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Jeffyjeff

I've dropped a spanner on my engine....

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Hi all,

 

I've got an old Lister FR3M - I was recently replacing the impeller and brilliantly dropped my spanner on the engine. In the picture attached the blue arrow shows where I dropped the spanner, and this has caused a rupture in the sealant, meaning when the engine is running it's now pissing water/coolant out of this small hole.

 

The yellow arrow shows a sheared bolt, which has made me very nervous about trying to lift this whole plate off as I don't want to shear all the other bolts off too and cause more problems. Equally I don't want to just seal it up as it is, as I think it'll be a matter of weeks before the water finds its way out again.

 

Has anyone got any ideas or experience in this area?

 

Cheers,

Bex

 

 

Lister.jpg

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When you say "pissing" - how much really ?  Are you using raw water or a closed circuit cooling system ?

 

The real problem is the sheared bolt which will need careful work to remove, and can't be done without removing the plate.

 

Had the bolt been there, the spanner drop probably wouldn't have done any damage.  The joint was weak and probably leaking as shown by the blue sealant squigged in there.

 

Clearly the plate needs to come off to have the gasket and bolt replaced, but could you make it to a boat yard to get it fixed ?

 

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If it were me I would bite the bullet and remove the plate, drill out/remove the broken bolt, retap the hole, reface, re-gasket and refit the plate with new bolts.

It could of course go horribly wrong but it does need a proper fix.

Edited by Loddon

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It looks strange. Weirdly only a few bolts holding the plate down and keeping coolant in, Are any others sheared off. Top left corner for example?

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20 minutes ago, jake_crew said:

When you say "pissing" - how much really ?  Are you using raw water or a closed circuit cooling system ?

 

The real problem is the sheared bolt which will need careful work to remove, and can't be done without removing the plate.

 

Had the bolt been there, the spanner drop probably wouldn't have done any damage.  The joint was weak and probably leaking as shown by the blue sealant squigged in there.

 

Clearly the plate needs to come off to have the gasket and bolt replaced, but could you make it to a boat yard to get it fixed ?

 

It's a closed loop system yep, probably drained a pint in 10 minutes. Looks like I'll have to bite the bullet and take the plate off, thanks 

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44 minutes ago, Loddon said:

If it were me I would bite the bullet

Yep, a bit nervous of the drilling but looks like the best option. Cheers 

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2 minutes ago, Jeffyjeff said:

Yep, a bit nervous of the drilling but looks like the best option. Cheers 

First off remove the plate, hopefully any broken bolts will be sticking up. 

Soak for days in plusgas before doing anything else, then use molegrips to try and remove the remains. If you are lucky you wont have to drill and will just have to retap the holes. Once you know what size tap is needed (it wont be metric) these people https://www.tap-die.com should be able to supply it.

  • Greenie 1

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If you are not experienced with this sort of stuff then get help. Breaking off any more bolts will be a pain, and drilling bolts out cleanly is not easy. Assuming the top left bolt is missing, and if you shear off any more of the bolts on that edge, then there is just not room to get a drill in to drill them out. There might be just enough bolt left to get a mole grip on but each time you mess up the chances of success reduce.

 

................Dave

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I have used this stud extractor many times in vintage vehicle, probably a 70% success rate, much easier than drilling and re-tapping.

Agree with Loddon, soak stud with releasing agent for at least 12hrs before you try remving.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Remover-Extractor-Puller-Mechanic-Vehicle/dp/B07B3S1CJN/ref=asc_df_B07B3S1CJN/?tag=bingshoppinga-21&linkCode=df0&hvadid=&hvpos=&hvnetw=o&hvrand=&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=e&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=&hvtargid=pla-4584413740120217&psc=1

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6 minutes ago, Fender151 said:

I have used this stud extractor many times in vintage vehicle, probably a 70% success rate, much easier than drilling and re-tapping.

