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Front Wheel Removal Assistance

Old 03-04-2013, 09:22 AM
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Front Wheel Removal Assistance

Hi Everyone,

PO obviously liked removing the front wheel as the Front Axle Bolt has a some amount of stripping.

1. Bike mounted on Front and Rear stand.

2. As per the manual I loosened the Axle Holder Bolts.

3. Remove the front Axle Bolt...Umm, yeah it's not budging.

Please anyone with any tips they've used for a similar situation? I would like to do whatever I can to increase my chances of success before attempting to strong arm it again and risk causing any stripping to this already tired bolt.

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And yes. I have a new bolt on order for once I get this one out.

1. I'm using a 8" 1/2 inch with #22metric socket. I have a longer ~Torque Wrench I could use ~13" but I generally use it only for torquing down to factory spec, NOT to strong arm loose a bolt.
2. I've applied WD40 to the bolt and will continue to do so for a few more days and wait for any suggestions you all may have.




Last edited by WhOrD; 03-04-2013 at 09:28 AM. Reason: additional information
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by WhOrD View Post
Hi Everyone,


PO obviously liked removing the front wheel as the Front Axle Bolt has a some amount of stripping.

1. Bike mounted on Front and Rear stand.

2. As per the manual I loosened the Axle Holder Bolts.

3. Remove the front Axle Bolt...Umm, yeah it's not budging.

Please anyone with any tips they've used for a similar situation? I would like to do whatever I can to increase my chances of success before attempting to strong arm it again and risk causing any stripping to this already tired bolt.


And yes. I have a new bolt on order for once I get this one out.

As long as you have both the pinch bolts on both sides loosened, it's entirely riskfree to gently tap the bolt head with a rubber or wood mallet, as it's unwound about half the thread, just to get the axle loose... Or stick a screwdriver in the two holes on the other end and wiggle it a little...
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Tweety View Post
As long as you have both the pinch bolts on both sides loosened, it's entirely riskfree to gently tap the bolt head with a rubber or wood mallet, as it's unwound about half the thread, just to get the axle loose... Or stick a screwdriver in the two holes on the other end and wiggle it a little...
The manual says to loosen the axle holder bolts and then the Axle bolt itself on the right side first, before loosening the holder bolts on the left side.

I'm guessing I want both sides loosened specifically for the rubber mallet treatment to work?

Thank you Tweety,
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:34 AM
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It actually sounds like he can't get the bolt to break free.

Not much you can do, if this is the case. Find a good 6 point socket or box wrench and turn it out. A few taps with a hammer could help with this also.
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:51 AM
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So the problem is loosening the axle bolt or the axle itself? You only keep the left side pinch bolts (2 allens) to hold the axle securely.

Once you loosen the axle bolt a bunch, then loosen the left pinch bolts then tap the axle bolt to free axle. Spray alot of liquid wrench, pb blaster or wd40 on everything to help.
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Old 03-04-2013, 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by 8541Hawk View Post
It actually sounds like he can't get the bolt to break free.

Not much you can do, if this is the case. Find a good 6 point socket or box wrench and turn it out. A few taps with a hammer could help with this also.
Correct. I would love to turn it out, my fear is that it already has some smoothing on the bolt ends and I do not want to cause anymore damage.

So I'm searching for any tips which would help the bolt to break free more easily. I have a nice pipe I could add as an "extension" to the wrench to give me more torque.

When I tap the bolt with a hammer / rubber mallet, should I tap it directly on the head, or on the side in the direction it needs to travel to loosen it.

Stupid PO's making my life complicated
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Old 03-04-2013, 10:18 AM
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To loosen the axle bolt, tap it with a steel hammer on the head like a nail. Just the tapping/hitting will help break it free. Use a well fitting socket not a wrench if its rounding. You can also heat the fork leg with a propane torch to expand it slightly.
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Old 03-04-2013, 10:26 AM
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I assume you're afraid to strip it, right ? If this is the case, you did mention you had one on order. You may use your extension, and apply a gradual pressure to your longer wrench or pipe you are adding for torque. Just before you feel it will let go stop, and let the nut work by keeping the same amount of pressure to the wrench. This will allow the threads to eventually break lose. Be patient. This is key here. I have done this to stuck bolts in the past and waited up too four to five minutes before I felt something wanting to budge.

