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Rod bolt problem!!!!!

This is a discussion on Rod bolt problem!!!!! within the General Help forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; What up LS1's.....OK I'm currently installing ARP rod bolts. Anyone ever had a problem with stripping the bolt with EASE??!! ...

  1. #1
    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    1998 Camaro Z28 Conv. M6

    Unhappy Rod bolt problem!!!!!

    What up LS1's.....OK I'm currently installing ARP rod bolts. Anyone ever had a problem with stripping the bolt with EASE??!! I mean gracious...I barely get into the second pass of 45-inch/lbs and it starts to strip. Anyone who's used ARP knows when you strip them just ONCE, you CANNOT continue from THAT point.

    So, this means I have most of my bolts done with 3 passes of 45-inch/lbs as instructed on the ARP directions. However on 2-4 bolts I have some that are 2 passes of 45, and one is only one pass BEFORE the bolt stripped rendering my 2nd and 3rd pass useless!!! So, where do I go from here??? What can I expect in terms of how this will affect the overall project??? Will my car even be driveable???? Thanks in advances...need some help on this one for sure!

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    Life in the Fast lane sunsetorangess's Avatar
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    Im not sure what Arp calls for but i if i remember correctly the last two rebuilds i did i torqued the main's at 15 ft lbs first pass and seconded was 85 degrees.
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    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    ORION where you at my man! I know you have a good answer for me!?lol

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    Veteran 0rion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jb3golf View Post
    ORION where you at my man! I know you have a good answer for me!?lol
    wish I did brother but I've never done the rod bolts. I know the katechs are preferred by people and I've read all kinds of conflicting information regarding pretty much everything to do with swapping the rod bolts. I still think something is up if your stripping them at such a low torque. Sure your wrench isn't messed up or something? You keep saying in/lbs but do you mean ft/lbs? Everything I'm reading says arp's go to 45 ft/lbs the final pass. You're just burnishing them the first 2 times so you can get a more accurate reading the last pass.
    I'm not going to get into all the conflicting stuff too much because I don't want to spread something I don't know for sure but some have said ARP recommends you resize the rod when using their bolts. Not sure why or if that's even true but you may want to call ARP and see what they say and tell them about your issue. I most definitely wouldn't put it back together until you get those bolts torqued correctly.

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    Member camaroz98's Avatar
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    i used them with my last rebuild and had no problems of any short did you install them on new rods or your old ones?

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    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 0rion View Post
    wish I did brother but I've never done the rod bolts. I know the katechs are preferred by people and I've read all kinds of conflicting information regarding pretty much everything to do with swapping the rod bolts. I still think something is up if your stripping them at such a low torque. Sure your wrench isn't messed up or something? You keep saying in/lbs but do you mean ft/lbs? Everything I'm reading says arp's go to 45 ft/lbs the final pass. You're just burnishing them the first 2 times so you can get a more accurate reading the last pass.
    I'm not going to get into all the conflicting stuff too much because I don't want to spread something I don't know for sure but some have said ARP recommends you resize the rod when using their bolts. Not sure why or if that's even true but you may want to call ARP and see what they say and tell them about your issue. I most definitely wouldn't put it back together until you get those bolts torqued correctly.
    Thanks for the reply....yeah sorry, I meant 45 ft/lbs. So, at least every bolt is at that spec. I've read so many different ways of torquing these bolts it is crazy.......I did not re-size my bolts although ARP recommends this. I just made sure to do one bolt at a time per rod. I've read the tolerances just aren't as precise as advertized....I guess I better call ARP on monday....thanks again buddy...

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    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by camaroz98 View Post
    i used them with my last rebuild and had no problems of any short did you install them on new rods or your old ones?
    I installed them on the old ones, as this is a "Block in Car" project. All bolts are torqued to 45 ft/lbs, but not all have been re-torqued due to the stripping. The problem is SINCE the bolts are stripped, I can't re-torque them in any direction. So I guess I'll have to call ARP and see what I'm looking at......any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks for the post......

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    Senior Member bills98ta's Avatar
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    If you have the heads pulled, you can pop the pistons out and install a set of H-Beam rods and new bearings.

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    Moderator Firebirdjones's Avatar
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    Orion is right with his comments on resizing the rods.
    Working in and around a machine shop, we never installed any brand of rod bolts without resizing the rods,,,,period. It was always a part of the procedure.

    Problem with LS rods,,,is they are snap cap design and cannot be resized,,,since the parting lines are not always exactly parrallel to begin with. So it's a win/lose situation really. I'd personally rather spring for a complete rod setup than chance new bolts in old rods that aren't resized.

    We always used ARP bolts without issues, in all parts of the engine builds. We also always resized the rods, or new (better) rods were purchased.

    I didn't see any mention of the moly lube ARP recommends on there bolts when torquing to spec. I assume you did use this??? Makes a huge difference in torque readings. Without it you could very possibly strip threads as you have probably far exceeded the recommended torque settings without the lube in place.

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    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bills98ta View Post
    If you have the heads pulled, you can pop the pistons out and install a set of H-Beam rods and new bearings.
    Great Idea! How difficult is this install??? Break it down to me and I will ABSOLUTELY go this route. I just don't want to take the chance of ruining all the money I've spent on parts (224R Camshaft, Gaskets, LT's and Off-Road Y etc.....) You know? How difficult would this be factoring in the block is in the car???

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    Quote Originally Posted by Firebirdjones View Post
    Orion is right with his comments on resizing the rods.
    Working in and around a machine shop, we never installed any brand of rod bolts without resizing the rods,,,,period. It was always a part of the procedure.

