Minimoto Garage - Starter Ratchet Plate Installation

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Starter Ratchet Plate Installation
Step by step pictures and instructions listed below. (Note: The pictures listed below are of a Polini 910 Carena with a Polini 4.2hp air-cooled engine, but the basic setup is the same on all Polini engine Pocketbikes.)
Step 1.
Make sure you have the right part, the picture below is the pull start ratchet plate for Polini Pocketbike engines. The Polini part number is 143.680.002.


Step 2.
Start by removing the fairing, itís just a couple of screws depending on the model you have. Once you get the fairing off it will be easier to see and work. If you havenít had your plastic off in a while, now is a good time to wipe everything down and do a little clean up on those areas of the bike that your not accustomed to seeing.


Step 3.
Depending on your bike, the footpeg bracket may have to be removed to get to the starter cover. The complete starter casing is mounted to the engine by 4 allen head bolts, one in each corner.

After you remove the cover, wipe down each part so you can see what you are looking at (note: it's always a good idea to remove any dirt or debris that may have accumulated over time).


Step 4.
The pull start ratchet plate is attached to the starter casing by a single allen head bolt. In the picture below notice we are using a phillips head screw. That's because we replaced this plate already and put the phillips screw back in it (note: we believe it is easier to get out the next time you have to do this, due to the factory allen head bolts strip very easily).

In order to remove the allen head bolt you will need to have a good grip on the cover assembly so that you can apply the necessary torque to remove the bolt. If you use a vise, be sure to protect the aluminum housing from the jaws.


Step 5.
You need a nice T-handle allen wrench or a socket allen wrench to get the bolt out. (note: I would not recommend using the common "L" shaped wrench, due to tendency to apply too much side pressure, which will strip the bolt). With the T-handle you can get a good amount of even pressure on it.


Step 6.
After you break it loose, there are a couple of ways to take it apart. The recommended method is to cut the string at the top of the handle and let the plate slowly (note: while applying pressure to it) unwind while still in the cover. After the spring finishes unwinding just pull the old ratchet plate out (note: be careful not to pull the spring out with the ratchet plate). Remove the string from the ratchet plate by pulling it through.


Step 7.
The picture below shows a new ratchet plate compared to one that is worn.


Step 8.
Now take the string and pull it through the new ratchet plate. Make sure the original knot is big enough to prevent slipping through the hole when pulling to start the engine.


Step 9.
Now run the other end of the string through the hole in the cover and back through the handle and tie it, so that it looks like this again. If all goes well you should never have to take the spring out of the cover.


Step 10.
Now with the knot end facing the cover, replace the ratchet plate. Line it up with the spring hook so that it catches. (note: youíll see the groove on the backside of the plate where the spring hook locks in).


Step 11.
Now this part is a little tricky. Wind the plate counter-clockwise with your hand, make sure you don't wind the string around the plate, this will done later. (note: The correct amount of winding is about 3 turns) Once you get the proper tension set you then wind the string around the outer edge of the ratchet plate. When winding the string around the plate, you will pulling all of the slack from outside of the pull starter casing to the inside of the casing. (note: You may have to wind the ratchet plate some more to allow the proper tension of the string once it is fully wound to the ratchet plate so that the pull handle is snug on the casing string hole).

Step 12.
The picture below is what your complete pull starter should look like after replacing the ratchet plate. Make sure the handle has a proper amount of tension pulling inward toward the plate. This way you won't have problems cranking your bike later with the handle hanging out a few inches from the casing.


Step 13.
The picture below represents the completed job. The starter pull ratchet has been replaced and the complete starter is reattached to the bike. All you need to do now is reinstall your footpeg and fairings, and your ready to ride.
Finished now you're ready to ride.
Thanks again to Mid-South Minimoto for this great how-to!
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