Any way to fix spinning subframe threaded inserts? For pannier mounts & top plate

Discussion in 'Parallel Universe' started by lookaught, Mar 10, 2014.

  1. lookaught

    lookaught Loner Extraordinaire

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    A previous owner of my bike had the grand idea of using red loctite on everything, and although I did my best to use heat (kinda chickened out a bit with the torch, particularly with these bolts so close to the gas tank) and managed to get most bolts out without stripping or breaking anything, a few of the mounting holes which use pressed in threaded inserts are now spinning freely.

    Specifically, one of the rear mounts for the top plate, and one side of the underside mounts used by certain pannier systems. I think I can reach the top plate insert from the side after removing the tail lamp plastic, and can probably JB weld the insert so i stops spinning. The two underneath though, there's no access to the backside of the inserts. Any idea how to reseat these? Or drill out and replace? I think if I drill them they will end up falling down the subframe tube and might rattle around forever :huh

    Thoughts? Has anyone replaced these with some type of rivet nut?

    Top plate, its the top right bolt hole that's spinning:
    [​IMG]

    And these lovely bastards. It was no fun grinding off the bolt heads and getting glowing hot metal right next to the fuel tank. Still haven't taken the time to get the studs out yet.
    [​IMG]
    #1
  2. angusbeef83

    angusbeef83 Adventurer

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    Interesting timing on this post, as I was installing a TT luggage rack on my 800 this weekend, and one of the TT supplied bolts cross threaded in the right rear mounting hole. My attempts to loosen the bolt caused the exact same thing to happen...and now the bolt and mounting point spin freely. I attempted to gain access to the frame, but the rear, top plastic cover cannot be removed while the bolt is in place. I was able to cut the top of the bolt and mount the rack (relying on the other three bolts to provide stability, which they do), but one day I know I'll want to retrieve the headless bolt and fix the mount.
    #2
  3. lookaught

    lookaught Loner Extraordinaire

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  4. 73datsun

    73datsun Been here awhile

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    I've never cross threaded so many damn bolts, then I did working on my F700. Horrible. Same issues with the pannier set up in the rear.

    I eventually just caved and paid my dealer to "fix" it. I asked him to replace the hardware with the BMW parts (spacing on the name). But they couldn't figure it out. So they drilled and helicoliled. It works.

    Good luck. I know the frustration.
    #4
  5. runnin4melife

    runnin4melife Been here awhile

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    Hmmmm I haven't used red Loctite on the BMW but have on a few dirtbikes in the past. I would use a heat gun or a soldering gun to pinpoint heat the area (soldering gun for near the tank). I am not sure if any solvent will reduce the integrity of the red Loctite. The lower bolts you hacked off are going to be hard to remove...

    Straight from Loctite:

    Q: What solvents can I use to remove liquid Loctite materials?
    A: Most organic solvents are effective in removing anaerobic and cyanoacrylate adhesives. Chlorinated solvents are most commonly used. Dry MEK and acetone are used on applications using instant adhesives.
    Q: How can I remove a fastener that is "permanently" locked in?
    A: The application of heat is needed to remove a fastener that can't be removed with a hand tool. Temperatures of 325F and above is needed to break down a standard anaerobic, 500F for high temperature Anaerobics. A heat gun or propane torch is commonly used to do this process, and careful disassembly should occur while parts are still hot. Once apart, and cooled, use methylene chloride (Chisel #79040) to remove cured excess material. Always wipe down the fasteners with clean up solvent to remove the wax film that Chisel leaves on the surface.
    #5
  6. lookaught

    lookaught Loner Extraordinaire

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    Yeah normally I use a torch on red loctite but I didn't realize they were attached with red... because it's extreme, ridiculous overkill and whoever did it needs a swift kick in the junk. The one top plate bolt was already spinning before I put a wrench on it, and I guess I was just a bit too cautious with the torch on those ones underneath because they are like 1/4" from the plastic gas tank... I did get the others out on the exhaust side without an issue, it just needs a good 30-45 seconds of direct propane heat to melt the loctite.

    Anyway, getting the studs out shouldnt be too difficult now that I can put the heat right down on the insert. Once i get them out I bought this tool to attempt to retighten the rivet nuts before I move on to replacement. I hope they can be just tightened.

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B004KLVJAA/ref=pe_385040_30332200_pe_309540_26725410_item_image
    #6
  7. toowheels

    toowheels on a mission...

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    Hey lookaught,

    I'm a little late to the party here but you've found the best thread dealing with the subject.

    I've run into this in about 1 out of 150 top rack installs and even on brand new bikes. :cry

    Please everybody stop installing anything if it starts to bind!! Tighten the Rivnut and/or tap it! (not the case for you courtesy of the red :eek1 Loc-Tite.)

    Use the simple tool in the thread above that anyone can assemble.

    Thanks,

    Dave
    #7
  8. zaner32

    zaner32 In over my head

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    +1 Had this issue for the pannier frame mounts. Tightened it up with somewhat of the same tool without the bar. Just the bolt, washer and nut.


