The Lightest Starter for Rotax 2-Strokes

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bebedriver

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Here's a couple of photos of the M5 Starter, 6 3/4 lbs, takes up no more room than the recoil start. This one's going on a 503 engined Minimax 1600R.Minimax 503 installation.jpg
 

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Mig29fuk

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Jan 19, 2021
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Have M5 Starter on my 447 Sluka. Easy to fit and very smooth operation. I use a Lithium Ion Battery capable of 175 Amps at Cranking. Weighs 10 ounces (400 Grams). Cost £75.00 from FulBat. LITHIUM - Fulbat. In fact I now have 2 as its so light I can carry it as a spare. Charge in 1 hour.
Regards
Gerry
 

bebedriver

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Yep, glad you are enjoying it Gerry :cool: If anyone is interested 'over there' - its £485 or $678. The last one delivered to the US cost $730 including carriage from memory. The only alternative apart from the original (stick out the back) Rotax starter (heavier) is the GPL which weighs 12lbs and costs $800. I also offer 2 years warranty, compared to my competitor's 1 year mainly because there are M4 units ( the previous model) still operating after 20+ years!
 

bebedriver

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It should do, but I've never fitted one to a 277. Basically it replaces the Recoil Start assembly and the cup which is bolted to the flywheel. The majority of Rotax 2T motors use the same set up. If you can compare the crankcase arrangement (Mag flywheel/Recoil unit) with a 377/447 and it's the same then yes. Yours is the first inquiry, so I'll put some effort into finding out for sure :cool: TBH It might be a case of overkill! It will spin a 582 with no trouble at all!

OK, after a fair bit of searching, it looks like it will fit a free air cooled 277, but not a fan cooled unit - if this helps?
 
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Litefox

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Apr 29, 2021
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Yep, glad you are enjoying it Gerry :cool: If anyone is interested 'over there' - its £485 or $678. The last one delivered to the US cost $730 including carriage from memory. The only alternative apart from the original (stick out the back) Rotax starter (heavier) is the GPL which weighs 12lbs and costs $800. I also offer 2 years warranty, compared to my competitor's 1 year mainly because there are M4 units ( the previous model) still operating after 20+ years!
I would like more information. Are there drawings showing how it is mounted? Does it require a different engine mount? I live in Virginia.
Thanks,
Woody
 

bebedriver

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Hi Woody, it simply replaces the recoil start unit, it's no deeper, and the motor lies alongside the crankcase. No different mount required. See these pics. You can choose where you orient the motor, simply download the full size backplate template, offer it up to suit your application and mark it up based on the 12 O'clock position and we drill the plate to order.
 

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Mig29fuk

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I can thoroughly recommend the M5 Starter. I have it on my Fan cooled 447.
Weight is important so I adopted using a Lithium Ion Battery with Cold Cranking 170 Amps weighing 10 ounces. FLTX7L - Fulbat
The final part to complete a sweet install is the KeyWest Rectifier/Regulator with its smooth DC for charging the Lithium Battery.
Regards
Gerry
 

Litefox

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Apr 29, 2021
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Hi Woody, it simply replaces the recoil start unit, it's no deeper, and the motor lies alongside the crankcase. No different mount required. See these pics. You can choose where you orient the motor, simply download the full size backplate template, offer it up to suit your application and mark it up based on the 12 O'clock position and we drill the plate to order.
Can I download the template before buying one?
 

fgutier2

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May 20, 2019
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Can any tell me how do I get one of these starters here in Dearborn Michigan? Is there a web page ect,ect?
 

Armilite

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AMES, IA USA
Rotax's Electric start bolted on the 277UL Free Air. I have seen a GPL adapted to a 277UL Free Air also. AirScrew makes a Billet Cover, to replace Rotax's Cast Cover. There are also Billet Rope Pull Covers. These Billet 582 Starters were being sold on eBay. With a GPL you can keep your Rope Start if you want.
 

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Mig29fuk

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Looks good. I elected for the M5 Starter and abandoned Pull Start on 447. I use a 175 Amp Lithium Ion battery.
The Battery weighs 10 ounces and is small. The cost was such that I purchased two and keep a spare on board in Fireproof Bag.
Pictures of install included.
Regards
Gerry
Bath, England.
 

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Joined
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Location
Bothell, WA USA
We've updated several of the Rotax 447's installed on our 'pushers' with the GPL electric starter: some retain the pull start option and others didn't. They are simple to install and work fine. They are relatively heavy, a bit expensive perhaps. Out of 5 installed, we've only had one bad one. I like what I see in the M5 starter and will give that a go next time around. We are using the Shorai LFX 18 or 21 mAh batteries with a weight of about 2.5 lbs. GPL recommends an 18 amp or higher battery. So far, so good.
 

