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Removing rusted nuts.

That is a problem we all encounter. We go through the story step by step:


Required tools:
- Rust solvent (Brunox, WD40, Valvoline 1299)
- file
- hammer
- cold chisel
- gas burner, autogenous welding machine
- wire brush
- set of keys
- set of wring irons

Loosening a nut or a screw.
It is not always rose scent and moonshine in the life of a restorer. Already in the first phase of dismantling you often encounter a recurring problem: loosening retained nuts. They are fused with the thread of the bolt. This 'weld' is caused by corrosion. And bolts also seem to have united forever with their housing. The older the vehicle is, the more it will be affected by the influences of moisture. The resulting rust increases the chance that your life will be made acid if you want to dismantle.

There are many connections with screws / bolts and nuts in a car. It is important to keep the original screw bolts, not so much out of respect for history, but more because some of these screw bolts are rather specific.

If such an irreplaceable screw breaks during dismantling, then you have a problem. Certainly if the remains can no longer serve as an example.

You will then have to find a turner / cutter as a friend who will make an identical copy for you. The broken original can serve as a model at best. So never throw it away.

By working methodically and with a little cunning, one can avoid the core of this misery, even though some of these solutions will prevent you from barbarizing and even lead to the destruction of the nut. After all, the nut is usually replaceable, unlike a bolt.

Before moving on to the practical work, first some small basic tips that are useful to keep in mind.

There are dozens of solvents for rust removal on the market. Since the time we tinkered in our workshop, we have used them with liters, which means we sometimes lost a fortune while they hardly worked. Now we use the expensive product 'Brunox', nowadays often the offer is the WD 40 and the much cheaper Valvoline 1299 uninhibited. With which we almost enter the Valvoline at wagon loads. This plea has never disappointed us. And the naming is ingenious. The product is good for one way of deployment, for two ways of use and is also good for 99 other things. 1299 So.

Where other products let us down at the most important moment, the more expensive 'Brunox' has proven its effectiveness in the final battle against rust.

It is of course important to work with the correct tools. To loosen an 6-sided nut, use a suitable socket wrench or pipe wrench with an internal hexagon or a suitable 'Metrinch' tool. Internal hexagons have much more grip on bolt heads and nuts than the ones with internal hexagons. The advantage of this is that smaller strokes can be used in more limited spaces. With a hexagon you lock the nut much better and the forces exerted on it are evenly distributed over the whole of the six surfaces, so that the effort is also effective. Applying a lot of force can also be done with 'Metrinch' tools that are suitable for metric and inch dimensions.

The secret behind that tool is that the point of application of the forces is exerted on the flanks of the hexagon. The power transmission can therefore be optimal without the risk that the cap, pipe or key 'shoots over the corners' of the nut. The disadvantage of 'Metrinch' ring and spanner wrenches is that it is difficult to work with in spaces where there is little 'strike space'. •

That seems obvious and yet ...
• Never use too large a lever. Therefore, do not put pieces of pipe on the wring iron to extend that. Because then there is a risk that you will break the screw that is under the nut. Brutal violence does not provide a solution. You will see that a vibration is ten times more effective than a big blow. You always unscrew by pulling the tool towards you: you pull towards you to control the applied force. Pushing is out of the question.
• Finally, but that is certainly not easy: you will have to be patient if you want to keep your bolts, getting angry is not an option. It is better to use solvent all day than to get the angle grinder to decapitate the screw bolt. This is only a choice if all other options have been exhaustively tried. Even if it took two weeks. Experience has shown that 90% of the original screws / nuts / bolts can be saved without damaging them more than the test of time.

Success!


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A reaction

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  1. And what about nut splitter? Ideal!
    Otherwise, simply heat up and start carefully going back and forth.
    Increase the strokes slowly.
    No more support on the hexagon? Grip pliers take everything.

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