The Mountain Bike Life

When it comes to all things maintenance I tend to learn things the hard way. Clean your suspension fork after every ride, dust off the drivetrain, lubricate those bolts. I know it all like the neighbourhood mechanic, but how often to I actually heed the advice? Almost never. The subject of this blog entry will be my lovely SIDI trail shoes and the cleat that has been stuck in there for over a year.

At this point I don’t remember how the SPD cleat became stuck in my shoe, but I had rounded off the bolt trying to extract it numerous times. Once the bolt head was stripped, I was screwed. At this point I quickly convinced myself that these shoes were worn out and I could use a brand new pair. Off to the shop I went and I returned with some Giro Privateers. Over a year later I decided enough was enough. Lets get that cleat out!

For this method of extraction you’ll need a decent drill and a metal drill bit. I can’t recall the exact size but the bit should be about the diameter of the screw’s shaft. It might be a good idea to use some cutting fluid and a pair of safety glasses. My Ryders cycling shades did the trick.

Drilling out the seized bolt

Drilling out the seized bolt

Drill in to the screw head. It shouldn’t take longer than 30 seconds for a decent drill bit to get through most of the screw. After you feel you’ve gone deep enough, tilt the drill and drill into the side until it pops off. Be careful not to drill too deep. You should be able to judge the proper depth without drilling all the way through.

Don't drill too far or you might damage your shoe

Don’t drill too far or you might damage your shoe

After the head is out hopefully there will be enough length in the bolt to grab a hold of with a vise grip. Grab it securely and twist anti-clockwise.

Grab the stuck bolt securly with vice grips and twist anti-clockwise

Grab the stuck bolt securly with vice grips and twist anti-clockwise

If the bolt is seized up, try soaking it in some penetrating fluid like PB Blaster. Don’t get it on your hands!

Success

Success!

Success. The bolt is finally out and you can return to regular enjoyment. These shoes have plenty of miles left in them and they look good to boot.

The Reluctant Wrench: Schrodinger's Cat
Hitting the Trails with My Old Man

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