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  1. #1

    Default Steering stabilizer bolt woes - need help

    Last night I was trying to swap out my steering stabilizer in my father's garage with barely any tools other than his cheapy flea market type stuff. Big mistake right from the start. I got the bolt on the drivers side off no problem but when trying to get the passenger side I ran into problems. It was the original bolt so automatically I sprayed it down with PB Blaster. I then tried getting a small wrench on the top of it to twist it out, but of course, small wrench = no leverage. (I also checked using the other bolt I was able to get out to make certain I was going in the right direction. I might be screwed if it's reversed thread but the new bolt provided with the new stabilizer shock was not reverse thread so I thought I was reasonably safe.) So I swapped out for a socket and socket wrench but while tugging on it the top of the bolt snapped off before any threads but low enough now to provide no where to grab. Now I'm mad because my cut off tool was back in my garage with my air compressor so I grabbed the old trusty Milwaukee Sawz-All and cut into the washer on the bottom side twisted it off with a pair of plyers and to tried to pry the stabilizer shock off. I figured maybe if I could grab that side with vice grips I could twist from that side. Well I got the washer off but when trying to pry off even with the assistance of a large screwdriver that couldn't seem to get the right leverage it wouldn't go. I grabbed it and twisted, tugged and finally with enough force I actually busted the shaft on the shock off just at the mount. So now the bolt remains in place today, drove home because it was getting late and I needed to work, and that last bit of shock remains attached.

    I know this right up makes me sound very hack, but I was being very careful not to make any bigger issues. I have a new bolt in the new stabilizer kit so I just need to get the old one out. Is there a trick of the trade that I'm missing here? I'm at home today so I thought I might take the cut off tool and start by getting the remainder of the shock off not cutting into the bolt. I'm sure someone has gone through this before - any tips?

  2. #2
    Sr. Engineer
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Manitowoc, WI
    Posts
    400

    Default

    It sounds like a little bit of the bolt is still sticking out, so there may be some hope to get it out yet. You'll need a couple tools though. A dremel tool, a hand held torch, a flat screwdriver, and a hammer. First, take the dremel tool with a cutting wheel and cut a slot in the center of the bolt. Make it fairly deep, you're going to use the screwdriver in this slot to get the bolt out. After you make the slot, take your torch and heat up the bolt. Keep the torch on the bolt for a couple minutes at least, you want that bolt red hot. As soon as you take the heat off the bolt, put the screwdriver in the slot you made earlier, start twisting with one hand and hit the end of the screwdriver with a hammer at the same time. The shock will help break the bolt loose sort of like an impact wrench does. Keep hitting the end with the hammer and twisting.

    I've only had to do this once but it did work. Now I use heat on stuck bolts before I snap them off.

  3. #3

    Default

    [QUOTE
    Now I use heat on stuck bolts before I snap them off. [/QUOTE]


    Wow, heat, what a novel idea... Feeling 3 shades of stupid now... Thanks, I'll give it all a try.

  4. #4
    Sr. Engineer
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Manitowoc, WI
    Posts
    400

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Rocketron View Post
    [QUOTE
    Now I use heat on stuck bolts before I snap them off.

    Wow, heat, what a novel idea... Feeling 3 shades of stupid now... Thanks, I'll give it all a try.[/QUOTE]


    Experience can be the best teacher, I bet you'll never snap one off again

  5. #5

    Default

    also make sure your front end is off the ground to take of pressure on the boly

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