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#540381 - 12/29/02 06:38 AM Frozen Bolts, Candle Wax, and a Propane Torch
TheLoneRanger Offline


Registered: 05/27/02
Posts: 1456
Loc: Southeast United States
I realize it's rare to encounter a rusted bolt that will not budge, [Roll Eyes] but here's a trick in case you do:

Heat the area around the bolt with a propane torch, and touch a candle to the threads. The wax will be sucked into the opening around the threads, and the bolt can be removed easily. The heating and candle application may have to be repeated a couple times. This works on the same principle as "sweat-soldering" copper pipes, and will work where penetrating oil will not. (Always use care when and where you apply heat)

Try this on your next stuck bolt. You'll be amazed. [Eek!]

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#540382 - 12/29/02 07:44 AM Re: Frozen Bolts, Candle Wax, and a Propane Torch
mdv Offline


Registered: 10/24/02
Posts: 515
Loc: MA
quote:
Originally posted by TheLoneRanger:
I realize it's rare to encounter a rusted bolt that will not budge, [Roll Eyes] but here's a trick in case you do:

Heat the area around the bolt with a propane torch, and touch a candle to the threads. The wax will be sucked into the opening around the threads, and the bolt can be removed easily. The heating and candle application may have to be repeated a couple times. This works on the same principle as "sweat-soldering" copper pipes, and will work where penetrating oil will not. (Always use care when and where you apply heat)

Try this on your next stuck bolt. You'll be amazed. [Eek!]

What a great idea [Cool]

I just looked at a parts car that I might be using that trick on shortly.

Edit: Typos

[ December 29, 2002, 11:45 PM: Message edited by: mdv ]

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#540383 - 12/29/02 08:20 AM Re: Frozen Bolts, Candle Wax, and a Propane Torch
Shannow Online   content


Registered: 12/12/02
Posts: 27117
Loc: a prison island
I read that on the Pirates of the Rubicon website a while ago.

It really saved me on a Car I owned who's previous owner must have been Magilla the Gorilla.

Now I always remove the transmission fill plug before I remove the drain plug to be sure that I can get the oil back in.

The wax just wicked in between the flat headed fill plug and the aluminium washer.

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#540384 - 12/30/02 08:10 AM Re: Frozen Bolts, Candle Wax, and a Propane Torch
digitaldrifter91 Offline


Registered: 09/14/02
Posts: 1902
Loc: cali
my tranny drain bolt is stuck, i cant take it off..i used a ton of penetrating liquid to try and it wont budge, even with an impact wrench...would ur theroy work for my problem?

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#540385 - 12/30/02 08:29 AM Re: Frozen Bolts, Candle Wax, and a Propane Torch
Ken2 Offline


Registered: 12/02/02
Posts: 6261
Loc: Washington St.
I've used this technique with bee's wax--works very well.

Another technique with rusted threads is cold-shocking. Get it plenty hot, then put cold water on it. Yes, you might remove the temper and need to renew the parts, but it will usually break the rust.

If you don't have heat, use a good penetrating oil, B'laster PB, Penetro 90, etc., soak it well, loosen it slightly, tighten, loosen, tighten, etc., adding more penetrating oil to wash out the rust. Do not just unscrew--you need to work it back and forth to allow the rust to be washed out by the penetraing oil. If you just force it off, you may either gall and strip the threads, or gall, jam, and break it.

Drifter, I don't know what will work for your transmission drain plug. Be sure to use a six-point wrench of the correct size so you have the least chance of rounding off the head. With the wrench above, put a cheater bar on it--another a piece of pipe, or whatever, to make it longer, and pull harder. Counterclockwise when you're looking at the head, right?

Ken

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#540386 - 12/30/02 09:16 AM Re: Frozen Bolts, Candle Wax, and a Propane Torch
Shannow Online   content


Registered: 12/12/02
Posts: 27117
Loc: a prison island
Drifter,
another option if you only want to let the oil out and can't get the factory approved drain plug out is often casing bolts aren't blind, and the bottom bolt will drain the unit quite effectively.

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#540387 - 12/30/02 09:29 AM Re: Frozen Bolts, Candle Wax, and a Propane Torch
digitaldrifter91 Offline


Registered: 09/14/02
Posts: 1902
Loc: cali
huh i dont get it...

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#540388 - 12/31/02 01:55 AM Re: Frozen Bolts, Candle Wax, and a Propane Torch
Shannow Online   content


Registered: 12/12/02
Posts: 27117
Loc: a prison island
I just meant that there are a lot of other bolts on a transmission or transaxle that will let the oil out, or provide you with an adequate oil level indicator if the worst comes to worst.

Just be really careful not to pull out a detent spring plug or it could get real expensive.

A local guy also welds nuts onto the back of mutilated plugs to provide a bigger area for a socket to bite on.

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#540389 - 04/22/03 08:50 PM Re: Frozen Bolts, Candle Wax, and a Propane Torch
labman Offline


Registered: 03/14/03
Posts: 8711
Loc: Nothern USA
Pounding with a hammer can be quite effective in loosening a rusted bolt. Keep the joint wet with penetrating oil while you pound. Like heat, excessive pounding or bad aim can cause problems.

Note on that tranny plug. The transmission on my truck went unchecked until I finally bought a big enough 6 point socket. Even then I had to lay on my back and push on the breaker bar with my foot to break it. I carefully retightened it just snug enough to stay. It always freezes, and I still have to use my foot on the breaker bar every oil change. It is a steel plug in an aluminium housing.

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#540390 - 04/22/03 08:59 PM Re: Frozen Bolts, Candle Wax, and a Propane Torch
TheLoneRanger Offline


Registered: 05/27/02
Posts: 1456
Loc: Southeast United States
Labman, try some anti-seize compound on the threads of the steel plug, the next time you take it out. When I'm screwing steel into aluminum, I always use anti-seize. It makes for easy removal.

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#540391 - 04/23/03 01:11 AM Re: Frozen Bolts, Candle Wax, and a Propane Torch
labman Offline


Registered: 03/14/03
Posts: 8711
Loc: Nothern USA
Thanks Loneranger. Duh, why didn't I think of that?

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#540392 - 05/08/03 09:59 AM Re: Frozen Bolts, Candle Wax, and a Propane Torch
Kestas Offline



Registered: 06/04/02
Posts: 10870
Loc: The Motor City
Some people remove the bottom plug, drain all the fluid out, then realize they can't remove the top plug. Short of rotating the car upside-down, they have no way of filling the differential! Compared with the top plug, the bottom plug is typically easier to remove since it is always immersed in the lubricant. That's why it's always recommended to remove the top plug first.

[ May 08, 2003, 01:02 PM: Message edited by: Kestas ]

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#540393 - 05/07/03 11:01 PM Re: Frozen Bolts, Candle Wax, and a Propane Torch
dickwells Offline


Registered: 06/12/02
Posts: 901
Loc: Northern Illinois
"I realize it's rare to encounter a rusted bolt that won't budge"

What the heck pampered part of the "range" have you been brung up in? Or has Tonto done all the work on shocks and exhaust systems? Thanks for bringing this up. Regards, RW

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