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Thread: Mercruiser vs Gm starter

  1. #1
    Does anyone know for sure if there is any difference between the gear reduction starters sold on the Gen V big blocks and the Mercruiser (or any marine) starter. My mechanic insisted I buy a new marine one when installing my new 502 longlblock and afterwards someone told me they are actually the same piece. Have a friend who needs new starter and want to make sure before I give him my gm one. Already have enough paperweights in the garage!

  2. #2
    The Merc. starter is a marine starter and the G.M. is not a marine starter. Buy the marine starter. It's cheaper than having an explosion.

  3. #3
    They use all the same parts, but the marine unit is sealed with gaskets and/or o-rings. You acn seal up a GM unit and it will work just fine.

  4. #4
    Jet Junk
    The only difference is that the marine starter has a sticker on it that reads " Sae Marine #####"
    The marine starter is not sealed any more than the automotive version. It is not sealed to keep water or moisture out. This applies only to the gear reduction Delco starter, not the 10 MT fullsize Delco starter, which is shielded more as the Marine version. I Know this for a fact, having rebuilt dozens of marine starters, and hundreads of automotive starters every year for the past 7+ years.

  5. #5
    Dennis Moore
    Jet Junk is correct, I just finished writing a magazine article about the small gear reduction GM starter and they are exactly the same as the automotive version. This came as a surprise to me. I am a Mercruiser Master Technician and would have also said buy the starter from Mercruiser because it is different than automotive (until I wrote the article).
    The old style, large diameter, starters are NOT interchangeable between automotive and marine.
    Dennis Moore
    Free lance writer for the boating industry.

  6. #6
    Anyone got pictures of them?

  7. #7
    I'd still use a marine unit. On the off chance that my boat somehow explodes, I would hate to have to convince my insurance man that the starter did'nt cause it. $200 vs. claim denial, no contest.

  8. #8
    Well my friend is actually an in-law so... no just kidding. Wanted to be sure, didn't want to offer to save him $150 and then end up costing him more bucks. Thanks everyone for the input you are all the reason this board is so good!

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