    Problem with LS rods,,,is they are snap cap design and cannot be resized,,,since the parting lines are not always exactly parrallel to begin with. So it's a win/lose situation really. I'd personally rather spring for a complete rod setup than chance new bolts in old rods that aren't resized.

    We always used ARP bolts without issues, in all parts of the engine builds. We also always resized the rods, or new (better) rods were purchased.

    I didn't see any mention of the moly lube ARP recommends on there bolts when torquing to spec. I assume you did use this??? Makes a huge difference in torque readings. Without it you could very possibly strip threads as you have probably far exceeded the recommended torque settings without the lube in place.
    Good Info!! Yeah, I did use the ARP lube on all bolts and all are spec'd to 45 ft/lbs. The problem is on 2 of them, I was unable to make the 3 passes required to attain the right stretch. So, I'm not sure where to go from here. I just don't want to take the chance of destroying my engine. BUT, when you have two ARP bolts that have stripped (and consequently cannot be torqued either direction) this makes me worry. If you have any advice that would be awesome seeing that you have the experience with rods/bolts/resizing.

    Any help bro I would appreciate on this.

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    Moderator Firebirdjones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jb3golf View Post
    Good Info!! Yeah, I did use the ARP lube on all bolts and all are spec'd to 45 ft/lbs. The problem is on 2 of them, I was unable to make the 3 passes required to attain the right stretch. So, I'm not sure where to go from here. I just don't want to take the chance of destroying my engine. BUT, when you have two ARP bolts that have stripped (and consequently cannot be torqued either direction) this makes me worry. If you have any advice that would be awesome seeing that you have the experience with rods/bolts/resizing.

    Any help bro I would appreciate on this.
    Okay gotcha. I understand. I'm sure ARP would swap those bolts for ya. I'm sure people have had success changing just rod bolts on these LS motors and letting it fly. It's not something I'm accustomed to doing, since I was always tought to resize rods in the process,,,,so I can't honestly say it's going to work for you.
    Since you are this far into it,,,I'd talk to ARP and finish what you started.

    I like Bills idea, but swapping rods around and/or pistons cause balance issues. Balancing everything is another ballgame all together.
    Again, maybe people get away with it, but it's not something I would personally do.

    Then I would get into the question of,,,,"well since I removed the heads it's a great time for some cnc ported goodies"

    Before I was done I'd have an entire forged rotating assembly with AFR's turning a relatively cheap and easy weekend job into a $6,000 project.

    I would replace the stripped bolts and finish what you started, button it back up,,,otherwise I think you are opening up another can of worms.

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    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Yeah, but how do you replace stripped bolts????? Maybe I'm not saying this right; it's the ARP bolt head that is stripped. So the head to the bolt wont hold the 10mm, thus I'm kinda stuck. Does this mean I need to take all the rods out??? Can I take them out and take them to a machine shop and have them remove the bolt HEADS that are stripped? Or do I just install the remaining 4 I have left with ARP lube and pray for the Best?! This is a tough one man....

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    Veteran 0rion's Avatar
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    I guess I was misunderstanding you also. I thought they were stripped in the rods but it's just the bolt head that's stripped? Much better predicament than what I was thinking you were in.
    Try a standard on it or a size smaller metric...... I'm thinking those might be standard to begin with ain't they? Either way if all else fails get out your trusty pair of vice grips and get those suckers out of there. What point socket were you using on those?

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    Veteran 0rion's Avatar
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    actually, I think craftsman makes sockets that are supposed to grab onto anything. Maybe grab a set of those.

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    yep....they're called grip tite sockets

    http://www.sears.com/shc/s/search_10...ckets&sLevel=0

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    Veteran Hi-Po's Avatar
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    I also completely misunderstood your situation. This is not nearly as bad.

    Those are probably a 12 point head right? What point socket was used? Not that it matters now.

    Vise gribs might work. You said the head was a 10 mm correct? See if you cant squeeze a 3/8 on there. I have used a chisel and a hammer MANY times to remove fasteners in this situation before. Welding a nut is probably not an option here, as it might transfer too much heat to the bearing. But welding a nut on the stripped head is very easy, and the most effective method. Its what I always do.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 0rion View Post
    yep....they're called grip tite sockets

    http://www.sears.com/shc/s/search_10...ckets&sLevel=0
    Ya, I have those. They usually work pretty good.

    Drilling with an easy out works also. Left handed drill bits work well with studs that are not rusted. In your case, a left handed drill bit might work. If not, you have a nice hole to smack an "easy out" in and turn it out.

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    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 0rion View Post
    I guess I was misunderstanding you also. I thought they were stripped in the rods but it's just the bolt head that's stripped? Much better predicament than what I was thinking you were in.
    Try a standard on it or a size smaller metric...... I'm thinking those might be standard to begin with ain't they? Either way if all else fails get out your trusty pair of vice grips and get those suckers out of there. What point socket were you using on those?
    I believe it's a husky 10mm (12-point) socket. I mean all the lines line up perfect on the ARP bolt heads. What I don't understand is why I went through TWO of these sockets due to stripping the bolt and socket??!! I wonder if my torque wrench isn't accurately set properly or if I didn't put enough lube on the bolts.... mmmmmmm!!!

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    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 0rion View Post
    actually, I think craftsman makes sockets that are supposed to grab onto anything. Maybe grab a set of those.
    Good call Orion!!! I knew you would come through for me!!!! That's why I had to call a brother out! You are da man!!!

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