Changing starter.

Dave L

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is there some trick? I'm trying to change out my starter and it appears to be impossible to reach the two bolts that hold it on. They look like 17mm but a metal flange on the starter inhibits a socket. Not enough space for a crescent/box wrench. I don't understand why it would be so difficult to change out a starter. There must be some trick to it. 70 2800cs.
 

aearch

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Stevehose

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very difficult with original intake manifolds on. I ground down a 17mm wrench then it's a long, back breaking exercise of moving the bolt 1/12 rev at a time, flipping the wrench over each time. Replace the starter with a newer model and you will be able to get a socket on there.
 

bluecoupe30!

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love this topic....now. Struggled with this very exercise. Solution to bottom bolt is "obstruction wrench" you can reach top with your current tools in your trunk mounted kit, the 17 mm Heyco is thin enough to work the top bolt. Have patience. BTW, On a dual Weber 32/36 it IS possible to replace starter in situ, trick is to remove the solenoid first, then replace once new starter is installed. Good luck.
SAM_3040.JPG
 

Dave L

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Crap! You generally don't find this kind of design flaw in BMW cars. It was so strange, I assumed there was a easy solution I had been overlooking. At least I can stop thinking there is a "trick" and go straight at the problem.

Problem one, I don't have a trunk tool kit. (It disappeared during a time in a shop, don't get me started on that one).

I'll figure something out.

Oddly, I've read here that one bolt is accessible with a socket. I don't see how that is possible. Also, reference to "top" and "bottom" bolts, it more like inside and outside, they are almost parallel.
 
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Simufly

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Did mine recently, the bottom bolt is the easier, the top bolt is difficult, I ground down an old ring spanner. Easier with the two rear injection inlets removed.
 

Ohmess

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I did the bottom bolt with a 3/8 socket and a three foot extension extending to a wrench behind the tranny. For the top bolt, I used a 17mm open end wrench that is prefectly flat, using the Stevehose 1/12 turn technique.
 

aearch

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IMG_0619.jpg
RIGHT
Its best if u ground one down so u can turn more w/ each setting
the one i made
 
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Bert Poliakoff

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Bosch #, IIRC, is SR441X. I believe it is from a 5 series through '95. It is smaller, more powerful and easy to put in. The E24 guys have been using these for quite a while now. Google the number and you can see where they are used. Bosch sells them for $135, rebuilt by them, and that seems to be the going rate. The only thing I am aware of, is the existing wires will have to be switched around at the starter but I can't remember in what way
 

bavbob

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Despite his age, Bert is correct, SR 441x......fits in with a 17mm socket and extension in 5 min. I did not need to re-wire anything.

I have done this on 3 other cars, always worried that the core I am sending back is not a SR441x......either they don't notice or don't care. I have never had an issue getting 100% of the core charge back.
 

GolfBavaria

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Did mine recently, the bottom bolt is the easier, the top bolt is difficult, I ground down an old ring spanner. Easier with the two rear injection inlets removed.
This is correct, just went through this nightmare myself. The bottom is more accessible than you think. That wasn't the problem, the top we had to grind down a 17mm socket. Grind it flat and it will eventually slip in. Total pain in the ass, the wrenches that came with car still too thick. You can also grind down a wrench like AERCH shows on the sides but you will need more leverage that that one shown. Keep the length and flip every turn. Socket worked better in the end. Keep grinding it down until it fits. Then it will snug right up. Major design flaw. Or better yet, go buy an M3 starter, it is smaller and works I've heard. Wish I would have known that before I bought the Bosch starter.................Arggggghhhhhhhh.
 

rsporsche

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sell the starter on ebay ... and then buy what you want. the starter for the 8 series v12 is a good one (according to SFDon) sr444x if i remember correctly
 

Dave L

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Ok, so I've changed out the starter, a super PITA job, but that's done. I got one quick crank, then back to nothing. It may not be the starter after all! Anyone know how to test or bypass the ignition switch? I'm fearing my problem may be the switch. Any other suggestion in the ignition system to test?
 

OCCoupe

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sell the starter on ebay ... and then buy what you want. the starter for the 8 series v12 is a good one (according to SFDon) sr444x if i remember correctly
I have one in my coupe. It's a reduction gear starter. Large and torquie.
 

NewSixCoupe

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I approached this project with dread over the weekend after reading this thread, but was shocked at how easy the original starter came out! The manifolds are off, so that helped quite a bit, but I just hit the two bolts with Kroil, waited 15 minutes, and then used a regular 17mm open end wrench. So now I have to select a replacement starter, and two models keep popping up in discussions on this site: Bosch SR440x (e30 M3) and 441x (e34). I'm waiting to hear back from a Bosch rep re: the difference between the two, but I understand both are small case models with permanent magnets. Just wanted to ask for advice from anyone that has recently replaced their starter. Thanks!
 

NewSixCoupe

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Funny, just got off the phone with Bosch technical support and they can't or won't recommend any starter other than the SR71x for an e9. And they will not explain the difference between the 440 and 441. I spoke with the Bosch rep that supplies my BMW mechanic; he's going to check with their electrical engineering dept. and get back to me...
 
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