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Removing drop-in bolts without power tools?


Original Post
GabrielKoybz · · Brooklyn · Joined Nov 2014 · Points: 698

Would like to remove these ugly sleeves so I can patch the holes cleanly, but I can’t figure out how to get these things out . Ive been hesitant to replace some of the old drop ins at my local crag because of the mess they leave behind but I would like to learn how in order to leave as little trace as possible ..
 ps new bolt was installed next to the one pictured.

Healyje · · PDX · Joined Jan 2006 · Points: 456

There are puller designs you can look up here and Supertopo that you could modify to pull it or you could just hammer set it recessed a bit and fill it with stick epoxy

GabrielKoybz · · Brooklyn · Joined Nov 2014 · Points: 698

It wouldn’t budge when I tried to hammer it in. And I do have patching epoxy (instaCrete) which works well but I don’t wanna patch it if it’s sticking out so much if I can help it

Cabot Steward · · Smog Lake City · Joined Sep 2017 · Points: 7

Hurleys are nice and work well.   Most LCO (Local Climbing Organizations) have them.

GabrielKoybz · · Brooklyn · Joined Nov 2014 · Points: 698

Thanks folks

Zach Harrison · · Flagstaff · Joined Jun 2008 · Points: 1,361

This almost looks like a 5 piece sleeve? They usually have little holes to accommodate  expansion, which you can hook into and pull the thing out.  Cutting a small positive notch into a flat head screwdriver is cheap and easy. Camming the thing against the sleeve and twisting increases its pulling friction.  

 
If this is a bolt with a non threaded cone and a threaded sleeve ( sometimes called self drive or drop in?) just funk the sleeve out with the threaded shaft. The sleeve is just hammered onto the cone but the cone isn't threaded onto the shaft, they have shit pull out power. Or get some needle nose vice grips since it sticks out a wee bit? Have fun and thanks for replacing garbage hardware.
GabrielKoybz · · Brooklyn · Joined Nov 2014 · Points: 698

Not a 5piece but that looks like a handy tool for removing 5piece sleeves.
Thanks for the ideas .

Mark Roth · · Boulder · Joined Jan 2008 · Points: 13,642

Redneck core drill: drill around it with a smaller bit to weaken it.  Screw the hanger back on and funk it out.  It'll be a bigger hole, but now you can patch it flush...

Paul Hutton · · Kansas City, MO · Joined Mar 2012 · Points: 740

I've heard of pulling tools working nicely. 

nbrown · · WNC/Broomfield, CO · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 6,890

If you can get your hands on a Hurley Jr tool (there seems to be a bunch floating around nowadays) and a short bit of 3/8" rod (to connect the sleeve to the puller) it should be removable if the rock isn't too ridiculously hard.

Bruce Hildenbrand · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2003 · Points: 1,200

I don't think what you have is a drop-in bolt.  Here is a video on how to install a drop-in bolt so you might be able to reverse engineer a way to get it out.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9mcwX70dxGw

I think what you have there, given the style of the hanger, is a self-drive bolt.

https://www.industrialhardware.com/skin1/pages/en/pdf/SelfDrillAnchor.pdf

The two types of bolts are similar in design.  Somehow you need to figure out a way to destroy the integrity of the pin inside the sleeve so you can pull out the bolt without destroying the rock around it.

Jonathan Croom · · Unknown Hometown · Joined May 2015 · Points: 391

Just out of curiosity, what kind of rock are you dealing with?

Somewhere I read a suggestion to try inserting a couple ball bearings, small enough for a loose clearance fit, then screw in a 3/8" bolt. Keep cranking on it, and hope that the bearings push out the cone with enough force to overcome the friction of the sleeve against the rock before anything binds up or breaks. I have not tried this method yet.

Post up if you have any success. 

GabrielKoybz · · Brooklyn · Joined Nov 2014 · Points: 698

I think you’re right Bruce , it may actually be a self drive .thanks for those resources.

I tried the ball bearing technique on the one pictured but just snapped the tool .
It’s hard granite .

Drew Nevius · · Oklahoma · Joined Jun 2012 · Points: 1,884

Might want to look at Gary Ballard’s removal method on pages 27-28 of the document linked below. No power tools required. To everyone saying “use a Hurley Jr”, that doesn’t work with drop-ins and self drills

http://texasmountaineers.com/docs/bolt_removal_process.pdf

nbrown · · WNC/Broomfield, CO · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 6,890
Drew Nevius wrote:To everyone saying “use a Hurley Jr”, that doesn’t work with drop-ins and self drills

I can assure you that it does. The CCC has removed a ton of drop-ins, using the very technique I mentioned, at Hidden Valley, VA. May not work in every rock type but it certainly works in some.

Drew Nevius · · Oklahoma · Joined Jun 2012 · Points: 1,884
nbrown wrote:

I can assure you that it does. The CCC has removed a ton of drop-ins, using the very technique I mentioned, at Hidden Valley, VA. May not work in every rock type but it certainly works in some.

Interesting. I was attempting this in hard limestone. I could imagine that it would work more easily in softer stone. Were you drilling out the cone first, or just removing the bolt/hanger then using the Hurley with the draw stud?

nbrown · · WNC/Broomfield, CO · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 6,890

Just remove the bolt and hanger, screw in the 3/8 rod (I just used one made from a sawed-off 3/8 wedge bolt), then yank. That rock is highly variable but much of it is hard sandstone.

Timothy Fisher · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2017 · Points: 0

It really will be helpful to distinguish between selfdrives and drop in. They a bit similar but very different. It the sleeve is sticking out like pictured it with most certainly be a hand drilled self drive. To use a Hurley or a much more powerful acme thread "do dad" you have to adapt to the thread of the self drive sleeve. They are typically 5/16", 8mm, 3/8, or 10mm. Penetrating oil is very helpful. I find the 8mm exasperating because some of them have very small diameter cones. That means you came only use a small diameter ball bearing

GabrielKoybz · · Brooklyn · Joined Nov 2014 · Points: 698

Timothy that’s helpful info, thank you. 

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

Fixed Hardware: Bolts & Anchors
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