I remember cranking those old things. Damned starter switch contact in the gearbox used to act up. I used to roll them past the bottom of the stroke and pull up sharply using the finger tips with thump tucked well out if the way, that way if it kicked back it pulled the handle out if your hand and away from you.We were taught when cranking the old Ferguson (it wasnt old then) (start on petrol swap to kero when warm) never grab the handle with your thumb around it. when it kicked back it pulled out of your hand and no damage. Same with the simplex water pump at the dam. both were clockwise.