Now if you do happen to strip the head, unless you have a quality vise grip to grip the nut down, and try to unscrew it this way, then I suggest you spend a few dollars, and get yourself a good bolt extractor. It has a left hand aggressive thread, and you will need to drill into the head of the bolt, to insert the bolt extractor. Believe me, this will work, but bolt will no longer be good...that's the down side.
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Old 03-04-2013, 10:41 AM
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I just want to double check, this Bolt (shown in OP picutre) is a right handed thread so (right tight - left loose) applies?
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Old 03-04-2013, 10:47 AM
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Ha, yeah, good to think of that but it is standard thread. Leftieloosey.

I spent hours trying to remove camper wheels with that problem.
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Old 03-04-2013, 10:58 AM
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Just give it the beans and turn it out. I have a spare front axle (thought they are only around $30 new) I can send you if you thrash the one you have now as I have no need for it with the front end I'm running now.
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Old 03-05-2013, 01:46 AM
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A lot of good advice.

Make sure to get a good 6 pt. socket or end wrench on it. Smack it a few times real good with a large metal hammer. This will a lot of times jar it enough to break it loose. If it acts like it's going to mushroom the bolt where you wouldn't be able to get a socket on it put the socket over it and hit the socket. This will help better distribute the blows and keep from messing up the bolt any worse than it already is. If it just doesn't want to come loose and you round the edges of the bolt, or if you just don't care anymore being you've got one coming you can take a good sharp cold chisel, put the very edge of it on the outer portion of the bolt and pointing in the direction of loosening it and give it a few good wacks. The chisel will start to dig into the bolt and between hitting it in a loosening direction and the sharp jolts will break just about any bolt loose. You may need to go to the left on the top then swap sides and go to the right on the bottom back and forth a couple times but it should get it loose.

Also, in case you didn't realize it, the axle is hollow. So by spraying the penetrating fluid down the axle from the other side it will get into direct contact with the threads rather than trying to penetrate it through the head of the bolt.
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Old 03-05-2013, 08:59 AM
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Update: Followed advice and tips

AND ~I~ STILL FAIL

My old man comes over and in 2 minutes with what appeared to be very little effort, breaks the bolt loose.

Now bare in mind I am stronger, faster, younger than my father. But he was an ASE Master Mechanic / Contractor and I work in Information Technologies with computers

Do not underestimate Old Man Strength!

Thank you everyone again for your advice!
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Old 03-05-2013, 09:33 AM
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NICE!!! Did he say something like this;

"You kids today, ya got the muscles for the flexin', but when it comes time to do some work.....thats when we see........."

Followed by; Now get inside, wash your hands & help your mom with setting the table for dinner"
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Old 03-05-2013, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by smokinjoe73 View Post
NICE!!! Did he say something like this;

"You kids today, ya got the muscles for the flexin', but when it comes time to do some work.....thats when we see........."

Followed by; Now get inside, wash your hands & help your mom with setting the table for dinner"
Haha, the astonished look on my face was reward enough to him.

This much effort just to change my rotors makes me anxious as to how much crap I'll deal with for the MCCT + Carb tuning......
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Old 03-05-2013, 03:53 PM
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Where are you in CA, if you're close enough I'll come over and unbolt something myself just to see that look..lol. I'm probably you Dad's age or older!
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Old 03-05-2013, 11:13 PM
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Originally Posted by WhOrD View Post
Haha, the astonished look on my face was reward enough to him.

This much effort just to change my rotors makes me anxious as to how much crap I'll deal with for the MCCT + Carb tuning......
Don't worry yourself too much... You'll still make that look when he's 75+... My old man still has a couple of tricks he hasn't given me the details on yet... Usually, he graciously "admits" that I probably tired it out for him...

However at the absolutely kindergarden'ian age of 34 I have gotten it a few times from younger guys, so in the end it evens out...
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