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Lifetime Member
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am doing a few mods and just finished drilling out my third bolt. It seems that all the bolts especially the allen heads are single use. What's your experience?
 

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Registered USDA
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4,229 Posts
Make sure you are using the correct size allen key / socket. A US size may fit in a metric slot but when you put pressure on it thats it say goodnight. Also tap you allen key or socket in to make sure it sets all the way. It is real easy to strip them if this is not done. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Always using the metrics and the correct size. It just seems that they round out very easily.
 

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Tired of the crap
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I've had a couple of fasteners on the V-Rod that were challenging to get out - but most seem to go in and out without stripping.

Obviously some fasteners are (designed to be) single use - head bolts and those on the rotors come to mind.

I'll sympathise with the frustration created by stripping a screw head - but I'll not join in the chorus of "cheap Harley bolts" that seems to gain currency on this, and other H-D, forums.

From an engineering standpoint, you don't want a screw or bolt to be too hard. Make a screw so hard that it can't be stripped - and chances are you'll end up snapping it off because it is so brittle. If you've ever tried removing a snapped hardened stainless screw, you'll understand the wisdom of this last statement.

My advice to avoid stripped screws remains the same: Make sure you've got the right size and type of removal tool. Clean (and chase) threads when replacing fasteners. Use the appropriate threadlocker or anti-seize where needed. Apply penetrating oil and/or heat when encountering stubborn fasteners - and, most importantly, do not rush.
 

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1130cc Ninja
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knock on wood... i have been lucky so far with not stripping any out
 

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LIUNARep said:
Always using the metrics and the correct size. It just seems that they round out very easily.
The biggest problem I had when stripping fastners was rushing. I didn't make sure the socket was seated or I did not make sure to hold the socket level with the fastner head. The 2nd is real easy to do. You may not be kneeling down to where the fastner is and the socket cocks just enough to screw you so to speak.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I defintely have a rushing issue!!!! Pardon my ignorance for just a moment but what is this chasing that you guys speak of? Also I have vice grips on what remains of one bolt at the bottom of the lower legs and it still won't budge, any ideas?
 

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VRSCRT
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193 Posts
get a good torque wrench and tighten the fasteners to H-D specs per the service manual. if you have a 1/2 inch or more of stud sticking out you could use a stud puller, or you can protect the lower leg and weld a nut onto the broken bolt and extract it with a wrench or socket.
 

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Pan American Son of VROD :-)
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I bought a set of straight sticks this week because I stripped the heads on half a dozen allen heads taking them off with ball end allen keys. I replaced all of the bolts with new Grade 8 hardware.

Yes...I think the majority of them are single use.
 

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LIUNARep said:
I defintely have a rushing issue!!!! Pardon my ignorance for just a moment but what is this chasing that you guys speak of? Also I have vice grips on what remains of one bolt at the bottom of the lower legs and it still won't budge, any ideas?
If the bolts were torqued over HD spec the threads can damage; then on the way out the damaged threads cause even more damage every turn and eventually freeze up - real bad situation because the only way out is for the threads to go bye bye on the weakest part. Also chemical reactions between different metals over time can cause similar situations. Aluminum is so prone to this happening - thread grease is super important on these parts. Good luck and pray the bolt is the ruined part; but, don't count on it...
 

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Greg/Moderator
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LIUNARep said:
I definitely have a rushing issue!!!! Pardon my ignorance for just a moment but what is this chasing that you guys speak of? Also I have vice grips on what remains of one bolt at the bottom of the lower legs and it still won't budge, any ideas?
The correct tap or die will work to clean the threads. Chasing dies are made to clean threads not to cut new ones.

Don't know if anyone makes a chasing tap ?????????
 

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You are just a stud, DJ. Back off on the steroids prior to final assembly... Hope to see the bike back together soon.
 

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Dilligaf
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Yes the moco bolts seem to be one time use, they suck!
 

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Registered USDA
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LIUNARep said:
I defintely have a rushing issue!!!! Pardon my ignorance for just a moment but what is this chasing that you guys speak of? Also I have vice grips on what remains of one bolt at the bottom of the lower legs and it still won't budge, any ideas?
Yep I stripped those out. Get a dremel tool & cut the head off allowing you to drop the bottom axle holder. The remaining stud will come out by hand. Ask me how I know. Take my advice & you will be fine.
 

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Color me Gone
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Maybe not what you mean but yes some of the bolts in the engine are stretch bolts and designed to only be used a single time. Head bolts and the four main case bolts should not be used more then once. They are angle torque bolts that stretch the first time they are torqued. Using them more then a single time can result in improper torque specs.
 

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Max said:
Maybe not what you mean but yes some of the bolts in the engine are stretch bolts and designed to only be used a single time. Head bolts and the four main case bolts should not be used more then once. They are angle torque bolts that stretch the first time they are torqued. Using them more then a single time can result in improper torque specs.
The manual will tell you that they have to be replaced. The front disk brake bolts & sprocket bolts have to be replaced. I'm not sure why. I did compare them to the new ones and noticed that the end of the bolt is concave on the new ones and flat or protruding on the ones I removed.
 

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I cant take the sissy bar off my base-plate/luggage rack due to a stripped bolt. I just haven't had the time to drill it out. It is a pain in the @$$. Ever notice its usually the last bolt that strips? I was one bolt away from removing the bar. Now my Sundowner just looks weird from the back of the bike since I don't have the baseplate installed.
 

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mystic1221 said:
I cant take the sissy bar off my base-plate/luggage rack due to a stripped bolt. I just haven't had the time to drill it out. It is a pain in the @$$. Ever notice its usually the last bolt that strips? I was one bolt away from removing the bar. Now my Sundowner just looks weird from the back of the bike since I don't have the baseplate installed.
Had the same Problem.. Stripped 2 allen head bolts trying to put the stupid sissy bar on... I actually found shavings in the threaded side of the base plate :mad: Ended up taking a Torx Set to it and hammering it in to the stripped bolt, and got lucky and pulled them out. Went down to Harbor Fake, bought a 40 dollar Tap & Die set, re tapped the Holes, and Re Chased the Bolts, and now its smooth sailing!! You think Harley would have a little bit better quality control :chair:
 

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1130cc.comaholic
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13,241 Posts
I finally gave up on trying to get my rear fender off, I had it off before and was going to do it again and the bolts holding the baseplate to the fender are stuck, one of these days I'll cut it off and get it out somehow and buy new bolts :thumb:
 
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