[A4] FYI - Removing Locking Bolts

Rocky Mullin caliban at sharon.net
Fri Nov 12 03:40:06 EST 2004

	lock nuts don't deter thieves, wheels are selcom stolen anyway,
and only inconvenience the car owner.

	the best lock for your rims?  insurance.

At 2:48 PM -0500 11/10/04, Mitchell Segal wrote:
>Hello all,
>I just wanted to relate to you something I learned yesterday, in the hope
>that it helps even one other person out there.
>On Monday night while driving somewhere, I found out I had a flat time (a
>nice BIG nail right in the center of my tread).  I was in a hurry, so I
>figured to just change the tire as fast as possible, toss everything back in
>the trunk, and be on my way. 
>Well, in my haste, as the last step, I was tightening the lock-bolt I have
>on my car, the emergency wrench slips, and I broke the pins off the lock key
>for the bolt.  This was a major problem, since
>(a) the spare I put on to replace the flat had a bent rim I got 3 days
>before from a nice pothole (we won't go there right now), so it was
>(b) it's Winter here, and I need to put on my winter tires and rims
>So, I go back to the store where I bought the locks (not Audi original), and
>found out the company that made them is no longer in business.  We search
>through about 200 spares they had, but none matched my code.  I then asked
>them what they do in this situation (ie: many people lose the keys), and
>they told me that since the bolts are so deep into the mag (2001.5 A4 1.8TQS
>w/ 17" mags), the usual bolt extractor wouldn't fit.  So the only other
>option would be to weld a nut onto the lockbolt, and then remove it that
>I tried a professional tire place just down the street, and got basically
>the same answer.  I wasn't looking forward to this, as there was possibility
>of damage to the wheel.
>Before going ahead, I decided I would stop by a local general mechanic that
>I trusted, to see if they had any good ideas, or at least they would
>probably charge less than the performance or tire shops.  It was a good
>thing I did, because he had them off within 5 minutes.  The solution?
>12-point socket set.  He simply found the one that would slip over the whole
>lock bolt, hammered it on a bit, and then removed the whole lock bolt as
>normal with a breaker bar.  Easy as pie, barely even nicked them.
>He told me it works just about every time.  Didn't damage the socket at all
>(since they're usually stronger than the bolts).  Also, he said that this
>was the way that theives usually get the locks off when they want to steal
>your mags.
>So, if anyone in the future is facing a problem with lock nuts, and missing
>or broken key, try using a 12-point socket (closer fit than a 6-point
>socket, more contact points, better grip). 
>Hope this helps someone!!
>Mitchell Segal
>A4 mailing list
>A4 at audifans.com

  Rocky Mullin 

  "Evil kills those who perpetrate it, and the pastures of inequity are harmful"

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