How to keep spindle from turning during blade removal.

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by LarryF, Nov 17, 2012.

  1. LarryF

    LarryF LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,171

    Well, I'm back again and still no luck. The impact wrench I bought, even though it can put out 1000 ft # didn't do the job. And that's because the spindle starts to turn the same as I had indicated in my original post when I applied a lot of torque using a big breaker bar with a pipe over the handle to give me even more leverage. I had hoped that the hammering action of the impact wrench would make a difference, but it didn't. Tightening up the belt that drives the blade pulleys didn't help much either. I haven't tried the acetylene torch idea yet because I don't have one. But when I was in Home Depot the other day in the plumbing section, I noticed that in addition to tanks of propane, they also had something called MAP/Pro premium torch fuel. Same price as the propane tank, but a warning on the MAP/Pro can stated "Use only with torches designed for MAP/Pro gas. I asked the HD guy about the difference from propane, and he said it heated the copper fittings faster and hotter, but had no other specific information. Does anyone know if this would be hot enough for me to have success with what Piston Slapper suggested?

    I haven't tried grinding the head off yet, because if the remaining threaded section of the bold doesn't come out (and I would have nothing to grab hold of after the grinding), then I'd have to remove and replace the whole spindle. But now I know that neither a cheater bar nor an impact wrench can solve the problem because the spindle turns before the needed torque to loosen the bolt is achieved. Any other suggestions?
     
  2. Oldtimer

    Oldtimer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,454

    Grind the bolt head off. If it came into my shop we would grind it off.

    Oldtimer
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  3. LarryF

    LarryF LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,171

    Can you or anyone else who has done this tell me if you ever had a situation where that didn't work? Once I grind it off, I won't be able to grab anything in order to turn out the threaded part that is still in the spindle. Would I have to drill a hole in that bolt in order to use an easy out? I presume they are high-strength bolts and that material may not be easy to drill.
     
  4. Oldtimer

    Oldtimer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,454

    Check the grade marks. It should be a gr5. If it was in my shop one of my techs would put it on the lift & grind the head off. They would never use a torch on a spindle.

    You will have the thickness of the blade & washer to work with. Let it cool before you take it out.

    Oldtimer
    Posted via Mobile Device
     
  5. LarryF

    LarryF LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,171

    OK, I was finally able to get that bolt out. I did it by finding an answer to my original question of how to keep the spindle from rotating. And finding that was just dumb luck when I was looking over some tools on display at Home Depot and spotted a wide-jaw and large pair of vise grips for 14 bucks. With that clamped onto the spindle (photo attached) and blocked against the inside of the mower deck, it provided enough resistance to keep the spindle from turning with the impact wrench hammering on the bolt. It might be that I could have used a breaker bar with a 3 or 4 foot pipe over the handle, but since I now have this nice impact wrench, that's what I chose to do. I'm now glad I didn't resort to cutting the hex head off, because once the blade was loose, it still took a lot of torque all the way to unscrew the bolt using a socket wrench. Looks like the bolt was rusted in. One thing for sure, from now on I'll be using anti-seize compound when installing blade bolts, as suggested above.

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  6. BigFish

    BigFish LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,064

    Use new bolts also. I would get new washers ,too.
     

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