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Old 10-14-2006, 09:01 AM   post #1 of 16
Peevee
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Default bolt cutters

I have a new job. I'm a service technician for a plumbing company. When we install a new toilet, they want us to cut off the toilet bolts. This is very time consuming trying to cut these bolts off with a hacksaw or mini saw. They want the bolts cut off and the plastic caps put on. I tried a dremel tool and the bolts will eat a cutoff wheel in no time. What makes them so hard to saw off is they are in a awkward position to start with. I'm thinking of trying some bolt cutters. What size would cut 1/4 bolts with ease and still fit in my tool bag? If you have any other suggestions they would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 10-14-2006, 10:01 AM   post #2 of 16
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Default Re: bolt cutters

The smallest bolts cutter I own have 12" handles they can easily handle a 1/4 bolt
H.K. Potter 12" bolt cutters available at the Home Depot
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Old 10-14-2006, 03:48 PM   post #3 of 16
Dan Lovell
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Default Re: bolt cutters

I think if you used bolt cutters you would crush the end of the bolt, making it very hard for the next guy to get the bolts off. That could be an issue especially if the next guy is you. I use a mini hack saw, what kind of blades are you using?

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Old 10-14-2006, 04:12 PM   post #4 of 16
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Default Re: bolt cutters

What might work out for you is to use a 4.5" right angle grinder. That's what I used last time. Fairly quick and does min damage to remaining bolt. What you do need to do is use some kind of guard to keep hot sparks from hitting the toilet as they will embed themselves in the porcelain.
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Old 10-14-2006, 05:56 PM   post #5 of 16
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Default Re: bolt cutters

Have you tried a battery operated sawzall???
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Old 10-14-2006, 06:10 PM   post #6 of 16
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Default Re: bolt cutters

I believe there are at least 3 different lengths to choose from at most plumbing supply stores. If the correct length still can't be found I recommend cutting them to length before installation. First run the nut on beyond where the cut will be and when the nut is backed off the rough cut will be a little smoother to re-install the nut later.
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Old 10-14-2006, 06:34 PM   post #7 of 16
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Default Re: bolt cutters

Those bolts cut very easy, not very hard. What I do is make only 5 or 6 passes with the Hack saw and break them the rest of the way with a small pair of vise grips. The bolts break clean at the nut and it is not hard to unbolt later on.
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Old 10-14-2006, 10:09 PM   post #8 of 16
HydroHarold
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Default Re: bolt cutters

Don't give up on a Dremel just yet. They make a right angle adapter and if you use the laminated cutoff wheels they last all the way through a bolt that size. Keep the pressure light on the tool and you should be good to go with no problem threads.
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Old 12-15-2006, 09:57 PM   post #9 of 16
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Default Re: bolt cutters

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peevee
I have a new job. I'm a service technician for a plumbing company. When we install a new toilet, they want us to cut off the toilet bolts. This is very time consuming trying to cut these bolts off with a hacksaw or mini saw. They want the bolts cut off and the plastic caps put on. I tried a dremel tool and the bolts will eat a cutoff wheel in no time. What makes them so hard to saw off is they are in a awkward position to start with. I'm thinking of trying some bolt cutters. What size would cut 1/4 bolts with ease and still fit in my tool bag? If you have any other suggestions they would be greatly appreciated.
I think if you have spent some time on this you would definitly made the right choice for the job....
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Old 12-15-2006, 10:58 PM   post #10 of 16
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Default Re: bolt cutters

Quote:
Originally Posted by Argee
Have you tried a battery operated sawzall???
I just replaced a toilet and a battery operated sawzall was the perfect tool for the job. Cuts thru those bolts like butter.

Dur
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Old 12-15-2006, 11:19 PM   post #11 of 16
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Default Re: bolt cutters

Quote:
Originally Posted by HydroHarold
Don't give up on a Dremel just yet. They make a right angle adapter and if you use the laminated cutoff wheels they last all the way through a bolt that size. Keep the pressure light on the tool and you should be good to go with no problem threads.
Yea but the dremel uses electricity. what if its in an outhouse?
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Old 12-16-2006, 12:54 AM   post #12 of 16
Machiem
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Default Re: bolt cutters

I use the same method as slipshod.

I've cut them all the way off before until someone showed me the "score and snap-off" method.

I'd be leary of using bolt cutters since it might add extra tension on the bolt and crack the porcelain. Then, you get to replace the whole toilet again.
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Old 12-16-2006, 10:16 PM   post #13 of 16
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Default Re: bolt cutters

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peevee
I This is very time consuming trying to cut these bolts off with a hacksaw or mini saw. .
You get paid by the hour. So why would you want to get done faster.
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Old 12-18-2006, 09:06 PM   post #14 of 16
Peevee
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Default Re: bolt cutters

I finally tried some different blades for the mini hacksaw and that's what I'm using now.
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Old 12-18-2006, 09:57 PM   post #15 of 16
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Default Re: bolt cutters

Back in the days of American made toilet bolts, the bolts were prescored at a certain height so that all you had to do was grab the top of the bolt with a pliers and lever it back and forth a couple of times to snap the extra length off so that you could cover what was left with the plastic caps.

Do you carry unbendable soda straws with you?

You can put the straws on the bolts which makes it easier to guide the toilet base onto the bolts.

I recently found out the hard way that if you have to put a new toilet on a cast iron toilet flange, you had better put some wide washers on the hold down bolts because the little rectangular back on the bolt will pull right through the slots for the hold down bolts. The wider washers (Snip the washers part butting against the flange for a closer fit with some "bulldog" aviation snips.) give you more of a shoulder for the bolts base to pull against and won't let the bolt pull through.

Good luck, and live and learn.

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