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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The horrible scratching sound popped up the other day when I turned the key to start the car. First indication of failing starter? I seem to recall guys were going with a Corvette starter for the '96SS as an upgrade? Could someone direct me to a good replacement, please?
 

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Something like these. I can't remember, I think mine is Remy or ACD:

Sounds like this:
 

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If you go with the Corvette starter you also have to adjust the wiring a bit to fit as the terminals are in a slightly different place.
 

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The attraction of the vette starter was mostly that is was made by Denso which had a reputation of making a superior product. They also used more power (amps) which resulted in better cranking. The sound came from the gear reduction system in the starter.

The issue now is Denso is not making them in 2022 (to my knowledge). The new ones may look the same but the internal windings and gears may be better or worse than the original design by Denso.
It is rare that a aftermarket part exceeds OEM specifications.
 

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At one point my attraction to them was that they were cheaper than a B Body starter, especially when they were super cheap at AutoZone. This time I just saw a low price and figured why not since I was upgrading to a 140 Alt and new cables. I was pleasantly surprised by the very high quality (for a cheap replacement) radiator I got from Amazon earlier this year and the parts were well reviewed so I said f^&k it. Only time will tell if that works out in my favor but I have my old starter that works fine if anything terrible happens.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
If you go with the Corvette starter you also have to adjust the wiring a bit to fit as the terminals are in a slightly different place.
ok, could you elaborate a little and describe how the wires need to be adjusted? Anybody have experience with the latest AC Delco starters? Mine has lasted 135k - the original. Thanks guys.
 

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All you HAVE TO do with the OE starter cable, undo the clamp that holds the wire to the crossmember,
Open the clamp ,
Remove it , turn it around, put it back on ,
Do it back up with the wire passing the mounting bolt on the other side.
This give sufficient extra length.

This I did on mine when I did the Denso.

"SOUNDS LIKE A VETTE"
Or a Caravan , or a Corolla :sneaky::sneaky:
 

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Mine is the Carquest brand from the parts stores. No issues yet.

It looks like the best current options would be either the Remy or the Delco.
 

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The horrible scratching sound popped up the other day when I turned the key to start the car. First indication of failing starter? I seem to recall guys were going with a Corvette starter for the '96SS as an upgrade? Could someone direct me to a good replacement, please?
I installed a Powermaster starter (Summit Racing) 3 years ago and love it. Turns over very quick and is smaller than stock starter.
 

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I also used a Powermaster gear reduction starter for my 96 which I bought from Summit Racing and as far as I know it's still going strong with the new owner at 130k miles (installed at 30k miles). The engine fired up very quick compared to the OEM starter.
 

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I also recommend the Denso (93-96 LT1 Vette version). The nice thing about that is you can punch that into any local chain parts store and order one. Don't worry about the power cable, sometimes you can just tug it to get the extra length. But if not, remove and/or flip the cable clamp as recommended. That's the only mod. No shims needed either.

Can't say I know about current reliability because all of the ones I've installed within the past 10 years still work on my driven cars. The Delco (Vette/Denso) one that I ordered from Dal 20 years ago has been on 3 cars and about 200,000mi of driving. However I do have a seized Denso reman sitting on my shop floor that came out of a wagon that sat non-driven for 6 years with no hood on the car and tarp over the engine in the weather. I'll probably return that for a lifetime warranty claim.

I also have a Denso-style PowerMaster from Summit on my 383 (same one might be going on 10+ years now, wow). That one is powerful and reliable as well. The only reason I didn't use a Vette one there is that I needed a starter for a 168-tooth flywheel/flexplate instead of the 153-tooth. I had trouble finding an off-the-shelf (parts store) Denso starter for 168-tooth.
 

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In the aftermarket Hitachi vs Denso, choice I lean towards the Denso due to the extremely low cost for solenoid contact replacement.
I have had good service from both though.
Sometimes in a non stock setup it comes down to fit.
My wagon, no Denso will fit , few Hitachi's will. I have an MSD ( hitachi) in there and it is good, but costly.
Mostly due to header clearance.
Interestingly in the road racing game the major players are all Hitachi type ( Tilton- Quartermaster) Even our cars from Europe use Hitachi type although having weird brand names
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Interesting reading from all your guys. I DO have Clear Image Quad 1 headers so clearance may become an issue with an aftermarket, non-stock starter. It's looking like the Powermaster Mastertorque 9600 may be a good one for quality and size. I think I'll give that one a try. This forum STILL rocks!
 
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