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Discussion Starter #1
So I'm trying to grease the steering box (lower fitting) on my 2006 GT2544 and the zerk fitting comes out, stuck in the grease gun. The threads on the zerk were almost worn or mashed smooth, and me being naive and all, I'm thinking that all I need to do is replace the zerk with like. So I checked the parts diagram and it says it's a 737-3000. Then I go online and find that the 737-3000 is a straight 3/16ths fitting. Drive to Tractor Supply and buy enought 3/16ths zerks to last about 150 years, ... and they won't go in the hole. I spent a solid 10 minutes twisting on them and couldn't get them to start in the hole.

Then it occurs to me that maybe the condition of the threads on the zerk was an indication that the threads in the hole also are boogered. Or is there another reason I'm not considering that the zerk might not be starting?

If the threads in the hole also are mangled, do I need to just tap it back to 3/16ths or should I drill it out and tap? Arguing from ignorance I'm thinking that if I can't get the zerk to go even a little bit into the hole that means there's plenty of metal left and all I need do is tap it. And if I need to go bigger, that size drill bit, what number tap, and what size zerk fitting does that work out to?

And as always, thank you for sharing your hard-won knowledge.
 

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I would tap it. If you drill it, you will likely get shavings inside where you don't want them. Even tapping may get a bit, but that's what I would do. Cover the tap in grease so any shavings will stay with the tap.
 

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It's very likely you came across another of CC's press fit grease zerks. The zerk looks almost like it is threaded but has concentric ridges instead of threads. Just tap new threads into it and replace the zerk. Harbor Freight has a box of assorted zerks for $8. Handy to have on hand.

 

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Discussion Starter #4
It's very likely you came across another of CC's press fit grease zerks. The zerk looks almost like it is threaded but has concentric ridges instead of threads....
That would explain a lot. Since I obviously don't know what I'm doing, I was considering the possibility that I couldn't get the replacement zerk to 'start' in the hole was because it was left-hand threaded. So I tried putting a fingernail in the threads and twirling the zerk, but my nail didn't seem to try to travel in either direction. Which bumfuzzled me. Now it makes sense.

Follow-up question. I'm going to have to go buy taps. Since the (3/16ths) zerks I already bought don't fall into the existing hole, would you first try to tap the hole to 3/16ths?
 

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Just exactly how authentic do you want? I would do whatever zerk fits and tap accordingly. Just make doubly sure that the tap fits the zerk. Don't ask me how I know that.
 

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I just bought this on Amazon and it works great

This is the Amazon link...it is available in different sizes
 

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I agree that it is probably a drive in type of Zerk Fitting. They use them on the blade spindles of the 3000 Series Mower Decks. I tried tapping one of those and the metal was way too hard to tap with a regular tap. I don't know any reason the steering box would be hard metal, so hopefully that will not be any issue for you.

They sell the Drive In Zerks on Amazon, and I would guess most part stores would also have them, if you want to just try installing another one of them. They make installation tools for installing them, but I have had good luck using a deep well 1/4" drive socket.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Okay, here's how dumm I am. I didn't realize the zerks I'd bought from TSC were press-in. I wondered why the label mentioned the diameter (3/16ths) but not the pitch. I went to Harbor Freight and bought a set of taps to tap the hole. And when I was comparing the 3/16ths tap to the TSC zerk to see if it was the right pitch, I realized realized the TSC zerks were press-in.

So I'd already taken two trips into town and still didn't have the parts and tools I needed so out of frustration I just drove in another press-in zerk. Somewhere between now and when that one falls out I'll get a thread-in zerk and have it on stand-by.

Thanks for your help, guys, but like Ron White always says, you can't fix stupid.
 
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