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when i try to start the car, the motor cranks about 5 or 6 times and then a grinding noise. and after the grinding noise it cranks again about 5 or 6 times then just as the car is about to start up the grinding noise comes back into play.
Hmmm, try this.
Remove you valve cover and diconnect the ignition coil from the distributor.
Then while you watch, have some one hold the ignition so you can observe the valve train while the motor is turning over.

I bet you problem is there.
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