Removing sleeve bolts


Original Post
eli poss · · Durango, Co · Joined May 2014 · Points: 136

So I need to remove the sleeve and cone of two bolts. I've read up on the little guide the access fund has here, as well as watching their videos. I have a few questions:

1) In the video it said if I use a hardware store tap I'm gonna break it. Obviously I don't want that to happen but it doesn't say what kind of tap to get. I know i need a 3/8" spiral flute tap, but other than that I'm clueless. Does anybody have any suggestions? Also, in the video he has the tap inside some kind of housing that makes it easy to operate by hand. Can I buy this or do I have to make it and how?

2) Where can I get a draw stud with an eyebolt?

3) In the video he uses a magnet on a brass rod to remove the metal shavings. Is there a reason it's on a brass rod or can I just glue the magnet to a stick or piece of tubing?

Or better yet, is there anyone in the Durango area or SW Colorado that has experience with this and can teach me?

Highlander · · Ouray, CO · Joined Apr 2008 · Points: 175

Have you tried a hook tool to remove the sleeve?, that is usually the easiest way to get the sleeve out. Otherwise just search for a heavy duty 3/8 spiral tap, that is what I use. for the cone I use some high grade threaded rod and have an eyebolt that screws on to the rod and I can use a funkiness to remove. 

eli poss · · Durango, Co · Joined May 2014 · Points: 136
Highlander wrote:

Have you tried a hook tool to remove the sleeve?, that is usually the easiest way to get the sleeve out. Otherwise just search for a heavy duty 3/8 spiral tap, that is what I use. for the cone I use some high grade threaded rod and have an eyebolt that screws on to the rod and I can use a funkiness to remove. 

They aren't the typical Rawl or Powers 5 piece bolt so the hook method wouldn't work even if I had a hook tool. I don't really have access to any power tools so I can't make a hook tool. Does anybody sell them? For the tap, how do you tell if it's heavy duty? Do you have some kind of housing to use with the tap or do you just use it like a bit on a drill?

Trevor. · · Boise, ID · Joined Apr 2012 · Points: 741

Eli, 

You're going to want a 3/8" x 16tpi spiral flute tap. Get a standard tap handle for it, pretty much any purpose built tool will be sufficient. 

Instead of a threaded eye bolt, I use all thread rod, some spacers made of plumbing connectors, washers, and nuts to make a puller apparatus. I'll take a photo of my setup later, it's really easy to make with store bought parts, and gets the job done. Only downside is that there are several loose parts that are prone to being dropped if you're not careful.

I'm removing bolts in hard basalt, and haven't had a lot of luck funking comes out of the hole, so I just use my all-thread puller to extract them as well. I've never once been able to pull a sleeve with just a hook tool, and have stopped even trying.  

Whatever you do, make sure you keep your threads as clean as possible, and try to keep some grease or oil on the threads doing the work whenever possible, it makes things go much smoother. Nothing sucks like having the threads on your tool gall up and become worthless. 

EDIT:


Here's my super simple puller tool. Highest available grade threaded rod(3/8"x16tpi for extracting 3/8" sleeves and 1/2" cones, 7/16"x20tpi for removing 1/2" sleeves), matching high quality nuts, an assortment of washers, and you're in business. 

I'm pretty much using a variant on the technique that ClimbTech shows in this video:

eli poss · · Durango, Co · Joined May 2014 · Points: 136

I don't think I'll have an issue funking out the sleeves because it's in limestone and the bolt probably hasn't even been weighted beyond body weight, if that. Plus I'm not really super handy so building a puller seems like more effort than its worth unless I have to replace a wedge bolt in the future. So could I just walk in to the local hardware store and say I need a 3/8" x 16tpi spiral flute tap and tap handle?

Also, out of curiosity, it looks like a tap has the same kind of connector as drill bits so would it be possible to put a tap on a hand drill? 

Duncan Domingue · · Scott, Louisiana · Joined May 2015 · Points: 0

I don't know much about the process of removing bolts, but I am a machinist and if the Access Fund recommends not using hardware store taps, that very likely means they want you to use High Speed Steel taps. You can find these online at places like McMaster-Carr or MSC Industrial, or a tool house in your area like CW Rod.

