Broken camshaft bolt

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  • Broken camshaft bolt

    Broke camshaft bolt ... Still inside head
    While putting the last of 9 footlbs on my camshaft bolts after doing my valves the torkwrench malfunctioned and just as I realized ... Snap bolt broke.. What's the best way to get this bad boy out ?

  • #2
    Well, that depends. Do you have a picture?

    If the bolt shank is still sticking out and you can get to it maybe a set of needle nose vise grips, if that won't work maybe you could use a dremel to cut a slot and remove it with a screwdriver. If you go that route I'd make sure to use plenty of rags maybe soaked with something to catch any shavings and prevent them from getting into the engine. If both of those won't work because the bolt shank is flush or below the surface of the surrounding metal you could try using an easyout. The hardest part of that is making sure the drill is centered on the bolt. If you're referring to the bolt that holds the cover on I broke one as well. It was a real PITA and in the end I buggered up the hole for it. In the end, after removing the bolt I had to use a helicoil and some belzona to rebuild the hole so I could put the bike back together. Two years later and its still holding up well with no issues.
    Learn to ride your bike so your bike doesn't ride you....

    Comment: (For off-topic replies)


    • #3
      It is 1 of the 8 bolts that hold the camshaft in place, the threads for this start about 1/4" in the head and this is we're the bolt broke sothere is no way to get anything on broken bolt, will try and take picture but my computer for some reason can not log onto forum so using just my eye phone

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      • #4
        In that case it sounds like an easy out is the best option.
        Learn to ride your bike so your bike doesn't ride you....

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        • #5
          Yes will need to get so left hand dill bits and good quality easy outs

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          • #6
            I have had great luck in using left handed (Reverse) drill bits. 9ft pounds or slightly higher is not much. the drill bit grabs the stud and backs it out as it turns in reverse.

            The key is a good center punch. start with a very small bit and work your way out with larger bits. if the stud doesn't back out? you can get an easy out to back the remaining portion out after you weakened it's walls a bit with the drill bits.

            http://www.harborfreight.com/13-piec...set-95146.html
            http://www.harborfreight.com/12-piec...set-40349.html
            Life is Tough, But It's Tougher If You're Stupid: "John Wayne"

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Rocky View Post
              I have had great luck in using left handed (Reverse) drill bits. 9ft pounds or slightly higher is not much. the drill bit grabs the stud and backs it out as it turns in reverse.

              The key is a good center punch. start with a very small bit and work your way out with larger bits. if the stud doesn't back out? you can get an easy out to back the remaining portion out after you weakened it's walls a bit with the drill bits.

              http://www.harborfreight.com/13-piec...set-95146.html
              http://www.harborfreight.com/12-piec...set-40349.html
              Thanks Rocky, do you think that this bolt will have bottomed out? I did screw in another bolt to check by was hard to tell

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              • #8
                Hammer..."first"...I ask you to forgive me for what I am about to do, which is to jokingly give you a hard time, in your hour of need. This is "meant" to be funny, so please bear with me.

                How could anyone named Hammer be doing a technical job as fine as checking the valve clearances on these bikes....and not expect to break off a bolt head? If your name was Torque Wrench, or Soft-as-Silk, that would make sense...but the name Hammer ? You needed a more gentle tool.

                Next, this is just one reason why I say...do NOT waste time checking the valve clearances on these GL1800 engines. Rarely is there ever a valve out of clearance, and...things like this can happen.

                Okay....I got that out of my system, and again, I apologize for giving you a hammer time...er...meant...hard time.

                The advice given to you by USNRider and Rocky is right on line with what needs to be done. Those two guys are much nicer on a Sunday morning than I was.

                If the Torque Wrench failed....caused the bolt to tighten up "much" more than the intended 9 ft. lbs, then most likely the bolt did NOT bottom out, but broke off where the bolt shank meets the threaded portion of the bolt. Compare the broken bolt to a good bolt...one that is not broken. Is there a section of the bolt, upper section, close to the bolt head...where it is a shank...and there are NO threads ? Do the threads start down lower on the bolt?

                It would be a seriously anomoly for Honda to have a bolt that can bottom-out, while tightening it. I have never seen Honda do that before, so my guess would be that the broken bolt did NOT bottom-out.

                That means.....the remaining section of the bolt is NOT torqued in the hole with more than 9 ft. lbs. Which means, it "may" indeed be able to be removed by a left-handed drill bit, or...even "try" a straight-slot screw driver....a small one...and "try" unscrewing that bolt...gently....and see if it will gently turn "out".

