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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Help !!!

I have looked and can't find a thread addressing my problem, Sooooo -

I went to install the running boards we just got and found that the screw inserts on the frame were all gummed up on the inside with weather undercoating (we bought Slingshot in Michigan this last July)

I got 11 of the 12 inserts cleaned out first using a 3M pad and a chop-stick, then using brake cleaner and re-tapping the threads by running one of the connection bolts in and out a few times alternating w/cleaner. When I got to the rear upper insert on the passenger side, (the last one), the second time running the bolt through the insert started to spin. Now I have a bolt 3/4 of the way into the insert and can't reverse it out without the insert just spinning in the hole in the frame. I am left with about a 3/8" space between the washer on the bolt and the insert flange.

I tried to wedge a flathead screwdriver under the insert to hold it, but working close quarters between the frame and the rocker panel, and then also between the ground and the frame, I couldn't get enough pressure to keep it from spinning.

Secondarily, there appears to be no way to get to the interior of the box frame to "hold" the insert from the backside. AHHHH ! !

Any ideas, or should I wait for the experts at Tech-Day in Dallas coming up in November?

"No Ideas a Bad Idea" at this point.

Thanks in advance for the assist.
 

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Can you get a grip on the insert with a pair of vise grips to get the bolt backed out anyway? Can't get carried away with being to tight or the vice grips will be putting too much pressure on the bolt and not allow it loosen up. I will look at mine tomorrow in the day light and see if I can think of any thing else that might help.
 

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2004 Slingshot Yellow
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That's about the worst thing that can happen! It can be fixed but requires some work. This has happened to me on another vehicle on a motor mount.

First, there are access holes in the frame near those bracket holes but not where you can get to the nut from them. You could try a swivel head wrench and see if you can get on the nut enough to be able to back out the bolt but that's a long shot. If you can, leave the wrench in there and put the bracket on so you can tighten up the bolt.
The hard way:
Use a cutoff wheel or cutting torch to cut the head off the bolt. May need a helper to hold the bolt head with lockgrips so it don't spin while cutting if using a cutoff wheel.
Use a punch or screwdriver to knock the cut bolt and loose weldnut out of the hole and into the frame.
Tape a small magnet to a coat hanger and fish it through one of the close access holes in the frame and remove the nut otherwise it will rattle around in there forever.

The easiest way now to install your bracket will be to put it on with the one remaining bolt then use a large self drilling hex head sheet metal bolt and run it in next to the empty hole in the bracket. You'll need a right angle drill for that since there is not much room between the frame and rocker.

Another option is if you have a Mig welder you can weld a stud in the hole.

The other old school option is to fabricate a plate of at least 1/8" steel about 3/4" x 2". Make sure the open bolt hole in the frame is larger than 3/8" , If not drill it out to 7/16".
Get a 3/8" carriage bolt, drill a 3/8" hole in the center of the plate and then file the hole square to slip fit the shank of the carriage bolt. Now, using a piece of stiff wire, feed the wire through the open hole where the nut was from the outside of the frame until you can grab it in the large triangular access hole. Now Feed the wire through the hole in the plate then wrap it tightly several turns around the threaded end of the carriage bolt. Carefully push the plate and bolt through the hole into the frame and try to pull the thread end of the bolt through the open hole. It may take several tries and fishing the plate and bolt back out with the magnet. If you can get your finger in the small access hole you can help align the plate and bolt while pulling to pull the bolt through the plate and then through the hole. Once the bolt is through the frame wrap a few turns of wire around the protruding bolt against the frame so it don't fall into the frame.
Carefully install the RB bracket on that bolt first with a lock washer and hand tighten the nut. The plate will hit the top of the inside of the frame and stop the bolt from turning.
Install the other bracket bolt and tighten. Tighten the new nut but not too tight so you don't strip the square shank or break that low grade bolt.
I hope you can follow this.
If all else fails find a shop that can burn off the bolt and weld a stud on there for you.
Greg

If anyone has another solution please share but this is the only way I know of.
Greg
 

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I have a small stock of M10-1.5 threaded inserts. They are not hard to install, if you have a 1/2” hole. If all else fails, you can center drill the existing bolt and run a 1/2” bit through it. I can send you the “home grown install” hardware by US Mail...... drop me a note and let me know if you need it.

[email protected]

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter #6
All good thought processes. "drilling out", "tap & Die" or an "easy-out" do not appear to be options because it's the top insert and I have to work between the frame and the inside of the rocker panel.

Shall go get a narrow vise-grip in the morning, my regular grips are too wide, but maybe if I cut the compression washer off the bolt first I can get at the insert.

I tried getting my fingers into the back side thru the "access" hole in the frame but not even close to reaching where I need to be. It was getting dark-30 here when I was last under it while trying to literally yell the bolt out of the insert. So I figured better to put the yellow beast back in the garage and try again another day.

I will look at it again today and see if I can implement any of the suggestions above. Shall report back later tonight.

Thanks,
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Does anybody know what that insert is made of ?

My thought is that maybe it can be tig welded to the frame. Any feedback on this or any other ideas let me know.
 

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If you don’t actually use the running board to stand on then one bolt should hold it in place just fine. The bracket is heavy metal.
 

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Just my thought. If the bolt is in the insert far enough, cut the head off and weld the insert to the frame. Use the headless.bolt as a stud. Put nut and lock washer on. Tighten it up and forget about it. Sounds easy in my mind anyway.
 
