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All going well on my first at home 36K service on my new-to-me '03 LT, so far. Until tonight when I ran into a VERY tight transmission drain plug. The one that takes a 14mm hex wrench. I don't have such a wrench, so used the head of a 14mm bolt, with a nut welded on the other end. Wow that plug is in tight! Using a 3/8" socket wrench & 12" cheater bar with a combination of steady pull and bumping with a dead-blow hammer, I broke two welded bolts! The plug didn't budge! :mad:

I searched the forum and found good suggestions on other approaches to this problem, including a proper 14mm hex wrench from Autozone, also a 3/8" rod coupler from the local hardware store.. Tomorrow I'll give these a try. :rolleyes:

Even so, I'm fearful at applying more force than I have already applied unsucessfully. With a proper hex head wrench, and a two foot cheater bar, I could probably apply a couple hundred ft. lbs. of torque, I suppose. And I could even try to put the 1/2" air wrench on it.....probably 300 lb. ft. or more. But I really hesitate to apply that much force. Does it really take that much????

Should I fear stripping out the drain plug's 14mm hex opening or damaging the transmission case?

Any hints or counsel will be welcomed. I've never, in many years of amatuer wrenching, come across a drain plug so resistant! Pretty humbling to be stopped by a drain plug.

Thanks in advance :wave
 

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They can be tough.
No surprise you broke a welded bolt. Unless it is a high grade hardened bolt, it would be likely to break.

In addition to a good quality tool, a class A fit between the tool and the drain plug, and plenty of leverage, if it still doesn't break free, I'd heat the tranny housing aound the drain plug with at heat gun.
 

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I used the 14mm hex wrench and a long 14mm wrench. After the hex was installed, I used the wrench on the opposite side, forming a "T". Mine was pretty tight, and since it was upside down, I had to sing the "Lefty loosey, righty tighty" song a few times........
 

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That plug can be tight, I have used a 12" pipe on the hex wrench. Along with the upside down lefty loosey thing, make sure that you are not pulling in a direction that could move the bike off the stand. -Chuck-
 

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+1 with Grif...it usually require a smack to break it loose. Scary, but those are some fine threads and made for the torture. Juts be sure to have the wrench seated well before you smack it.

Ron
 

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The garage is heating as we speak for just such a task. The first time is scary. I have the 14mm and a pipe. Like these last two threads have mentioned, the plug breaks loose with a "pop". You may have a hard time easing up to the pressure you will need to break it loose. I get myself situated so that I have the leverage to give the plug a quick snap. Try this in combination with the heat and you should be good to go.
 

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I used a 3' cheater bar. Came off with that! Notice I didn't say "came right off"?
 

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Hmnnnn... I've never had that much trouble getting the oil drain bolt out. Are you gentlemen all using the crush washer that comes with the new oil filter?
 

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If you can access the plug hit it with a hammer like you are driving a nail, before trying to turn it. Be careful not to deform the hex and don't hit it so hard you break the tranny housing. This is the way we loosen 99% of the SAE plugs we use at work.

Before you laugh and say this guy is nucking futs, try it and prove me wrong.

30+ years of working hydraulics has taught me a few tricks.


NOTE: Unless your bike is different than mine there is NO crush washer used on the tranny drain plug.

Roy
 

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bigbear said:
If you can access the plug hit it with a hammer like you are driving a nail, before trying to turn it. Be careful not to deform the hex and don't hit it so hard you break the tranny housing. This is the way we loosen 99% of the SAE plugs we use at work.Roy
I agree. The combination of first heat the transmission housing to like 150 degF, then apply a max steady torque and a sidewise hit should crack it loose if anything will. Be careful not to bugger the internal hex.

Use a thin coating of Permatex on the sealing surfaces when you put it back in.

Hydraulics guy.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Problem Solved!

Thanks to all who replied with suggestions. I got the bugger out, and it wasn't so tough after all. This morning I followed the advice received above, found an Autozone that had the 14mm hex socket in stock (3 piece kit for $11) and was pleased to see it was for 1/2" drive.

I tapped the hex wrench up into the drain plug with a couple of firm raps with a hammer, and then applied the two foot long 1/2" drive breaker bar. It still took a pretty good pull, but I did not have to beat on the bar with a hammer , or apply heat. It just came out, without drama. Kind of an anti-climax I suppose. That's a good thing.

I should know the value of using proper tools, in this case the 1/2" drive 14mm hex, which made the job quick and relatively easy compared to trying to jury-rig a home fabricated tool out of a bolt and nut. I guess all that I really needed was just the good advice I got here on this forum, reminding me to equip myself with the right tool for the job.

I got the transmission lube changed in no time, and the motor oil & filter too. Now it's time to remove the tank and tackle fuel filter, air filter and coolent flush. :rolleyes:
 

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I got my 14mm socket from Autozone. I took the hex head out of the socket and I use a 14mm wrench on it after I insert it into the plug........
 

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Bob, When you get to the Final Drive....... be sure to loosen the FILL bolt on the top of the Final Drive housing before draining the fluid below. This tip has been passed around and it was probably started by someone who drained first and then could not remove it to fill!
 
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