Darned GM engineers got the great idea that they could hold on V-8 exhaust manifolds with M8 bolts! That pompous a$$ should be fired!! He didn't think about our salty WNY winters when he called that shot! 3 out of the 12 manifold bolts had missing head when I looked around to investigate the ticking noise my truck has been making for a while.. Seems the driver's side rear bolt has been missing for quite a while.. Up goes the truck on stands and the torch goes to work to remove the exhaust pipe flanges.. (I tried to start my holey jeans on fire as the torch passed by after lighting it) I felt this burning sensation and put it out with my other hand!! DANG! The flange bolts wheeled right off after heating them.. This won't be so bad after all??!?!
The driver's side has the steering column and all the electrical junk on it so..
Why not start there?
I struggled with the bolts (which they glue into the aluminum head) I finally get them all out and twist and maneuver the manifold out.. GRRRRR.. The rear bolt had busted off inside the head about 3/16" Not gonna be easy to extract that one.. Nope- can't extract it because there is NO clearance behind it.. The firewall is about 2.5" in front of it.. So I study the problem for a while and scratch my head and ponder removing the head to fix it.. NO WAY!! I googled the problem and find it's quite common and issue all over with these trucks.. I broke out the welder and gobbed up a bead from the busted bolt to a washer then welded a nut on top.. I got it to move 1/2 a turn before it busted off.. 2 more tried and the same results (minus the half turn that is).. Time to walk away..
Let's do the other side a while..
The passenger side's front two bolts are gone too..
As I removed the other bolts two more busted right off leaving me with 4 little nubbys in the head.. Better yet, I removed the dipstick tube hold down nut and then pulled up the dipstick with about half the tube with it..
It was easy to remove the manifold then.. 4 little nubby's all in a row..
All is great if I want to put the manifold back on with the two center bolts and never check the oil!!
I'm now emptying my shop of 3/8" nuts as I welded them on the nubby's to remove them.. A couple retries as the weld wasn't strong enough.. Success!!
Then out came the angle die grinder to clean the head up and we have:
Good to go!
Now to remove the starter and get to the rest of that rusty dipstick tube..
That's when I walked out of the shop to order parts in fear that I'd roll the thing out and blow it up.. (I really felt like doing it!)
As I ordered it I discovered a neat repair kit to use on that drivers side rear bolt so I didn't have to remove it!! It's in the mail since nobody local has it.. (surprising since I see so many GM trucks all over)
The busted dipstick tube waits for me to have the patience and lack of anger to remove it in a fashion so I won't have to remove the oil pan to retrieve the bottom piece.. More to follow there I'm sure.. The truck has a home for a while in the middle of my shop floor.. I've got to fix some more electrical things for someone.. I'm so glad I took this vacation! (I need a vacation from vacation?)