Agree with Loddon, soak stud with releasing agent for at least 12hrs before you try remving.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Remover-Extractor-Puller-Mechanic-Vehicle/dp/B07B3S1CJN/ref=asc_df_B07B3S1CJN/?tag=bingshoppinga-21&linkCode=df0&hvadid=&hvpos=&hvnetw=o&hvrand=&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=e&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=&hvtargid=pla-4584413740120217&psc=1

I have one of those and it works OK provided there's enough bolt shank protruding so that the extractor teeth can grip over their whole width.    In this case I doubt that will be so.

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I think I would suggest that unless @Jeffyjeff is used to drilling out bolts it might be an idea to try to clean up the area with the plate on, then centre punch the middle of the bolt to try to get a dead centre hole and then drill at least the first hole with the plate in place. That way it might be easier to keep the drill central.

  • Greenie 1

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The bolts do look like they have sheared off flush with the top of the plate, but hard to tell from the photo, so a molegrip might work. The stud extractor mentioned above does need a good bit of exposed stud/bolt to grip, and is much too big to get on the top left stud.

 

Lots of fluid over several days is worthwhile because you might only get one shot at this. From a recent experience, or strictly

watching somebody else have an experience, there is some evidence that PlusGas is a cut above some of the others.

 

................Dave

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"PlusGas" is proper penetrating fluid, designed to creep down the threads, helping to release seized threads.  there are other penetrating fluids available, BUT WD-40 is not one of them.

In this case, a small surrounding wall to create a pond, will help to keep the remains soaked.  Plasticine, is the normal wall material, but chewing gum, or Miliputt will work.

 

Bod 

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My stud extractors are tapered reverse taps at a coarse pitch.  Drill a hole in the stud, then unscrew the stud using the extractor tool.  No issues with not enough protruding stud, they work even if it's flush or recessed.

 

They usually manage to get sheared screws or bolts out, but I also use liberal amounts of PlusGas - and yes, use the name brand for this.  I haven't found a generic equivalent that frees up seized parts half as well.

 

Also resist the urge to use power tools on stud extractors.  Doing it by hand means you can feel it move the smallest fraction, and you're much less likely to strip threads even if you need to use a long extension bar.

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6 minutes ago, TheBiscuits said:

My stud extractors are tapered reverse taps at a coarse pitch.  Drill a hole in the stud, then unscrew the stud using the extractor tool.  No issues with not enough protruding stud, they work even if it's flush or recessed.

 

They usually manage to get sheared screws or bolts out, but I also use liberal amounts of PlusGas - and yes, use the name brand for this.  I haven't found a generic equivalent that frees up seized parts half as well.

 

Also resist the urge to use power tools on stud extractors.  Doing it by hand means you can feel it move the smallest fraction, and you're much less likely to strip threads even if you need to use a long extension bar.

I have used these "Easy-Outs"with success in the past (where I used to work) so recently got a set of my own and have had 100% failure rate, I dunno know why.

The set I have are from Screwfix and the thread looks more tapered than what I remember, and all the bolts I have tried them on have been brass, I do wonder if the extractor is expanding the sheared bolt and making it a tighter fit.

and don't break them off, then you can have a real problem.

 

...............Dave

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I don't know what lies beneath the plate but that blue sealant suggests that something is not sitting nice and flat. I guess that the best thing is indeed to try and drill that bolt out. You might have to tap a different and bigger size bolt and in  fact you might even find that to get a decent seal a new plate and re tapped fixings would do a 'proper job'. Depends on what lies beneath the plate really.  Not a big job on a bench in a warm workshop with decent tools but not quite the same in a cramped boat in winter. Good luck

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Lateral thinking alert

 

Been thinking about this.

Only caveat is how easy/secure is it to tap cast iron?

If bolts don't come out then they could be left in place as locating studs and drill and tap new fixings next to them. Reason for this is that the bolts could be hardened steel but the casing is cast as is the lid. You will need a sharp/new tap and lots of lubrication.

Edited by Loddon

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1 hour ago, dmr said:

I have used these "Easy-Outs"with success in the past (where I used to work) so recently got a set of my own and have had 100% failure rate, I dunno know why.

