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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Front Strut Pinch Bolt Stuck 2002 Focus SE (sedan) CHEAP SOLUTION

So last week the front passenger spring broke at the bottom due to a mixture of potholes and what seems to be a really bad bearing on the top strut mount. I put the car up on some jack stands, soaked the bolts I needed to remove in some PB Blaster and let it sit for a while and started pulling everything apart, stabilizer link bar came of easily, went for the pinch bolt which was already visually a nightmare, after many tries with 6 points and even extractor sockets I was unable to remove it and ended up with a mutilated bolt. Since the bolt was not budging with pipe wrenches, MAPP Torch, sledge hammer, I decided an extractor bit was way out of the question as it was almost guaranteed to break off. I have so far drilled an 1/8 "pilot hole". So what my question would be is since the bolt is threaded right to the knuckle, would it be okay for me to just drill out the "pilot hole" larger to the threads (which I'm almost positive will get destroyed) to put an 8 Grade Nut And Bolt into as a replacement? This is unfortunately for BOTH sides [?|]
 

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I would go for a bit that is smaller then the threads.
 

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w/ my magic bag
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If you have some money, junkyard knuckles are another option.

Toby
Yea, it'd be a great time to upgrade your brakes to the later ones. If possible, look for a pr of '05 only spindles & then you use the 10.9'' brakes or the svt 300mm setup. You'd need the bigger '05+ ball joints or the '05 A-arms too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Okay.... so after shearing off a cobalt bit inside of the nut, it looks like I'm at a loss. I decided to see how well the lower pinch bolts were holding on the steering knuckle, and to my amazement it came loose! My next step is to locate some front steering knuckles to just avoid this mess I've gotten myself into....[?|][?|]
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Final Solution...

Okay, sorry for taking so long on figuring this out. We bought another car which needed a complete brake over-haul from the booster all the way to brand new hardware on the rears (everything was rusted and falling apart). Today I was able to find somebody that had a cutting torch, had him come in and start cutting through a bolt on one side. After about 7 minutes of cutting he decided he did not want to risk loosing the knuckle so he just cut off the bolt heads to relieve the pressure on the whole pinch part of the knuckle itself so that we would then be able to hammer the knuckle off of the old strut (A SHIMMER OF HOPE). After that I just used my bits to easily boar out the scorching hot, soft metal bolt (We tried loosening the bolt after getting it cherry red, then letting it slightly cool, did not budge at all). Now even though I failed at making a straight boar through the bolt itself I was able to at least get a hole somewhat straight through and drilled the whole up to something like 3/8" I think, and purchased some 3/8" grade 8 steel bolts and nuts that were something like 2 1/2" long (Again, i think... Just make sure your new hole and bolts match). Now AFTER I have done all of my drilling and have made sure my bolt will slide ALL OF THE WAY through, I pulled the new bolt back out then took a metal grinder and cut the remaining edge of the old bolt in between the pinch that would prevent the new strut from correctly setting in the knuckle. From there it's just a matter of pulling out the old piece of crap strut and replacing it with the new one, reassembling and using the normal torque specs as far as tightening the new bolt goes. Good luck to anybody else who is having as much trouble as I. Also, if you think you do not know anybody resourceful, as I did when I first starting running into my major issues, you are probably wrong. Just ask around, ask a neighbor, a co-worker, even a frequent customer of mine loaned tools and knowledge, so you'd be surprised. It CAN be done.
 

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3/4" would be a bit large.....

Sure you don't mean 3/8"??
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
3/4" would be a bit large.....

Sure you don't mean 3/8"??
See, I had actually initially put 3/8" then edited the post to 3/4". After making it back to the shop today i quickly realized it was 3/8".... Sorry about that, editing post.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
For anybody who is wondering why I did not go with some junkyard knuckles, when I went to take the hub nuts off it was quickly realized that they had actually been pressed and set in over time, so taking those off would be a whole separate can of worms....
 
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