Starter gear doesn’t engage fully with flexplate

Nick Bos

Dec 7, 2016
1970 mustang 302 c4 stock. So my car recently left me stranded when it wouldn’t turn over. So the starter basically just “screams” and the engine doesn’t turn. We looked at the bendix meshing the flexplate and the bendix comes out, hits the face of the flex plate (it makes a very short “tap” noise) then IMMEDIATELY retracts and spins in place away from the flex plate(not engaged). Is my flex plate warped? The teeth aren’t in the greatest condition but the bending is not fully extending out. Starter never been changed and meant for a 302 c4. Why is the bendix not fully extending? And why is the bendix retracting after making brief contact with the flexplate? Is that a safety feature on old starters? I have a video and pictures.
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