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Jeep 12 Volt Starter


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I have a 1943 GPW with a 12 volt conversion. Not fitted by me, it's the way it came. It has the original type of 6 volt starter which most of the time works fine but occasionally makes either a terrible graunching noise or just fails to engage and whirrs away. The problem is more prevalent when the engine is warm. There is a new ring gear on the flywheel, fitted as part of a recent engine rebuilt, and a new spindle bush  in the bell housing. I've cleaned and inspected the starter, everything looks fine and moves the way it should do.

I've read conflicting stories about using a 6 volt starter on 12 volts, some people say there's no problem, others say that the over-rapid engagement will prematurely destroy the gears. I've also read that fitting a stronger bendix spring can be beneficial. Also been told that the original starters were better made than modern replacements and if I have one I should endeavour to keep it.

So, any advice please?

Thanks, John

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When I was looking for someone to rebuild a starter Barry Ring suggested using a Denso high torque starter. We fitted one and have had no issues. 


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I had a similar issue with my starter on 12 volt system that was set by the previous owner

I had my starter rebuilt to 12volt by this chap in Lancashire, he doesn't have a website but you have the details here:


I posted it from Dorset, took a week or so to get it back fully rebuilt like new.. cost a few bob, but have had not issues since

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  • 3 weeks later...

Just to round this off:

I dismantled the Bendix and found a component inside was broken in two, the plunger, I think it's called. A new Bendix from East Coast Jeeps seems to have solved the problem. It was sold as being suitable for 6V and 12V, so hopefully it will stay fixed. Fingers crossed.


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