When thru axles are installed and uninstalled with the Allen key or any other recommended screw, then old and cheap quality thru axles stop rotating with the key and decrease round play on its threads, it is common with aluminum thru-axles, it usually occurs when you have applied torque force with much more power, as result, threads do not respond with the rotating key and it starts slipping and sliding with the key, which makes a better thru axle stripped and it gets stuck within the hole of the bike end frame. there are specific keys for thru-axles and if you use a non-recommended key, it will cause a negative effect and it converts the new thru-axle into the strip.
Can Stripped Thru Axles be Recovered?
Stripped thru axles are not recovered and you cannot further use them for your wheel, these become useless, and when it got seized interiorly if you are still applying torque force, stripped thru axle won’t come out and it starts tightening which is bad and irritating in unmounting and uninstallation when you notice it has got stuck, then never apply rotating force further.
Thru axles become useless on the thread place where the hex key mounts and you will start applying torque force, the inner threads would become free and do grip the key, the whole axle remains the same and the same thread place makes thru axle useless. it usually matters if you are new and if you are tired and you want to do all this process immediately, it is an easy method, all it needs your proper attention and skills. thru axles need better threading when you are installing a new axle within the hole of the fork tube frame, and it needs proper washing and lubing before its installation because sometimes it got stuck interiorly and does not comes out when you want to uninstall them.
If you apply much more force on the clamp area then the treads will start to move freely and sliding will take place on the other thread region. the interior hole of the thru-axle where it is going to mount loses its ability to hold the thru-axle firmly, it mostly occurs when you have changed more than 4 to 5 thru axles rapidly on the same interior place, although it is reversible and it is recovered easily from the mechanics and wheel builder stores with the help of several welding machines, and this inner area becomes useless by using different experiences and different tools for unmounting the stripped thru-axle, if you will drill the interior hole or you can hit with the hammer or any other tool, these are the reasons you will destroy the interior region of the stripped thru-axle.
The appropriate method is that, if you have recognized that the thru-axle got stuck and seized interiorly, never use any tools for unmounting the thru-axle, take your bike to a nearer mechanic store, because sometimes the thru-axle is in better condition and it can be reused, and if you will do all process in your home then there are chances of destroying and damaging of old thru-axle and you have to purchase another one for the wheel.
Which Kind Of Key Is Used For Unmounting Thru Axles?
beginner and non-experienced riders use almost everything for thru-axle, but these screws are made of steel and other firm and hard materials which would not help in rotating of thru-axle because a normal thru axle goes into stripped thru-axle, so always use soft and flexible tools for applying torque force on thru-axles, it does not cause any damage and protects internal threads from slipping.
And the other important thing is that the screwing head of the tool should be smaller than the hole of the thru-axle, it helps in opening properly and those tools whose heads are larger than the head of the thru-axle would damage and destroy the thru-axle, this is the reason tools with shorter heads are recommended for uninstalling thru-axle.
Do Hammering And Drilling Works For Stripped Thru Axle?
Yes with the help of anything you can hit from one side of the thru-axle, it can work because the other end of the thru-axle is open to the atmosphere and when you can apply any force from one side with the help of these things, the thru-axle will constantly move towards the other end, constantly hitting will result in unmounting of the stripped thru axle from the frame.
But it is not as easy as I am describing, you have to avoid the internal region of the thru-axle where the thru-axle is mounted within the fork, these tools( hammer, screwdriver, or drill machine) if hit on the internal threads of the forks then it will cause big damage, you have to avoid the internal threads so that these tools would hit exactly on the thru-axle on one end and apply force towards the other end.
Allen key is the best tool for removing stripped thru axle from the bike as compared to other screw drivers and hammering tools.
The most important noticeable thing is the paint and color of the bike when you apply force on these tools if they slipped from their place their will hit on the frame and scratch the bike paint.
Best Tools for Removing Stripped Thru Axle:
- Screw Extractor
- Torx Bit
- Allen Keys
- PB Blaster
- Vise Grips
- Mole Grips
- Torque Wrench
- Hex Key
- Evo-Stik Hard
- Fast Metal Epoxy
The best way of using these tools is that you can wrap any rubber tape or rubber strip on the screwing ends of these tools and then insert their ends within the thru-axle threaded area, it prevents fork inserts from damaging and destroying and also prevents paint scratching.
Adjust the pliers within the thru-axle hole and rotate in an unscrewing direction, these will move the thru-axle in the axle direction, this method is more worthwhile as compared to the Torx bit and screw extractor.
For rotating force use a torque wrench, it will start rotating the thru-axle with a high-power grip.
All of these tools are only applicable in one situation if the other end of the thru-axle is the Hex end.
How To Prevent Bike Frame From Damage?
The safe and easy method is fine duct tape or any other rubber tape, if these are not available then in emergency conditions you can use rim tape and wrap it thoroughly on the mouth of the thru-axle where you are going to screw the stripped thru-axle and even on the hole of the thru-axle, after wrapping with the screwdriver or small steel drills make a hole within the tape to access the mouth of the stripped thru-axle, and after that use above tools for removing and unmounting.
Material Of The Stripped Thru Axle And Tools:
As you know thru axles are of steel and aluminum based, but mostly these all are manufactured with aluminum metal and when you compare them with tools, which are made of firm and hard steel when you apply torque force on the head of the stripped thru-axle with steel tools, surely the thru-axle starts tightening within the fork and does not unmount, steel tools make aluminum thru axles junky if you are applying force with high power from your hands, simply we can say as if you are a beginner never do it by yourself and if you did these kinds of mechanical works in past, then never bring your bike to LBS store and use these tools in your home for uninstalling the stripped thru-axle.
Cut The Stripped Thru Axle From The Center Line:
Mostly stripped thru-axles will be seized firmly within the fork inserts and they won’t unscrew by using all the tools, then you can simply give a small cut on the head of the stripped thru-axle in the center line with the help of a steel circular Saw, which makes two parts of the thru-axle and after cutting use your handy tools for unscrewing and you will notice, stripped thru axle starts mobilizing, this is the easy way of uninstalling of the stripped thru-axle.
How To Recover Damaged Threads Of Stripped Thru Axle In Bike Frame?
Unmounting and mounting thru axles with the wheel of the bike frame sometimes causes damage to threads by using tools, it is more common if you are unmounting a stripped thru-axle, this is a complex process, after noticing that few threads are destroyed and damaged, then stop the work and never use any tool or never insert thru axle within the frame, because frame threads need proper repairing, small needles files are available which can recover the internal threads of bike forks.
Other than that find same sized bolt from any of your biker friends or from the mechanic store, the bolt should be fully new with fully recovered threads, insert it within the thru-axle threads and rotate it and the bolt should not be aluminum metal, steel bolts are recommended for recovering process of the wheel and frame threads.
Clean the fork insert threads by using soft brushes and never use any hard metal tool for cleaning purposes of the threads, because it will cause damage to threads and the new thru-axle won’t come out when uninstalling and unmounting.
Threads are a very sensitive and soft part of the bike which needs proper maintenance, while inserting a new thru-axle within the threads, check firstly if thru axle is not inserting smoothly within the threads and if there is a resisting force from the threads, then you need to clean the threads properly.