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E-tec 50 shift rod screw stuck

 
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bmacpiper



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 8:22 pm    Post subject: E-tec 50 shift rod screw stuck Reply with quote

Hey all, hope you're getting out and enjoying some of the great weather (at least here in the PNW)!

After my recent electronic work, I'm now delving into lower units for gear oil and water pump kits. I have twin etec 50s, 2007 models.

I've removed everything I need to in order to drop the lower unit on the starboard engine, with the exception of the shift rod connection up in the motor head. It's a reasonably accessible screw/bolt, but it's very much stuck with some salt around it. Unfortunately, it's the type of fastener that is both a screw head and hex bolt head, and those always seem to have a slight taper on the hex sides, i.e. a socket doesn't get a good bite on it.

I've tried a socket with breaker bar, socket with an impact drill, screwdriver with a crescent wrench on the shaft (bent the screwdriver tip into an S, and it's Craftsman, i.e. not terrible quality), etc. and it will. not. budge. It very much has the feel of one of those times where, if I keep trying, I won't be at all surprised to twist off the head of the screw and leave the shaft in place. The socket I'm using (also Craftsman) has some smearing between points, and the bolt is surprisingly totally intact. It must be very hard metal, i.e. stainless perhaps.

Short of cutting the shift rod and replacing it, any great suggestions for loosening a salt-frozen fastener? I can't really get a torch in there, and all my good tricks are pretty much spent. Kroil? Salt Away? Dance around the moon at night with a bloody chicken?

Best and thanks as always.
Ben

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BrentB



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 8:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Any pics?

If cut, will it be easy to repair?

Maybe wrap with a rag and soak it with PB Blaster, Kroil or brake fluid, careful with all and soak it for a few days and make sure it stays wet

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BrentB



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 9:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are you able to clean the area thoroughly and remove surface rust?
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thataway



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 10:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Use a wire brush to get all of the corrosion and paint off. Keep soaking with Aero Kroil or PB blaster. I have used one of the very small micro torches on places like this--soak--clean up--hit with some heat. Soak again--try, repeat.. Generally eventually they come loose. Sure can be frustrating.

The newer Craftsman sockets and screw drivers are not what they used to be. Snap on or Mac might be a better choice. But for the one nut:

As I vision the problem, it is a set screw with a rod in a socket. If it were just a nut, then these are fairly easy to cut with a Dremel cut off sheet.

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bmacpiper



Joined: 03 Jun 2007
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey guys--
I can't do pics with Photobucket any longer (they no longer allow linking unless you pay $40/month, yeah right) and google pics don't display even when I add recommended extensions. Anyone have a good photo hosting site that's free and allows linking to forums, etc.?

Anyway--there is no surface rust, it's all just the white powder/salt. The actual nut/screw is very clean.

It is indeed a set screw in a block, with the rod inserted in the block. The rod seems to be flattened on the inserted end, and I'm guessing it must have a hole for the set screw to fit into--I can't imagine a set screw holding for very long on a flat face against shifting.

If I cut the rod, it would not be terrible to replace, just a matter of getting parts and adjusting the new rod. I think I might be able to get a Fein tool in there, but not sure if I can cut stainless with the blades I have. Perhaps a dremel wheel. It's fairly tight quarters though--accessible by socket with a 4-6" extension.

Agreed re: Craftsman now vs. 30 years ago, not even close to the same quality.

I'll look for the PB product and I have kroil already. The unusual part for me is the salt aspect--it's not "frozen" like rust, i.e. metal fusing together. It's more like it's jammed from the solids. I wonder if soaking with salt away solution might eventually dissolve some of it.

OK, talk soon.

bmc
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localboy



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2017 12:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rusted/stuck fasteners can be a real PIA. All the above have good suggestions. 1st, penetrating spray allowed to do it's job, then a good, strong torque tool, like a vice grip, to attempt to loosen it. Sometimes, just budging it/breaking if free and voila! 2nd, if no luck, heat. Even a small propane torch can work wonders, but requires care. 3rd, might require cutting the bolt to release pressure. My experience, from working on old cars, is a little heat goes a long way.

Once you do get it off, use some silver anti-sieze prior to re-assembly. It works wonders and is available at any auto parts store.

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Larry H



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2017 1:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are you sure you are trying to remove the correct screw?

Here is a page from the shop manual.

The screw that connects to the shift rod has a threaded portion and an un-threaded pilot that actually goes thru the shift rod hole. Since the screw is stainless in an aluminum 'block', corrosion is very possible. Heat the aluminum block to release the corrosion's grip on the SS screw threads.

If that fails, you might have to cut the aluminum block between the horizontally rotating shifter and the vertical shift rod.

If you cut the shift rod, the gearcase may have to be dismantled to replace the rod. If you don't have the special tools to dismantle and reassemble the gearcase, a dealer shop will have to do that job. If the shift rod is replaced, it must be adjusted to a specific height.

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BrentB



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2017 6:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="bmacpiper"]Hey guys--
I can't do pics with Photobucket any longer (they no longer allow linking unless you pay $40/month, yeah right) and google pics don't display even when I add recommended extensions. Anyone have a good photo hosting site that's free and allows linking to forums, etc.?



Ask the mods for a photo album then post pics from Drive

If pics are too large then resize them
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Wandering Sagebrush



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2017 7:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

BMC, I like Flickr. It's free, but for $30/year, you can be ad free. You can also load directly into an album here on CBrats. If you post photos on more than one forum, something like Flickr would be your best option...
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bmacpiper



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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 10:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, a followup for posterity.

