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Northstar Engines and System Technical Discussion Discussion, Guide pins in Cadillac Engine Technical Discussion; Anyone have a good tip on removing the head guide pins from the N* block?...
  1. #1
    83CADMAN's Avatar
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    Guide pins

    Anyone have a good tip on removing the head guide pins from the N* block?

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    billbrownfarm is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Guide pins

    Yes,
    Just drop in a 1/2 inch drill upside down in the hole. Then take a foot long pipe wrench, wrap around the dowel pin and twist. I took 4 out three days ago this way in less than 15 minutes. If you need to replace the dowel pins they are gm part # 3522352 for $5.29 from gmotors.com.
    Have Fun!

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    Re: Guide pins


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    Re: Guide pins

    Quote Originally Posted by billbrownfarm View Post
    Yes,
    Just drop in a 1/2 inch drill upside down in the hole. Then take a foot long pipe wrench, wrap around the dowel pin and twist. I took 4 out three days ago this way in less than 15 minutes. If you need to replace the dowel pins they are gm part # 3522352 for $5.29 from gmotors.com.
    Have Fun!
    Great idea. I tried it and it worked well. Well….except for the last one, It sheared off flush with the deck!
    What to do????

    ----------

    Thanks Ranger, another great tip! I like it! Unfortunetly I don't have, or access to a welder.

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    billbrownfarm is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Guide pins

    I would try a square bolt extractor. I forgot to mention to soak the pin with wd40. If all else fails I would drill the pin out with a bit one size smaller than the pin outside diameter.

  7. #6
    Speedygman is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Guide pins

    Take a TAP and start tap in 5/8 x 11 in the dowel pin then screw in 5/8x11 bolt thru a nut and washer and pull out.

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    Re: Guide pins

    IF you try to pack (drill shank or rod) and twist out the guide sleeve, instead of WD-40 use a load of PB Blaster and let it soak for a half hour.

    Speedy's method is the exact reverse of using a pack of greased washers, nut and bolt to install the water pump drive pulley on the intake cam snout.

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    Re: Guide pins

    Quote Originally Posted by Submariner409 View Post
    IF you try to pack (drill shank or rod) and twist out the guide sleeve, instead of WD-40 use a load of PB Blaster and let it soak for a half hour.

    Speedy's method is the exact reverse of using a pack of greased washers, nut and bolt to install the water pump drive pulley on the intake cam snout.
    Yep! PB Blaster soaked for a couple of days before I even started.
    I also thought of tapping with 5/8 and pulling. I’m figuring I’ll have to drill / ream it through.
    As it stands for now I'm proceeding with drilling all the other holes and I’ll come back to the problem child last.
    First I used a 1/2" bit to clean out the old threads, then followed with a 17/32” bit to reach root thread diameter for a 5/8”-11 tap.
    I was going to use a power drill but changed my mind and used the old school method of hand reaming.
    The aluminum was malleable enough the drill bits cut just fine. I had to grind a flat on the drill bit shanks so I could lock them in a tap wrench. Every hole came out perfectly perpendicular to the deck. BTW lots of shiny aluminum chips from every hole.
    Now its back to the…..I’ll post my problem guide pin results later.

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    Manic Mechanic is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Guide pins

    Want to mention for posterity that when doing the pipe wrench method be very careful with the surrounding deck surface. The aluminum alloy is super soft and if the the wrench jaw wipes on it when twisting it will score it up. Take a second to check for room first and save yourself a lot of extra trouble. Don't try to do things as fast as Tim Carroll does in his videos LOL.
    Vernon

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    Re: Guide pins

    Quote Originally Posted by Manic Mechanic View Post
    Want to mention for posterity that when doing the pipe wrench method be very careful with the surrounding deck surface. The aluminum alloy is super soft and if the the wrench jaw wipes on it when twisting it will score it up. Take a second to check for room first and save yourself a lot of extra trouble. Don't try to do things as fast as Tim Carroll does in his videos LOL.
    Vernon
    Excellence advise.
    I'll have to check his video out.
    1994 Caddy N-star removal 017.jpg
    My problem child

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    Re: Guide pins

    How good are you with a Dremel tool and burrs ? Cut a 1/32" slot down the inside of that broken off guide pin - it will collapse and pull out

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    Re: Guide pins

    Quote Originally Posted by Submariner409 View Post
    How good are you with a Dremel tool and burrs ? Cut a 1/32" slot down the inside of that broken off guide pin - it will collapse and pull out
    Hmmmm…Good idea, but… I don’t have a dremel.
    I just priced drill bits; 9/16, 19/32 and a 5/8 at $20.00 EACH! OUCH!
    That’s $60 bucks I could use elsewhere.
    On with good old Yankee ingenuity.
    Today I plan to tap all holes with a 5/8-11 tread. I'm thinking, since I’ve already run a 17/32 thru the damaged guide pin, the additional thread cut would thin the broken pin’s wall enough to pick out the remnants.

  14. #13
    stoveguyy is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Dad has a good assortment of bearing pullers for alternators. Small jaws, slide hammer, works great on small bearings. Doesn't everyone have these in their toolkit?

  15. #14
    ofnaman is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Guide pins

    I've tried everything in the book including almost all of the above mentioned ideas. Have not tried the welded treaded rod trick though, good idea. The quickest and best thing Ive done to remove the dowels is a dowel puller. One of the guys at the shop had one and he saw me struggling a couple months ago while doing a reseal on a northstar (The Cadillac dealership I worked at closed, so I am relatively new at this GM dealership). He suggested I try it. I am not kidding, the thing is worth it's weight in gold. Had all 4 head dowels out in less than 5 minutes. Its a slide hammer that has a collar that fits around the outside of the dowel. The harder you slide the hammer the tighter the collar gets. Did not even oil the last three dowels. The downside is the only big tool company that Ive found so far that still makes them is Snap on and it's $300. Definately worth it if you do a lot of them. I'm sure there are other companies that might make them still, I am currently looking for one. You need a 5/8 collar (I think it's 5/8).

    With that being said, My 2000 Deville's headgasket blew last sunday so I did them at work today. Bad news is the guy with the dowel puller recently quit so I was out of luck on using his. I ended up taking a 4" long bolt (cant remember the size, fit snuggly in the center of the dowel) and put a pair of vise grips around the outside as tight as I could get them. Twisted the dowel until it was loose, but then couldnt get it any further. I was determined to figure out a way to remove them without getting violent with them like I used to in the past. I tried everything with no luck. When I was about to give up and just chip it out like I've done in the past I had a crazy idea I thought wouldnt work at all. I broke out the air hammer. Used a blunt chisel tip on it. Hit the head of the bolt from the bottom of the head and I couldnt believe it, it came right out. Took an hour to figure it out and get the first one out. Had the last three out in about 10 minutes after that.

    The air hammer trick works, especially if you don't want to drop big money on a dowell puller. The best way is to get a dowel puller though. You can even reuse the dowels if you want when you use the puller (I wouldn't, but you can). Here is a link to the snap on puller so you can get an idea of what I'm talking about. http://buy1.snapon.com/catalog/item....roup_ID=676035

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    Re: Guide pins

    Hell, that's just a slide hammer with a lathe collet on the end. The collets are what make it expensive.

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