August 15, 2023
Tips for Removing 12-Point Fasteners
For the professional who services equipment and has trouble removing 12-point fasteners, there are a few things that can be done to help make it easier. If it’s just an occasional problem, following these tips should be adequate. But if the problem is severe, a blanket changeover to another style of fastener may be needed.
Make sure the fasteners are installed with no more torque than is necessary. The installation torque should be measured with a recently calibrated torque wrench in good condition.
Fasteners should be oiled before removal. The objective is to get as much oil as possible onto all the surfaces that move during fastener removal. The fasteners should be allowed to soak in the oil. Make sure to wipe off the oil on all the surfaces engaged by the wrench.
Use only high-quality wrenches in new or like-new condition. A worn wrench should never be used because it could damage the corners of the fastener, thus making it impossible to remove with any wrench.
If a fastener has already been damaged, the best you can do is try. Impact guns provide a pulsating torque that is more effective for removal than a steady pull. It is also a safer way to develop high torque.
For large fasteners, slugging wrenches are also a good choice. However, the blows should not be much greater than is necessary to break the fastener loose. Once you get the fastener off, do not re-use it. You might not be so lucky next time. If possible, replace the old fastener with a spline fastener or a larger single-hex fastener.
Using these tips can help save time and labor when on a jobsite and can ensure users are properly following safety procedures. For further information on safety or to sign up for our safety program, visit https://www.wrighttool.com/safety.