Broken Exhaust Manifold Bolt - Chevy Impala SS Forum
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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-05-2016, 09:27 AM Thread Starter
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Broken Exhaust Manifold Bolt

Everyone's favorite. I've had one or more on all 3 B/D bodies. Two months ago I got a nice 'new' '96 FWB to replace FTSS, and sure enough my wife comes in last week saying, "I found this bolt where you park your car." RRRRRRRR!!!!!!! It would have been 500x easier to change them all out with GR8 as soon as I bought it, but NNnnoooo I wait til one breaks. All I want to know is how everything's fine for 20 years and it breaks the minute I get it.

Anyway, a nice day spent on some good carwork therapy.



Yep, it was the drivers rear. It could have been a worse one for access. And it could have been an easier one too.





Of course I felt the stud "almost" start backing out and the extractor snapped off flush. I didn't want to spend 3 hours trying to drill it out, so what to do now. I figured I'd try something different.
1. Drill out and clearance for the inboard hole. 31/64"
2. Clearance the spacer.
3. Dig out a socket head bolt I had clearanced 10 years ago for some tight headers on my Monte SS.
4. Drill out the gasket to match.






Everything went back together slick as snot from that point. Well except where I had all 6 bolts tightened and then realized I forgot the gasket to the cat pipe.....

Why post on such a dreaded and boring topic you say? Well, I don't have a welder which is a popular fix. I don't like the idea of the "let's not use that hole and just put 2 gaskets on and crank down hard" fix. And, I'm not buying headers yet which permits bypassing that outboard hole altogether. It's just for future searchers for an approach I've never heard used before now. and the freebie was I ripped out the AIR Pump while everything was apart.

And I discovered this on the passenger rear. I'm confused what the hell is going on exactly. It could be a bottomed out "too-long" bolt with the head snapped off. I picked up stud extractors to replace whatever it is.



EDIT: 9/7/16

Well, mystery solved. I've done a total 5 broke bolts, but the pic above shows the first time I've ever seen one snap at the head.

a $20 set of Lowes stud extractors:


A barely large enough sledge to seat it:



And an access hole drilled in the inner fender, -- and it comes out too easy:


\'96SS SOB: SSRI, Herter Tune, Tri-Y II, SLP SS, 3000 Edge, F/HO bars, METCO extendeds and CV MMC, Bilsteins, currently Vredestein Ultrac Sessanta (315/35 rear)
\'96FWB BUW-Butt Ugly White: SS Bars, METCO LCAs, Koni Reds, PowerTrax No-Slip

Last edited by 96 Black; 09-07-2016 at 10:45 AM. Reason: Mystery Solved - Passenger Bank Finished
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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-06-2016, 07:31 PM
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Keep drilling the old one out. Care need be taken, yes, yes, singin at the choir, I know...

Once it loses enuff meat, It'll back and/or come crumbling out.

Then replace with ARP's. Seriously on this last point. Go with the ARP's. You'll never regret it.
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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-06-2016, 08:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEO9C1 View Post
...Then replace with ARP's. Seriously on this last point. Go with the ARP's. You'll never regret it.

This is completely true. When was the last time you said "Wow, this is a beautiful bolt"? Hold an ARP bolt in your hand, you'll be convinced. The quality and finish are amazing.

As a bonus, they're stronger than grade 8.

I'd recommend the stainless bolts, and a very small amount of the Nickel Permatex antiseize.

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95 DGGM 396 Stroker, Eagle crank & rods, LT4 heads, LT4 intake, LT4 hot cam, Finish Line long tube headers, 2 1/2" exhaust, Big Baer brakes, 3.73 rear, Hotchkis lowering springs, Front and rear Hotchkis Sway bars, aluminum driveshaft, Metco aluminum boxed trailing arms, K&N, Gary's Cables, 42# Green Giants, T84's,T56 Magnum
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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 11:45 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEO9C1 View Post
Keep drilling the old one out. Care need be taken, yes, yes, singin at the choir, I know...

Once it loses enuff meat, It'll back and/or come crumbling out.

Then replace with ARP's. Seriously on this last point. Go with the ARP's. You'll never regret it.
Um, I already crapped out once using that approach. Kept drilling on the snapped off extractor one time and got off into the head before finally (2 more hours) being able to get a bite with a tiny chisel to hammer it out. That's the reason for my coming up with drilling the manifold itself to use the inner hole.

