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Discussion Starter #1
I just attempted my first oil change on my 07 Vegas. Long story short I appear to have stripped the threads on the drain plug bolt as its just spinning in place. It wont tighten and it wont come out. I feel that whatever needs to be done now is beyond my ability so I'll have to bring it in to the dealership and have them fix it. For several years I've changed the oil on a VW Passat, Toyota Tacoma and Honda Shadow and I've never done this before... Has anyone done anything similar or have any advice?
 

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No bueno. According to my dealer that's a major repair.
 

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I know in the old days once you removed the old plug you could buy a rubber grommet type plug that worked. I suppose you could also rethread the hole a slightly larger size. That does not solve you first problem of removing the old one. Sorry these are probaly poor suggestions, but I am sure the dealer would have much better ideas.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I just happen to have the bike at my uncles place right now. He is a retired mechanic but unfortunately he only dealt with cars and trucks in his day. However he pointed out that my plug is very strange. Its not leaking any oil even though it spins without much resistance. Its almost as if it was just passing through the hole with a nut on the other end. I don't know if thats possible... unless the previous owner stripped it out and then made a quick fix of it by doing this. I guess I'll find out when I bring it into the shop.
 

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There is an o-ring between the head of the bolt and the case. There is probably just enough pressure between the two to keep from leaking just yet.I would not ride it that way.
As far as it being an expensive fix, it doesn't have to be.


Well unfortunately as you already know, it is stripped. If you can put the bike up on a jack and secure it, then use vise grips to hold the head of the bolt, you can use a drill with a small bit to start a hole in the middle of the bolt.You may want to pull the oil filter first and try and drain as much oil as possible before drilling through the bolt,since when drilling through the bolt will obviously get messy with the oil draining out. I would then go to a bit just big enough to take out the hex to a round hole.Drill through the bolt.That will get you a good hole in the center of the bolt with a good round hole to work with, which will help in stepping up to a bigger bit. Next take a little bigger bit and drill the hole bigger, a little bigger at a time.Cause you want the threads to be as thin as possible when you get to a drill that finally cuts the head off the bolt.
You should be able, by then, to collapse the threads at this point and work it out of the hole.
After removal, you need to get a drain plug repair kit. Or just get a threaded insert with the correct threads. tap the hole for the insert and install the insert.

I hope I didn't confuse you with all this.
Good luck.
Rick
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I follow you and if the damage was in another location I'd attempt to fix it myself. I once had to re tap the metric threads on my last bike's rear fender because the previous owner forced SAE bolts into them... But right now I only have a small motorcycle lift that wouldn't provide me with enough space to get my tools underneath. Considering what a larger lift might cost I feel that I'd rather just pay someone else to do it.
 

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I follow you and if the damage was in another location I'd attempt to fix it myself. I once had to re tap the metric threads on my last bike's rear fender because the previous owner forced SAE bolts into them... But right now I only have a small motorcycle lift that wouldn't provide me with enough space to get my tools underneath. Considering what a larger lift might cost I feel that I'd rather just pay someone else to do it.

Take vise grips and grab hold of the drain plug and pull downward and while twisting counterclockwise. The plug will come out, trust me...been there and done that. Now for the repair. Go to the auto parts store and get a self tapping screw that is slightly larger than your drain plug screw. Slowly insert it and let it work its magic. This is going to be the least expensive yet highly effective method. Other people have used Heli coils to rethread but I have heard that those eventually will come loose. Another alternative is to use a product called Time Sert. I hear this is a highy effective method of repair. Hope this helps.
 

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Take vise grips and grab hold of the drain plug and pull downward and while twisting counterclockwise. The plug will come out, trust me...been there and done that. Now for the repair. Go to the auto parts store and get a self tapping screw that is slightly larger than your drain plug screw. Slowly insert it and let it work its magic. This is going to be the least expensive yet highly effective method. Other people have used Heli coils to rethread but I have heard that those eventually will come loose. Another alternative is to use a product called Time Sert. I hear this is a highy effective method of repair. Hope this helps.
Of the two methods mentioned; this is the one I would use as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The bike is back from the shop. The mechanic used a flathead screwdriver to pry down on the plug while turning it out. The threads on the plug were intact but stripped on the engine. So he tapped them to a slightly larger size and installed a slightly larger drain plug. Since he had to drain all of the oil out anyways, I had him finish off the oil change for me with the kit the I had already purchased. The cost was $78 for labour and $4 for parts.
 

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I know this thread is old but i was reading it and saw about the oil extractor. Me personally wouldnt ever use one on anything! You wont get everything out and will leave the settled stuff at the bottom. This is one of the reasons i will never take a vehicle in for an oil change. One thing i take my time on is an oil change.

