Dislodging Edson pedestal bolts - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 17 Old 04-29-2013 Thread Starter
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Dislodging Edson pedestal bolts

I've been prepping my new-to-me Islander 30 and need to run a cable or two up the steering pedestal for the GPS unit. I removed the compass and have been completely stymied by the bolts holding the compass base to the pedestal bowl. Teasingly, one bolt came out fairly easily. It's about four inches long with the bottom two inches threaded and has a flat head. The other three are pretty much welded in! I've tried dousing the entire visible lengths in ProBlast and have even used an impact screwdriver to no avail. Any secret tips on breaking through?
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post #2 of 17 Old 04-29-2013
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Re: Dislodging Edson pedestal bolts

Not much to tell you other than they thread into the cast aluminium of the pedestal itself and they are probably corroded beyond belief.
If you start with a small hole and go bigger and bigger, can you drill the heads off from the top?

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post #3 of 17 Old 04-29-2013
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Re: Dislodging Edson pedestal bolts

I had to break the plastic cylinder that held the compass up high, then was able to get the heads loose by turning them with vise grips (abuse, but allows for a lot more torque). My plastic cylinder was UV damaged, so this wasn't a big loss. I replaced my binnacle compass with a smaller surface mounted one (mostly to get the compass farther away from my GPS with it's magnetic SD slot door).

You need to take things apart all the way down below the engine controls to get a tap in there and make them smooth again.

Put it back together with new bolts and lots of Tefgel.

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post #4 of 17 Old 04-29-2013
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Re: Dislodging Edson pedestal bolts

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Originally Posted by nestorph View Post
I've been prepping my new-to-me Islander 30 and need to run a cable or two up the steering pedestal for the GPS unit. I removed the compass and have been completely stymied by the bolts holding the compass base to the pedestal bowl. Teasingly, one bolt came out fairly easily. It's about four inches long with the bottom two inches threaded and has a flat head. The other three are pretty much welded in! I've tried dousing the entire visible lengths in ProBlast and have even used an impact screwdriver to no avail. Any secret tips on breaking through?
I would be real sure of WHAT you can still buy as my older unit has many NLA items or prices that are

AFTER YOUR INFORMENED you can break the cheapest part to save the best stuff

For example if there is know way there coming out you can cut the bolts at the base of the compass riser and then soak it as a unit

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post #5 of 17 Old 04-29-2013
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Re: Dislodging Edson pedestal bolts

Interesting--I took the same tack as Alex and broke the plastic cylinder to be able to get a good shot at those bolts. I got a new cylinder from Edson (this was 4 years ago), and replacement bolts that were less likely to corrode. Better check, of course. I coated the threads in some Lancote before screwing them back.

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post #6 of 17 Old 04-29-2013
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Re: Dislodging Edson pedestal bolts

I don't think you will have to break anything other than the bolts. Once you have drilled off the heads of the bolts you can disassemble everythig and get a more appropriate tool on whats left of the bolt shafts and remove them.
If all that fails you can cut the remaining shaft off, drill out the theaded end and retap the theads in the aluminium pedestal.

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post #7 of 17 Old 04-29-2013
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Re: Dislodging Edson pedestal bolts

My decision was an easy one, I am in the process or rebuilding or replacing almost everything on my Offshore 33. Last weekend I was spinning the helm to see if the rudder turned freely, it was kinda stiff then it got real easy. Later on I while cleaning and prepping the engine compartment for paint, I noticed the entire Edson sheave assembly had corroded and broken into various assorted broken bits.
Now I have learned they make this assembly with different offsets to line up with the rudder, mine was a rusted mess. And don't cut the cable/chain assembly, they are freaking expensive.

I am thinking of changing the name of the boat to 'breaksalot'

Experience teaches us things we would rather not know.

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post #8 of 17 Old 04-30-2013
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Drill and tap them if they wint come out. On my ib30vone came out, and one broke inside...I drilled the heads on the remaining bolts and used vice grips to finally get them out. I re-tapped all of the holes as I reassembled. On my boat the chain had snapped and I bought 19 feet of replacement chain from grainger...much cheaper than Edson...good luck
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post #9 of 17 Old 04-30-2013
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Re: Dislodging Edson pedestal bolts

Mine spun out - they had a square nut on the bottom that just fell down inside the pedestal. I replaced them with brass screws that look better and will remove a lot easier.

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post #10 of 17 Old 04-30-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Dislodging Edson pedestal bolts

Lots of interesting advice. Thanks to all. An approach that I might take based on some Google searching is to use a Dremel to cut off the bolt under the sleeve, exposing the shaft of the bolt above the threaded area, then use a pair of Visegrips to twist out the bolt. Apply elbow grease, prayer, and appropriate cuss words--in random order. I'm not happy about the thought of drilling out the bolts! The threaded sections are about an inch or more as I recall. I'm also concerned about one of the posters mentioning that the bolts might be NLA as its an older unit (at least since 1983).
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