Swingarm Bolt - Help I can't get it out!!!

19 replies to this topic
  • S_Phillips

Posted July 02, 2002 - 04:00 AM


I just got the shock/forks rebuilt for my 92-CR250

Before putting the new susp. in I'm trying to replace the bearings in the swingarm and linkage.
It was very stiff!!

I was able to get the linkage off quite easily but I can't get the swingarm bolt out.

I pounded on that thing all nite last nite with an impact socket and a 4 lb. hammer.
I don't think it moved an 1/8 of an inch. I did drop some oil in hopefully to loosen it up
but didn't seem to help much.

My next approach was to take the wheel/brake assembly off and lay the bike on it's side, drop more oil in, and work the swingarm up and down for awhile and beat on it some more???

Would applying heat to the Aluminum swingarm be OK???

Hate to apply too much heat, cause the bolt runs through the cases.

If this doesn't work I'm stumped. Can one cut through the bolt with a hack saw to get it off??

Any tips would greatly be appreciated.
I'm going to post this on a couple of the other forums for hints too.
:D :) :D

  • John_Lorenz

Posted July 02, 2002 - 04:13 AM


What you need to do is apply a little heat

Here is a good link to doing this with the proper tool

Hope it helps

removing swing arm bolts from Hondas

[ July 02, 2002: Message edited by: E.G.O.**** ]

  • acarter920

Posted July 02, 2002 - 04:19 AM


lol @ ego... I gotta get me one of them.

One idea you might try is to get a socket and wrench on the bolt and turn that to the left while you pound on the other side. Or have someone pound on the other side while you turn it.

I know a lot of gunk and grime gets in that pivot point. Sometimes the bolt will actually thread into the grime and you are able to unscrew it like its threaded. Just an idea... :)

  • S_Phillips

Posted July 02, 2002 - 04:25 AM


EGO - HAHAHA yea that did help, my mood anyway :)

acarter920 - That is a great idea but the way "Honda" did the head of that bolt it has
a flat side on it. and the flat side is sunk into the tube so there is no way to turn the bolt itself until it comes out about 3/4 of an inch.

Anybody every use the hack saw idea? :D :D

thanks for your replies guys

  • John_Lorenz

Posted July 02, 2002 - 04:27 AM


forgot to add:

have you tried instead of oil a penitrating oil rust buster?
Warming the pentitrating oil up past room temp will help it seep down..

Dont over heat it room temp and slightly above

Glad I could make ya laugh at it sounded pretty frustrated

[ July 02, 2002: Message edited by: E.G.O.**** ]

  • S_Phillips

Posted July 02, 2002 - 04:30 AM


EGO - I did try a little WD40 but had very little left in the can. Guess I'll stop by on the way home today and pick up some.

Is WD40 the best Rust Penetrator out there?

  • sirthumpalot

Posted July 02, 2002 - 04:39 AM


Do you have an air impact wrench? Let the wd-40 or 3-in-one oil soak in for a while (couple of hours or overnight) and then hit it with the impact gun. I would be surprised if that doesn't do it. I would avoid heat if possible.

  • S_Phillips

Posted July 02, 2002 - 04:42 AM


SIRTHUMPALOT - Yea I have an impact wrench but i was able to get the nut off.
Do they make a hand held air impact hammer type thingy??

  • John_Lorenz

Posted July 02, 2002 - 04:50 AM


There is a better penittratng oil then WD, DOnt recal the name, but the local auto or hardware store will have it.

"Liquid Wrench"
Remembered the name
use that, as thumpy says let it soak over night saturate the intire bolt...............

  • S_Phillips

Posted July 02, 2002 - 04:56 AM


EGO - Ahhhh Liquid Wrench Will try that tonite and see what happens. Thanks

Visit the ThumperTalk Store for the lowest prices on motorcycle / ATV parts and accessories - Guaranteed
  • baxterj787

Posted July 02, 2002 - 04:56 AM


The hacksaw technique will be difficult at best, due to the tight fitment between the frame and swingarm and the swingarm and motor. The swingarm bearings actually ride on hardened steel collars, and those don't cut too easily. As you mentioned, an impact gun wouldn't do any good because of the design of the swingarm pivot bolt "head".

Try laying the bike on it's side (left side down, obvoiusly), taking care not to crush the LH radiator. Find a good soft punch and a BIG hammer. 4 lb will not be enough. If you can, find a second helper to hold the punch with a set of vice-grips, so their hands are at a safe distance away, and use a small sledge.

Worst case: (I've had to do this once, since then, swingarm pivot greasing has been critical to me) strip the entire bike, leaving the frame, motor, and swingarm. Find someone with a generously sized hydraulic press, and insert the bike into the press. Be sure to brace the left side frame tube at the swingarm pivot, otherwise you could bend the frame. 2 tons of hydraulic pressure should coax the bolt out.

Message to anyone reading this post, and not intended as a rant toward anyone: When greasing the swingarm pivot, you need to grease the bolt, remove the bearing collars, grease the needle bearings, grease the collars, and put it all bakck together. If the seals are in good shape, the whole shebang should last 10 years or so.

  • S_Phillips

Posted July 02, 2002 - 05:03 AM


baxterj787 -
Now there something I didn't think about. Pressing it out. But GAWD!! I hope it doesn't come to that. What a job....

I would worry since the bolt is hollow the bolt might colapse on itself?? Thoughts?

I should have done this Before I sunk that $500.00 bucks into have the susp. completely rebuilt.