The set I have are from Screwfix and the thread looks more tapered than what I remember, and all the bolts I have tried them on have been brass, I do wonder if the extractor is expanding the sheared bolt and making it a tighter fit.

and don't break them off, then you can have a real problem.

 

...............Dave

 

How coarse a thread are they?  If it's too fine a pitch (or if too tapered) they can't unscrew the stuck stud without stripping the new thread.

 

Try drilling a larger hole if you can, and using a size up.

 

They're not a magic fix, but they are close!

 

 

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I've never had any luck with easy-outs. Best way I've every found requires a mig welder. Put a nut on top of the broken stud where the inside of the nut closely matches the stud.  Fill it with weld, essentially welding the nut to the broken stud, spray with penetrating oil to cool it, then just wind it out. The rapid heating and cooling usually loosens the thread...

Edited by Quattrodave

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Are you sure the leaking fluid is coolant, and not fuel? The cavity under that plate is where a "sock" fuel filter lives. However a well known weakness on these engines is that frost damage can crack the thin casting between the water jacket and the fuel filter cavity, so it's possible that the filter has been bypassed, and the cavity sealed to keep the coolant in after such damage. 

 

If you are leaking coolant, then one approach may be to take that plate off, and seal the crack in the block wall using JB weld or similar.

 

MP.

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5 minutes ago, TheBiscuits said:

 

How coarse a thread are they?  If it's too fine a pitch (or if too tapered) they can't unscrew the stuck stud without stripping the new thread.

 

Try drilling a larger hole if you can, and using a size up.

 

They're not a magic fix, but they are close!

 

 

The sheared bolts were just too tight to shift, which is odd for brass into steel as there is no rust issue, and no tension once sheared. Maybe I did not try hard enough but I really did not want to snap an extractor. In the end I drilled them out. Messed up one and got the hole a bit off centre----or maybe that was a previous problem and the bolt was fixed with Araldite? 😀 New bolt just about holding but might need a helicoil at some stage. Its only the porthole bolts so nothing critical. Have replaced the brass bolts with stainless.

 

..............Dave.

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5 minutes ago, Quattrodave said:

I've never had any luck with easy-outs. Best way I've every found requires a mig welder. Put a nut on top of the broken stud where the inside of the nut closely matches the stud.  Fill it with weld, essentially welding the nut to the broken stud, spray with penetrating oil to cool it, then just wind it out. The rapid heating and cooling usually loosens the thread...

Mine were brass and sheared with very little bolt left protruding., and this was all done on the towpath during lockdown, no access to welding 😀.

But it might be a good plan if OP can get to a boatyard or knows a mobile welding friend as those back bolts won't drill out.

 

..................Dave

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14 minutes ago, dmr said:

The sheared bolts were just too tight to shift, which is odd for brass into steel as there is no rust issue, and no tension once sheared. Maybe I did not try hard enough but I really did not want to snap an extractor. In the end I drilled them out. Messed up one and got the hole a bit off centre----or maybe that was a previous problem and the bolt was fixed with Araldite? 😀 New bolt just about holding but might need a helicoil at some stage. Its only the porthole bolts so nothing critical. Have replaced the brass bolts with stainless.

 

..............Dave.

 

I'm not sure you could manage to shear a hardened steel extractor in a brass fitting.

 

But if there's any group of people on the planet who could they're likely to be on this forum ...

Edited by TheBiscuits
Emphasis

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7 minutes ago, dmr said:

Mine were brass and sheared with very little bolt left protruding., and this was all done on the towpath during lockdown, no access to welding 😀.

But it might be a good plan if OP can get to a boatyard or knows a mobile welding friend as those back bolts won't drill out.

 

..................Dave

Fair point, TBH most of the that sort of work I do is in a workshop not wedged in an engine bay. The less protruding the bolt is, the better. Generally I'd cut it off flush before welding. Never done a brass one, I see no reason why I couldn't braze a brass nut on, done a few aluminium ones over the years tho...

Edited by Quattrodave

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