Steel Bolt Stuck N Aluminum Block
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  1. #1
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    Steel Bolt Stuck N Aluminum Block

    I would like to know any tricks to remove a snapped off steel bolt from an aluminum block. The bolt was snapped off flush with the block; however, it was a water pump bolt on a 1992 3.3 Chrysler V-6 and it was on the passenger side. I did win after many (MANY) hours with a right angle drill and a carbide pointed bit, but had to retap the hole and I never did get all the bolt out; therefore, I had to use a shorter bolt on the new water pump. There was no room I could see to weld and the story only gets worse. HOWEVER, I sure would be interested in any tricks you folks may have. This is my son's old clunker and I am sure we will have to work in it agan. Thanks folks
    Geezer
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  2. #2
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    Re: Steel Bolt Stuck N Aluminum Block

    Oxy Fuel let the steel get red hot and blast the high flow oxy.

  3. #3
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    Re: Steel Bolt Stuck N Aluminum Block

    Quote Originally Posted by Fat Bastard View Post
    Oxy Fuel let the steel get red hot and blast the high flow oxy.
    Seems liek that would present the area too hot for the aluminum.
    Geezer
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  4. #4
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    Re: Steel Bolt Stuck N Aluminum Block

    I would not blast with torch. That trick works great on cast iron but aluminum just melts.What I do is mig a flat washer then a nut onto the broken bolt. The heat from the mig and with a new nut on usually make removal easy. I live in southern ontario where they use a lot of road salt to keep the roads clear. Lots of rust and corrosion. I have removed many a broken bolt. I have also removed broke spark plugs from Ford 5.4 pickups.
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  5. #5
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    Re: Steel Bolt Stuck N Aluminum Block

    I do something similar to the last post. I take a big nut, say a 3/4" nut for a 3/8" stud. I hold it over the broken bolt and blindly weld the inside. The heat stays in the center and does not mess up the parent material, even aluminum. Sometimes it takes 2 or 3 times, but each time the bolt cools it also shrinks a little. I works almost every time even when the bolt is broken off below the surface. I detest ez-outs and have had terrible results with them. One important thing to remember is to keep the ground on the nut. If the welding current travels through mechanical parts of the engine it will create future problems.

  6. #6
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    Re: Steel Bolt Stuck N Aluminum Block

    Quote Originally Posted by Ragtime View Post
    I would not blast with torch. That trick works great on cast iron but aluminum just melts.What I do is mig a flat washer then a nut onto the broken bolt. The heat from the mig and with a new nut on usually make removal easy. I live in southern ontario where they use a lot of road salt to keep the roads clear. Lots of rust and corrosion. I have removed many a broken bolt. I have also removed broke spark plugs from Ford 5.4 pickups.
    I never thought of welding a washer onto the broken bolt. I immediately dismissed welding a nut since it was flush with the aluminum and I did not want to damage the block. I like the idea of welding a washer first, then a nut to the washer....I assume that is what you mean. With the melting point of aluminum I would not trust my skills with a torch. Your suggestion would have probably saved me many hours. Can't believe I did not think of that. Thanks for sharing!!!!!!
    Geezer
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  7. #7
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    Re: Steel Bolt Stuck N Aluminum Block

    Another strategy that I was told a story about....this was a broken head bolt a guy had to remove, a couple inches below the deck of the block, he stuck a piece of pipe that had the OD of the bolt hold down into the block, inserted a steel stick electrode in the middle of the pipe, had his daughter flip the power on and off on his buzzbox to weld the two together, then used a vise-grip on the pipe in order to remove the whole works after the weld had cooled.

    Sometimes you gotta get creative

  8. #8
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    Re: Steel Bolt Stuck N Aluminum Block

    Another strategy that I was told a story about....this was a broken head bolt a guy had to remove, a couple inches below the deck of the block, he stuck a piece of pipe that had the OD of the bolt hold down into the block, inserted a steel stick electrode in the middle of the pipe, had his daughter flip the power on and off on his buzzbox to weld the two together, then used a vise-grip on the pipe in order to remove the whole works after the weld had cooled.

    Sometimes you gotta get creative

  9. #9
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    Re: Steel Bolt Stuck N Aluminum Block

    Quote Originally Posted by blackbart View Post
    I do something similar to the last post. I take a big nut, say a 3/4" nut for a 3/8" stud. I hold it over the broken bolt and blindly weld the inside. The heat stays in the center and does not mess up the parent material, even aluminum. Sometimes it takes 2 or 3 times, but each time the bolt cools it also shrinks a little. I works almost every time even when the bolt is broken off below the surface. I detest ez-outs and have had terrible results with them. One important thing to remember is to keep the ground on the nut. If the welding current travels through mechanical parts of the engine it will create future problems.
    Oh how I wish I would have posted this prior to the carbide bit approach. Makes perfect sense to use a large nut to contain the heat. I probably would have never thought about the ground cable. Thanks for post, appreciate the tips.
    Geezer
    Power Mig 255C
    185 TIG
    Blue 175 MIG
    Ranger 8 Kohler 20HP
    1974 5K Lincoln/Wisconsin Powered (Cherry)
    Victor/Harris O/A
    K 487 Spool Gun

  10. #10
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    Re: Steel Bolt Stuck N Aluminum Block

    Quote Originally Posted by greenbuggy View Post
    Another strategy that I was told a story about....this was a broken head bolt a guy had to remove, a couple inches below the deck of the block, he stuck a piece of pipe that had the OD of the bolt hold down into the block, inserted a steel stick electrode in the middle of the pipe, had his daughter flip the power on and off on his buzzbox to weld the two together, then used a vise-grip on the pipe in order to remove the whole works after the weld had cooled.

    Sometimes you gotta get creative
    Another good one, I will keep these in the archives for the next time and I am sure there will be another time. Again, I wish I would have posted my challenge before all that drilling. I did have a bolt bust off flush on a 1952 tractor radiator a couple of months back and I took a piece of flat plate 1 1/2 X 4 inch and drilled a hole in it then MIG to the busted bolt. It came off like a breeze. I guess I was overly concerned about damaging the aluminum block so I started drilling. Thanks for posting the I like the pipe approach.
    Geezer
    Power Mig 255C
    185 TIG
    Blue 175 MIG
    Ranger 8 Kohler 20HP
    1974 5K Lincoln/Wisconsin Powered (Cherry)
    Victor/Harris O/A
    K 487 Spool Gun

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