    #8
  9. lookaught

    lookaught Loner Extraordinaire

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    Update:

    Ordered the rivet nut tool from Amazon for $36 and some stainless M8 rivnuts from McMaster Carr and replaced the spinning rivnuts. I tried to tighten them but it wasn't working well, and hell, I bought the tool so I was damn well going to use it!

    Nothing too exciting. The tools comes with different bits to do M5, M6, M8 and I think M10 rivnuts. Works easily enough, but it does take some strength to use it. There are quite a few rivnuts of various sizes on the bike, and my motto in life is that money spent on a tool is never money wasted, so for $36, I recommend this tool for those who don't mind spending a bit of money.

    The whole process took about 10 minutes, plus another 20 to R&R the bodywork to get to the subframe. I haven't replaced the ones underneath the bike yet but I imagine there is no way to remove the rivnut when it's drilled, and it'll just fall down the subframe tube and rattle for eternity... oh well.

    Tool:
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004KLVJAA/ref=oh_details_o00_s00_i01?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    M8 Nuts:
    http://www.mcmaster.com/#97467A693

    Drilled. The screwdriver is stuck in the side to bind the nut to keep it from spinning. I could have clamped it with vice grips on the top flange but this just seemed quicker and easier. It doesn't take much drilling to remove enough metal to get these out.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Once drilled I cleaned it with brake cleaner to get off the oil from drilling so that there was no lubricant to make the new nuts more likely to spin in the future.

    New nuts in place. The nuts or ordered are a perfect fit for the diameter of the holes in the 800:
    [​IMG]
    Tool in action.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    #9
  10. GPHusky250

    GPHusky250 Been here awhile

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    #10
  11. pkbinder

    pkbinder Kissing Moose

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    I had the same problem with exactly the same rivnut. With a bit of help from someone with actual mechanical aptitude, we wrestled out the stripped rivnut, found just the right sized FLANGED nut, cut off two sides of the flange and it fit perfect just under the frame. Couple little spot welds and it is just perfect. Pk
    #11
  12. HighTechCoonass

    HighTechCoonass Living the Dream....

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    same happened to me... I used a vice grip to hold the nut from spinning to remove a cross threaded bolt...

    [​IMG]

    then was able to re-tap...

    [​IMG]

    I was installing my Touratech Zaga rack with a top plate...

    [​IMG]
    #12
  13. Reaver

    Reaver Outta Here

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    I did the same but with no welder, I used a larger standard nut under it as a spacer then jammed a washer to fill the remaining gap. A bit of krazy glue held things together. Used anti sieze on the bolt and carefully installed to avoid cross threading. Not ideal but it'll be years before I need to remove the luggage rack and maybe by then my Sonic Screwdriver will come. It was back ordered.
    #13
  14. pkbinder

    pkbinder Kissing Moose

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    Sonic Screwdriver? Is that from the future? pk
    #14
  15. tsdrob

    tsdrob n00b

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    I'll post photos of my repair. Apparently I'm one of the 1 in 150 Dave talks about. Bike has less than 500 miles on it. The other three worked just fine.

    BTW, Dave the rack look great.

    It didn't take much to get the bolt crossed. I started it by hand and got it a good way in before the AS minute.

    It wasn't even one of the "hold my beer, watch this" moments.
    #15
  16. murdock84

    murdock84 Been here awhile

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    I re-tapped a good bit of the threads where I had to put bolts for accessories on my bike as well. I never had to do this on any other bike or atv I owned. It was like they put all of them in slightly crooked.
    #16
  17. toowheels

    toowheels on a mission...

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    Hey tsdrob,

    Thanks and glad you like it! :thumb

    Did you manage to tap it and it's ok now?

    I mailed the bolt for you on Monday so it's well on the way!

    Thanks,

    Dave
    #17
  18. tsdrob

    tsdrob n00b

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    I was not lucky enough to get the bolt out and retap. The rivnut would not turn the bolt loose even after drilling it out. I filed the rivnut off. The rivnut, which is hex shaped, had a bulge in the side of the case. The bulge happened to be exactly where the bolt seized and was not on the other rivnut. When I looked, the factory nut did not go as deep as the bulge. Working on getting a replacement now.
    #18
  19. Maconace

    Maconace n00b

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    These Riv-Nuts seem to be very problematic. Can't believe there is not a better way to assemble these parts. -- Great job, BMW!

    Does anyone have info or pics for what spacers/bushings are needed to install a SW-Motec luggage rack for the tail section with the BMW system case rails?

    The bushings I have do not level the luggage plate, and I fear I am binding those Riv-Nut things .... what pieces are really supposed to work with that combination? Are the bolts the same length front and back?

    Thanks,
    #19
  20. HighTechCoonass

    HighTechCoonass Living the Dream....

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    Contact the manufacture... or ask for a copy of the installation diagram.
    #20