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Armilite

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Location
AMES, IA USA
We've updated several of the Rotax 447's installed on our 'pushers' with the GPL electric starter: some retain the pull start option and others didn't. They are simple to install and work fine. They are relatively heavy, a bit expensive perhaps. Out of 5 installed, we've only had one bad one. I like what I see in the M5 starter and will give that a go next time around. We are using the Shorai LFX 18 or 21 mAh batteries with a weight of about 2.5 lbs. GPL recommends an 18 amp or higher battery. So far, so good.
==================

Years ago, when I first saw a Lithium Battery being used on a Mitchel Wing with a Small Jet engine on Youtube, I then talked to a guy using one on his Kawasaki 440. He was using a 200 CCA, so I went with a 240 CCA for my Yamaha Vmax 600 Twin in my Sled to try one out. My 1995 Sled never started as good with the normal Batterys as it did with the Lithium. I Paid $99 for it off Amazon. Starters don't like low Voltage. I have never had to Jump-Start it.

Now when it comes to these different Starter setups for Rotax's, they must manufacture them out of Gold, that's why they're Heavy and Expensive! I just bought a Starter for my 900cc Kawasaki Jet Ski, the same starter used on most Older Seadoo jet Skies and I Paid $56 new for it off eBay. I have seen GPL Starters listed for $259. Here are some listed on eBay. They do have us Captive, there are only 4-5 of these Starter setups Manufactures in the World. You can Source the Starter, Nuts & Bolts & Washers, Solenoid, etc. The Housing, Tooth Flywheel, Red Spacer, and Cover Plate are all that need to be made. The Flat Round Cover Plate with (4) Holes drilled into it can probably be Water Jet cut out of 6061 for less than $25. The last Bracket I had made with 27 Slots in 3 rows was $18 out of 3/16" Steel. A piece of .125 1/8" Aluminum Sheet Plate 6061 12" x 12" is $12 off eBay and you only need 7". Off ebay you can find about any Shape of 6061 to meet your needs. For the COST of (1) of these Starter setups, you could buy a Cheap Small Hobby Lathe and a Small Drill Press, and you can make your own and still save money if you're resourceful. The GPL Starter Housing Adapter is my drawing. Now could you break up that Housing into maybe (2-3) parts and then Weld it together to fit more Engines, Yes!

Even GPL doesn't make an Electric Start setup for the Rotax 277UL, the one Engine used the most in the USA/Canada for Small Planes that can make USA Part 103.
 

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Armilite

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GPL Starter setup adapted to the Rotax 277. A guy named Monte did it years ago. He never Published what or How he did it. GPL has (3) different Starter Housings. It's been a while, but I think he did mention, he used the D4 GPL Housing. The Cover Plate could be 3D Printed today or even made from Clear Lexan Plastic. Maybe even the Housing could be 3D Printed today, at the very least be used to make a Casting. You could use Hardened Steel Inserts. The Spacer could be also 3D printed. The Tooth Flywheel you would probably have to Source unless you're a good machinist. If you look close the GPL Tooth Flywheel is made from a Flat Disc with (4) Holes and the Tooth Ring is Welded on. Both can be Water Jetted out and Welded together. There are some Billet Tooth Flywheels out there, but they're expensive. For the Rotax-based starter, setups think Seadoo's 580/587, 650/657 that used the same Horse CDI.
 

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bebedriver

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GPL Starter setup adapted to the Rotax 277. A guy named Monte did it years ago. He never Published what or How he did it. GPL has (3) different Starter Housings. It's been a while, but I think he did mention, he used the D4 GPL Housing. The Cover Plate could be 3D Printed today or even made from Clear Lexan Plastic. Maybe even the Housing could be 3D Printed today, at the very least be used to make a Casting. You could use Hardened Steel Inserts. The Spacer could be also 3D printed. The Tooth Flywheel you would probably have to Source unless you're a good machinist. If you look close the GPL Tooth Flywheel is made from a Flat Disc with (4) Holes and the Tooth Ring is Welded on. Both can be Water Jetted out and Welded together. There are some Billet Tooth Flywheels out there, but they're expensive. For the Rotax-based starter, setups think Seadoo's 580/587, 650/657 that used the same Horse CDI.

Well, I can tell you that the M5 can't be made much cheaper! I have to make a profit, otherwise there would be no point in producing them. I'd like to see you make one as you describe; believe me others have tried. If I could make it for $100 I would, believe me. The main pulley is manufactured on a $400k machine, it wouldn't be possible on a hobby lathe as the tolerances to accept the sprag etc. are critical. The M5 is a far more sophisticated unit than the GPL design and also lighter and far more compact. The lack of a recoil start facility has never been a problem, and on the one or two occasions someone has had a flat battery, they have actually been able to hand swing the prop (!).

You could do something IF you had the skills, but many people don't and so they have to buy. There are a few hundred of these units (the original M4 and now the M5) all over the world, with happy owners who thought the price was worth it.
 
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