ChopperAddict's Hints & Tips



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Tips & Tricks - How to remove bolts and screws that are thread locked in

I am sure that we have all had this experience, when stripping our aircraft down.

You have a tiny little hex cap bolt holding your flybar holder or whatever in place, and no matter what you try, the Allen Key or Hex Driver is just rounding itself and the cap bolt off.

This should only occur where the bolts are threaded into a CNC (Aluminium ) part, as thread lock should NOT be used in plastic threads. 

Well, one of the best ways I have found to get these recalcitrant bolts to move is to use that old faithful workshop tool, the Soldering Iron.  The more powerful it is the better, so a 40W iron or larger is ideal.

You also need to have a pointed bit, not a blade type bit.

Heat the iron right up, clean the tip, and then press the tip of the bit into the head of the cap bolt and hold it there for around a minute or so.  It may of course take longer on larger bolts.

Then try to move it again, even if only just slightly.  If it moves and then sticks again, reapply the bit to the bolt head and repeat until the bolt comes out relatively easily.

When you remove bolts that required this to remove them, always make sure to thoroughly clean the threads again BEFORE using the bolt again.

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