Ok i'm just a highschool kid with a 74 4 door nova. Its not in great shape or anything but she gets me where i'm going. Its got a 350 and an automatic transmission. I've taken two years of high school auto but i'm not in it anymore so i don't have the option of asking my teacher so I came here looking for help. I was driving myself home a few days ago and when i was almost home it started making this terrible scraping sound. I didn't know what to do but i was so close to home i just got myself there. But as I was driving with it like this it would make the sound sometimes and stop others. It seemed like it would make the sound when i slowed down or turned in some way. Well i got myself home, put it in park and it wasn't making the noise so i got out and poped the hood and took a look, and i couldn't see anything out of the normal. So puzzled i decided to wait for the next day to investigate further. My first theory was that it was my ac belt because it was looser than it should have been. I never really thought that was it because it sounded like metal on metal, not belt on metal. But whatever it needed tightening anyway so i did. Then i tried driving it and i had gotten no farther than the end of my neighborhood when it did it again. So i took it back home and started thinking again. With no ideas i gave up for the day, the next day i noticed i had somehow gotten a flat tire, which bummed me out. And then it was raining and i'm not gonna switch to my spare in the rain so i waited another day. So today after i switched to my spare i decided to start her up and see how she was. when i started her without giving it any gas it just started idleing like normal. But later when i started it while giving it gas it did the horrible noise again so i shut it off immediatley. I looked yet again over the engine for a sign of what could be causing this noise, i found nothing. Desperate i climbed under to try to see anything i could with the started and flywheel. I found plastic piece that was nearly falling off that i think was just part of a guard around the starter, i took it off thinking maybe it was just scraping the starter or something like that, but no luck it still made the noise when i gave it some gas as i started it. So i don't know where to go from here, I still suspect it has to do with the starter or flywheel or that general side of the engine. But what to do now i don't know, any suggestions? Anything anyone might think would be so much help, and thank you to anyone who took the time to read all this.