Bench testing a starter | Ford Escort Owners Association (FEOA)

Bench testing a starter

Discussion in '1st Gen 1981-1990 CVH' started by NeckDelight, Jan 4, 2020.

  1. NeckDelight

    NeckDelight FEOA Member

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    So I have a engine I got to put in one of my escorts. The guy I got the engine from is a credible seller. I bought a good running Scort off him. I would like to give this said engine a compression test. The transmission is not on it I have a bracket made so the start will mount to the engine. I am wondering can I just take a spare battery take jumper cables take my ground lead to the casing or anywhere on the engine and positive jumper to the hot battery portion of the starter to get this thing to crank. Again I just want to give it. Compression test before I go through and replace all the seals in this engine. Kinda like a piece of mind. Am I wayyy of in thinking I can do this
  2. zzyzzx

    zzyzzx FEOA Member

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    Sure you can. I would be sure to have the starter secured.
  3. NeckDelight

    NeckDelight FEOA Member

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    Yeah it will be mounted to the block. I was just making sure there wasn't anything I was missing I think the two starters I have in my parts supply don't work ha.
  4. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    The normal way is to hook the +12 volts to the large terminal on the top of the solenoid, and use a smaller +12volt wire connected to the small terminal on the solenoid. This way the solenoid will pull the 'bendix' mechanism into contact with the teeth on the starter ring, before the starter starts spinning the engine.

    I do my compression tests by leaving the throttle shut. It doesnt give as high a reading as doing it with the throttle open; but its just as good a relative measure of compression. I let the engine turn about 6 or 7 times per cylinder, and I do that the same for each of the four cylinders.

    Replacing the main seals is a good idea, while the engine is out of the car. I would also recommend replacing the five core plugs on the block. Four of them are the same size; two on the front of the block and two on the backside. The one on the end of the block is larger, (3-1/16" I think); since that one can only be reached when the flywheel or flexplate is removed from the crankshaft.
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  5. zzyzzx

    zzyzzx FEOA Member

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    Starters are often easily repaired.
  6. NeckDelight

    NeckDelight FEOA Member

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    I was planning on taking them apart and see what's going on inside
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  7. zzyzzx

    zzyzzx FEOA Member

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    Good. Should be simpler than an alternator, since no diodes or regulator. Might just need brushes.
  8. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    I have found it necessary to clean the muck off the commutator on starters. And you have to ensure the gaps between commutator segments are cleaned out too.
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  9. Joey_Twowagons

    Joey_Twowagons FEOA Member

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    I remove the spark plugs from all the cylinders and do the compression test at WOT.

    However you do it, the relative difference is the more important value. I often find that the starter is slowing down by the last cylinder due to the battery losing strength.
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  10. NeckDelight

    NeckDelight FEOA Member

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    That's exactly how I give a compression test. I have the engine sitting in the garage just sitting in a engine stand. I have the starter bolted to the engine now I want to do a compression test. Checking the engine before I put it in the car
  11. Krankie

    Krankie FEOA Member

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    This is a gen 1 no? first gen Escorts don't have a stareter-mounted solenoid. The solenoid is on the fender well next to the battery. Grounding the case and putting positive cable to the cable lug on the starter should light it right up. The bendix is mechanically engaged by rotational forces.

    This is got to be the same guy I responded to on Facebook the other day.
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  12. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    My mistake, sorry.
  13. NeckDelight

    NeckDelight FEOA Member

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    Yeah I have two junk starters sitting on my shelf ha. Imagine that
  14. Joey_Twowagons

    Joey_Twowagons FEOA Member

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    When the solenoid on my starter quit, I bought a core starter at a the local junkyard for $10 and took the solenoid from it.
    These 1990s PMGR Ford starters seem to all be the same other than the snout. The starter on a late 351W engine I have is the same basic unit as the Escort 1.9 (!)

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