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53/54 Chevy 235 Flexplate woes...

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 54LedSled, Jan 30, 2013.

  1. 54LedSled
    Joined: Mar 11, 2011
    Posts: 363

    54LedSled
    Member

    I currently have a wanted ad out on a couple sites for a good 53/54 Chevy 235 PG flexplate. I have come to realize how rare these are becoming. I recently converted my Chevy to 12v and since then have had a hard time getting my 6v to connect right with my flexplate...lots of grinding and such going on. I went as far as to have the starter rebuilt , new starter drive, new 12v solenoid and so forth. Better...but still grinding a lot.

    I am realizing that the issue may just be my flexplate is worn or becoming worn. Now I haven't pulled the starter and turned the whole motor by hand to see how every tooth looks. Kind of a pain on the PG setups. Instead I'm going to take it to a guy that can put it on a lift and pull back the PG tranny and take a look at it that way.

    I really want to keep my factory 235/PG setup....she goes 60mph all day long which is fine for me. So my question is if I can't find a good 53/54 flexplate...has anyone had a new one machined? Is it possible? Cost?

    If not, what the next best thing once mine finally goes out? 12v flexplate from a later 235 and a 12v starter? Will that set up bolt to my 54 powerglide? Does anyone repro the 168 tooth 12v flexplates?
     
  2. 54LedSled
    Joined: Mar 11, 2011
    Posts: 363

    54LedSled
    Member

    Saturday Bump!
     
  3. 325w
    Joined: Feb 18, 2008
    Posts: 5,350

    325w
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from texas

    Did you have all this grinding before you had it change to 12 volt?
     
  4. the teeth are different on the 6 and 12 volt for the flex and the starter
     

  5. 54LedSled
    Joined: Mar 11, 2011
    Posts: 363

    54LedSled
    Member

    325w: no I did not

    Eugene: the starter is still 6 volt with the original 139 toothflexplate
     
  6. 325w
    Joined: Feb 18, 2008
    Posts: 5,350

    325w
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from texas

    Check the new starter drive. Maybe it has the wrong tooth count. As Eugene said the tooth count on the flywheels are different maybe the drive is different.
     
  7. Indychus
    Joined: Jun 9, 2010
    Posts: 134

    Indychus
    Member
    from Irmo, SC

    Subscribed for answers... I have the same issue on my freshly rebuilt 235 w/ 12v starter. If the tooth count is different, that's news to me. I talked to a sales rep at chevsofthe40s who assured me the 12v starter was a direct bolt on. Can I swap the 6v parts onto the 12v starter? Please tell me i don't have to pull the motor or trans again....
     
  8. Snarl
    Joined: Feb 16, 2007
    Posts: 1,639

    Snarl
    Member


    The drive gear on the 6 and 12 volt starters have the same number of teeth, but the diameter of the gear is different, with the gear on the 6 volt starter being larger so it will work with the smaller diameter of the 6 volt era flexplate/flywheel.

    1954 and earlier flywheels/flexplates need to use a 6 volt starter.
    6 volt starters can operate on 12 volts, but not the other way around.

    the shaft diameter was also changed when they went to 12 volts, so you basically can't combine 6 and 12 volt starter parts to create a hybrid starter, unless you are a machinist...

    all '37-62 six cylinder starters will physically swap as far as bolting up to the bellhousing goes, but you need to have 6v with a 6v flywheel and 12v with a 12 v flywheel.
     
  9. Snarl
    Joined: Feb 16, 2007
    Posts: 1,639

    Snarl
    Member

    as for finding a 6 volt flexplate, are there any salvage yards in your area? finding a '50-54 car with a powerglide shouldn't be that hard. Plenty of them around WI at least.
    Then there's Ebay......

    try giving National Chevy Association a call....
     
  10. Indychus
    Joined: Jun 9, 2010
    Posts: 134

    Indychus
    Member
    from Irmo, SC

    Awesome, so I basically need a 6V starter and I'll be good? I was hoping to make a frankenstarter from the 2, but my machining skills are limited. I guess I need to locate a good starter and get it swapped out before I chew up the flexplate any more.

    I wonder why the guy at chevsofthe40s (who specializes in these cars) didn't know that.

    The 6 in your avatar is gorgeous! Makes mine look like a pig.
     
  11. Snarl
    Joined: Feb 16, 2007
    Posts: 1,639

    Snarl
    Member

    If your flywheel is for 6v, then yes, you need a 6v starter. You need to know what you have for a flywheel. 139 teeth is 6v, 168 is 12v.

    chevsofthe40s is a reseller of parts. Intimate knowledge is not required to sell parts. Some parts places know more than others. Sometimes it depends on who answers the phone. technically he was right in that it would bolt up, but that's not the whole answer to what you really needed to know.
     
