Simms starter motor....ident and application help needed

Discussion in 'Identification' started by pp-admin, May 30, 2009.

  1. pp-admin

    pp-admin Member

    hello all,

    For a long time I have owned an old Simms starter motor which I never really looked at other than to repeatedly pick it up and realise it did'nt fit anything I owned. I can't even remember how I got it in the first place.

    But last week I finally put it on the bench and cleaned it up. Once the dirt of decades was removed, I realised it was an extremely heavy duty and sturdily made unit and probably at least 40-50 years old. It spins over nicely on 24 V dc and has a 9 tooth drive dog that appears to be internally clutched (ie hidden). The drive dog slides down its keyed drive shaft to engage. Having removed the end cover, its quite clear just how beautifully made it is. My first reaction was that it might be off an aircraft or something else demanding superb build quality (the copper contactors on the solenoid block are 1/4" thick !!). I have tried to look up what it was made for but Simms appears to be a long time defunct firm that was swallowed by the Lucas empire in the late 1960's.

    I have spoken to a couple of retired auto electricians who confirmed Simms were just about the best available anywhere (until Lucas got hold of them !!) but they don't know what it fits. They did say the 9 teeth of the drive dog suggested it could be Lister but everything I have found suggested Lister only ever used CAV starters upto the 1970's.

    My guess is its from a very big engine or a commercial vehicle. It has a triangular mounting flange with a mounting hole on each lobe. In general, its in very good condition and I suspect it might be a factory overhaul judging from all the numbers stamped on it.

    I would really like to pin down what it fits and wonder if anybody can help out with info or advice. If I could figure out how to post a photo here on IF, it would help !!!

  2. Victoria

    Victoria Member

    Simms Starter motor

    This starter sounds, from the description, to be very similar to the one on my Coventry Climax H30 diesel engine. I tried to have a look for a number etc on it during my last visit to my engine shed but it is right at the back, the identification is between the top crank cover and the motor body so is not visible. When I go up again armed with a torch and a suitable spanner I will have another and better look. Certainly it is 24volt, 3-lug fitting. The 'contact end' of the motor body has a pressed metal cover over it.
    These motors I believe were special to this engine as it was all part of an MOD contract - maybe yours came from a gov surplus place?? We also had Simms equipment on Albion lorries in the 1950s/60s - all 24 volt.


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