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Discussion Starter #1
Maybe this topic belongs in General Tech because I'm sure it's pretty much the same issue with either engine.

It seems like my starter having had only given me grief a few times within a single week well over 5 years ago has quickly went from fine to dead over a matter of a week. I was hoping to swap it out this Saturday when I'm not working either of my 3 jobs but it completely quit on me before my first pizza delivery. So, now I'm working on it in the parking lot and I've only removed 1 of the 3 bolts so far.

The bottom bolt wasn't an issue and I've yet to put a finger on the top bolt but the next bolt closest to the bottom bolt has been rounded. Having read the few topics discussing this here I expected this issue but I couldn't prevent it. The 10 mm six sided socket fits all the way onto the bolt but somehow the socket still twisted off. The idiot at Autozone couldn't say if he had anything for rounded bolts and it was too late to try any other stores. Had the bugs not started crawling in my hair I would've taken the wheel off and worked on it past 10 pm.

I know my dad has a socket filled with pins made for rounded bolts but I'm afraid it may be too wide for this application. I thought there existed a set of sockets that are just a tad smaller than normal that are made to be hammered onto rounded bolts but maybe I'm just thinking of the trick of using a smaller socket in such a fashion. I thought about giving that a try but none of my other sockets I had with me me were even close. I've already sprayed it with PB Blaster before getting started but I didn't think to give it another squirt before leaving.

Now the main reason for this topic deals with the new starter itself. Sure, I was only going to use 2 bolts like mentioned in the other topics but I expected there to be 3 holes in the new starter but there are only 2. I had bought this starter from Advance but while I was in Autozone I looked at their's and it had 3 holes. Now I'm thinking that maybe the bolt I'm working on is considered the top bolt and unnecessary if the bolts to use are supposed to be at opposite sides of the starter instead of being close together like the two I've worked on already. For all I know this starter is made with that in mind but I didn't get to drop the old one to see if the holes still line up.

I've got my fingers crossed that my rims and sound system will still be there tomorrow afternoon when I give this another go. Maybe I'll find the perfect tool or the best advice before my 5 hours to work on it are up and I'm supposed to deliver pizzas again tomorrow night. I can at least ride my bicycle to my job at the pet store in the morning but with my luck my bike will need more than air in its tires.
 

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Thanks, now I know I'm not crazy but if only I can get my hands on those tomorrow.
Most sears stock these, they are a craftsman bolt extractor set.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
After another 5 hours of work all I pretty much have to show for it is one less bolt to deal with. Bolt extractors have been useless considering the little amount of space and being unable to actually torque it down. At least the top bolt came off without any issue and I will be reusing that one without a doubt. The middle one is still being stubborn to the point where I am about to demolish it.

If it wasn't for bad luck I'd have no luck at all. Case in point would be this starter issue but also because I was right in thinking that the new starter wasn't right. Somehow 97101 looked like 97122 to the lady who brought it from the back and rung me up. It somehow also happened to also be 119.99 but from now on I'm going to double check everything before leaving the store. I'm so glad I stopped at a Advance while I was on my way back from Sears instead of waiting until the old one was out before realizing that I had the wrong starter.

A good chunk of my time was spent dropping the entire exhaust in order to gain the much needed space just to use a wrench. That didn't go as smoothly as it could have because I didn't have the tools needed right away and had to make a trip back home. I would've only left it hanging back a bit but thanks to my luck my wrench landed right into the down tube and went through my hollow cats. Maybe I'll replace the front o2 sensors while they're easy to get to if I can return the $60 bolt extractor kit to Sears. I'll keep the cheaper bolt extractor kit I bought from Advance that's actually a little more versatile and the vise grips I bought. Only the needle nose vise grips could grab the bolt but the bolt is at a point where I can only grab the corners.

Eventually I made one more trip back to the apartment to grab a dremel and a canister of cutting wheels. I didn't expect to cut the head off the bolt right away but figured I'd at least get halfway and then use a chisel and hammer or peck at it with the dremel like I would with a small enough die grinder. That's still the plan but I couldn't keep from breaking the cutting wheels thanks to the dang mosquitoes after getting maybe a third of way through. I must've gone through at least 15 of them with most only getting used for a split second. I tried to ignore the bugs and not worry about them biting me but they kept on going for the face so I gave up.

At least I don't think I have to work at any of my jobs tomorrow.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
I'm sure I've watched that many years ago but obviously as a rerun.

Here's more evidence of my bad luck.

So, after cutting into the bolt some more I finally break the head off with a hammer and chisel. I thought I was home free until I tried to install the starter and found that it was too big and backwards. Wow, Advance sold me the wrong starter twice but this time I brought the old one to prove my point. It was pretty strait forward after that but the 2 nuts for the passenger side exhaust manifold kept feeling cross threaded so I left them finger tight with just the one turn and tried to find a shop.

My arms were much too tired to try to torque down on anything else and I figured it would be a simple job for the first shop I could find open in this small town that thinks it's a city. Firestone wouldn't touch it because they were corporate and don't do any exhaust work. The Quick Lube across the street had no issue and I'm not surprised that after they lifted it up and supposedly gave it a good try I was then told some bad news. They want me to come back Monday so that they can replace the studs for around $85 because they say that the nuts are locked onto the old studs and the studs turn.

I'm not so sure because one of the studs was still finger tight when I got home. I didn't take a look at the other but I'm going back out there to work on it after the pipes cool down.

Edit: Neither nuts are cross threaded but it's possible that all I need to do is take a wire brush to the studs. I'm physically spent and I need to recover but if I'm going to have someone drop my exhaust it'll be to replace the cats. Not to just replace the studs. I guess my customers are going to think I'm delivering their pizzas on a Harley for a day or two.
 

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I did my starter by going in through the wheel well and it was easy but it sounds like you have other issues.

If you need any help let me know.
 

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Drop your exhaust and you will have more room. Every time I pull my starter I drop down the cat section of my exhaust.
 
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