The short version: all is well and we got out again on Sat/Sun for crab.

The long version: am I ever glad for the list, and for decades of working on old VWs.

The stuck fastener was on the starboard motor. My niece is visiting from CO for two weeks, so all decisions to proceed or not were made against that backdrop: "If I break the fastener, we can't get out at all", vs. "Water pump service is long overdue, do I dare go out without doing the service?"

Per recommendations here, I used the PB product, as well as getting the small creme brle torch from the kitchen. I also used an old BMW motorcycle trick--there was a very thin nut on the old /5 that required you to grind the face of a socket really flat, so the socket could get every last bit of bite on the nut (there's a slight rounding at the face of most sockets). So I ground a 3/8 flat, and after heat and PB, it came loose right away.

I proceeded to finish the service on the starboard engine (water pump kit, lower gear oil, lube drive splines above and below) and reinstalled. No sweat. The old impeller was perfectly fine--pliable and no cracks, etc. Still glad to have done the work.

Having found the winning combination, I started on the port engine. I proactively applied PB and heat, and grabbed the flat 3/8 socket. I gave it one tug, not hard at all, and the screw/bolt head twisted right off. Magnification showed a clear defect in the metal. At this point, I called Kitsap Marina, by some miracle they had the fastener in stock, and sent my niece and son on their way to get it while I started to drill.

Using a center punch, I managed to get a hole started almost dead center, but not quite. I have the big Irwin set of drills/taps/dies and the drilling was taking forever. Without exaggeration, I spent nearly an hour and had only gotten about 1/4" with a small bit. It never occurred to me that the bits in a tap and die set would not be ideal for metal! Anyway, I did break off one bit in the hole (crap!) but managed to back it out with an ice pick--I stuck a rare earth magnet on the side of the pick, and then rotated the bit backwards, it eventually came out, stuck to the magnetized ice pick.

At some point I decided "to hell with this" and tried my super-cheapo Craftsman bits, and go figure, they worked like a dream! I had the hole drilled all the way in about 5 minutes' time. As I went to enlarge, I started pushing sideways a little to try to center the hole better, and of course, snapped off a much larger bit, now 1/2" deep in the hole. After several failed attempts with needle nose, etc., my eyes fell on my stained glass bench, and a pile of thin horseshoe nails. I put one nail into each groove of the broken bit, and then twisted them counterclockwise to make a perfect extraction tool--the bit backed right out, and the magnet and needle nose finished the job. As my dad always said, "Better lucky than good."

Next I used a long thin punch in the drilled hole to break off the end of the fastener--it's a bolt with threads by the head only, and then a smooth shaft that fits through the shift rod, so the rod can rotate smoothly on it. I had drilled out to the edge of that smooth part, so it was easy to knock it out of there. Now the only thing holding the shift rod was the thin shell of the fastener, so with a couple of good yanks, that shell sheared off and the lower unit was free.

From there, I took the block (that the fastener was stuck in) over to the bench, and worked out the hole a bit better. I had estimated the size of the fastener, but thought I'd better stop drilling. My niece returned with the new screw, and sure enough, it was smaller than I remembered. My hole was just the right size; any bigger and I'd have made it too big to retap. I did try several times to back out the remaining metal from the old fastener with an EZOut, but no luck. I finally used the tap to make new threads, and literally cut new threads into the small crescent moon of the old fastener's remains! That is some serious "stuck" when it didn't even come out with a tap cutting through it.

The last question mark was whether the new hole would be close enough to center to allow the screw to hit its mark on the far side of the block. I threaded it in, and the rounded tip of the screw did hit the block, but then deflected nicely into place.

Completed the lower unit service on that motor, and reassembled. On the water, I did feel that shifting into reverse on that motor was just a hair off, so I may still replace the block with the off-center hole, or maybe just adjust the shift rod instead.

You can imagine I was very pleased with myself--there were lots of failure points along the way, but the patience of a few grey hairs did allow me to keep after it, using just about every trick I've ever learned from old cars and bikes. It of course feels good to come out on top after all that! The crabbing is pretty weak here this year, but we did manage two very nice Dungys that fed five of us--we had crab rolls and also some oysters and everyone was satisfied.

Thanks as ever for the ideas. Best to all from the sunny (!) northwest.

Ben
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BrentB



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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 11:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow, great job and thanks for posting an update
GOT er done determination

Probably too late but food for thought is to apply a good layer of
Teflon paste to each item. I like Tef-Gel

http://www.tikal-online.de/products/tef-gel-anti-corrosion/?gclid=CjwKCAjwtdbLBRALEiwAm8pA5WUl9oHbdAXjKthuWWZ59r5Btff236zaXHTUFm3bo--q9clU_lA0DBoCpX0QAvD_BwE

Wear dispo gloves when applying to parts
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bmacpiper



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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 11:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Forgot to mention, I did put anti seize on everything.
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thataway



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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 5:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great job, and thanks for the follow up. Glad you ended up getting out! Sure is nice when a plan comes together...!
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localboy



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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 6:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
The long version: am I ever glad for the list, and for decades of working on old VWs


This warms my cockles. Wink Cool
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bmacpiper



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 10:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Larry H wrote:
Are you sure you are trying to remove the correct screw?



Hey Larry! Not sure why, but I didn't see your post before. Yes, the screw with the smooth pilot was in fact the one that was stuck. Thanks for taking the time to post the manual page!

Talk soon,
bmc
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