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ryan04wakesetter

Sheared off screw on Wedge

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ryan04wakesetter

Hey guys,

I have an 04 Malibu Wakesetter with the manual wedge and the other day after riding I noticed one of the screws on my wedge was sheared off at the head. Im not sure if I may have hit something or if the screw just corroded and the head was weakened and fell off. I tried to use a threader to get it out but have had no luck. The other screws are in so tight that my power drill can't even back them out. They do not appear to be corroded but I guess it is possible since the boat is now 4 years old. Does anyone know any good tricks to getting a screw with the head sheared off out? Do you think I may need to get a new wedge because of this? Does anyone know how much a new wedge runs or if you can buy parts to a wedge so maybe I could just get the actual wedge piece? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.

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Ronnie

I have removed broken screws out of the strut arms several times. They will come out fairly easy if you can drill it and use an easy out. On the few that were really hard, I have taken a map torch and quickly (only a few seconds) heated the outside of the strut at the end where the broken screw is but not enough to heat the screw itself. Then they will back out if you don't try to over force it. Take your time and drill in the center of the screw for the easy out. You may have to grind the top of the broken screw to get a flat spot to use a center punch on. DON"T use the wedge without repairing it first.

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sampson
Hey guys,

I have an 04 Malibu Wakesetter with the manual wedge and the other day after riding I noticed one of the screws on my wedge was sheared off at the head. Im not sure if I may have hit something or if the screw just corroded and the head was weakened and fell off. I tried to use a threader to get it out but have had no luck. The other screws are in so tight that my power drill can't even back them out. They do not appear to be corroded but I guess it is possible since the boat is now 4 years old. Does anyone know any good tricks to getting a screw with the head sheared off out? Do you think I may need to get a new wedge because of this? Does anyone know how much a new wedge runs or if you can buy parts to a wedge so maybe I could just get the actual wedge piece? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.

I took a dremell tool and made a cut in the top of the broken bolt that I could fit a flat head into and backed it off that way with a drill and some grease. You should do it before you use it to much because water get under there and can bend or brake the wedge off. This happened to mine that is why I am looking for the dimensions for the bottom part of the wedge because mine is at the bottom of the lake. I have one of the side pieces so I am getting another one of those made but I just need the dimensions for the bottom piece. If you could help me out that would be greatly appreciated. Thanks ([email protected])

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Bill_AirJunky

I have a buddy in Texas going thru this now. Most likely those screws are in there with some kind of thread locker & will take quite a bit of force to get lose. I imagine the average drill won't do it.

Look for PB Blaster at any Home Depot or Lowes type hardware store. It's pretty good at helping to break lose stubborn bolts.

Get the appropriate bits for a ratchet & try it. The additional leverage might do it for you. Or maybe try an impact drill or hammer drill. Be careful not to strip the head or you will need to drill them all out. Which is most likely what you will need to do for the one that sheared off. There are a few tools out that might do it, where you drill out the center of the bolt, insert a hardened bit (Easy Out.... ain't so easy) & try to back it out. I've never tried them when Lock-tite was used on the bolt though.

Edited by Bill_AirJunky

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Sunsetter95
I have a buddy in Texas going thru this now. Most likely those screws are in there with some kind of thread locker & will take quite a bit of force to get lose. I imagine the average drill won't do it.

Look for PB Blaster at any Home Depot or Lowes type hardware store. It's pretty good at helping to break lose stubborn bolts.

Get the appropriate bits for a ratchet & try it. The additional leverage might do it for you. Or maybe try an impact drill or hammer drill. Be careful not to strip the head or you will need to drill them all out. Which is most likely what you will need to do for the one that sheared off. There are a few tools out that might do it, where you drill out the center of the bolt, insert a hardened bit (Easy Out.... ain't so easy) & try to back it out. I've never tried them when Lock-tite was used on the bolt though.

I found that I had to use a drill press and drill most of the old bolt out. Be very careful doing this. Drill very slowly with a very sharp bit.

Also, mine is a '95 Wedge so the screws were in there a little longer and they broke off when trying to disassemble the Wedge. They didn't break off under use. Mine also has three 1/4" bolts in the bottom of each strut. I think the newer ones have larger bolts... still, drill carefully!

