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Old 08-06-2013, 10:11 AM   #1
Skirouled!
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Default Crank Starting 50 Pickup

Hey guys, this is my first post here, so I'll give a little background info first. I'm Jeff from Duluth MN and I've got a 1950 ford F3 pickup that is currently my daily driver/ work truck. It's still the 6v pos ground electrical system, but my battery doesn't hold a charge very well. The generator does charge, but it's not doing me much good since the battery is junk. Normally I'd just bite the bullet and buy a new battery, but I'd really like to convert the truck to a 12v system within the next month or two. I don't have a lot of money right now, so I'm really trying to save up to do the conversion. In the mean time, I'd like to get a hand crank and start it by hand. I noticed there is a hole in the grill for a crank, but I don't have a crank. The only cranks I've found for sale online are for the Ford 8n/9n/2n tractors. I'm going to assume that these aren't going to work with my truck. Oh, and the truck has the v8, just to be clear. Not sure if it makes a difference. So, do any of you have some input on cranks, or perhaps know where I could get a crank that'll work for my truck? It has also crossed my mind that I could try to make my own crank. If you've made it all the way through this novel of a post, thank you!
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Old 08-06-2013, 10:17 AM   #2
George/Maine
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

You still need ign to start it. Buy a 12 volt battery and coil and resister for a 1967 ford. I wouldn't, even think of stating with a crank.
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Old 08-06-2013, 10:42 AM   #3
Skirouled!
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

I can run it down a hill and it'll start just fine and run all day, so the battery does hold enough charge to power the ignition. I just don't have enough juice to crank the motor over. I can throw it on the charger and even after it's been on the charger for a few hours, it'll still crank very slowly.
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Old 08-06-2013, 10:52 AM   #4
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

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Originally Posted by George/Maine View Post
You still need ign to start it. Buy a 12 volt battery and coil and resister for a 1967 ford. I wouldn't, even think of stating with a crank.
ditto !!!!!!
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Old 08-06-2013, 11:17 AM   #5
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

If you need a temporary fix, try a "Youtube epsom salt battery" search. I've never tried it but it might work.You have nothing to lose.If it does work please let us know.
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Old 08-06-2013, 11:51 AM   #6
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Have you load tested the battery to make sure it's not a starter problem?

Bob
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Old 08-06-2013, 12:12 PM   #7
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

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Have you load tested the battery to make sure it's not a starter problem?

Bob
Or a battery cable problem.
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Old 08-06-2013, 12:17 PM   #8
Walt Dupont--Me.
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

You'll need a ratchet nut on the front of the crankshaft for the crank to engage. I'd rather crank a V8 than a Model T. Walt
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Old 08-06-2013, 01:42 PM   #9
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

Just use a 12V battery on the starter, or just give it a jump with a 12V battery. Use the 6V on the rest of the system.

I wouldn't be trying to hand crank a flathead, even with their low compression. Just the rotating mass would require Popeye's forearms.
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Old 08-06-2013, 01:58 PM   #10
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

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Originally Posted by George/Maine View Post
You still need ign to start it. Buy a 12 volt battery and coil and resister for a 1967 ford.
Do you mean an in-line resistor wire? If so, would this be better than a firewall mounted ceramic resistor? Thanks, ...jack
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Old 08-06-2013, 02:11 PM   #11
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

Back in the early '60's my '33 with an overhauled 21 stud .083 over engine had a bad battery and I was 300 miles from home going to college. I was able to crank it and it would start on third pull. The pull was from 6 o'clock to 12 o'clock. I did this for a month or so until I could get a new battery. It did not ever want to kick back. I now have a grill guard on the car and will need to remove it to use the crank and would not be at all concerned about it being a problem today.
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Old 08-06-2013, 04:28 PM   #12
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

The problem has gotten progressively worse over the past few months, so I'm sure it's not a cable or starter problem. Once the battery is fresh off the charger, the truck will start just like it should. After a few hours, the battery is drained of all charge, whether it was in the truck or not. I think I'm going to give the epsom salt trick a shot and see if that'll buy me some time.
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Old 08-06-2013, 06:11 PM   #13
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

welcome to the 'Barn....as others have said, use the 12V to jump straight to starter....as long as it runs on 6V, use the 12V to crank it....good luck....Mike
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Old 08-06-2013, 06:35 PM   #14
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

Welcome Jeff,Double check all cables,and use a cutoff switch at the battery. My 40 used to do the same until i installed one. Maybe an Optima battery? You wont find an original crank handle ..been lookin for years to find one to hang on my wall. Good luck Ken
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Old 08-06-2013, 07:01 PM   #15
Kurt in NJ
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

I used to start my 46 with a crank many times, but most times it was easier to park on any small incline and give it a push and pop it in 2nd, my battery was an old tar top--the tar had fallen out and all the cells could be lifted out ---I even cleaned all the sediment out and replaced tha acid ---then the tar (the store on the corner was getting a new tar roof---the roofers poured it on for me) ---sometimes I would set the crank in place and jump on it ---other times it was rteluctant to start and I had to grab with both hands and windmill it.

The 16 year old Optima died in my A and I took a Mercedes battery and cut it in 1/2 to make it 6V (the optima was the last battery I bought new, since then all my batterys have come off the "junk pile" --it seems testing batterys has become somewhat of a lost art---I just changed the battery in my truck, it had been condemmed by a battery testing machine, I got 10 more years out of it.

I have found vthat many of the modifications done in the name of "improvement" aren't needed if there is a proper restoration to original specs.

A proper hand crank can cost more than a battery --by post war they wern't issued as original equipment except perhaps for cars shipped out of the country
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Old 08-06-2013, 09:05 PM   #16
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

To me, it makes more sense and cheaper to install a 6 volt optima battery than to convert to 12 volts.
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Old 08-09-2013, 05:19 PM   #17
Skirouled!
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

Just a little update here, I went and bought a new 6v battery to get me by until I can convert the truck. I needed it to be as reliable as possible, and the old battery barely had the amperage to crank the engine over even after it was fresh off the charger. Let it sit for an hour, and it didn't have the guts to do it. Plus, I have other things I could use this battery for once I do the conversion, so I don't feel too bad about spending the money. I appreciate all the help from you guys, and I'm sure you'll probably hear more from me when I decide to do the conversion. Thanks!
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Old 08-09-2013, 05:37 PM   #18
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

make sure you have 6V cables, which are heavier than 12V....why the conversion??....Mike
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Old 08-09-2013, 06:27 PM   #19
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Default Re: Crank Starting 50 Pickup

Did you check all your grounds and cables for corrosion? On 6V, you need clean grounds. Corrosion builds up resistance and slows the cranking speed. Make sure cables are good, not corroded down inside the jacket, clean all ends and where they mount. Clean between the starter and the bellhousing, add a ground cable from the block to the frame. Make sure your cables are not some cheap 12 volt type. Thin cables are no good. Don't go half assed to put it bluntly. You'll just make it harder on yourself. After all that, check to make sure the generator and regulator are functioning properly. A good 6 volt system should start just fine.
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