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454 flexplate backwards?


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Installed a new Powermaster starter on my 71 Monte Carlo with a 454.  The bendix gear barely touches the flexplate.  Tried to shim it, but that really doesn't control the depth that the gear extends into the flexplate.  The original starter sounded horrible, and I tried playing with shims on that one also, but could never get it to sound right. With the Powermaster, it's easier to see whats going on,  and it really seems like it doesn't extend far enough. It got me thinking......can the flexplate be installed backwards on a 454? The engine was rebuilt before I bought the car, but it probably only has 100  miles after the install. I'm still trying to sort everything out. What should I look for to determine if the flexplate is installed correctly of not

 

John

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There is a lip at the center hole that centers on the crank, that should point towards the trans (that'll probably be hard to see if everything is assembled). There are also raised pads on the flexplate that the convertor mounts to, those raised pads should face the converter. The balance weight for the 454 plate will be on the engine side too.

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I had the same issue with the 1st power master starter. The gear didn't come out enough to hit the flywheel right I had to go with the starter  #9612 I believe.  Its been great.  I did have to grind some of the aluminum housing because it was so close to my headers...     Here are some pics 

IMG_7960.jpg

flexplate.jpg

starter.jpg

starter 5 .jpg

starter 6.jpg

starter 7jpg.jpg

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Thanks, Joe.  I'll have to check that out.

 

Great pics, Alan.  Thats the same starter I have,  9612.   I could not push my bendix out far enough to engage the flexplate like your does. What flexplate did you use? It looks new.

 

John

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Joe is 100 percent correct. Ask me how I know. lol. All the flexplates for 454 should be the same no matter the brand. Unless of course you go full race or something like that. 

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John, I had the trans out and the old starter kinda chewed the teeth on the Flywheel.  I believe I replaced it with the  Pioneer Automotive 871003 - Pioneer SFI Certified Flex-plate.  Are you sure you have the gear  for the starter pulled out all the way? Its a bit of a pain to pull it out , I then used a flat head pop it all the way. 

https://www.summitracing.com/parts/pio-871003

 

  

Starter gear 1.jpeg

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8 hours ago, Glen said:

Damn!  Can you even fit a credit card between the starter and exhaust??  Gonna wrap/heat shield the starter?

I noticed the same thing and thought how hot is that starter going to get, looks great. 

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Believe me I know.,Crazy right. This is my second year with it.  Last weekend was 92 out  stopped for gas,  starts right up haven't had  a single issue. No wrap and no shield. My proportioning valve I had to make a heat shield its on the frame and same thing, really freaking close... 

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Crawled back under the Monte today. Looks like the flexplate is backwards. The flats for the torque converter face towards the front, and in the last pic, looks like the flywheel weight faces towards the torque converter. Time to pull the trans (in the driveway, on jackstands) and flip the flexplate around. Sigh

IMG_1178.jpg

IMG_1180.jpg

IMG_1179.jpg

IMG_1181.jpg

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If you are not pulling the trans right out run some bollts, 6" or so than with the engine and trans droped a bit ( maybe pop the distributer cap so ti doesn't break agianst the fire wall) than you can slide the trans back, flip the flywheel and siide the trans back into place. 

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Sorry to say, It looks like you are correct in saying the flexplate is on backwards. 

You may want to put a new one on, the center having the bevel, being on backwards, most likely bent the center of the flexplate. Check it with a straight edge. 

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I think its better off to replace the flexplate. They are not too expensive. It will give me a chance to reattach the brackets that are suppose to be held by the transmission bolts (trans dipstick tube and wiring harnesses) also.

 

John

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  • 2 weeks later...

So I'm going to replace my flexplate next week. I have a few questions. What is the torque value of the flexplate to crankshaft bolts?  Do you need sealant on the flexplate bolts going into the crankshaft?

Thanks in advance

John

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A backwards flex plate sounded familiar to me and my 72 had the flex plate installed backwards when I bought the car in 2011. It will ten years the last Monday of this month that we have owned the car. Kept having the starter act up when we tried to start ole red and finally my son in-law crawled under and took off the dust cover and discovered the problem. Not a problem he had on in stock form one of his previous cars.

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