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Old 05-20-2010, 07:32 AM   #1
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Cutting a Bolt

Any concern with a not being able to get a nut on a bolt after cutting? I need to shorten some bolts I wet-set in concrete, so obviously I don't want to screw them up (sorry for the pun). I was going to cut after the post base is on, but won't be able to get my reciprocating saw in there. I'd like to cut first, then put the bases on. Thoughts?

Anyone have any other tips on shortening bolts?
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Old 05-20-2010, 07:46 AM   #2
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Install a nut on the bolt, then cut. Remove the nut, it will clean (chase) the threads.
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Old 05-20-2010, 07:47 AM   #3
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Put a nut on the bolt, below the cut, before cutting. After the cut unthread the nut and it will be easy to put the nut back on when you're ready.
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Old 05-20-2010, 07:47 AM   #4
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Put a nut on it below the cut, then cut and when you remove the nut it will chase the threads clean.

EDIT: HAHA That was a triple jinx

Last edited by acme54321; 05-20-2010 at 07:48 AM. Reason: Triple answers!
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Old 05-20-2010, 08:10 AM   #5
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Do like they all said... get a nut onto the bolt FIRST. Run it down an inch or so past the cutting point .

But also, after you cut the bolt off, work a file around the cut edges of the bolt to get rid of any sharp points that the cutting leaves... THEN back the nut off to reestablish the spiral of the threaded pattern of the bolt. It really doesn't matter how much you taper the top of the bolt with the file; you won't hurt the fitting of the nut any. The proper threads will be shaped when you back the nut off.
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Last edited by Willie T; 05-20-2010 at 08:13 AM.
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Old 05-20-2010, 11:18 AM   #6
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I've done alot of playing around with all-thread... sometimes it's hard to put the nut on first, like when you are cutting the middle of a 10' span!

Usually, I just use a triangular file.

First, I taper the end of the cut a little to get off any excess, then I file in the direction of last thread where it was cut with the edge of the file. This opens up any compressed or deformed areas.

Works just fine 99% of the time, and never requires me to remember to put the nut on first!

Last edited by xxPaulCPxx; 05-20-2010 at 11:28 AM.
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