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Old 01-15-2020, 07:47 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Starting issue cj7

Anyone had a starting issue with cj7. I built a 258 and then took out the 258 that was worn out and put in the built motor and now have an issue with the starter grinding and not engaging correctly. Swapped starters three times and it starts but still grinds and gets worse until it won’t engage but only grinds. Anyone have any suggestions. I am thinking I may need to swap out the bell housing or something. ????
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Old 01-15-2020, 07:53 AM   #2 (permalink)
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What do you mean by "built". What parts are not stock? Any chance it's the wrong flywheel or the flywheel is installed incorrectly?
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Old 01-15-2020, 07:58 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I'm picturing something seriously booty fabbed here.
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Old 01-15-2020, 07:59 AM   #4 (permalink)
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or maybe just shim the starter so it meshes properly?
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Old 01-15-2020, 08:01 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Anyone had a starting issue with cj7. I built a 258 and then took out the 258 that was worn out and put in the built motor and now have an issue with the starter grinding and not engaging correctly. Swapped starters three times and it starts but still grinds and gets worse until it won’t engage but only grinds. Anyone have any suggestions. I am thinking I may need to swap out the bell housing or something. ????
Get a endoscope camera for your phone.
Remove the cover at the bottom of the bellhousing.
Crawl underneath and place endo-cam near the starter gear.
Have someone crank motor while you record video.
Watch video on phone or computer.
After watching video, you can decide what needs to be done.
Much better than asking the internet.


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Last edited by ToddRH; 01-15-2020 at 08:02 AM.
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Old 01-15-2020, 08:02 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Had a local motor shop Barr a build the motor. Stick 258. Put a new flywheel on it and put the engine in the Jeep. Had the grinding issue. Swapped out the flywheel and still have the issue. Swapped the starter three times and still have the issue.
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Old 01-15-2020, 08:03 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Sounds like the starter wasn’t shimmed 5 times.
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Old 01-15-2020, 08:04 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I tried shims and it did not help. I am thinking that the bell housing just doesn’t work well with this new engine.
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Old 01-15-2020, 08:06 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I like the idea of the endoscope. That way I can at least see what is happening.
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Old 01-15-2020, 08:14 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I like the idea of the endoscope. That way I can at least see what is happening.
Smartphone ones are relatively inexpensive too. Mines got a long enough reach I could put the camera end in the bellhousing and watch it from the drivers seat.
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Old 01-15-2020, 08:17 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Thanks for the response. Going to keep tinkering with it until I either fix it or replace something.
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Old 01-15-2020, 08:33 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Smartphone ones are relatively inexpensive too. Mines got a long enough reach I could put the camera end in the bellhousing and watch it from the drivers seat.
Just bought one off Amazon, wifis to the phone, awesome diagnostic tool for $30.
Wife asked if I was planning to do my own colonoscopy

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Old 01-15-2020, 09:35 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I tried shims and it did not help. I am thinking that the bell housing just doesn’t work well with this new engine.
you should stop thinking.


258 block is 258 block.
even after they changed the casting to make it lighter the external dimensions never changed.

if you pulled out a 258 and put in a 258, everything you had before should work.
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Old 01-15-2020, 09:52 AM   #14 (permalink)
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check the ring gear on the flywheel, it's the only part left that could have changed. I'm guessing either the ring gear is toast or it's not in the right location on the flywheel

Definitely check the ring gear offset, apparently there were differences over the years

Last edited by ironmangq; 01-15-2020 at 09:55 AM. Reason: more info
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Old 01-15-2020, 01:15 PM   #15 (permalink)
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In before "LS swap it"
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Old 01-15-2020, 01:16 PM   #16 (permalink)
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LS swap it
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Old 01-15-2020, 02:16 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Stick or auto? I have seen people install the flex plate back asswards in the auto version.
LS swap it anyway
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Old 01-15-2020, 02:31 PM   #18 (permalink)
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you should stop thinking.


258 block is 258 block.
even after they changed the casting to make it lighter the external dimensions never changed.

if you pulled out a 258 and put in a 258, everything you had before should work.
Pretty much this. Either bad bendix on the starter, one of the gears is munched, or the new flywheel =/= the old flywheel. I assume you've turned this by hand and its not just one bad spot on the flywheel?
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Old 01-15-2020, 02:32 PM   #19 (permalink)
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did you put the large metal shim plate back on that goes between the engine and the bellhousing? are the alignment dowels in the back of the engine?
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Old 01-15-2020, 05:49 PM   #20 (permalink)
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or maybe just shim the starter so it meshes properly?
You cannot shim a Jeep starter to correct the mesh. You can only adjust depth.

Summit racing sells a nice adjustable starter for the Jeeps at a reasonable price. This issue is very common.

Op, verify that dowels are in and that you have the correct flywheel(both are very easy).
If they’re correct, order the adjustable one and be done with it.
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Old 01-15-2020, 06:06 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Does it have a different flywheel? Maybe the ring gear is not on it right.
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Old 01-15-2020, 06:34 PM   #22 (permalink)
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In before "LS swap it"
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LS swap it
\

In the nick of time.
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Old 01-15-2020, 07:37 PM   #23 (permalink)
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did you put the large metal shim plate back on that goes between the engine and the bellhousing? are the alignment dowels in the back of the engine?

I think we have a winner!!

Or just LS swap it.
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Old 01-16-2020, 05:59 AM   #24 (permalink)
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I appreciate all the input. The plate between the block and the bell housing is there, the dowels are in place, I have replaced the flywheel and compared it to two others and no difference, used three different starters and tried shimming it with washers. Nothing worked. I think the adjustable starter from summit may be the next step or swapping out the bell housing for another on I have. It is just puzzling that it won’t work right with factory parts. Has to be some sort of variance somewhere causing the mis match.
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Old 01-16-2020, 06:05 AM   #25 (permalink)
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If that doesn’t work, the LS swap will be the next move. Lol
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