1st Gen Front Wheel Carrier Bolt Snapped

Discussion in '1st Generation: 2002–06 R50, R53 & 2004–08 R52' started by agranger, Mar 11, 2018.

  1. agranger

    agranger MINI of the Month June 2009
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    OK, I've got a full build thread going on about Rufus, but I wanted to single out this issue.

    I've got a serious suspension rebuild effort going on with the front wheels (rear will come in a bit)

    1. New coil-overs
    2. BBK
    3. Inner and Outer balljoints up front
    4. Adjustable drop links
    5. Lower control arm bushings
    6. New lower control arms (the inner ball joints were frozen solid

    Rufus is a 2005 (13 year old) JCW and I'm pretty sure that the suspension (other than a new front swaybar replaced due to rust a few years ago) is stock. I've had a hell of a time with siezed bolts, but the large bolt that holds the shock body to the wheel carrier was the worst and the head snapped off (despite a week soaking in penetrating oil, applied 3-4 times).

    That's my problem... It's the bolt up near #6 that pinches a receiver area of the carrier on to the lower portion of the shock body. The head snapped off cleanly on both sides.

    [​IMG]

    I've got a couple of options:

    1) I could buy new carriers ($400), but it would probably also need CV boots and maybe wheel hubs (another $400+) given the rust that is there.

    2) I could drill out the old bolt and run a hardened bolt through the new smooth hole, putting a nut and washers on one end to pinch the carrier on to the shock body. This would be the simplest solution, but will it hold?

    3) I could try to thread the hole and go back to the stock M12 bolt (it has a special smooth part in the middle of the shaft so the 2 parts of the carrier will pull back in together). I'd probably use a kit like this: https://www.amazon.com/Thread-repair-helicoil-damaged-thread/dp/B01MPYFF8E/ref=sr_1_8?ie=UTF8&qid=1520796856&sr=8-8&keywords=m12+tap+1.5

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Nathan

    Nathan Founder

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    I'd imagine you'd want to use one of those locking nuts if you were to go with something smooth bore. Maybe even double nut as a jam nut to ensure it stays in place. Also, beware of the grade, have no idea what to recommend.
     
  3. fishmonger

    fishmonger Well-Known Member

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    Try using a set of really good left hand drill bits and start drilling from smallest to increasingly larger bits. There are few bolts that will resist that extraction method. Once the bolt gets weaker due to losing its core, it will likely break it's bond from the carrier just by getting torqued from the bit trying to twist the increasingly thinner "tube" that remains of the bolt. If it doesn't work, you still can try your plan to drill it out completely, but you likely won't need to.

    At a minimum, this is a good excuse to buy another tool.
     
  4. Dave.0

    Dave.0 Helix & RMW Powered
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    Drill it out and use a high grade bolt with washer and two nuts to lock it down.
     
  5. agranger

    agranger MINI of the Month June 2009
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    I tried the left handed drill idea and even gave my handy extractor a shot... no dice so far. I just bought a couple new bits today. It is tiring work, drilling out that hole, so I'll try to do a bit every night this week.

    This suspension work is a PITA. It has been 2 full days in the garage and I've still got one full day left once I get the holes drilled out.

    I've got some grade 8 bolts on the way.
     
  6. MCS02

    MCS02 Moderator
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    You will have to use heat to get it out. I don't mean map gas. You will need Acetylene. Be very careful only heat the carrier around the bolt, the side with the threads. You will have to get it hot like close to cherry hot. Then put the extractor on it. Try not to get the bolt hot by not hitting it with the flame. That way the carrier metal will expand more than the bolt. Dont burn anything important.

    Method two....Take the hole thing off and take it to a machine shop they will get it out for way less then $400 for a new one.

    I am very old school Heat and Hammer!:D
     
  7. Sully

    Sully Administrator
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    And if that doesn't work... try a bigger hammer. Thats my motto... J/K (Partially).
     
  8. agranger

    agranger MINI of the Month June 2009
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    I like the idea of a machine shop... taking it somewhere with a drill press would be much easier, but I'm afraid of what else is seized in there. I'm a bit afraid of disassembling things further. The bolts that hold the wheel hub to the carrier don't look so good. I'm trying to get things back together at this point. Once my credit card recovers from all of the parts on this project and if something else has an issue up front, I'll think about a proper update on the rest.

    I also like the heating idea... If I were to do it again given what I know right now, I might have tried heating the carrier to break loose that seized bolt, but you never know it's seized until you snap the head off. I thought I had gotten the second one loose after soaking it in penetrating oil for a week and pounding it well with a hammer, but that wasn't the bolt shaft turning... that was the head snapping off!
     
  9. MCS02

    MCS02 Moderator
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    When I worked with old stuff I cant tell you how many times only heat would work. Good luck with it. busted bolts is one of the worst things!!
     
  10. agranger

    agranger MINI of the Month June 2009
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    Success! Well... 1/2 success!

    I was able to drill through one of the carriers... it's tough work for an old man who makes his living sitting on his fat ass in an office all day. :D I got out there this evening and it took me 20 minutes of drilling spread out over an hour or so to cut a hole clean through. A few whacks w/ a 6-pound hammer and the carrier was free!

    Now I just need to drill out the other side... I was, however, able to fit one of the coil overs, just to raise my spirits a bit! (the new bolt to tighten the carrier to the strut body is on the way... should be here w/ my new control arms by Friday, so maybe I'll get the front end assembled this weekend.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. Dave.0

    Dave.0 Helix & RMW Powered
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    Big hammers save money.
     
  12. BlwnAway

    BlwnAway Active Member

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    #12 BlwnAway, Mar 12, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2018
    Mine broke years ago, drilled smooth with a bolt and nylock nut has worked just fine for over 150,000 miles now, even through a disassembly or two.

    People don't realise those pinch bolts should be removed with heat from the start and also should be pulled and anti-seized way before you "need" to remove them, simply as a PM measure.
     
  13. agranger

    agranger MINI of the Month June 2009
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    A small evidenced by the pic, above, I got one side drilled through. I got the bolts today, 3/8" wide and 3" long, grade 8 hardened. I put a pair of washers on one side that got closer to the edge than I would have liked, and a washer w/ lock nut on the other side. I tightened it up and it held on to the shock body as it should! Yea! Now I've just got 2" of bolt to drill through on the other side...
     
  14. smi2710

    smi2710 New Member

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    I just had to do this. I drilled it first but it walked and went through the housing so I stopped and got a used one for 75$ and was back in business in 30 minutes


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     

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