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Old 05-05-2012, 10:48 PM
95_190_PS_PS 95_190_PS_PS is offline
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Having trouble pulling harmonic balancer

I'm having quite a bit of trouble pulling my harmonic balancer. I am using a harmonic balancer puller, yet can't get it to budge. I have a 95 Prostar LT1, First off, using the bolts that came with the puller as I was cranking the main bolt down, the bolts that bolt the puller (grade 2) to the balancer stripped right through the puller when I added a good amount of force. I went out and bought some grade 5 bolts and nuts to put behind the balancer to allow for additional threaded area to reduce the chance of stripping. At this point as I was cranking down on the puller bolt, there was no movement at all, but eventually the bolt head snapped off. I tried again using new bolts and nuts and this time added heat from a torch per the advice of my uncle/mechanic. The puller started bending and eventually snapped the head off of one of the bolts again.

The question is, does anybody have any other tips to getting the harmonic balancer off? I need to remove it so I can put it on my replacement LT1 that I already have in the boat. The new engine has a harmonic balancer, but lacks the crank trigger wheel that is apparently required in Mastercrafts using the Cadillac ignition rather than the optispark. So currently I have the engine stripped down to the block + rotating assembly sitting in my house on an engine stand. I read that I can pull the crank shaft out with the harmonic balancer connected and take it to a machine shop and have it pressed off, but I don't know what is meant by a machine shop that would do that kind of thing. I live in the Orlando area.

I know I've already gotten quite a bit of help from you guys on various issues with my engine swap, but if you guys have any tips, I would really appreciate it.

*I'm sure the question will come up, and yes, I did pull the bolt that hold the harmonic balancer to the crankshaft prior to attempting to pull it.


Danny
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Old 05-05-2012, 11:05 PM
95_190_PS_PS 95_190_PS_PS is offline
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If anybody is reading this wondering what a crank trigger wheel is, here's a picture.

The nuts shown are what are connected to the harmonic balancer puller.
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Old 05-05-2012, 11:56 PM
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What you are pushing against in the middle of the harmonic balancer is the crank trigger. The only hole in the middle is the hole the bolt goes through. You need to put the bolt back in the hole, but leave it sticking out about a 1/4", then use your puller. You might need to repeat the process a couple of times, but you will get the balancer and trigger off.

If I didn't make it clear, your puller will be pushing against the bolt.

That will pull off the balancer and the trigger. The balancer is held on to the trigger by the bolts from the raw water pump. The flange you stripped the bolts in is the front of the trigger.

Last edited by Table Rocker; 05-06-2012 at 12:02 AM.
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Old 05-06-2012, 12:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Table Rocker View Post
What you are pushing against in the middle of the harmonic balancer is the crank trigger. The only hole in the middle is the hole the bolt goes through. You need to put the bolt back in the hole, but leave it sticking out about a 1/4", then use your puller. You might need to repeat the process a couple of times, but you will get the balancer and trigger off.

If I didn't make it clear, your puller will be pushing against the bolt.

That will pull off the balancer and the trigger. The balancer is held on to the trigger by the bolts from the raw water pump. The flange you stripped the bolts in is the front of the trigger.
This would have been my suggestion as well that you needed to have the bolt in
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Old 05-06-2012, 12:02 AM
95_190_PS_PS 95_190_PS_PS is offline
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Thanks, I'm going to give that a try right now. From everything I read before, it was my understanding that the bolt needed to be removed in order to pull it, but I can understand mechanically why the bolt needs to be there, thanks.
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Old 05-06-2012, 12:09 AM
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Nothing like a little midnight mechanic work.

It will come right off with a lot less force than you have been using. I think you will also need to take the timing cover off the Indmar engine, since it doesn't have a hole for the OptiSpark.
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Old 05-06-2012, 12:15 AM
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I have a set of instructions but they are too big to post here. Send me your e-mail address and I will send them to you. My e-mail is parts@indmar.com
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Old 05-06-2012, 12:54 AM
95_190_PS_PS 95_190_PS_PS is offline
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I put the bolt part way in, and easily backed the harmonic balancer about 1" off, the bolt is backed out just about fully, and the harmonic balancer is still holding on. I guess I'm going to have to go out in the morning when the hardware store opens to try to find a longer bolt to put in its place so I can back it the rest of the way off. I have a feeling that I'm also going to have to re-tap the holes in the balancer tomorrow since the threading now feels a bit loose from all my unnecessary work.

Thanks for all the help.
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Old 05-06-2012, 08:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 95_190_PS_PS View Post
I put the bolt part way in, and easily backed the harmonic balancer about 1" off, the bolt is backed out just about fully, and the harmonic balancer is still holding on. I guess I'm going to have to go out in the morning when the hardware store opens to try to find a longer bolt to put in its place so I can back it the rest of the way off. I have a feeling that I'm also going to have to re-tap the holes in the balancer tomorrow since the threading now feels a bit loose from all my unnecessary work.

Thanks for all the help.
If you have something like a steel dowel or a longer thinner bolt, you should be able to put that in until it bottoms out and then crank it out with the puller. It has to be almost there.

The crank is fine thread. It might be hard to find a bolt that size at the hardware store.
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Old 05-06-2012, 11:41 AM
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Glad to hear that it worked
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