The reason to avoid hardware store taps is because they are typically carbon steel, and for your purposes are pretty weak and likely to snap. So you want a tap that says High Speed Steel, or HSS. It may also say High Speed Steel with Cobalt, or just Cobalt, or M2 (a type of high speed steel). Though you are unlikely to find any locally, do not purchase a Tungsten Carbide/Solid Carbide/Carbide tap. While they are incredibly strong, they are also incredibly brittle and will likely break if you try to use them with a handheld tap wrench.

Duncan Domingue · · Scott, Louisiana · Joined May 2015 · Points: 0

Also, while you can chuck a tap into a hand drill, I highly recommend against it. Even a hand drill on its slowest setting spins too fast for you to have much control over the tapping operation. Note that once the tap bites, or engages, it will pull itself into the workpiece while it's being spun, and it will not stop being pulled into the workpiece while it is spinning. That sounds like a tautology, but what it means is that once your tap bites, it will keep threading itself into your workpiece and won't stop until you either stop drilling, it runs into the end of the hole and strips the jaws of your drill's chuck, or the tap itself snaps.

So, use a tap wrench, use a bit of machine lubricant (go for something dark and stinky to get the most help when tapping stainless steel, dark and stinky typically means it has lots of sulfur compounds), and take your time. Go a half turn forward, then a quarter turn back to break the chip, and repeat until you're done. It's better to go slowly and carefully, because if you break a High Speed Steel tap in a hole, you're pretty well f***ed.

Trevor. · · Boise, ID · Joined Apr 2012 · Points: 741

Most hardware stores don't have spiral flute taps. I got mine on Amazon for fairly cheap and they did the job. The tap handle on the other hand should be easily procured locally. 

The end of taps are square, and need to be used with a tap handle. It is very important that you have it very straight when starting. 

Jason Todd · · Cody, WY · Joined Apr 2012 · Points: 643
eli poss wrote:

I don't think I'll have an issue funking out the sleeves because it's in limestone and the bolt probably hasn't even been weighted beyond body weight, if that. Plus I'm not really super handy so building a puller seems like more effort than its worth unless I have to replace a wedge bolt in the future. So could I just walk in to the local hardware store and say I need a 3/8" x 16tpi spiral flute tap and tap handle?

Also, out of curiosity, it looks like a tap has the same kind of connector as drill bits so would it be possible to put a tap on a hand drill? 

Your average hardware store won't have a spiral flute tap. If you order, do NOT get a bottoming tap as it will be difficult to start.
A tap will not work with a hand drill.  You need to turn counter to thread direction very often, start with half a turn forward, half back, full forward, half back, etc. prevent breaking the tap. If it feels tight, you're on the edge. A drop or two of machine oil will really help in tapping.

eli poss · · Durango, Co · Joined May 2014 · Points: 136

Thanks guys. So I think I'm going to get this guy on amazon because free shipping. It says high speed steel and 18TPI, and I'm assuming that's alright, correct? And then I'll get the tap handle at the hardware store and just use the original bolt/hanger to funk it out. Since I'm just patching the hole I don't think I'm even gonna bother with removing the cone, but if I did I would just tap it and funk it out with the bolt and hanger or if it get's stuck just tap through it and fish out the metal shavings with the magnet.

Thanks for the help y'all, I feel slightly less clueless.

Jason Todd · · Cody, WY · Joined Apr 2012 · Points: 643

You'll want a 3/8-16 tap, I think the 18 tpi is a typo, FWIW.

Why not just leave the sleeve in if you are just patching the hole?

Thomas Beck · · Las Vegas, Nevada · Joined Feb 2006 · Points: 660

This is the guy you want to talk too; Greg German.  He's in Colorado.  I believe you want a bottoming bit and only a few places distribute them.  3/8" x 16 is the size for 3/8 Rawl bolts...They're expensive.  Greg has the link source.  These are the guys:  McMaster-Carr or MSC Industrial.

He'd probably make you an extraction tool depending on how busy the Guitar business is:  greg@germanguitars.com

There's a lengthy thread on tools, technique on MP somewhere.  If you are patcching you can someitme punch the sleeve and then patch.

