Years ago I bought a 12 volt starter for a speedster I put together, don't remember where I got it. Now I am restoring a 16 roadster and am putting a ring gear on the transmission and will put a starter hogs head on for starter. Since 12 volt uses the smaller cables and draws fewer amps I would like to go with a 12 volt starter. Who is putting these out and how do I contact them. Seem to recall the name Decker?
I think Mac's sells them now. Larry Becker passed away a few years ago. Im not sure if his kids took over the shop
Dale the 12 volt version that Mac's sells does not look like an original. Its close. They use a more modern 50s 60s era main body and windings, and I believe a special casting that looks and fits like the stock T starter. For a speedster original looks is not as important. I am thinking about getting one of them for my speedster project. If you get one of Mac's 12 volt starters, and you like it (or hate it) could you post pictures of it and also your opinion on it. Have fun and be safe Donnie Brown ...
Be careful that the nose that supports the shaft and goes into the hogs head is not made of aluminum. The old Becker's were made of aluminum and several broke prematurely, depositing pieces into the oil pan and other places. Some were on 6 volt systems. I would think on 12 volts, the possibility of breakage would be greater.
Ok, I'll open the can of worms...
Why would anybody want to use a 12 volt starter?
Tim, I have had a Becker 12 volt starter and alternator on my car for about 6 years. Bought them from Larry himself. My wife and I go for very long rides. Like from Florida to Ohio and back. I need 12v to charge the cell phones, Run the GPS plus other things and the extra amperage maintaines the extra current needed for my halogen headlights. It's easier to find good 12 batteries where 6 volt batteries are getting more difficult. The coils sing better with 12 volt and unlike popular belief they will last as long on 12 volt as they will on 6 volt. My coils that were built by the Coil Dr are going on 4 years and still going strong. I removed my mag when I saw the damage from a magnet that had come loose and broke through the hogs head. The 12 volt starter doesn't turn any faster than the 6 volt. Its a personal choice if thats something you want to do but if your car is a driver like mine then there are sufficient advantages switching to 12 volt.
My car is a driver and everything runs on 6V just fine, including the Ford coil ignition. As my 6V batteries last 10 years, I don't need them to be available at every auto parts supplier. Besides, they don't suddenly die...I can drive around for another year or two by hand starting the car.
I use a 6 to 12V converter for the car fridge and tyre compressor. As for headlights, the originals work OK for the speeds one should drive at during the dark hours, but in any case LED bulbs are available for 6V.
Use the standard Model T starter but connect one or both battery terminals with skinny 6 ft. 12 volt cables. It will work fine and not slam the Bendix.
Your could argue with Royce about this but this idea came from his dad. His dad passed away in 2015 and with him we lost over 80 years of Model T experience. We miss his knowledge, dry wit, and sense of humor but we cherish our memories.
I'll agree with Tim. I learned to drive in a '38 Plymouth and passed my driver's test (in 1960) in a '49 Plymouth. My dad had a number of 6 V Ford products. My first car was a '51 Buick. All were 6 V and all started reliably. I cannot see why if 6 V would start an 8-cylinder 7.5:1 Buick straight eight, it wouldn't start a 4:1 four-banger Model T.
It's not so much a matter of 12 volts being stronger than 6 volt, but rather the battery itself. More available today and longer lasting as well as the T running better if something happened to the mag.
FACT: 6 volt batteries are not difficult to source. They are as common as 12 volt batteries. Every auto parts store and Tractor Supply has them on the shelf.
OPINION: I understand that this topic is as old as a box of dirt but it's still a source of amusement for me. I would feel silly driving a T with halogens, GPS, alternator, distributor and etc. Also, I LOVE the sound of the OE ignition.
It all comes down to a matter of choice. Sometimes it comes down to that's the system you inherited when you bought the car. If it's 12 volt and it works for you, leave it that way. Just make sure you do what it takes to reduce the strain that 12 volts does to the bendix and ring gear. I have plenty of friends that have 12 volt systems in their cars and they like the way they run. Mine came to me as a 6 volt system and it runs fine. I don't criticize them and call them apostates because they don't run right out and convert their cars to 6 volt. That's their choice and I respect that.
FACT: 6 volt systems were put on tens of millions of cars, trucks and tractors and it worked perfectly (and still does) on them.
6 volt systems do work just fine, but I have a heck of a time getting 6 volt batteries without going in to Oakland to a battery store.
When my '51 pickup battery wouldn't start my truck one rainy day after driving very slow with lights on hauling a panel truck on a trailer I am glad I converted it to 12 volts because the AAA truck that came to sell me a new battery did not have a 6 volt battery in stock.
I never recommend switching to 12 volts just for more cranking power or better lights.
With the right cables and 6 volts any old car will be just fine as long as the starter is not in poor condition.
IF, for some reason, you must run your 6 volt starter on 12 volts, the Bendix spring trick works. The "slamming effect" on the Bendix will be greatly reduced. Gator Gould taught me this back in the other century. I just found the picture in an adv for the firetruck that is for sale.