How To Remove Nuts & Bolts For Full Size Jeeps

Posted by Adam McDaniel on Sep 15th 2023

How To Remove Nuts & Bolts For Full Size Jeeps

Looking to remove nuts and bolts safely from your legendary Full Size Jeep? In this tutorial Adam will walk you through exactly how to do just that!  

How To Remove Nuts & Bolts for Full Size Jeeps

(Video Transcript). 

The last Grand Wagoneer that rolled off the assembly line was in 1991. A lot of people driving the vehicles now are not as old as the vehicles, which is cool that we are continuing to save the Full Size Jeep. 

With that being said, time takes its toll on nuts and bolts and pretty much everything. A lot of times when we go to take these nuts and bolts off, they break, they strip, they rip. I mean, there's just a whole plethora of issues that pop up when you go to pull it off. Right now, I'm going to let you know that that doesn't always have to happen. In fact, we have a very unique way of pulling things off safely, it's a little more time consuming, however it gets the job done and it preserves the part.

Now as you and my pretty much everybody watching knows the parts for the Full Size Jeep. They're not easy to come by to say the least, which again to me makes it owning or restoring a Full Size Jeep kind of cool. If you want it, you gotta bust your ass to find stuff to get it to on there. 

I have a U-bolt plate here from a 1979 to 1991 Full Size Jeep. It basically has a slightly different fold to it. Pre-1979, it has a three plate sandwich system.

Now, these nuts right here, they are synonymous for basically rust welding themselves on. However, this plate, there's no aftermarket. There are other U-bolt plates that you could purchase to put into place, but it's not going to be OEM, and it's not going to be stock, and it's not going to give you the look that we're probably looking for. 

So, the first thing that most people run for is your impact. If you use a small impact, or a small socket, or a small wrench, you're typically get the spinning, or I should say the noise, buh but no reaction, right? So what do we do? We bring out the big boy, right? And then go from there. This is like the last possible choice I ever go to, and the only time I use this is when I don't care about what's happening to it, meaning... the bolt that's in there, whatever it might be, I'm pretty much assuming it's going to be grenaded when I use it. So that would probably assume that I go down to the smaller one, right? 

This one right here, it's another badass. It's pretty darn aggressive, but this is still not my tool of choice. THIS is, the small one. It's basically a quarter inch drive here, and this little guy does have a good amount of torque and it gets the job done on a lot of bolt extractions. However, if it's not getting the job done, I don't step up to grab this bigger one immediately because again, you can break the bolt. 

There's another issue that can happen is that bolt, it not only rust welds itself into the nut or whatever the system is being held in there, it also rusts itself to the sheet metal. 

Currently we have a 60 year old Rhino Grille Support in the shop and we're actually removing it from the vehicle. So, it can weld itself to that piece of sheet metal and it'll rip that tab off. I mean, there's just a number of things that can happen to it. Removing parts from classic vehicles, specifically Full Size Jeeps, there's an art form to it. 

Now, just like removing parts from the inside of the cab, it's all heat management. Heat management, heat management, heat management. There's two types of heat sources that are go-to's: propane and MAP. 

MAP is really, really hot. Propane is pretty hot. This really gets things done really quick, however, what issue this has is, if you have paint on that fender, you have paint on anything, you can bubble it. In this case right here, we're not gonna bubble this paint, so this would be a good little application for this right here. Propane too, if you have to. But I'm a big fan of having both as an option here.

Essentially, if you're using a torch, you want to heat up the nut, and focus more on the nut, and not the bolt going through it. The reason for that is, is that as you heat this up, it's going to expand, and then you're going to be able to pop it off. It'll blow you away once you start messing with heat management with regard to removing bolts, nuts, plastic parts, pretty much anything. It is a gigantic lifesaver or time saver. It'll save you money in the long run because you're not going to rip and break parts off. 

Now, those two options are awesome. I actually invested into a, what's called a mini conductor and these things are awesome. If you want to invest into something that will save you down the road, this is about a thousand bucks. It ain't cheap, however, this will save you so much more in the bolts and nuts and all the other stuff that come off here, and the actual integrity of the part because you don't have to heat it up so hot that you're annealing the metal or whatever's around it. 

And this thing's pretty simple here. You can pretty much bend it to any shape that you want, put it on what you want, boom, pull the trigger, and 30 seconds later, boom, that sucker is hot enough to be able to come off here. 

Then, going to my go to, which is the smaller, boom, rip it off, and you're good to go. Now you still have a bolt attached, you still have an original part, still in good condition, however, always check to make sure that you're not rusted out and make sure that you're not using metal or bolts that have any kind of integrity question. 

Your life, your family's life are on the line. Just don't take that chance. So if it is bad, get rid of it, get rid of the whole freaking thing and start over with another one. 

To sum things up, heat management is your friend. My personal way is to use a smaller impact system of removing bolts and then basically play with the heat to then get that to be removed there, slowly, efficiently, correctly. 

I hope this helps you successfully remove nuts and bolts for your Full Size Jeep project! 

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