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68Slalom

I would try hitting the center of the bolt left in with a punch a few times, making sure that the punch is totally centered on the face. Get a left handed drill bit just one size smaller to start your hole and sometimes they pull right out, but you have to feel confident that you loosened it up with tapping it with a punch.

I was actually looking at my wedge and it's welded :)

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vette-ski

The screw should be easily removable with your fingers if the head popped off unless it has loc-tite on it. But if you can't get the other screws out and the foil is still in place you probably can't get ahold of the end of the screw. Applying heat should break down the loc-tite. Try that with the 3 good ones to get the foil out of the way, then try your luck with heat on the 4th one. Personally I would contact Malibu for the right screws before re-assembling. This is a known issue. Also you are fortunate you saw that before the whole wedge bent in half after the other bolt popped.

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LostBoys

Does anyone know where you can get more of these screws at? Should I get a special one from Malibu or just any screw?

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klmyers

This happened to me over the weekend. How did you straighten the arm? It looks like brass or aluminum so I am unsure if I can forcefully straighten it or if it needs heat applied.

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WakesetterE

No heat needed to straighten the arms. I had a press avalible, and I just disassembled the wedge and pressed them flat. There are others that had said they used a vehicle's tire to flatten the arm out. I happen to have a 10 ton press and it was very easy. At worst, drop em off at a machine shop and they will press them flat. The material bent back easy enough, took about 15 minutes after they were removed and disassembled. I can imagine why one whould heat this stuff as I think its nibral, and ints pretty flexible relatively speaking.

Remember when you replace the wedge bolts to get some that are hardened like the ones I used that are good to Minimum Tensile Strength

85,000 psi

This is much stronger than what you will likely find in a hardware shop.....and cheap enough at less than 8 bucks for a package of 10.

Edited by WakesetterE

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cWonka
On 8/7/2008 at 10:37 AM, Ronnie said:

I have removed broken screws out of the strut arms several times. They will come out fairly easy if you can drill it and use an easy out. On the few that were really hard, I have taken a map torch and quickly (only a few seconds) heated the outside of the strut at the end where the broken screw is but not enough to heat the screw itself. Then they will back out if you don't try to over force it. Take your time and drill in the center of the screw for the easy out. You may have to grind the top of the broken screw to get a flat spot to use a center punch on. DON"T use the wedge without repairing it first.

Where did you get the screw to replace them? Size or dimensions would be helpful.

On 8/7/2008 at 1:01 PM, 68Slalom said:

I would try hitting the center of the bolt left in with a punch a few times, making sure that the punch is totally centered on the face. Get a left handed drill bit just one size smaller to start your hole and sometimes they pull right out, but you have to feel confident that you loosened it up with tapping it with a punch.

I was actually looking at my wedge and it's welded :)

Can you just weld a wedge that has bolts?

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kerpluxal
44 minutes ago, cWonka said:

Where did you get the screw to replace them? Size or dimensions would be helpful.

Can you just weld a wedge that has bolts?

Stainless steel from Ace

Due to this happening many times.. I had my arms welded to the foil.. resolved my issues

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Nitrousbird

One of the reasons I justified my upgrade to a floating wedge.  Did it before this happened...let someone else deal with that problem if it were to ever happen.  

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cWonka
58 minutes ago, kerpluxal said:

Stainless steel from Ace

Due to this happening many times.. I had my arms welded to the foil.. resolved my issues

So you can weld the manual wedge arms to the foil? I’m assuming this just a cheap 15 minute job at a machine shop or possibly even muffler shop?

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kerpluxal
13 hours ago, cWonka said:

So you can weld the manual wedge arms to the foil? I’m assuming this just a cheap 15 minute job at a machine shop or possibly even muffler shop?

I did.. can't remember how much I paid.. but it was around $50.00. 

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minnmarker
14 hours ago, kerpluxal said:

Stainless steel from Ace

Due to this happening many times.. I had my arms welded to the foil.. resolved my issues

That is a good idea.  Are the same metals used for the foil and strut so it's weldable?

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kerpluxal
3 hours ago, minnmarker said:

That is a good idea.  Are the same metals used for the foil and strut so it's weldable?

hmmm nope... lol... but the welder welded it up ... and never had an issue again... I read of others doing the same on here

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