Trevor. · · Boise, ID · Joined Apr 2012 · Points: 741

You won't be able to use the original bolt to funk the sleeve out. The inner bolt is a smaller diameter than the 3/8" threads you're going to cut into the sleeve. Also, that is not the tap you want. Get a spiral flute one, they work better for this use. Here's an example: https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00F8Q2GIU/ref=mp_s_a_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1493003365&sr=8-6&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_QL65&keywords=3%2F8+16+spiral+flute&dpPl=1&dpID=41V5yf%2B7NpL&ref=plSrch

Thomas Beck · · Las Vegas, Nevada · Joined Feb 2006 · Points: 660

My bad...That's a great price.  i paid about $25 each from McMaster Carr

Get a spiral flute one, they work better for this use. Here's an example: https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00F8Q2GIU/ref=mp_s_a_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1493003365&sr=8-6&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_QL65&keywords=3%2F8+16+spiral+flute&dpPl=1&dpID=41V5yf%2B7NpL&ref=plSrch


Jason Todd · · Cody, WY · Joined Apr 2012 · Points: 643

A bottoming tap is for finishing a blind tap to the bottom of the drilled hole.  They are harder to start, especially in a hole that isn't drilled the proper diameter for the tap.  You want one with a plug end for easier starting.

Greg Barnes · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2006 · Points: 1,498

They aren't the typical Rawl or Powers 5 piece bolt so the hook method wouldn't work even if I had a hook tool.

So what exactly are they? This method was developed for 5-piece, it may not work on other designs.

Also if you can use power tools, it's fairly easy to simply power drill through the old sleeve and cone - assuming the bolt core does not snap of course (if it does your only option is some sort of core drilling). Just get a 3/8" solid-head carbide SDS bit (lots of manufacturers have them, often advertised as "4X better in rebar", available in big box hardware stores), and drill right through the old sleeve and cone. You'll need to stop and cool the head of the bit fairly often (spit water on it, etc). Once through the old cone/sleeve, then swap the bit (watch out if it's hot!!) for a 1/2" bit, and expand the hole (otherwise there are often pieces of sleeve left in the hole, you can actually get those out pretty easily in granite, but in limestone they're likely to have wallowed out the hole a little bit).

Anyway let us know exactly what type of bolt you're dealing with (if you know?), since the tapping method (and the one I just outlined) were developed for 5-piece.

eli poss · · Durango, Co · Joined May 2014 · Points: 136

I'm working with the 3/8" cobra sleeve bolts. These guys. Sorry, I thought the method would work with all sleeve bolts.

I'm only patching the holes so I don't need to worry about the cone or drilling a bigger hole for 1/2" bolts. The reason I want to remove the sleeve is that the hole is kind of messy and I think the patch job will look better and cleaner if I remove the sleeve. 

dameeser · · denver · Joined Sep 2009 · Points: 196

It's a lot of work to remove the sleeve and cone if you are just going to patch it.  It's worth it if you are going to reuse the hole but not if you are just patching.  I would get a punch and just bash it in enough to make the patch job look nice.

20 kN · · Hawaii · Joined Feb 2009 · Points: 1,128
Duncan Domingue wrote:

I don't know much about the process of removing bolts, but I am a machinist and if the Access Fund recommends not using hardware store taps, that very likely means they want you to use High Speed Steel taps. 

I can attest to that for sure. I bought hardware store taps and broke two of them removing three bolts. They are way too delicate. Anyway, using the hook tool is far better if you can get it to work. It wont work if the bolt is super corroded, but if it does work you can remove the sleeve in seconds saving you tons of time and work. Otherwise, tap is the only other option.

Gregger Man · · Broomfield, CO · Joined Aug 2004 · Points: 576

Here's a good source for a durable tap: 

http://www.discount-tools.com/rfn-106fp.cfm

This one: 3/8-16 H-3(three turns to achieve full thread),  3 flutes,  RFN-28578  $13.05

Gregger Man · · Broomfield, CO · Joined Aug 2004 · Points: 576

Here's a good source for a very powerful 1/4" rare earth magnet:

http://www.leevalley.com/us/wood/page.aspx?p=40076&cat=1,42363,42348

Rare-Earth Rod Magnets

99K36.03  1" long, 1/4" diameter,  ea.$3.80

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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