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Discussion Starter #1
I heard once somewhere that a starter would have an easier time turning a motor at say 37* than it would 16 or 17*. Is that true or false?? I asked pretty much the same question over on the bullet last night, and a couple of guys said that there deal seamed happier with 10* pulled than 20*. Right now I don't have the ability to "pull" anything, just trying to decide if I should put that on my to want list.lol
 

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I heard once somewhere that a starter would have an easier time turning a motor at say 37* than it would 16 or 17*. Is that true or false?? I asked pretty much the same question over on the bullet last night, and a couple of guys said that there deal seamed happier with 10* pulled than 20*. Right now I don't have the ability to "pull" anything, just trying to decide if I should put that on my to want list.lol
i say false. what ignition do you have in that thing?
 

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Just another Wannabe
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Easier at 37 degrees than 17 degrees? Really??!!

I run programmable ignitions and we pull timing OUT to help it start.:p

Never heard of an ignition system trying to add timing to help start an engine.
But yes, the programmables have aids of dropping timing under a certain rpm to help them start. They are very helpful. For our injected alcohol engines, 20 is the best for starting.
 

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Check the parts spam section. I have a programmable timing computor for use with msd ignitions for sale. Has start retard, high speed retard, etc.
Just fyi
 

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The hei is fine just the way you got it, I would not use the vacuum canister but the mechanical side.
Unless you are running high compression wild cam it is not necessary to lock out the timing. Rev it up 25-3000 rpm set the full out timing you want wherever it times at idle will be the inital. If it starts good runs good leave it alone.
And a starter works harder to spin then 35-38 degrees , when the engine gets hot it will work the starter even harder.
 

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Bostick Racing Engines
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I would say what they may mean is depending on the combo it may start and idle easier... like it has no vacuum and needs a lot of lead to idle.... (my injected alky deal is a pig to start and get to run with less than 30+) but as far as the work load on the starter... no way 30+ degrees is less stressful on the starter than 17 or so... especially add high compression and high cranking compression.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I don't think I or anyone would call my combo radical(fwiw). I didn't really want to turn this into a lock it or don't thread. The "somewhere" I heard this was in hot boat magazine. Fwiw my boat has never idled better cold,and seemed to have better response out of the hole,since I locked it out. I'm at 39* total. Even If I took 20* out(or whatever is in the mech. adv. on an hei) that's still 19* at start up. I'm not convinced it would start easier at 19*
 

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locked out timming

Is it hard on your rod bearings locked at 35 plus degres at idle?
 

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I'm No Expert
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i'm locked out at 34* and i dont have any retard function. What i do is press the starter button and then flip the ignition switch. Since the MSD takes a second or so it activate the starter usually has the engine spinning fast enough and it starts right up. I've accidently hit the ignition switch early a few times and i can say the starter does not like it. Motor pretty much wants to run backwards. :)

Now.. before it was locked out i ran 15* of initial and 36* total. No seperate igniton switch, everything was on the key. It would start easy, same starter..
 

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Bostick Racing Engines
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H2O...

As far as your initial post... just think about it for a second... Do you think it would be easier to crank the engine over when it's trying to fire closer to TDC and has less to travel to the down stroke, or further away before TDC where it has further to travel and compress to be on the down stroke side? I'm not trying to be a dick or anything... but what makes more sense to you? Often times what makes the most sense for a reasonable person if often the more correct answer. In the old days when people actually had to hand crank their Model T to start... one part of the procedure was to pull the lever on the steering wheel that controlled the advance in the magneto (no swinging weights in those days) in the "full retard" (their term... not mine) so as to not break your arm when you cranked it over and it tried to "back up" on you and try firing backwards... and sometimes resulting in broken hands/arms/legs whatever got in the way of the hand crank.

And as for the last post...
You'd be surprised how much easier it would crank over with the ignition on at 19* vs. 39* with upwards of 500 inches and 13:1+ compression even with a hefty starter and good rotor phasing... for a 468 that's about 9-10:1... then you may not notice much of a difference if you have a decent starter... should work just fine. BUT... stock GM old school one though, and you may need to pack an extra one and a flex plate in the "things to pack in the boat" list with locked out at 39* and no retard... it may not backup on you EVERY time... but it will backup on you at the WRONG time... and chipped starter teeth are lucky... blowing the starter nose right off the block is not uncommon.

I have had stocker 8.5:1 chevys with the high torque strarters start all the way up to 50* initial advance and other than being a little slow on the cranking... start just fine (customer couldn't figure out why it pinged right off idle :)sphss)
 

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i'm locked out at 34* and i dont have any retard function. What i do is press the starter button and then flip the ignition switch. Since the MSD takes a second or so it activate the starter usually has the engine spinning fast enough and it starts right up. I've accidently hit the ignition switch early a few times and i can say the starter does not like it. Motor pretty much wants to run backwards. :)

Now.. before it was locked out i ran 15* of initial and 36* total. No seperate igniton switch, everything was on the key. It would start easy, same starter..
msd "starter saver"s are relatively cheap and easy to install with any msd ignition. small little box, won't even notice it. you wouldn't need to do the "hit button, flip switch" trick if you install one.

kinda puzzling why you would lock out an hei??? all that advance isn't helping your starter issues.
 

