and as usual I should have rang him first, not last.

The auto-electrician only charged me $270 including the solenoid, I think he felt sorry for me as I was a bit stressed. (Lot stressed???)

The funny thing is, there are obviously at least 2 types of starters for the 6.9 as even the flange on the starter was wider. But it still fitted ok with a couple of small mods.

Total cost for the repairs including the s/h starter was $790, could have been a lot worse. I was quoted about $2500 for a new starter from the Merc dealer.
Much happier now and the car works well again.

In regards the the switch on the auto, BEA sell a lot of them as they seem to stuff up with age.

Russell Bond - (Adelaide, South Australia)
1978 450SEL 6.9 .... #5166 .... 12/78 (Sold.) [url="//"][/url]