  • baxterj787

Posted July 02, 2002 - 05:08 AM


S Phillips, I had to do the hydraulic press trick once on a '91 CR250 with a hollow bolt. It wasn't enough pressure to completely collapse the bolt, but I was using this as a last resort before getting out the cutting torch...

Good luck

  • S_Phillips

Posted July 02, 2002 - 05:15 AM



S Phillips, I had to do the hydraulic press trick once on a '91 CR250 with a hollow bolt. It wasn't enough pressure to completely collapse the bolt, but I was using this as a last resort before getting out the cutting torch...

Oh so you feel my pain :)
And you know what I just remembered, my bike is a 91!! I've been calling it a 92 for years.
I'll go change my sig now too. :D :D

If the motor wasn't so strong on that I wouldn't even bother but it is.....

  • Boit

Posted July 02, 2002 - 05:38 AM


The first thing that came to mind when I read the headliner was the solution offered by SirThumpalot. I would set the impact wrench at its lowest torque setting and hammer on that nut/bolt assembly. If it doesn't loosen up pretty quickly, you have a problem. At this point, you might want to load the frame into your vehicle and mosey on down to a quality machine shop. Try to avoid doing something radical that might damage your frame beyond repair. Call the shop ahead of time.

  • sirthumpalot

Posted July 02, 2002 - 06:09 AM


Second thought. I still like the air-impact gun idea. If the nut on that side of the bolt is shaped such that an impact socket doesn't do much good (as baxter suggests), then move the impact gun to the bolt head on the other side of the bike (I learned this working on rusted out boat trailers). Be sure to hold the nut with a socket on a big wrench then let it rip. That should do 2 things. First it will loosen the nut, and second it will spin the bolt which should loosen it a bit if it's rusted or corroded in place. You "should" be able to get it out after that. If not, then just let the impact gun spin the bolt over a few times and it will hopefully loosen right up.

My only other ideas are a breaker bar wrench (very long socket wrench) which may be stronger than a air-wrench, but you may strip the edges off of the nut if you're not using a quality socket. In this case you must resort to either drilling the nut off, or using a dry chisel or punch to loosen the nut, which works good but those swingarm nuts are sometimes very hard to get to and there's lots of room for error (and broken fingers). Wear goggles!

As for penetrating oil, I really like the 3-in-one oil. It may help to get the nut warm (NOT HOT!) before putting the oil on. I try to avoid "hot" heat on aluminum at all costs.


Posted July 02, 2002 - 07:46 AM


WD-40 is good so is Liquid Wrench but the best I have seen yet is....PB Blaster...it is a penetrating type of spray oil whatever you want to call it. It should be avail. at your local hardware store probably on the same shelf as the WD-40. Use that, let it soak overnight and I mean saturate that thing spray it till it runs over then do it again a couple of times. That stuff works great and if I remember correctly it is non flammable, a little heat probably wouldn't hurt but I would be very careful. my 2 cents, Frank

  • S_Phillips

Posted July 02, 2002 - 08:24 AM


FastFrank -
Thanks for the info wouldn't ya know it though.
I just got back from the auto parts store and picked up WD and Liquid. That other stuff was right beside it. But never heard of it so left it there.

I appreciate everyones post. I intend on posting the results and what it took to get it out later.

  • Wyatt

Posted July 02, 2002 - 11:00 AM


WD-40 is not a good penetrating oil. It is a lubricant and water dispersant (hence the name).

Get a designated penetrating oil such as liquid wrench or so'k.

  • S_Phillips

Posted July 10, 2002 - 08:20 AM


SUCCESS!!!! :D :)

Thanks to "ALL" for giving thoughts and ideas. I probably used/tried each and every one.

But here is what worked.....For Me.......

Took the engine mounting bolts loose, tire off, etc.

I cut off the sloted side of the bolt using a drill and a air grinder.
Stuck an EZ out inside the bolt. Put socket over the EZ out. Air impact
wrench on socket. Starting out the bolt would barely turn. So I reversed the
direction of the wrench. Each time the bolt would turn a littler further.

Also while doing this I would put liquid wrench on it and smack the other side with
the 4 lb. hammer.

Well even though I got it turning quite freely it was not coming out any further.

Tried the air impact hammer but it didn't help either.

After about 10 min. of turning with the EZ and stopping to apply liquid wrench, it got quite loose.
But still wouldn't move from side to side.
It was midnite and I was completely pissed by now..... One last blow I said this time with a 2 handed
homerun swing I hit it.

Ahhhhhhhaaaa It moved a 1/4 of an inch!!!! :D but no more as I hit is some more.
I applied more Liquid Wrench and turned some more with impact wrench and EZ out.
And then hit it again. It moved a 1/4 inch again but no more. Kept repeating the above method
and finally got it out 2 1/2 hours later...........

After finally getting the bolt out I realized that even with all the attempt to lubricate. The bolt was still
dry on the left side. Yes i had turned the bike on both it's side tryin to let it seep down in there.

One of the bearings on the left side were completely gone execept for the race. The others
would just crumble with a little pressure.

Getting the races out of one side wasn't bad using a socket of similar size and hammer. However
the other side I had to use the air grinder with a small bit to grind across the race until I just touched
the aluminum. After that use something small to slide under race and pry a little this loosened up enough
so that socket with hammer popped it right out.

I hope this and the links below helps others out that may need it.

Here are links to the other forums that I posted this on.




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