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                • #9
                  I agree with trying left hand drill bits. I have had quite a bit of luck using them and even if it doesn't grab and back the broken bolt out, your next option is going to be an easy out and now you already have the hole drilled.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Hammer View Post

                    Thanks Rocky, do you think that this bolt will have bottomed out? I did screw in another bolt to check by was hard to tell
                    I highly doubt you bottomed out that bolt. The only way you can bottom out a bolt is if you use a non OEM bolt with longer threads than a OEM bolt has. (we know you didn't do that)

                    Manufactures leave a small margin of room under any bolt when a part is cast, because of when the threads are milled into the part.
                    The tap can't bottom out in the milling process or there is going to be issues. so they leave a little room at the bottom of the thread depth.

                    If you look in any closed end hole you'll see what I am saying.

                    Life is Tough, But It's Tougher If You're Stupid: "John Wayne"

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by MMR View Post
                      Hammer..."first"...I ask you to forgive me for what I am about to do, which is to jokingly give you a hard time, in your hour of need. This is "meant" to be funny, so please bear with me.

                      How could anyone named Hammer be doing a technical job as fine as checking the valve clearances on these bikes....and not expect to break off a bolt head? If your name was Torque Wrench, or Soft-as-Silk, that would make sense...but the name Hammer ? You needed a more gentle tool.

                      Next, this is just one reason why I say...do NOT waste time checking the valve clearances on these GL1800 engines. Rarely is there ever a valve out of clearance, and...things like this can happen.

                      Okay....I got that out of my system, and again, I apologize for giving you a hammer time...er...meant...hard time.

                      The advice given to you by USNRider and Rocky is right on line with what needs to be done. Those two guys are much nicer on a Sunday morning than I was.

                      If the Torque Wrench failed....caused the bolt to tighten up "much" more than the intended 9 ft. lbs, then most likely the bolt did NOT bottom out, but broke off where the bolt shank meets the threaded portion of the bolt. Compare the broken bolt to a good bolt...one that is not broken. Is there a section of the bolt, upper section, close to the bolt head...where it is a shank...and there are NO threads ? Do the threads start down lower on the bolt?

                      It would be a seriously anomoly for Honda to have a bolt that can bottom-out, while tightening it. I have never seen Honda do that before, so my guess would be that the broken bolt did NOT bottom-out.

                      That means.....the remaining section of the bolt is NOT torqued in the hole with more than 9 ft. lbs. Which means, it "may" indeed be able to be removed by a left-handed drill bit, or...even "try" a straight-slot screw driver....a small one...and "try" unscrewing that bolt...gently....and see if it will gently turn "out".
                      One needs to keep a sense of humour for sure ,Am not really the Hammer type but used that name from a friend of mine who has gone on the walk and is no longer with us and who know dout is getting a bit of a chuckle out of all this , love working on the wing and with 150,000 miles on my 01 it did need some valve adjustments... Just maybe not by me...
                      I did try drilling the broken bolt end to test its hardness.... No not the one in the bike ... and it was surprisingly soft also measured the bolt length with micrometer and as Rocky said it is not bottomed out ...it is OEM..not many options here , have got some helpful advice and moral support for sure from you guys
                      Thanks as I live in an isolated area it may be a few days before I can get the stuff needed to finish the job, will keep yea posted

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Hammer View Post
                        and as Rocky said it is not bottomed out ...
                        Hammer, sorry, but that no good Rocky gave you that piece of information one hour after I posted the same. Read above :tongueout;

                        Anyway, enough of the teasing. I have been exactly where you are right this minute, so I, and others, know what you are going through.

                        And...Rocky is really not a "no good". He is a do good.

                        Now, have you "tried" to take a small straight slot screwdriver and gently "turn" the threaded portion of the bolt that is still inside the head ? Might even take a very small "pick" tool, and try that as a way to grab a small protrusion of the broken off piece, and gently try to turn it.

                        The point here is that "IF" you can get that broken off piece to turn at all, and I mean...a nano movement...that is a very good sign, and it relieves a lot of your tension, because it tells you the broken off piece if not binding in the head. Many times I will take a small "pick" (sold at most automotive parts stores, Harbor Freight, Sears, Home Depot, etc, as a small kit of about 4 or 5 small angled picks) and see if I can gently move that broken piece, in the direction of turning it OUT. Any movement at all is a great sign. It doesn't have to turn a lot, to show you it can move. In the perfect world, it would start to turn, and then eventually rotate OUT, until it is removed from the head. But in this incidence, if it can be moved "at all"...even the slightest movement, that is a sign that it is not binded tight into the head. That means, it will either be able to be "screwed" out...or that you can use a reverse drill bit, or an easy out, and it will slowly screw out of the hole.