  12. Indychus
    Joined: Jun 9, 2010
    Posts: 134

    Indychus
    Member
    from Irmo, SC

    Thanks for the info! And sorry to the OP for the hijack. I guess I'm off to count some teeth...
     
  13. hobbyjp
    Joined: Mar 14, 2006
    Posts: 327

    hobbyjp
    Member
    from socal

    As far as I know there is no such thing as a 12volt or 6 volt starter, There is a 6 volt and 12 volt starter solenoid. you can use your original starter and change the top solenoid. The solenoid is from a later corvette 50's-60's you should be able to find the proper one from doing a search on 12 volt conversions. I used the corvette solenoid and its worked great. You can get by with the 6 volt solenoid but theres a chance you will burn up the solenoid faster. There is a difference between the powerglide flywheel and the 3 speed flywheel I have never heard of a 12volt or 6 volt flywheel. There are some good articles on doing a 12 volt conversion on this site and on the web your just gonna have to do some searching.
     
  14. 54LedSled
    Joined: Mar 11, 2011
    Posts: 363

    54LedSled
    Member

    Does anyone know where I can find pictures of what a 53/54 PG flexplate looks like?? All I keep finding is the pics of the manual flywheels.
     
  15. hobbyjp
    Joined: Mar 14, 2006
    Posts: 327

    hobbyjp
    Member
    from socal

    Is your flexplate visibly worn or are you just getting grinding? usually the starter drive gear is the problem not the flexplate. if you dont have good connections sometimes the solenoid doesnt through the gear out all the way or the solenoid could be sticking, you may also need shims, what solenoid are you using.
     
  16. Snarl
    Joined: Feb 16, 2007
    Posts: 1,639

    Snarl
    Member

    No. What I said before is the way it is. Do I need to post a picture?
    Try looking at a Hollander interchange manual...
     
  17. Snarl
    Joined: Feb 16, 2007
    Posts: 1,639

    Snarl
    Member


    Have you tried calling National Chevy yet? they do have used parts available.
     
  18. BLACK TAG ON STARTER AND GEN IS 6 VOLT
    RED TAG ON STARTER AND GEN IS 12 VOLt
    ops as far as this senile mind can rember
     
  19. GREASER815
    Joined: Dec 2, 2008
    Posts: 973

    GREASER815
    Member

    Here is a picture of a Powerglide flexplate for the curious minds.

    This is a 1953 plate, 139 tooth, original 6 volt system.
     

    Attached Files:

  20. Indychus
    Joined: Jun 9, 2010
    Posts: 134

    Indychus
    Member
    from Irmo, SC

    I thought the same thing until today... there is indeed a 12v and 6v starter. The solenoid for the 6v is mounted to the starter motor, whereas the 12v starter solenoid is mounted to the cast iron housing that bolts to the engine. The bolt pattern is the same, but the solenoids are not interchangeable. I have a 12v starter on a flexplate designed for use with a 6v (confirmed tooth count this afternoon) and it does not work. The engine spins over 3-4 times before the starter starts grinding and disengages. I have ordered the correct 6v starter, so hopefully that sorts my issue.
     
  21. Indychus
    Joined: Jun 9, 2010
    Posts: 134

    Indychus
    Member
    from Irmo, SC

    6V starter:

    [​IMG]

    12V starter:

    [​IMG]
     
  22. 1954belair235
    Joined: Mar 27, 2009
    Posts: 22

    1954belair235
    Member
    from Perris Ca

    I might have one ill check.
     
  23. Snarl
    Joined: Feb 16, 2007
    Posts: 1,639

    Snarl
    Member

    Your 6v pictured is for a foot pedal start for a truck application, the 12v shows a later 12v with solinoid for key starting.

    both 6 and 12 were available with a solinoid start.

    Since you are working on a 49-54 car, you will need the 6v with solinoid start, not the one you have pictured here.



     
  24. fletch4000
    Joined: Mar 23, 2013
    Posts: 2

    fletch4000
    Member
    from arizona

    I am in the same boat Guys but my flexplate has two sections with missing teeth. Looks like i need to get a replacement but I cant find one anywhere... Any options or solutions would be great. I have a powerglide 53 belair. desperate now. Is there another tranny that would work on a 235 inline 6?

    joe
    phoenix az
     
  25. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 17,486

    gimpyshotrods
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    With an adapter, you can put any GM automatic behind it, the kit comes with a flexplate. You would, however, need to convert to an open driveline rear end (unless it already is, 'cause I can't remember when the switch happened).
     
  26. fletch4000
    Joined: Mar 23, 2013
    Posts: 2

    fletch4000
    Member
    from arizona

    thx will look into it
     

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