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Old 12-04-2010, 06:55 AM   #1
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Busted zinc removal

Can anyone suggest a method to remove the threaded part of a zinc annode that is busted off inside the brass bolt head that holds the zinc?

thanks
R.
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Old 12-04-2010, 07:19 AM   #2
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RE: Busted zinc removal

A propane torch (plumbers torch) works great. Hold with a pair of pliers or vise grips and heat. The old zinc melts out.

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Old 12-04-2010, 08:27 AM   #3
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RE: Busted zinc removal

Ok thanks. that confirms what I was thinking of trying yesterday. Just wanted to hear that it had been done by someone else first.
R.
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Old 12-04-2010, 09:10 AM   #4
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RE: Busted zinc removal

One thing to try is smacking a groove in it with a cold chisel so that you can use a big flat blade screwdriver to try to unscrew it.

If that fails, mix a 50/50 solution of muriatic (hydrochloric) acid and water (always add acid to water, NEVER the other way around) and it'll dissolve the zinc overnight.
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Old 12-04-2010, 09:36 AM   #5
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RE: Busted zinc removal

Or buy a new plug or two*for a few bucks - lots cheaper than a torch*to keep on your boat
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Old 12-04-2010, 09:58 AM   #6
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RE: Busted zinc removal

Everett marina sells the base bolt/plugs.* Are you moored in Everett?*
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Old 12-04-2010, 10:44 AM   #7
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RE: Busted zinc removal

Hey tom
I agree but I am doing this from home in my shop. I have a bag of old zinc caps that have been collected on my boat over the years and thought I would try to make some use of them.
One fellow suggested muriatic acid. I have the torch but not the acid so I will try the torch first.
R.
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Old 12-04-2010, 11:38 AM   #8
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RE: Busted zinc removal

Ralph:

I have successfully removed them when busted off flush with the bronze, just by driling into the zinc and working them around with a skinny screwdriver. Usually the zinc is really soft by teh time it busts off that close.
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Old 12-04-2010, 01:41 PM   #9
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RE: Busted zinc removal

Good suggestion....some of them are harder than others, probably representing various age and sacrificial life.

I just played with the torch for a while and got most of them cleared. Only burnt my thumb once LOL !

The torch method does not clean out the thread real well. Takes a lot of heat...more than I suspected when I started.

Would like to try muriatic acid next time and see how well that does. Certainly its less work.

R.
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Old 12-04-2010, 01:43 PM   #10
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RE: Busted zinc removal

"Only burnt my thumb once LOL "

Ya done well there boy!!
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Old 12-04-2010, 03:29 PM   #11
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RE: Busted zinc removal

Hey at least I only burnt the LEFT thumb and not the right !
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Old 12-04-2010, 08:18 PM   #12
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RE: Busted zinc removal

<h1>OK Ralph- keep it up and Baker may move the post to OTDE !</h1>
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Old 12-06-2010, 04:03 PM   #13
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Busted zinc removal

I use, after drilling out the residue, a very stiff bristle , round wire brush, about 3/8" diam., to clean out the threads.
It's a relic from the days when I could afford some Snap on stuff. I've seen similar brushes elsewhere though.

Then an old *tap I ground off the end to produce a M.M.(mickey mouse)*version of a bottoming tap.

-- Edited by C lectric on Monday 6th of December 2010 05:05:05 PM
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Old 12-06-2010, 08:10 PM   #14
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RE: Busted zinc removal

For a stiff round wire brush use a copper fitting cleaning brush. Local plumbing supply houses, hardware stores or the big box stores have them. You can also cut the handle off and chuck them in a drill.

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