Besides, my right angle drill is so old (how old is it?) -- it's so old it's all metal, and it has no reverse to be able to use my left hand bit. Which BTW worked great once to back one out while I was still drilling the pilot hole for the extractor.

Agreed ARPs are way prettier than the generic anodized GR8 at Lowes/HD. But I found really nice black shoulder jobbies at ACE. And my cheap-ass packet of anti-seize came from the AZ checkout thank you very much ocala.

Anyway, all done now. Next B-/D- body I buy I'm bringing all new bolts with me to change out before taking delivery. haha

\'96SS SOB: SSRI, Herter Tune, Tri-Y II, SLP SS, 3000 Edge, F/HO bars, METCO extendeds and CV MMC, Bilsteins, currently Vredestein Ultrac Sessanta (315/35 rear)
\'96FWB BUW-Butt Ugly White: SS Bars, METCO LCAs, Koni Reds, PowerTrax No-Slip
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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 02:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 96 Black View Post
Um, I already crapped out once using that approach. Kept drilling on the snapped off extractor one time and got off into the head before finally (2 more hours) being able to get a bite with a tiny chisel to hammer it out. That's the reason for my coming up with drilling the manifold itself to use the inner hole.

Besides, my right angle drill is so old (how old is it?) -- it's so old it's all metal, and it has no reverse to be able to use my left hand bit. Which BTW worked great once to back one out while I was still drilling the pilot hole for the extractor.

Agreed ARPs are way prettier than the generic anodized GR8 at Lowes/HD. But I found really nice black shoulder jobbies at ACE. And my cheap-ass packet of anti-seize came from the AZ checkout thank you very much ocala.

Anyway, all done now. Next B-/D- body I buy I'm bringing all new bolts with me to change out before taking delivery. haha
Glad it worked out for you.

Yeah I get it on the bolts. I live in a small town, so anything exotic has to come by mail. Sometimes it just takes too long, ESPECIALLY for a daily driverů

It's not like we get a weeks notice before something breaks.
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-08-2016, 09:49 AM
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This is what I had to do for that same, rear drivers side bolt.. Spent a couple hrs before finally resorting to this. My mechanic and I tried drilling it out but it just made it shorter.. Replaced all with gr8 and called it a day
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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-09-2016, 06:09 AM
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After decades of trying to , occasionally, trying to drill out broken bolts w/ RH drill bits, I got a set of left hand bits.

Made me wish I bought them 45 years ago!! ONLY WAY TO GO!

God Bless America!

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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-11-2016, 04:22 PM
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Got same problem here on my 96. My solution.... buy a second complete motor and a set of aluminum heads for 200 bucks oh and came with motor stand.

I tried to drill mine out with motor out. Broke off ez out in the head. Got too aggrevated since had 2 more to do and just happend onto motor deal that evening. Anyone wanna buy set of iron heads

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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-12-2016, 06:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shilaeli Hugger View Post
[SNIP]

I tried to drill mine out with motor out. Broke off ez out in the head. Got too aggrevated since had 2 more to do and just happend onto motor deal that evening. Anyone wanna buy set of iron heads
As an FYI, EZ-Outs are only to be used when the bolt/screw is loose. They sure as hell not going to do you any good in an area that has a broken bolt that constantly gets heat cycled like our exhaust manifold bolts.

Also what I have done since I did this all the time as a machinist, is to use a standard (good quality) punch, but grind the tip to a 45' angle. Drill to almost the minor diameter of the fastener, and then chip away the fragments and flush it out with compressed air. Then chase all threads with a tap & oil for good measure. Again flush out with Brake-Kleen and compressed air.

I clicked on this thread, because I just pulled off my stock manifolds last night, to find that both rear bolts are sheared off flush with the cylinder head.

I had to do this on my 9C1, so I've been there done that.

I'm going to be doing the same thing, as soon as I can borrow a 90' drill.

The fun never ends!

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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 01-04-2017, 05:38 PM
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My approach to this broken stud problem was to use dremel to file the screw out up to threads, then use helicoil system. I have tried just all the methods in the book, but I was snapping everything.

96 Impala SS 65k miles.
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