Rebuild Your Pullstarter!
This page will take you through step-by-step instructions showing you how to rebuild your pullstarter.
These instructions are meant for car or truck owners who have taken apart their engine, only to have the pullstarter come apart or the spring fall out. To diagnose your pullstarter and reinstall it correctly, click here for directions.
The first step is take the engine out of your car or truck, then remove the pullstarter from the engine with the appropriate screwdriver. For our .12 and .15 engines, either a #1 (small) Philips head screwdriver or a small flat head screwdriver is required to take out the pullstarter screws. Some engines require an Allen head (hex) driver, make sure you use the right size driver or you will strip out and damage the screws.
It is beyond the scope of these instructions to show you how to remove the engine - see the Instructions Page for your kit for details.
The only tool needed for rebuilding your pullstarter is a pair of needlenose pliers, although a #2 Philips screwdriver will help if the diameter of the screwdriver shaft is 6mm. This is the inner diameter of the pullstart one-way bearing on our 15FE, 15SS and 12R SS engines, and will speed up the assembly of the pullstarter.
Note that the spring is NOT an item that HPI Racing sells; normally it only comes installed in a pullstarter assembly.
As with any instructions, read through this entire walkthrough before starting the rebuild process.
Below is a picture of two pullstarters from our engine line. These are used, actual customer-owned pullstarters, used for the purposes of this demonstration.
Notice that the pullstarters have two different types of one-way bearings (the hex-shaped metal pieces in the center of the assembly). HPI engines have used both types of one-ways in the engines. Both one-way bearings work the same, but you should be aware that the one-way shown in the following pictures may not match the one in your pullstarter.
Note that on the silver-colored one-way bearing, the side with the angled edge faces the open side of the pullstarter.
The first step in rebuilding is to take everything apart. We start with the plastic retainer clip that keeps everything in place.
Be careful and don't use too much force to pull out the clip, it must snap back into place when you are finished with the rebuild.
Use your pliers to carefully pull out the one-way bearing. Keep it from dropping on the ground, you don't want any dirt or forgeign objects to foul up the bearing!
Look inside and see how the end of the spring inside is wrapped inside the C-shaped plastic part moded to the inside of the pullstarter case.
Put your thumb over the spring assembly and pull out the cord holder a little so you can pull out the end of the spring from the plastic part holding it in place.
When the end of the spring is free, pull out the spring assembly. This part also holds the spring, so wear eye protection and be careful so the spring doesn't jump out and hit you.