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Hawaii

Helm Wheel Nut Stuck

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Aloha All,

Went to pull the wheel today to fix a Seastar Helm leak and cannot get the cap nut off my wheel. I believe this is a standard Maverick Gemlux wheel, Is this a stainless thread or plastic insert to post? Any bright ideas? I prefer not to wreck the nut/wheel.

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PB blaster and a light knock with a hammer to break free. I always wrapped the nut in a old rag and used a big wrench to break mine free. Put some never seize on it before reinstalling.

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After spraying with penetrating oil of your choice the nut should come off. Use a good fitting socket and you should not damage the nut.

 The next step will be getting the wheel free. That is the more common stuck item between the nut and the wheel. I have found that a nice flat bar prying up under the wheel with a good strike on the helm shaft will free the wheel. So once you get the nut free you leave it screwed onto the shaft flush with the top of the shaft. Use the flat pry bar for leverage and hit the shaft with a hammer. The wheel should pop off 

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50 minutes ago, HoneyB said:

After spraying with penetrating oil of your choice the nut should come off. Use a good fitting socket and you should not damage the nut.

 The next step will be getting the wheel free. That is the more common stuck item between the nut and the wheel. I have found that a nice flat bar prying up under the wheel with a good strike on the helm shaft will free the wheel. So once you get the nut free you leave it screwed onto the shaft flush with the top of the shaft. Use the flat pry bar for leverage and hit the shaft with a hammer. The wheel should pop off 

If the flat bar does not work...go to a rental store and get a wheel puller or buy one at Harbor freight for a one time use.  Don't over leverage the flat bar or you could bend the shaft.

 

Many auto part stores will rent them...

DC

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I have seen pullers mentioned and even tried them myself. I found the pressure applied in such a small area will bend the wheel pretty quick. But a lot of people have good results with a puller.

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Depending on the type of wheel a puller may or may not fit.  If it does fit just get it tight, maybe a couple turns past finger tight, then like HoneyB said a good strike on the back of the puller and it should pop off.

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Got a harbor freight near by? They sell a small gear puller that fits perfectly for about $6. Had to use it on my boat too.

Make sure you put some anti-seize on both the shaft and nut when you reinstall .

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When you pull the wheel with a puller loosen the nut than reinstall a nut back on the shaft to cover the treads this will help you not damage the shaft threads than install the puller put a fair amount of pressure on tha wheel and tap the end of the puller bolt with a brass hammer ( don’t want to mushroom the treaded shaft ) . Tap the puller with a brass

hammer  if the wheel doesn’t pop off apply more pressure to the wheel puller and tap it again with the brass hammer. Then when you remove the nut from the shaft it will clean what ever thread damage was done while removing the wheel with the puller  this is why you reinstall the nut on the shaft leaving room for the steering wheel to pull up when it becomes loose . 

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On 9/21/2018 at 8:19 AM, dabear said:

When you pull the wheel with a puller loosen the nut than reinstall a nut back on the shaft to cover the treads this will help you not damage the shaft threads than install the puller put a fair amount of pressure on tha wheel and tap the end of the puller bolt with a brass hammer ( don’t want to mushroom the treaded shaft ) . Tap the puller with a brass

hammer  if the wheel doesn’t pop off apply more pressure to the wheel puller and tap it again with the brass hammer. Then when you remove the nut from the shaft it will clean what ever thread damage was done while removing the wheel with the puller  this is why you reinstall the nut on the shaft leaving room for the steering wheel to pull up when it becomes loose . 

Great suggestion....

 

dc

 

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