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Old 07-04-2011, 03:02 PM
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Repairing a stripped oilpan drain plug hole

Yep, after changing my own oil for over 35 years, I finally stripped a oil drain plug hole. To be fair, it looks like the oil pan drain plug bolt is cheaply made, non-rolled threads and somewhat too small a diameter, yet it held up and the pan stripped.

To get me by, I did install an over-size plug, but now have the pan off and would like to do a better repair.

I really like those Time-Serts, (I think that's the name), but they don't seem to be available locally, so I settled for a heli-coil kit.

I'll have to shorten the heli-coil insert a bit, but see no problems installing the heli-coil. What I can see happening is the heli-coil screwing into or out of the oil pan with installation or removal of the drain plug.

I'd like to use loc-tite when putting in the insert, but can't see how I could do that and not have to chase the insert internal threads to remove excess loc-tite.

Any tips on using a heli-coil on an oil pan? Is it worthwhile? Will it hold up?

ps: Pan is $800+, so worth repairing. I could attempt to MIG weld, re-drill and tap, but it's not easy to weld inside the pan boss (basically a welded on nut), plus any welding ruins the anodized finish, so welding an additional nut on top of the original isn't preferred either, although possible. Drain boss is at front of pan, with bottom of hole almost flush with pan floor, so can't go too large and install a larger bolt.

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Old 07-04-2011, 03:18 PM
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Last edited by sqzbox; 07-04-2011 at 03:23 PM.
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Old 07-04-2011, 03:31 PM
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How much "meat" do you have to work with on the original boss? Just wondering if you can drill it out a couple of sizes bigger, then thread it for a new, larger plug?
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Old 07-04-2011, 07:05 PM
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You could use a "poor mans heli coil" . take a bolt to fit the pan, (threads that you have) and drill a hole through the center for the OE size plug. Then loctite and screw in flush, let it cure for 24 hrs. and you should be good to go.
It sounds kinda shaky ,but it should fill the bill and leave your anodizing intact.
Cutting the proper lenght and dressing the ends is important of course, and probably easier to do before the permanent install of the bung .
It works.If you can make it pretty...well then OK.
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Old 07-04-2011, 07:16 PM
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MAC has a tool for just this repair. It reams the hole to an oversize, then you tap it with a supplied tap. The kit contains the proper plugs and gaskets for the now oversize hole. I do these on the vehicle all the time, works great. Part number is OP885, retails at about $150. You can repair 5 pans, as the kit contains 5 magnetic plugs. After that, you can buy repacement plug packages.
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Old 07-04-2011, 07:28 PM
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Napa makes a spark plug repair insert and tool kit for about 35 bucks. They work real good on aluminum heads. I would bet there is one for a drain plug as well.Might not hurt to call them.
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Old 07-04-2011, 08:03 PM
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So they do, never though to look there. here it is:

ULT 76430



This is the link to NAPA Canada , no pricing though. Strangely, it almost looks exactly like the MAC set....
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Old 07-05-2011, 07:07 AM
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Why not buy a new oil pan?
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Old 07-05-2011, 07:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sqzbox
Why not buy a new oil pan?
He said it was an $800 pan so I dont think tossing it is an option.
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Old 07-05-2011, 07:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T-bucket23
He said it was an $800 pan so I dont think tossing it is an option.
Excuse my ignorance, but what makes an oil pan worth 800 bucks?
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Old 07-05-2011, 07:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sqzbox
Excuse my ignorance, but what makes an oil pan worth 800 bucks?
Really a good question there
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Old 07-05-2011, 08:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sqzbox
Excuse my ignorance, but what makes an oil pan worth 800 bucks?

Extremely high profit margin and what someone is willing to pay.
I can't see any Steel wet sump pan being worth more than a few hundred. But that's me.
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Old 07-05-2011, 08:17 AM
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oil pan plug repair

If you paid $800 for an oil pan,take the thing to a machine shop and have it done right.Why spend money on a kit that might not work .You got any pics of this oil pan?
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Old 07-05-2011, 08:29 AM
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is his an aluminum pan? i am assuming yes due to the cost. if yes, is there enough meat around the hole to just drill and thread for a larger plug? if not, try the helicoil idea and use some quick metal like jb weld on the helicoil when you install. let it cure and then run a tap through it to clean up the threads.

another thing I have done in the past is what latech is talking about. it works well if you have enough meat in that area of the pan. drill and tap for a larger size fine threaded bolt (like big enough to cover off the depth of threads for your original size oil plug plus some wiggle room. bigger is better here if you have enough meat in that area). install with locktite or jbweld and allow to cure. cut off/dress flush to the original flat oil plug gasket surface on the outside of the pan, or just use the head of the new bolt as the gasket surface for the new plug. that can be confusing for the guys at jiffylube, so be carefull with that one. if you use the head of the insert bolt for a gasket surface for the actual plug, just make sure to smooth it out well for a good seal on the new plug gasket, bolts always have the markings on the head so they aren't smooth. cut off and dress the excess on the inside of the pan so all the oil can all run out when the plug is removed. next drill into the centre of that insert bolt and tap the threads for the original oil pan plug, or use a smaller plug from another application if your pan isn't meaty enough for a large insert bolt. just make sure you are square to the gasket surface for the new plug or you will have leakage problems forever. always use an original equipment plug and gasket, they will usually outlast an aftermarket plug, and the gaskets are usually neoprene backed steel for longer drip free life. try not to use a plastic gasket because they tend to fool you when you are tightening the plug and can cause overtorquing of the plug. they also tend to be single use and they split easy. i have had really good luck with the gm oil pan plugs and washers but quite a few of them are metric (up here in canada).
just some thoughts,
dsraven
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Old 07-05-2011, 08:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SSedan64
Extremely high profit margin and what someone is willing to pay.
I can't see any Steel wet sump pan being worth more than a few hundred. But that's me.
I dont understand it either, but a quick search of Summit racing shows it is not hard to spend close to or even over 1K on a pan.
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