D90 Step Rails & Rusty Bolts - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old December 20th, 2011, 04:20 PM
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D90 Step Rails & Rusty Bolts

Okay... I thought I'd start with an easy install but not really...

I've got a 97 D90 with the Mantec Sill Protectors already installed. Looking at putting the Land Rover Step Rails on but running into an issue of the bolts being totally rust welded. I tried PB Blaster and CRC Freeze Off... about 5 applications over the course of 36 hours. Maybe I need to wait longer. I was able to get the nut off but I need to pull the whole bolt out and replace with a longer bolt. I can't get the bolt to budge.

Does anyone know... is that thing threaded on or can I just knock with a hammer? Should I just heat it up? Any advice would help. (see picture... it's the assembly right behind the front wheels).

Does anyone have the same set up... Mantec Sill Protectors with the LR Step Rails? I am not positive it's going to fit without banging one something with a hammer.
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  #2  
Old December 20th, 2011, 04:37 PM
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So that bolt is not threaded on to anything else... if I bang it out... will the outrigger come apart from the bulkhead? It's probably rusted on too...

And no issues replacing it with a clean longer bolt of the same size?

Thanks.
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  #3  
Old December 20th, 2011, 05:01 PM
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That bolt isn't threaded into the chassis outrigger or the bulkhead mount. Give it a good bashing whilst applying some torque. The outrigger will separate but is held in place by a further bracket. A longer bolt of the same grade won't cause a problem.
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  #4  
Old December 20th, 2011, 05:52 PM
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When you re-assemble, use plenty of anti-seize on the bolts and the bore in the outriggers...
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  #5  
Old December 20th, 2011, 05:57 PM
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Another thing you can do it heat it us around the areas where it passes through the other metal and then apply a candle to the bolt near the metal to metal connection. The wax will get sucked into the rusted areas and then the bolt should come out in a much easier fashion. This also works incredibly well on stuck locknuts.
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  #6  
Old December 20th, 2011, 06:45 PM
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That bolt never comes out. I would not mess with it.
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  #7  
Old December 20th, 2011, 09:25 PM
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I think the reason it won't come out is because your truck realizes it will be gay with steps and sliders. You are putting the cock in its face but it is refusing to suck it.
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  #8  
Old December 20th, 2011, 10:22 PM
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Lol!
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  #9  
Old December 20th, 2011, 10:56 PM
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I'd take the sliders off if I could... the back part of them looks completely attached to the frame... I don't even see bolts to remove them. And the sills aren't there anymore.

Well... the truck must be really mad and bit down on the cock since it failed emissions today too... okay okay... I am putting the steps away.
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  #10  
Old December 20th, 2011, 11:03 PM
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I know you mentioned your wife was 5'2 and having trouble getting in the truck. Horsey on the board will have some tips for you. He is only 5'1
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  #11  
Old December 20th, 2011, 11:30 PM
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I would not remove that bolt. Get a bfh or better yet a nice sledge hammer and loosen the slider at the rear portion near the outrigger (if you really want to remove those sliders) If you are able to knock them out a few inches, you will probably be able to unhook the front then wiggle the slider off using vertical movement. (I'm assuming they are the same design as Rockwares)

Do you have the sills? Will look kind of funny without them.
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  #12  
Old December 21st, 2011, 04:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aaronlam View Post
I'd take the sliders off if I could... the back part of them looks completely attached to the frame... I don't even see bolts to remove them. And the sills aren't there anymore.

Well... the truck must be really mad and bit down on the cock since it failed emissions today too... okay okay... I am putting the steps away.
Back section is sleeved into the body outriggers, there's a bolt on the inside of the chassis rail that pulls it tight into the outrigger. If the small bolt is seized... . But on the bright side the previous owner may have put lots of anti seize on before fitting the outrigger You been driving in the sea?
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  #13  
Old December 29th, 2011, 12:28 AM
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Update:

Much to Barry's dismay... I got these step rails on. I don't have the aluminum sills anymore so taking the rock sliders off wasn't really an option. I don't plan on needing the rock sliders and would use the step rails every day... settled.

I didn't even attempt to get that bolt off after several treatments of Freeze Off yielded nothing. If you notice the top picture, the tab for the rock sliders was bent back when that nut was tightened leaving a gap. I used a pry bar and bent it all the way away from the bolt. Slipped the step rails in and bent it back. It all fit pretty neatly and there was enough thread to put a brand new nut on it... with anti-seize.
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  #14  
Old January 21st, 2012, 06:01 PM
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wax bolt removal technique

Bumping this thread because I encountered the same problem this weekend. I planned to back out the bulkhead-to-chassis bolts enough to install new sliders. The passenger side bolt came out (all the way out) with no issues after a 24 hour soak in Blaster. The drivers side was a different story....

I got the nut off and then proceeded to snap off the head (great). I applied heat and then torqued the other end of the bolt, which also snapped. This was followed by several hours of heating the area with a MAP torch and hammering away at it with a sledge and punch. It did not budge. As a last ditch effort before either giving up or breaking out the drill, I tried the wax technique mentioned above. I let wax melt in around the broken bolt and into the seams, and then proceeded to hammer. It worked.

And it worked amazingly well. I could not believe how easily the bolt backed out. Very glad I decided to give this technique a try - I'm sure it will come in useful again.

Take a look at the condition of the bolt. These are being replaced, obviously.
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  #15  
Old January 22nd, 2012, 05:16 AM
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Thanks for sharing! Was thinking of replacing these bolts to. Any body know if they are available in stainless steel?
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  #16  
Old January 22nd, 2012, 08:41 AM
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I found some on McMaster in 316 stainless but generally stainless is not as strong as the original bolts. The originals were too far gone to determine a grade from the head, but given their location I would assume they would be a higher grade than the stainless ones.

For reference, mine were M12x1.75 and 180mm long.
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  #17  
Old January 22nd, 2012, 09:00 AM
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These, as mentioned above, are metric fine thread bolts. They are hard to find here in the states unless you go to a specialty bolt manufacture. Keep in mind these are graded bolts and would require a 8.8 or greater, forget what they are. I would stick to the metric size as they just the correct size for the holes. An SAE size that would fit is smaller than the hole size.
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  #18  
Old January 22nd, 2012, 12:29 PM
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I agree that you should not use stainless here. I used SAE grade 8 1/2" x 7" and it fit perfectly. Should be cheaper and easier to source locally. If you stick with metric use grade 8.8 or ideally 10.9. Cover that thing in anti-sieze.....
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  #19  
Old January 25th, 2012, 06:25 AM
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Grade 8.8 or 10.9? What load do these bolts really take? Except when in an accident, the load on the bulkhead is from the roof and windscreen. Stainless should be able to take the load. probably the only reason why the factory didn't use stainless is cost savings. I would not use stainless for the suspension or driven train, but other places on the body have fairly light loads.
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  #20  
Old January 25th, 2012, 09:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocketman View Post
Grade 8.8 or 10.9? What load do these bolts really take? Except when in an accident, .
You nailed it. If I'm ever in an accident, God forbid, I want the strongest stuff around me holding it all together. That bulkhead bolt seems structural to me. You can never go wrong with taking that extra step.
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