                        Take your time....use a very small "pick" or a very small straight slot screwdriver, and see if there is ANY movement.

                        Comment: (For off-topic replies)


                        • #13
                          I didn't read all of the posts in this thread but did see the one where Rocky mentions left hand twist drill bits.. I just want to second that. Those drill bits can save you a lot of time and effort.
                          Richard
                          Darksider #390
                          Murgie's FAQ

                          Comment: (For off-topic replies)


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by MMR View Post

                            Hammer, sorry, but that no good Rocky gave you that piece of information one hour after I posted the same. Read above :tongueout;

                            Anyway, enough of the teasing. I have been exactly where you are right this minute, so I, and others, know what you are going through.

                            And...Rocky is really not a "no good". He is a do good.

                            Now, have you "tried" to take a small straight slot screwdriver and gently "turn" the threaded portion of the bolt that is still inside the head ? Might even take a very small "pick" tool, and try that as a way to grab a small protrusion of the broken off piece, and gently try to turn it.

                            The point here is that "IF" you can get that broken off piece to turn at all, and I mean...a nano movement...that is a very good sign, and it relieves a lot of your tension, because it tells you the broken off piece if not binding in the head. Many times I will take a small "pick" (sold at most automotive parts stores, Harbor Freight, Sears, Home Depot, etc, as a small kit of about 4 or 5 small angled picks) and see if I can gently move that broken piece, in the direction of turning it OUT. Any movement at all is a great sign. It doesn't have to turn a lot, to show you it can move. In the perfect world, it would start to turn, and then eventually rotate OUT, until it is removed from the head. But in this incidence, if it can be moved "at all"...even the slightest movement, that is a sign that it is not binded tight into the head. That means, it will either be able to be "screwed" out...or that you can use a reverse drill bit, or an easy out, and it will slowly screw out of the hole.

                            Take your time....use a very small "pick" or a very small straight slot screwdriver, and see if there is ANY movement.
                            yea know what they say Great minds think alike...EH
                            Took your advice and used a very small pick to see if that succer would move er twist ...BY GOD IT DID!!!!!! AND AFTER 20 MINUTES OR SO THAT PUPPY IS OUTA THERE:woohoo:Thanks for the Tipand thanks to all for some good advice
                            and now on to the other head !

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                            • #15
                              Are you sure that your torque wrench only failed on the bolt you broke off? You my want to recheck all your work. If you have a beam type torque wrench you should be able reverse check. If it truely over torqued more bolts you may want to replace them.

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                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Hammer View Post
                                yea know what they say Great minds think alike...EH
                                Took your advice and used a very small pick to see if that succer would move er twist ...BY GOD IT DID!!!!!! AND AFTER 20 MINUTES OR SO THAT PUPPY IS OUTA THERE:woohoo:Thanks for the Tipand thanks to all for some good advice
                                and now on to the other head !

                                Hammer, that is EXCELLENT....I am very happy for you. YEAH !!!!!! :woohoo:

                                See, despite the hard time I gave you early in the day, ribbing you a little bit, my hard-earned experience doing these things myself...finally paid off. I am happy that it worked for you.

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                                • #17
                                  Yes rechecked everything and all is ok, the threads in the head look good no debris or damage, it just goes to show you its never the one thing that gets yea but rather a combination of things like faulty torque wrench Brain fart combo
                                  thanks again

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                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by sorcerer View Post
                                    Are you sure that your torque wrench only failed on the bolt you broke off? You my want to recheck all your work. If you have a beam type torque wrench you should be able reverse check. If it truely over torqued more bolts you may want to replace them.
                                    +1 here. I would start by replacing or recalibrating the torque wrench once you get the broke bolt out. And 9lbs is not much at all. Given the situation and that you really don't want a bolt to give way once you are running the engine again - it might just be best to put new bolts in.
                                    ...gene
                                    2012 GL1800 NAVI, GWRRA 367875
                                    Darkside #1511 - Bridgestone DriveGuard 195/55RV16 RFT

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                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by genedjr View Post

                                      +1 here. I would start by replacing or recalibrating the torque wrench once you get the broke bolt out. And 9lbs is not much at all. Given the situation and that you really don't want a bolt to give way once you are running the engine again - it might just be best to put new bolts in.
                                      ...gene
                                      New bolts and new "quality " dainty torque wrench made for the smalls ones on a wing of which there are many

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