Saturday, May 19, 2018


Today was going to be regular yard work, getting my utility trailer tires replaced, and then working on the tree that fell across the yard last week. Maybe even get to the reloading bench for a while.


It's pouring rain here. Has been for 3 or 4 days. Streets flooded. No way to cut the grass. Decide I am not working on the tree, although I did cut enough to get it off the house, porch roof and windows.

About 11 in the morning, I decide on the easy route. I hook the trailer to the truck and take it to the discount tire store. They do one. On the other side, two of the lugs just spin. Can't get the nuts off. We give up. I pay for one tire and come home.

Did I mention the rain? I put on my oldest boots and a full rain suit. Drive the truck and trailer up in the yard. Run an extension cord out to the wheel. Put a fresh disc on the angle grinder. Put on a face shield and hearing protection. And sit there in the rain, showering sparks until I grind down the two offending studs flush with the rim. Then chisel at the remaining metal until I can drive the studs back and get the wheel off. This time I leave the trailer.

The auto parts store had new studs and nuts. The discount tire manager was surprised to see me back, muddy and drenched, but he had a guy put the other new tire on for me right away. I think he was afraid I would sit down.

Come home. The trailer was on a jack. So I cut a large round out of the tree the right height to support the trailer and let the jack down. Trailer is solid and chocked. Trailer is supported by big immovable wood. Look at it for a few minutes. I feel safe enough to get under it.

Lay down in the water and the mud and try to hammer the new studs into the flange. Crawl out, get a bigger hammer and a longer, larger punch, lay back down and succeed in hammering the studs into the flange.

Mount the wheel, tighten the bolts, alternate between tightening and hammering until the studs finally pull up against the back of the flange.

Park the trailer. Put everything away. Use a hose to wash the mud off the rain suit and boots. Take a shower. I am out of the shower a little after 6.

Tomorrow I will have a go at some of the other things. Like the tree.


Will said...

Tends to be easier to drill out a bad stud, rather than chancing damaging the wheel. Requires a means of holding the nut still. Vicegrips work well. Try to get the first drill centered, makes life easier.

You should be able to pull the stud all the way into it's seat with a nut. Open face nut, not a blind hole dressup type. Spin it on with the flat side facing inward. A washer helps. You may need a couple washers for spacing, since some studs have a shank that will protrude beyond the wheel mounting surface. A dab of grease on the nut face helps. DON'T grease the spline of the stud or the hole.

Re-check lugnut torque after a few miles, and again after 20 or so.

Consider an anti-seize application to the threads (not the taper) of lugnuts. I was taught this at a service station back in the 60's in PA. Solves the situation of breaking studs that seize from corrosion. That shop never had a wheel come loose, and neither have I in 50 years. Actually, what we used was wheel bearing grease, but anti-seize is more convenient. Might also help with those studs that tend to gall, like the Toyota studs in the early 00's.

ASM826 said...


I did use a little axle grease on the threads when I put it back together, both the new and the old studs. I used to be a bicycle shop mechanic. A touch of grease on pedal threads, brake cables before putting them in housing, seat posts, etc., saves a world of trouble later.

Didn't think of trying to drill out the stud, but I should have. Thanks, if there's a next time, I will remember.

Borepatch said...

Oof. Sounds like you had even less fun than I did last weekend putting together the stuff for the yard sale. At least I didn't get muddy.

SiGraybeard said...

That's a pretty wild story. I had an involuntary flinch when I pictured sitting on wet ground, in the rain, with an AC powered angle grinder.

ASM826 said...


I was running the tool thru a ground fault circuit. It's a new, name brand tool, completely plastic body and switches. Not that I didn't think about it.

David aka True Blue Sam said...

I love cutting wood, but trees in your yard are a pain. Every stick has to be picked up before the grass conceals them, and when you are cutting small springy branches they love to grab your chain and flip it off the bar. Wear your leggings!