: 94 SLS cradle bolts

10-20-10, 05:44 AM
Anyone got any ideals on out to get a rear cradle bolt out that has broke off the inner bolt (the bolt that is inside the body of the car). It is the one on the passager side far rear one, it is the only thing holding me up on getting the cradle off so I can repair the HG on it. I really don't want to mess it up and not be able to bolt the cradle back up. ANY help?
Thanks, Dave

10-20-10, 11:52 AM
Can you get at it with a drill and use an easy out?

10-20-10, 05:41 PM
Those are 10.9 grade bolts if I remember correctly. You won't have fun drilling it out and could easily break off an easy out, making matters worse. Easy outs are garbage in my opinion...dangerous stuff.

Are you saying the bolt broke? Last time this happened to me, I began by finishing removing the other bolts and lowering the subframe to gain working clearance.

Then, I was lucky. There was just enough bolt left to get a vice grips on the end. I got the fire wrench out and heated the bolt red hot and turned it out with the vice grips.

If there's not enough bolt left, there's two options. First one is to cut a hole in the wheelwell or the floorboard (your choice) where the upper part of the bolt/captive nut are and being work on it that way. Otherwise, if you are very careful, you could probably weld a nut onto whats left of the bolt and turn it out that way, again heating red hot with the acetylene torch.

I think the pre-'95's bolts weren't galvanized, but I could be wrong on the year. The shank rusts away when the bushings get old and start to leak, then you get broken bolts like this. If you wait long enough, the bolts break while you are driving, the subframe drops, pulls the steering shaft out of the rack and you are in deep trouble.

Also, I can't tell if you are saying the bolt broke or if the captive nut broke loose from the body, continually spinning, preventing you from getting the bolt out of the nut. I've been in that scenario once as well so I'll explain what I did just in case this is where you are at.

Cut the head of the bolt off and lower the subframe. Then, VERY CAREFULLY, spot weld the nut to the body to the side of the hole. Be VERY CAREFUL here not to weld the bolt to the nut on accident. Then, using the methods above, turn the bolt out of the nut. Once the the bolt is out, finish welding the nut to the body, take your angle grinder and clean up any mess so that the subframe sits against the body correctly, PAINT THE $HIT out of it, inside as well as outside the hole. I used a galvanizing primer and a colored epoxy paint. Run a tap through the nut, and thread a new bolt in.

I'd recommend buying all new 6 bolts after you get them out. They are fairly cheap and usually in stock at your local dealer.

10-20-10, 06:29 PM
Really good info - I have not run into any great difficulty removing those bolts, but the 2000 DTS my Dad sent out to AZ after 8 years did have some corrosion on the bolts, and a lot of corrosion inside the bushing cups. I (power) wire-brushed everything and applied ample anti-seize compound on the bolt threads.

10-27-10, 05:10 AM
The second is what I am talking about. The captive nut just turns with the bolt and of course there is no way of getting to it unless I cut a hole in the fender well. I am going to try the welding thing you talked about, sounds like the best way to go with it. MANY thanks!