Help! Two stripped bolt holes on trans pan!

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MerkurScorpio
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Help! Two stripped bolt holes on trans pan!

Post by MerkurScorpio » Mon Jul 12, 2010 12:31 am

Ran into a bit of a problem today with the new Scorpio. Two of the bolt holes for mounting the transmission pan are stripped. They don't seem to be stripped badly, just enough to prevent proper tightening. Any thoughts on how to fix this WITHOUT drilling and WITHOUT removing the pan and starting from scratch? I already have a small leak from one of the two bolts, and as luck would have it, it's one of the bolts right by the exhaust.

I am not necessarily looking for the best fix, but rather the quickest and easiest way to get by at least temporarily.

One thought I had was to get 4 small c-clamps, coat the threading on said clamps with thread lock, and place them on the pan lip on either side of the two offending bolts. My thought is that this would hold the pan tightly in place at these locations, and the thread lock on the c-clamps themselves would prevent them from working loose. I know this is far from ideal, but anyone else think this might just work?

Another thought I had was trying a either a thread chaser or self-tapping bolts.
-Paul-Michael Van Hook, Northeastern PA
'89 Merkur Scorpio "HookSport"

Paul-Aaron Zachary Van Hook is one year old! Born 11/4/2009!

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milehighXR
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Post by milehighXR » Mon Jul 12, 2010 7:33 am

I'd be surprised if you get c-clamps small enough to not catch on speed bumps.

Fix it right and be done with it. Take one of the bolts to Fastenal, and ask for a Heliciol, or thread lok thread repair kit. It will come with a tap, and the right size helicoil, or thread lok to fix it. I like the thread lok inserts, as you don't need special tools like with helicoil. Just drill those holes straight, elsewise you'll need a case, which means another trans build...
Johnny


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MerkurScorpio
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Post by MerkurScorpio » Mon Jul 12, 2010 9:17 am

I know I can small enough clamps to fit in the tight space, and what I would probably do to prevent any catching on speed bumps would be to cut off what ever threading hangs low.
-Paul-Michael Van Hook, Northeastern PA
'89 Merkur Scorpio "HookSport"

Paul-Aaron Zachary Van Hook is one year old! Born 11/4/2009!

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Post by MerkurScorpio » Mon Jul 12, 2010 5:42 pm

So I remembered this morning that one of the 13 bolts was a lot harder than the rest to tighten and took longer than the rest as well. So I went back out and pulled out that bolt as well as one of the bolts in a stripped hole. The former bolt turned to be not only a little longer, but also an SAE bolt almost imperceptibly wider than the OEM metric bolt.

I proceed to hit the hardware store where I purchased a couple of the larger bolts, new washers, some blue RTV silicone gasket maker, and thread lock. When I got home I immediately removed both loose bolts as well as a third one that was tightening, but not quite as well as it needed to be. I probably could have left it in, but since I was under the car I figured I might as well replace it too. I used a little of the gasket maker on the perimeter of the bolt hole on the pan, then essentially glued the washer in place, taking care to ensure none of the gasket maker got inside the hole. I then applied a small amount of thread lock to each bolt and then installed them. Once each bolt was in and properly tightened, I went a little over board and sealed all three bolt heads in a coating of gasket maker. I figure it can't hurt! So I am letting everything dry and cure today and then will give the car another run tomorrow.
-Paul-Michael Van Hook, Northeastern PA
'89 Merkur Scorpio "HookSport"

Paul-Aaron Zachary Van Hook is one year old! Born 11/4/2009!

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Post by Bob Weir » Tue Jul 13, 2010 4:07 pm

Sorry I didn't get to reply sooner. But my suggestion was to thoroughly clean the bolt hole [wire brushes avail at Harbor Freight] and try different bolts. Because; you should never assume the PO used the correct bolts and sometimes crud or other matter accumulates in the holes.

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Post by scorpioaddict » Wed Jul 14, 2010 12:43 am

I'm sort of agreeing with Bob, though it isn't always enough. I had three pan bolts and all the bell-housing-to-transmission bolts strip, so I went the long route. And one helicoil wasn't enough for the bell housing. It took two inserts per bolt. The metal was that soft.

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