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Technical Nailhead gurus - Starter interchange

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Mike B, Sep 18, 2013.

  1. I'm running a 63 425 in my A roadster with an ST400 trans. During the engine rebuild, I found out the crank was bad and replaced it with a dynaflow crank. My problem is the starter is grinding on the flexplate. It almost sounds like it's not disengaging. I did space the starter out now to 9/16". I've heard 1/2" to 5/8" before. Could it be that I'm not out far enough? Or is there a combo issue here?
  2. dtracy
    Joined: May 8, 2012
    Posts: 223


    Does the front pump leak or make grinding noises? Using that crankshaft the converter may not be driving the front pump correctly.

  3. No leaks from the trans. The noise only comes from the flexplate. I've done a few of the dynaflow to ST400 swaps and have never had an issue.

  4. There are short and long "nose" starters, you may need a short starter. The last spacer I made for the starter was 1/2 inch but I don't like to use a spacer because there is a chance the starter won't be aligned.........
  5. slacker1965
    Joined: Aug 17, 2007
    Posts: 120


    they do take a different starter....I don't have one off to show you sorry...I was workin on a 63 riv & tried to use a starter fm a 65... different snout... call a starter place, maybe they can put a different snout on yours?
  6. robertsregal
    Joined: Oct 2, 2008
    Posts: 743


    Here is some info I found on Russ Martin site he is very knowledgable on nailheads
    centerville auto repair 530-272-1564
    Also you could contact zman on this site another very knowledable nailhead person
    hope this helps good luck Nailheads Rule!!

    OK, now you want to know if the 64-66 trans will bolt to earlier Nailheads right? you can bolt this trans on to all Nailheads from 57-63 with my special crank adapter bushing and the correct flex plate, the 59-63 cal use the 401-425 flexplate but because ALL Buicks are externally balanced and different flexplate balanced to the 364 spec's must be used. The 57-63 starters (yes 4 different ones used) have a 1/2" longer snout for the Dynaflow so the starter from the 64-66 (or my mini gear reduction starter) must be used and will bolt onto the 61-66 blocks. The 57-60 364-401's will need one of special starters with a different mounting bolt pattern. Another option is the adapters we
  7. Thanks for the info. Russ Martin is a great resource and a great guy. I've dealt with him quite a bit. I was hoping it would be a quick "this fits with that" fix but it's not so far. I didn't know there are 4 different starters so maybe I just need the right starter?
  8. titus
    Joined: Dec 6, 2003
    Posts: 5,072


    The two or three times ive done the conversion ive used the 64-66 flywheel, starter and trans on the 62 or 63 401s and never had any trouble.


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