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gliderjoe
CEG'er

Reged: 03/25/04
Posts: 229
Loc: San Francisco
Valve cover bolt snapped, need help!
#1298278 - 08/11/06 05:53 AM

My Powerbuilt torque wrench from Kragen is a $45 piece of dung. I set it to 7.4 ft-lb. (10 N-m) and it never clicked before I snapped this bolt on the front (right) valve cover (bolt #1). I know, I should have been more aware of how tight I was tightening it. Never trust tools purchased from Kragen.



Can someone please help me with these questions:

1) What tap set do I need for this? Any tips on tapping this bolt would be greatly appreciated.

2) Can I reuse the gasket since I put the silicone on it already? I wiped it off as best I could.

3) In the lower picture, should the gasket go under the bolt washers or above?

4) Can someone recommend a good brand torque wrench under $60? The Craftsman from Sears seems good for $60.

--------------------
1998 Black CSVT, 75k mi

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Big Jim
Hard-core CEG'er

Reged: 09/03/00
Posts: 4693
Loc: Thousand Oaks, California, USA
Re: Valve cover bolt snapped, need help! new
#1298880 (Re: gliderjoe) 08/12/06 12:36 AM

Extracting a broken bolt is a little like two pocipines makeing love. It must be done very carefully.

Sometimes you can get the bolt out by tapping it with a center punch, hitting the edge counterclockwise. It is worth trying. It is only tight for a short part of the way out and then it comes out like any other bolt.

If that doesn't work, then it must be drilled out. You need to drill the hole dead center in the middle of the bolt. This is the main thing you must do carefully. You must also be careful that you keep the drill straight so that the hole is in the middle of the bolt. Start with a drill bit that is less than half the diameter of the bolt, and then go larger and larger until you have removed about 2/3 of the diameter of the bolt.

Now try a bolt extractor or ez-out. Since the head is aluminum, it is important that you keep trying with an ez-out. The reason for getting the hole in the bolt as big as possible is that you want the strongest ez-out as possible. If it is too small, it is likely that you will break it. If it were an iron head, you could keep drilling larger and larger intil you are nearly the size of the bolt and then clean the threads with a thread tap. With aluminum that is very risky.

As to what size the tap would be, match it up to one of the other bolts.

I have had good luck with Sears Craftsman tools. Actually, the torque wrench I have is a Craftsman.

Good luck.


--------------------
Jim Johnson
98 SVT
03 Escape Limited

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eepals
CEG'er

Reged: 03/05/02
Posts: 496
Loc: NJ
Re: Valve cover bolt snapped, need help! new
#1298930 (Re: Big Jim) 08/12/06 02:01 AM

Jim has good points, I'll add that the use of a left handed drill bit (meaning one that drills counter clockwise) helps alot. Sometimes the broken bolt will unscrew it self as you drill. Here's a link to something that works well. Sears sells a different brand that is probably cheaper.
http://www.thetoolwarehouse.net/shop/HEL-80-401.html

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WestCoastAjax
Hard-core CEG'er

Reged: 04/25/03
Posts: 1085
Loc: Northern B.C. Canada
Re: Valve cover bolt snapped, need help! new
#1299257 (Re: gliderjoe) 08/12/06 05:52 PM

Craftsman - yes, I use 3 types - 1 click stop and 2 needle types
Bolt removal has been covered
To rethread a hole with the same size threads - HeliCoil kit and it works. I've used it on block to spark plugs.


--------------------
2012 Lotus Evora
---------
95 Mystique MTX - GONE 395,000 Kms
--------- Both Zetecs
'97 Contour Mtx - stock - GONE


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SquareHead
CEG'er

Reged: 11/29/05
Posts: 410
Loc: Winnipeg, Canada
Re: Valve cover bolt snapped, need help! new
#1299645 (Re: gliderjoe) 08/13/06 04:08 PM

Get yourself a set of "Cleveland" drill bits. Good quality will go along way to make this go easier.Start with a small bit and work your way up. It will come out as the bolt is likley not very tight. Easy-outs work well as long as it doesn't break off.

--------------------
95 Contour GL. Bought new.
BAT Sway Bars/Pioneer CD/Koni Rear Struts/Mobil Fluids.
Looking for 15" alloy rims-PM me.
180,500km's so far.

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99SVT
Hard-core CEG'er

Reged: 12/15/02
Posts: 1165
Loc: Woodhaven, MI
Re: Valve cover bolt snapped, need help! new
#1299736 (Re: SquareHead) 08/13/06 08:15 PM

Weird. I also snapped a bolt when I had to do a valve cover gasket and I was using a torque wrench. Mine was on the side where it the bolt comes out the other side so i was able to back it out with a pair of pliers very easily.

These bolts go in and out very easily, you shouldnt' have too much of a problem getting that one out. Ford sells new bolts they are pretty cheap.

2. Get a new gasket.

3. Pull the washer through the gasket. This keeps the gasket in place as you flip the valve cover on to the head.

--------------------
I live in Detroit, I couldn't give a **** how good my car is in the "twisties."

"I could use a hundred people who don't know there is such a word as impossible."
~Henry Ford

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gliderjoe
CEG'er

Reged: 03/25/04
Posts: 229
Loc: San Francisco
Re: Valve cover bolt snapped, need help! new
#1299798 (Re: Big Jim) 08/13/06 11:00 PM

Thanks guys. Now when I insert the EZ out (size 5/16" dia. is what I have), do I tap on it with a hammer to "set" it into place? I also have a tap handle that I will use, which should give me some good leverage. I just need to make sure that I don't chew up the EZ out once I get it in there.

I will first try Jim's suggestion of chipping at it counter-clockwise. I've already sprayed it well with penetrating oil which soaked overnight.

--------------------
1998 Black CSVT, 75k mi

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gliderjoe
CEG'er

Reged: 03/25/04
Posts: 229
Loc: San Francisco
Re: Valve cover bolt snapped, need help! new
#1299893 (Re: gliderjoe) 08/14/06 01:59 AM

Ah phew. I didn't need to drill. I used some penetrating oil and let it soak. Then I hit it with a center punch and tapped on it counter-clockwise to break it free. Once I was able to turn it a bit and expose more bolt, I used needlenose and Vice Grips to get it out. Thanks all for the help! You guys are great. I owe a lot of you many beers.

--------------------
1998 Black CSVT, 75k mi

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Big Jim
Hard-core CEG'er

Reged: 09/03/00
Posts: 4693
Loc: Thousand Oaks, California, USA
Re: Valve cover bolt snapped, need help! new
#1299989 (Re: gliderjoe) 08/14/06 04:44 AM

That's good news.

--------------------
Jim Johnson
98 SVT
03 Escape Limited

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