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Unread 09-06-2009, 08:29 PM   #1
speicte
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Default Skid plate bolts sheared

Unfortunately, my truck spent its first few years in the 'rust belt'. I have since moved back to California, but the rust stayed with the truck. As a result, removing the factory skid plates resulted in shearing off 6 of the 8 bolts holding them on. Initially, I drilled out a small hole and forced some small screws in to hold it in place. But now, I need to find a permanent fix. I already tried using an 'easy-out' and that didn't work. The 'easy-out' snapped. These bolts are in there TIGHT!

Any ideas about the best way to go about fixing them?

It looks like the bolts are 8x1.25 bolts going into nuts that are tack welded to the frame from above. I am afraid that if I drill out too much of the bolt and am unable to re-tap, then I will have no way of bolting them back on. Its looks impossible to try and re-tack new bolts from above.

I worked on the first one tonight and drilled out most of the bolt and tapped it with a 6x1.0. I think I may try and do all of them this way first to avoid drilling out too much. Using smaller bolts is better than no bolts.

Anyone else had similar issues?

Edit: Just saw the other post from putting on the new lift, looks like he had a similar situation...
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Last edited by speicte; 09-06-2009 at 08:35 PM.
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Unread 09-07-2009, 04:04 AM   #2
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I guess we are in the same boat, What I plan to do is drill a hole through them and use a thin easy out that way, or jut wallow out the hole in the middle enough to re-thread it. Theres only so much you can do.
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Unread 09-07-2009, 04:53 AM   #3
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If the bolt sheared close to the surface you can weld a nut to it making sure to fill the nut up with weld. The heat from that weld will break the rust. Throw your spanner on it and you should be good, at least you will get another non destructive go at it.

Another method is to fully drill it out and take a helicoil kit to repair it, google for the kit. Autopart stores should have them.
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Unread 09-07-2009, 06:22 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speicte View Post
Unfortunately, my truck spent its first few years in the 'rust belt'. I have since moved back to California, but the rust stayed with the truck. As a result, removing the factory skid plates resulted in shearing off 6 of the 8 bolts holding them on. Initially, I drilled out a small hole and forced some small screws in to hold it in place. But now, I need to find a permanent fix. I already tried using an 'easy-out' and that didn't work. The 'easy-out' snapped. These bolts are in there TIGHT!

Any ideas about the best way to go about fixing them?

It looks like the bolts are 8x1.25 bolts going into nuts that are tack welded to the frame from above. I am afraid that if I drill out too much of the bolt and am unable to re-tap, then I will have no way of bolting them back on. Its looks impossible to try and re-tack new bolts from above.

I worked on the first one tonight and drilled out most of the bolt and tapped it with a 6x1.0. I think I may try and do all of them this way first to avoid drilling out too much. Using smaller bolts is better than no bolts.

Anyone else had similar issues?

Edit: Just saw the other post from putting on the new lift, looks like he had a similar situation...

I've used the grabit, yes as seen on tv, to remove a few very difficult sheared bolts. They make 4 sizes and one is a super large size. To get the impossible bolts I've also used a torch to heat things up and expand the metal; and plenty of wd40 too.
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Unread 09-07-2009, 10:40 AM   #5
speicte
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A Heli-coil would be a good option. I am going to continue to drill out and tap in smaller bolts today.

Welding new bolts underneath the frame would potentially work if all else fails. It would just hang down slightly more.

I do have a butane/propane torch that I can use to heat up the bolts and try the 'easy-out' again.

I will let you know how it goes....
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Unread 09-07-2009, 01:01 PM   #6
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Drill out the holes completely and re-tap them. You have to use larger bolts from now on (10mm probabaly, or 12mm if you can't drill a good hole for the 10), but it's the best ultimate solution. I had to do this to two of the holes when I was using stock skids.