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I heard once somewhere that a starter would have an easier time turning a motor at say 37* than it would 16 or 17*. Is that true or false?? I asked pretty much the same question over on the bullet last night, and a couple of guys said that there deal seamed happier with 10* pulled than 20*. Right now I don't have the ability to "pull" anything, just trying to decide if I should put that on my to want list.lol
BTDC means piston before top dead center.
So, the more advance you have the earlier the spark plug fires as the piston is raising towards top dead center. Since during cranking your piston is moving slowly, you are igniting things which is trying to push your piston back down while it's trying to go up. When thinking about things (ignition timing, cam timing, etc) actual time is something to consider vs just degrees.

Anyhow, you can get a start retard (starter saver), but since you aren't going to spend the $$$ right away your other option is what Shaun has done.
 

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One thing that has a major impact on engine cranking is flywheel/flex plate diameter. The smaller you go, the less leverage the starter has to rotate the engine.
Two years ago Nascar changed to flywheel rule allowing the use of a cable drive fuel pump to be ran off of the back of the cam. To do this we had to greatly reduce the diameter of the flywheel (thus lowering the leverage). This created big problems and lead to numerous starter failures that we have just now got under control (we think! LOL). The original flywheel/starter set-up was a standard type 153 tooth and a corvette starter. We had no problem starting our 12to1 small blocks with locked out timing. As soon as we went to the smaller flywheel......done!
In my boat I had a 598ci (4.5 stroke) 11.5to1 BBC with a 168 tooth flywheel and a Pep Boys re-manned oem starter. Never had a problem starting it hot or cold, even when running 87 octane dock gas, with timing locked at 32*. Never even had to do the crank before turning on the ignition either, although, as mentioned above, it is recommended.
 

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It sounds like you have found the optimum lead for your combo. Here are a few things to think about.
1 Put in the lightest springs in the mechanical side so total will be in as early as possible.
2 If you have a separate ignintion switch do as shaun does. But if you only have a key switch that fire's the ignition and starter then some wirring mods would be needed.
3 Start retard box. I think this would be ideal as you could adjust the amount of retard to find what works best.
Does it have difficulty starting now? In my experiance I have found it has been easier on the starter/flexplate with a little retard. What are the specs on your mill? Do you have an ignition box or just the HEI? SJ:)hand
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
LOL guys I understand the whole advance btdc concept. I never said it (17*being easier than 37* to turn) made any sense, I think that's why I've remembered it. Someone over on the bullet recommended what shaun said, and it's something I've had in the back of my mind so I think I'll try that 1st. Fwiw a couple of other guys over there have also commented that their stuff turned over/started a lot better if they only pulled 10*, they commented 20* out was too much for their set up. That leads me to believe their set up is happier cranking in the mid 20's rather in the teens I have no idea how compression comes into play here. I can only assume my junk should be easier to turn at any given setting. The hei is all by itself(no box). I may put up a lil vid of it starting here in a bit. I'd try the light spring deal if I thought I had 25+* of mech adv. there. Maybe I'll call my dist guy and see if he knows. I know you can't believe everything you read or here, that's why I value all of your opinions as a whole, and am curious what does and doesn't work for you. As far as starting now...when it's a little warm and happy it starts o.k. , sometimes the starter strugles when it's cold and doesn't want to light off the 1st bump. The other day I bolted up a new rebuilt starter and it didn't hang, so I'm told gear reduction starters don't like to be kicked backwards.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e_GjvymClbY
 

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I have never seen or heard of a motor cranking easier with more initial timing in it. It makes absolutely no sense. With not enough timing they can be hard to fire, but will always turn over easier. At least that is what I have found on my planet.:)st
 
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H2OMOFO, mine locked out will turn over easier cold than hot. I usally us the spin it up first deal when it's hot. I've got 12.5to 1 comp. Isn't yours like 8 if I remember right. I don't know what effect comp has on locked out timing.

Tim
 

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I'm No Expert
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msd "starter saver"s are relatively cheap and easy to install with any msd ignition. small little box, won't even notice it. you wouldn't need to do the "hit button, flip switch" trick if you install one.

kinda puzzling why you would lock out an hei??? all that advance isn't helping your starter issues.
Ya, they arnt too expensive but i figured why buy one if i dont need one. I was seperating my fuel/ignition/starter anyway so that i could run the fuel out of the system. Was the hei comment aimed at h20 or me?
 

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Someone over on the bullet recommended what shaun said, and it's something I've had in the back of my mind so I think I'll try that 1st.
Works great as long as your engine will light right up. If you got one of those deals where you have to crank it for a year with it sputterin and spittin... well then it aint going to work all that great :D
 
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