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2.5l starter nose broken


jpark6491

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Hey all, I am new here to the forums. I just purchased a 1999 Ford Ranger XLT 2.5, 5-speed manual, 2WD for $600. They said in the post that it was stuck in 3rd or 4th gear and has been parked for at least 1-2 months. When I got there to see the truck it seemed as though it was no longer stuck in gear; however, when I went to start the truck it sounded as though the starter was just spinning and not engaging the flywheel properly. I pulled the starter and saw that the nose piece is completely broken off with starter shaft unsupported.

Any ideas what might have caused the starter to break like this? I hate to put a new starter on without determining the root cause of what made this one fail.
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I assumed that the starter itself was just a cheap aftermarket piece that broke with the cold weather we have had this winter in Illinois. However, the previous owners mentioned that at some point a new flywheel was put on because the old one had a few broken teeth.

Could the starter possibly have broken due to an improperly installed flywheel/cracked flywheel or is it most likely that it simply broke due to being a cheap part? I have not had a chance to inspect the flywheel further just trying to wrap my head around this.

I appreciate any ideas, thanks!
 


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adsm08

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You might want to check end play on the crank. Manual transmissions tend to wear the thrust bearing out faster than autos, and crank end play can cause all sorts of odd and seemingly random issues.
 

jpark6491

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I am not familiar with this, what is the best way I can check to see if the crank has end play?
 

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Set up a dial indicator so it is on the forward face of the crank damper, then use a pry bar to rock the crank forward and back in the block, and see how far it is moving.
 

jpark6491

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You must mean taking the engine out and flipping it on an engine stand with oil pan off?

The truck is parked in the previous owners backyard right now. I was hoping it was a problem that I could fix and limp it home.
 

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You must mean taking the engine out and flipping it on an engine stand with oil pan off?

The truck is parked in the previous owners backyard right now. I was hoping it was a problem that I could fix and limp it home.
No, that test can be done with the engine in place. Throw a starter on it and drive it home carefully. Then work on it.
 

jpark6491

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Update: I was able to find the broken starter nose piece stuck in the bell housing. I pulled it out and put the new starter in place. It started up okay but there definitely seemed to be some grinding going on so will have to investigate that further. I tried to install it as straight as possible.

Also figured out that the transmission is still stuck in 4th gear and so until that gets fixed I won't be going anywhere or will have to tow it. ?
 

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decipha
good find, i have seen this also happen on a 2.3 ranger by someone installing the plug wires on wrong and the engine cross-firing and it snapped on start up

obvious not your issue but just thought i'd mention
 

jpark6491

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good find, i have seen this also happen on a 2.3 ranger by someone installing the plug wires on wrong and the engine cross-firing and it snapped on start up

obvious not your issue but just thought i'd mention
They also had to replace the flywheel at some point because a few of the teeth were chipped. I am wondering if the new one is not installed correctly or something else with alignment is messed up.
 


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