I have never ever ever never never had any luck with any type of "guaranteed to removed that stuck bolt" type of products. Drill and retap is the best way to go.
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Unread 09-07-2009, 05:13 PM   #7
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Wow...having the same issue...nice timing for me!
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Unread 09-07-2009, 05:34 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikestang View Post
Drill out the holes completely and re-tap them. You have to use larger bolts from now on (10mm probabaly, or 12mm if you can't drill a good hole for the 10), but it's the best ultimate solution. I had to do this to two of the holes when I was using stock skids.

I have never ever ever never never had any luck with any type of "guaranteed to removed that stuck bolt" type of products. Drill and retap is the best way to go.
Other option is to drill out the hole to install a heli coil so you can use oem skid plate bolts. Just an idea
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Unread 09-07-2009, 06:44 PM   #9
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You guys gonna really let those little pieces of metal stay there an taught you for ever? They'll come out. Ask them in the right way and they will come out. After that if they refuse a proper tap and die tooling will fix them.
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Unread 09-07-2009, 10:10 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BajaRnnr View Post
Other option is to drill out the hole to install a heli coil so you can use oem skid plate bolts. Just an idea
I've used a helicoil once, but only because I couldn't drill the hole out any larger. If you can drill it out, you're always better off with a newly thread-cut hole. But if you can't, then a helicoil is a good option. Just don't over torque on a bolt you put in that helicoiled hole.
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Unread 09-08-2009, 02:24 PM   #11
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So, I have successfully drilled and tapped 4 of the 6 buggers. The last two are killing me. One has the stupid 'easy-out' stuck in it and since it is hardened steel, it is close to impossible to drill out. The other also has the end of a temporary screw in it and again, it is very difficult to drill out. Also worth mentioning, I bought a new set of 'titanium' Bosch drill bits before starting this project b/c I knew my others were dull.

I went out and bought a new tungsten/carbide bit which is supposed to be the strongest and meant for hardened steel. It looks like it needs a high speed drill and I have been using a cordless drill. I may need to get a decent high speed (2000+ RPMs) electrical drill for it to work effectively. My cordless does less than 1000 RPMs. I will try it first with my cordless, and if that doesn't work, its another trip back to the hardware store for a new drill.

The headache continues...
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Unread 09-08-2009, 03:15 PM   #12
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To drill that 'easy out' you will need to anneal it, heat it cherry and let it air cool, that will soften it right up. You can drill it with a cheap carbide masonry bit, just hit the cutting edge with a sharpening stone to sharpen it up. Run it fast and hard. You dont need to waste money on expensive carbide.

If you are going to buy drills to drill bolts out get left hand twist, sometimes they will turn the bolt right out for you. Drill a pilot a few sizes smaller than go in with the left hand twist.

The easy-outs with the little twists are no good, a proper easy-out is square. You drill a hole and tap that square easy-out in it then turn.

The most luck I have had is welding a nut to the bolt though. The heat goes directly into the bolt without effecting the surrounding metal too much (I.E. dont **** with your frame). The heat will break that rust really good as well.

If you want the best penetrating liquid get KROIL. That is what the pros use, don't mess around with anything else.

I cant really say anything else. If interested join the Practical Machinist forums a wealth of info in there. http://www.practicalmachinist.com/
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Unread 09-08-2009, 03:41 PM   #13
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Depending upon how much "head" you have on the bolt, if you grind a groove across it (either a grinding disc or using a dremel disc) you may be able to unscrew it with a screwdriver. I have done this several times. Add penetrating spray a day or so before, let it dry, apply some heat, grind and unscrew.
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Unread 09-11-2009, 08:31 PM   #14
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A timely thread for me, too. The front two bolts sheared off and I managed to break off an "easy out" in both of them as well. Sheesh!
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Unread 09-19-2009, 09:08 AM   #15
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Quote:
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If you are going to buy drills to drill bolts out get left hand twist, sometimes they will turn the bolt right out for you. Drill a pilot a few sizes smaller than go in with the left hand twist.
good idea here...
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