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Unread 06-11-2008, 12:55 AM   #1
TyJeep
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1998 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: May 2008
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Fender flare threaded insert problems

Trying to take off my fender flares since they wont pass safety, tire sticks out to far. But I'm having a problem with the bolts that go into the threaded insert. No matter how much i turn they don't budge. No amount of heat, WD-40, or PB blaster would release it either. They just spun and went nowhere. I even reached up inside and grabbed the little bit there is of them with a pair of vice grips but they still just spun.

Anyone have any ideas on how to get them out? I'm running out of time on my plates.

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Unread 06-11-2008, 10:35 AM   #2
DeL2000
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Which flares are your trying to remove, the front, rear or rocker?
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Unread 06-11-2008, 10:56 AM   #3
M.DURITZ
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not even pliers work? the only other thing to do would just strip the bolt right out of there. some of those threaded should be plastic. just yank em out
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Unread 06-11-2008, 10:57 AM   #4
FLATFENDER54
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What size tires do you have? Can you take to somewhere else and see if you will pass?
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Unread 06-11-2008, 11:25 AM   #5
BlueFlame
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borrow some stockers for inspection...

There's 2 types of retainers. Most of the screws have plastick "nuts" on the back that you must grab. There are a few nutserts though, and those can be a pain. Accessing the rear and grabbing them with pliers seems to be the common method. (Mine weren't rusty, not one spun.)
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Unread 06-11-2008, 12:24 PM   #6
kevin_dubay00
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When you reach up in the body while you are spinning the bolt from the outside what happens? If the outside is spinning then you aren't grabbing it right with the vice grips. If it is rusted together it is not going to spin.

I had the same problem. I had to go buy smaller vice grips so I could really get them in there and you can feel the part of the bolt they need to go on just get the vice grips on it so that when it turns it is going to do about a 1/4 turn then the vice grips will not be able to turn any more and voila`.

The really fun one is the front top one closest to the cab, It's way up there (hopefully those are good to you). Funniest thing when I was trying to do it with the big vice grips I just couldn't get sufficient pressure with one hand to lock the vice grips tight enough so I squeezed my other hand in and got it locked but my arms were stuck I panicked for like half a second then realized I got them in I can get them out and freaking out wasn't going to help.

Hopefully this helps what I thought was going to be an easy 1 1/2 hour job turned into a 5 hour job.
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Unread 06-11-2008, 01:49 PM   #7
DeL2000
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kevin_dubay00 View Post
When you reach up in the body while you are spinning the bolt from the outside what happens? If the outside is spinning then you aren't grabbing it right with the vice grips. If it is rusted together it is not going to spin.

I had the same problem. I had to go buy smaller vice grips so I could really get them in there and you can feel the part of the bolt they need to go on just get the vice grips on it so that when it turns it is going to do about a 1/4 turn then the vice grips will not be able to turn any more and voila`.

The really fun one is the front top one closest to the cab, It's way up there (hopefully those are good to you). Funniest thing when I was trying to do it with the big vice grips I just couldn't get sufficient pressure with one hand to lock the vice grips tight enough so I squeezed my other hand in and got it locked but my arms were stuck I panicked for like half a second then realized I got them in I can get them out and freaking out wasn't going to help.

Hopefully this helps what I thought was going to be an easy 1 1/2 hour job turned into a 5 hour job.

I know where your coming from, just replaced my flares with Bushwackers and talk about a task just to remove the old flares. It took some time especially the rear flares, as it's pretty tight to get to those plastic nutserts. Used a needlenose pliers to hold them in place as I turn the bolt from the outside.

I had one bad bolt insert in the rocker which was completely worn and all it did was turn, I had to pry the metal insert out and replace with a new insert.

Didn't expect a simple remove of flares becoming a complicated job. Nevertheless, be prepared to get dirty and sore fingers.
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3 Lift and 1.5 BL
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Unread 06-11-2008, 05:59 PM   #8
TyJeep
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Tires are 35" and stick out over 6". They are really cracking down on shops that will slide you by. The guys i go to have always let me by in the past but since they are cracking down and the shop across the street lost their license to do safety and I/M they aren't letting anyone slide.

When i grab onto the back side i can't turn the front, even with an impact drill. And the bolt heads are starting to strip. I took out my pry bar and popped out the ones that don't have the black plastic nut on the back. On the first one I put it in the bench vise and couldn't even get it to move. To put the new flares on I used some sheet metal screws that were slightly bigger then the hole left by the nutsert to attach the flares where I couldn't get to the back side.

New flares are on now. They are the 6" bushwackers. And i passed safety and I/M. For those needing mud flaps i found them here. http://www.trailflap.com/Mudflaps.html
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Unread 06-12-2008, 12:58 PM   #9
BlueFlame
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Often, with things like that if you grip it too tight with vice grips or a bench vise, they'll never turn - you're crushing them tighter. It's a real pain getting a grip without too much grip...

Nutserts are such a bad idea. Wait till you try to drop your skidplate....
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