Gen 2 – cam bolt removal refusal



Doing my head gaskets for those that don’t already know.
The passenger side came off fairly easy. The driver’s side is absolutely refusing. I’m wondering how much torque the shop I take my car to applied when they did the timing belt and water pump.

I tried holding the pulley with pins that I broke until the hole I was putting them through broke off.

I attached a muffler clamp behind the sprocket to a piece of rebar in front. The other end butting on the floor.

I’ve hit it until the 5 gallon tank on the compressor drained with the max force this 1/2″ drive impact wrench can put out. I don’t know the brand Blue Point, so I don’t think it to be an especially powerful model, but should still be sufficient in most applications.

I’ve put a four foot piece of pipe over my breaker bar with the rebar configuration above and am starting to strip my cam sprocket bolt.

No dealerships have the sprocket holder tool around me and even if they did, I don’t think they can do much better than the rebar at holding the sprocket and I’d be starting to strip this bolt anyway.

These are grade 8 bolts mind you.


I have a MAP torch, but don’t know if I should use that on an aluminum head. Doesn’t sound like a good idea.

Crankset Automotive tire Bicycle tire Wheel Motor vehicle

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Someone either over torqued it or used loctite.

Use the torch pointed on the head of the bolt. When it starts to change color, hit it again with the impact or prying on it with your long bar.

You may want to have an easy out socket that fits the 17 mm hex head just in case.

The heat may damage the seal, but not the head. There’s also the plastic backplate behind the gear, but these are cheap from Subaru.



I’m leaning toward over torqued, but I’ll try the heat on the bolt if it can’t hurt. I was already planning on replacing the seals so they are on hand.
I’m not planning on replacing the head, so I don’t know what to do if this bolt strips or even breaks. My best guess is start planning on replacing the head.
Off I go…



No luck.
I heated a few times trying the impact and the breaker bar pipe. I could feel the socket starting to slip over the bolt with the pipe and backed off. The impact isn’t moving it, but it isn’t sliding over either.
My last attempt I heated until I could smell the seal burning.
Getting a bigger impact from someone. I’ll probably have to go out for a set of sockets for it.
On hindsight, and a fresh look at what I’m working with, I don’t see any reason this sprocket would have been taken off to do any of the previous work I had the shop do. It’s not in the way of anything. Yet, the passenger side came off so easily.

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