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I was attempting an oil change on my 2005 Hammer. The drain plug takes an Allen wrench to remove it. I inserted the wrench and applied counterclockwise pressure when the head of the drain plug snapped off from the body of the drain plug and came out with the washer. Now the body of the drain plug remains and prevents the oil from coming out. Need some suggestions on how to get the body of the drain plug bolt out.There is not enough of the body protruding to grab on to anything with vice grips.
 

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Drill and easy out. One thing that works well for helping get the good drain plug out is get a socket allen bit, put it in the plug and give it a couple smacks with a hammer, then loosen it up.

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Use an easy out after drilling your present plug with the size recommended for that easy out. If the remains of the plug come out clean, just use a new plug and crush washer before refilling the engine with oil. Do not over-torque that drain plug, you don't want to have to go through this again.
 

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OK, do this at your peril. There's a bunch of ways to make a bad situation worse.
I keep left and right hand ez outs and bits.
I lay the bike over to get room to drill unless you have an auto lift rigged for the bike or a pit or some other fancy contraption to get the bottom of the motor up in the air. Laying over takes a little planning and hopefully a bud with some muscle and some brains. You will have fluid issues to deal with before tipping the bike and after you lay the big beast over you have to be able to pick it back up later. Plan ahead.

Drill the ez out hole with a left hand bit. Drill size for the largest ez out that you KNOW you can use without chewing into the pan threads.
Centerpunch it to set the drilling location. That's the key to success. Getting the hole to start in the center or as damn close as possible.
Drill with the left hand bit. Keep the drill perpendicular to the plug bore. If the gods are smiling on you, the drill friction may heat it enough that the plug thread chunk comes out from the drilling.
When that doesn't happen and you are drilled through the remains of the plug, be ready to catch some oil. Then, try your left hand ez out. I use the hand start and tap while I'm turning method. Pop likes a 3 pound maul and I hold the head and just tap, tap , tap while I'm turning. If it gets hard and still no turn, switch to the right turn ez out. Turn clockwise and tap, tap , tap. Just for chrissakes don't snap an ez out off in the hole. Between the tapping and the force it will come free. Be sure to use the left hand ez out to turn it out counterclockwise once it's free.

Some folks will want to get some heat on it but I shy away from boiling the oil. You can douche it with penetrating oil to help loosen it up but it's an oil plug. Not like the threads have been dry up until now.

Or... get a shop to do it.
 

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AN EZ-out is the easiest way to make a bad situation worse. Especially in this situation.
You already broke the head off. Now, if you were turning the bolt the right way, then the body is seized or frozen in the threads. An EZ-out is hard and brittle, and will be easier to break off than the head of the bolt.
If by chance you were accidentally turning the bolt the wrong way, this would be great news.Because then you would have a great chance of removing it with a left hand drill or EZ-out, since the body wouldn't necessarily be seized in the threads.
Then you could drill the center of the bolt out with a small drill bit.Then drill with a little larger bit to get to a size that your Ez-out fits into or you just drill the hole to the size of the minor diameter of the thread.
Beware-If the bolt is not seized in the hole, if you use a right hand drill bit, the drill could grab the bolt and screw it right into the pan. Then you would be unable to get the bolt out of the pan without even more work. So, I would start with a left hand bit in your situation.
BTW, sears has an EZ-out with a left hand center drill on one end and the EZ-out on the other. This is a great tool. I have used my set several times. It is the best Ez-out set I have ever used.
 

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I just ordered the witchdoctors plug. Found out quickly the OEM plug is pretty soft. So much about bragging how easy victory service is. Got the plug out fine luckily but never again using the round oem plug with an allen. That oem plug is as soft as a fresh bunny in an Easter basket. Standard torque wrench time once the new magnetic plug shows up.

At least I got a little ride in prior, to heat up the oil so I could dump it. Might as well start pulling exhaust and order the vfc and get silly while I wait.

I would actually pay a local dealer if I had one just for convenience. Damn horse and buggy town. Let's open a shop in Asheville! Who's with me? Oh well I've got Mt Pisgah here at least and the blue ridge parkway and the dragon. :) See my pic in high-ball show off thread on the parkway 10 minutes from home.

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A trick I have used many times to undo balky fasteners is with a hammer and center punch. Tap a dimple at the edge of the offending fastener and then angle the punch so it points in the direction you want the rotation and tap on the punch.
+1 on Pop's suggestions - always keep a set of left hand drill bits around AND a torque wrench. The plug may be soft(?) but the case it goes into is softer aluminum. If the drain plug resists removal, don't tug on the wrench harder, instead tap the wrench handle with a hammer - light at first then harder, but not real hard.
I have had to teach a number of guys how to work on the machines I repair. There are upside down fasteners such as the subject drain plug. Every one of those guys guessed wrong which way to turn the wrench to remove those bolts and kept tugging until I told them to stop. Another reason I don't trust others with tools.
 
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