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'06 FPR Smokin Asphalt; '04 Ulta Violet
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If you don’t actually use the running board to stand on then one bolt should hold it in place just fine. The bracket is heavy metal.
:agree: agree We don't stand on ours so the other brackets and bolts are good enough. But, we do have the tucked and lowered brackets that put the boards out of the way of getting in and out

Nick
 

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If you don’t actually use the running board to stand on then one bolt should hold it in place just fine. The bracket is heavy metal.
:agree :agree Of course you'd have to cut the bolt head off. We don't stand on ours so the other brackets and bolts are good enough. But, we do have the tucked and lowered brackets that put the boards out of the way of getting in and out. AND, I have a lift and tools you are welcome to use if you think it will help.

Nick
 

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Does anybody know what that insert is made of ?

My thought is that maybe it can be tig welded to the frame. Any feedback on this or any other ideas let me know.
That was my first thought. If you can get someone to TIG or other method of welding or brazing so that it will hold the nut enough to get the bolt out and then clean all the threads with a tap before putting any more bolts in.
 

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That was my first thought. If you can get someone to TIG or other method of welding or brazing so that it will hold the nut enough to get the bolt out and then clean all the threads with a tap before putting any more bolts in.
From my ordeal this was not an option. I cut the head off the bolt, no room around the threads to weld through to the nut without welding the bolt too and cant get to the back to weld either. And not enough thread length left to use as a stud.
The nut was somehow tack welded to the inside of the frame, not a nutsert. GM must have a special machine to reach in through an access hole and weld that nut. I guess you could try drilling a few small holes and try to plug weld the back of the nut but not much room to work between the frame and the rocker on the SSR.
 

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:|

" guess you could try drilling a few small holes and try to plug weld the back of the nut but not much room to work between the frame and the rocker on the SSR."

You might have only the one of any remaining solutions. could you not bore a small hole in bottom of frame rail next to the bolt/nut opening and then use a (larger hole saw) to enlarge the opening and thus give access for a "tack" weld to the spinning nut and allow you to remove the remaining bolt part.
 

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" guess you could try drilling a few small holes and try to plug weld the back of the nut but not much room to work between the frame and the rocker on the SSR."

You might have only the one of any remaining solutions. could you not bore a small hole in bottom of frame rail next to the bolt/nut opening and then use a (larger hole saw) to enlarge the opening and thus give access for a "tack" weld to the spinning nut and allow you to remove the remaining bolt part.
One bolt in the bracket would be much safer than damaging the integrity of the frame.
 

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Capture Nut for Running Board Bracket

Viewed in another perspective, with one bolt removed in way of the damaged frame insert, you reduce the effectiveness of the design by 17% (1/6).

If you decide to replace that bolt, another option that does not require welding to the frame is to fashion a capture nut from a hex nut and a piece of flat bar. Drill a hole that is slightly larger than the outside diameter of the bolt in one end of the flat bar. Then tack weld a hex nut over this hole. Inserting the assembly from the backside/inside of the frame box and in position over the hole where the damaged insert once was (you can vary the length of the bar and will need an extra pair of hands), you will be able to thread a bolt through the mounting bracket and into the capture nut. It will turn slightly depending on the length of the flat bar but will contact the frame and allow you to thread and tighten the bolt. The bolt can likewise be removed. The concept is shown in the photo below.
 

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Just my thought. If the bolt is in the insert far enough, cut the head off and weld the insert to the frame. Use the headless.bolt as a stud. Put nut and lock washer on. Tighten it up and forget about it. Sounds easy in my mind anyway.

I'm with Dave on this one. Use a Dremel with a cut-off wheel to remove the head, leaving as much material as possible on the stud. Find a nut the correct size (use one of the bolts to confirm the size) clean up the burrs a bit so the nut will thread on nicely and bolt it up tight.

It seems like the cleanest, easiest way to achieve the results needed without risking the integrity of the frame rail.
 

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I got around to checking and it appears the insert is steel so the easiest thing would be to have some one tack weld it to the frame. I would then spray the heck out of it with penetrating oil, let it soak over night if you can, then try and back it out. If you don't have a tap to clean the threads you can go to the hardware store and buy a bolt the same thread size only longer and take either a cut off wheel or a hack saw or if you had to a file and cut a grove in the threads from tip to ward the head up the shank. That way when you thread it in it will give the junk some place to come out rather then being forced between the threads. Run it in then back it out a half turn then go in a little more and then back out. Keep it well lubed and you might get it cleaned out and be able to use the factory insert. All it will take is a tack. Most muffler shops will have a mig welder that can do the trick. Now one thing to keep in mind, anything more than a simple tack I would disconnect both sides of the battery before doing any welding. The current from either a mig or tig welder can mess up electronics very quickly. I one time fried a very expensive electronic ignition system in a race car when I got in a hurry and welded a bracket on with the battery still hooked up. And before someone says my exhaust was welded on with no problems. Keep in mind the exhaust is not grounded to the frame it is supported by hangers that have rubber in them. That is my public service warning about welding on the truck and good luck.

If no way to get it welded you might try taking an angle headed drill and drill a small hole through the washer head of the insert into the frame then put a small steel rod in the hole through the insert face and frame to basically pin it in place while you backed it out. It would be tight but that maybe a possibility.

Also I would suggest using penetrating oil over brake cleaner. Brake clean leaves a dry surface and nothing to lubricate the metals.


Good luck and let us know what worked.
 

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Since penetrating oil was brought up I have to give a plug for Kroils Oil. It really works.
I have been using Kroil for probably 50 years it great stuff !!!!!!
 
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