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Thread: Exhaust Nut Removal

  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Fairfax County, VA

    Exhaust Nut Removal

    The rehab of my R75/6 is going well. I have new grease in the bearings and new rubber on the wheels. The brake system has been flushed and new fluid added, and the handlebar control cables have been replaced and/or greased.

    I am ready to change out the pipes for some new ones, but I have been stopped cold by a warning in Mathew Parkhouse's article in the Jan issue of the Owners News where he warns about "Extensive Damage" that can result in removing exhaust nuts that have frozen onto the heads. The exhaust nuts on my bike have been on for 25 years and have never been removed, so there is an excellent chance they are frozen into position.

    Mathew said that the procedure for cutting the nuts off was described in an earlier article, but I don't have thatb one.

    Can somone send me the article, or advise me on what to do?


  2. #2
    rabid reader dbrick's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Santa Cruz CA

    Use a hacksaw with a fine-toothed blade. Hold the blade fore-and-aft, parallel to and over the exhaust pipe as it exits the cylinder head. Cut down through the nut. Only cut through the solid portion of the nut; when the saw blade first reaches the threads, stop. Remove the saw.

    Then use a chisel in the slot you've just cut, and spread the nut apart to remove it.
    David Brick
    Santa Cruz CA
    2007 R1200R

  3. #3
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Marin By God County, California
    You have the appropriate exhaust nut removal wrench, right?
    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  4. #4
    Registered User jgr451's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Left Coast Canada
    Use extraordinary means only if use of a cutting oil sprayed on the threads and the proper exhuast nut wrench do not work!!

    I have a 1984,no reason to think the nuts were ever loosened.I loosened them no problem and put them back with anti seize compound on the threads.
    No reason you should not be so lucky.

  5. #5
    Has the GS-Lust The_Veg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Atlanta 'burbs
    For further info check the Airheads site and do a search at I think Duane Ausherman's page has something about this also (just Google his name to find it).
    2012 R1200GS

    "If you can't fix it with a hammer, it's electrical." -somebody's dad

  6. #6
    Rally Rat YB in IN's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Bloomington, Indiana
    If you do screw the threads up when you take the nuts off, you can always get a thread chaser made at a local machining shop. You'd have to get the bike in so they could figure out the dimensions and everything, but it'd be a lot cheaper then repairing trashed heads. Good luck. I know that procedure was always and "adventure" on my old R80. Oh, and don't forget to put anti-seize on the threads before you put the nuts back on.

  7. #7
    I would suggest at least trying to remove the nuts before trying to cut them off. If you haven't already, obtain an exhause nut wrench. Soak the nuts in WD-40 or similar penetrating oil for hours or days ahead of time, then try to remove them. My favorite took is a large rubber mallet I bought at Sears, which I use to "persuade" things that don't want to move. I usually use this mallet to break my exhause nuts loose. If, after trying this method, you should cut the nuts off before doing any damage to the threads. If you do damage the threads, any competent machine shop can restore them.

    Good luck

  8. #8
    Registered User PeoriaMac's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Washington, Illinois

    use of heat

    I would add that heating the nut, then spraying with WD40 or other lubricant may help. The nut, being aluminum, soaks up the heat and may expand slightly. Soft hammer only! To do otherwise is to risk breaking off a fin from the nut...which looks a little tacky.

    1986 R80RT, 2005 R1200GS
    Livin' Large On The Lake

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