I'm back to my original answer. The bottom of the drive tube has worn off. Now there's no clearance between the brake spring and the clutch. The reason it's noisier at the start of the spin is because the clutch is slipping and spinning faster than the drive tube. When the clutch stops slipping, the clutch and drive tube are spinning at the same speed and the noise stops. You're putting a lot of money into an old washer, but it's a much better machine than the new stuff.