2002 Dodge Neon Lower Control Arm

Tiny
MAERC
  • MEMBER
  • 2002 DODGE NEON
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 115,000 MILES
While trying to remove the bolt to replace the passenger side lower control arm, the nut that's welded inside the frame broke loose. It's boxed inside the frame and rusted to the bolt, so the bolt just spins.

How do we get the bolt out, short of cutting a hole in the frame big enough to get a wrench in?


http://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/215656_c_1.jpg

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Saturday, July 19th, 2008 AT 5:12 PM

2 Replies

Tiny
NEONCOREY
  • MEMBER
Did you ever get this fixed with out cutting the frame and what not?

I am changing the bushings currently and I am using a 1/2" torque wrench with a pipe for more leverage and I am 2 secs from snapping the bolt it feels. Both sides are just as tight. 1/2 inch air gun isn't touching it so we resorted to the pipe on the end of a torque wrench and got it about 1/4 of the way out but now I am hitting a wall as it is so tight I think it might snap the bolt.

There has to be a trick.I don't want it to snap and have to cut the frame and everything. Any help would be greatley appreciated.

Thanks Corey
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Sunday, April 5th, 2009 AT 2:58 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
These nuts have a strip of metal spot welded to them to act as a wrench. That's what breaks loose and lets the nut spin. When you do manage to get the bolt part way out but then it gets tight it's because rust on the threads is getting inside the nut. Any professional would stop instantly, apply a spray lubricating grease, then run the bolt back in to bring the grease into the threads in the nut. Continuing to try to unscrew a bolt that gets tighter and tighter is just asking for disaster.

The trick is to reach inside the frame opening with a wire feed welder to tack the metal strap back onto the nut. As soon as that is done, you turn the bolt before the nut has had a chance to cool. As the nut cools and shrinks, the bolt will get harder to turn. At that point, you can reheat the nut with a small flame from an acetylene torch to expand it. Don't waste your time trying to do this with a propane torch. The flame is way too big, the temperature is too low, and you'll just make the nut mad!

Caradiodoc
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Tuesday, April 7th, 2009 AT 10:14 AM

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