Removing thruster anodes

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Removing thruster anodes

Postby dpiano on Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:13 am

Does anyone have a fancy way to remove the bow thruster anode?
I change the anodes yearly on our R-29 classic, and each time the bow thruster anode is a nightmare to remove. The screw comes out fine, but the anode just doesn't want to come off. Working in that tunnel restricts most tools. There is better access with the stern thruster. The best I've come up with is a very long sharp screwdriver and hammer. Last year I applied silicone grease to the area when attaching the new anode. Just changed them again, and no better. Worse, actually. I have wondered about installing a piece of aluminum foil between the shaft and anode, or something like that. There's got to be a better way!
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Re: Removing thruster anodes

Postby Brian B on Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:24 am

Use a plumbers basin wrench. Reach in, grab it and twist. Works great.
Looks like this https://www.homedepot.com/p/HDX-Basin-W ... 184138-_-N
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Re: Removing thruster anodes

Postby zekeandboone on Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:52 am

Mine were stuck BIG time. I emailed SideThruster and got an immediate answer. He suggested PB Blaster overnight and pliers. Pliers don't fit, but the basin wrench does! Not looking forward to it again.
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Re: Removing thruster anodes

Postby dpiano on Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:42 am

thanks for the tool tip. On my way to home depot when I get back to port.
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Re: Removing thruster anodes

Postby Red Raven on Mon Apr 16, 2018 12:50 pm

I use needle nose pliers. One tip in the bolt hole and the other tip on the outside of the anode. Always comes right off.
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Re: Removing thruster anodes

Postby HRowland on Mon Apr 16, 2018 2:22 pm

Red Raven wrote:I use needle nose pliers. One tip in the bolt hole and the other tip on the outside of the anode. Always comes right off.


Same for me. Never had an issue, they pop right off with needle nose pliers.

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Re: Removing thruster anodes

Postby NorthernFocus on Mon Apr 16, 2018 2:45 pm

I simply use the bolt and allen key/wrench as a lever to pop it loos. Just back the allen screw out past the threads then apply a bit of sideways pressure on the wrench. This method likely wouldn't work if the zinc is severely depleted.
Dan

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Re: Removing thruster anodes

Postby zekeandboone on Mon Apr 16, 2018 6:08 pm

Red Raven wrote:I use needle nose pliers. One tip in the bolt hole and the other tip on the outside of the anode. Always comes right off.

Curt, I tried needle nose pliers, but they were too short to fit in the thruster tunnel. Do you have an extra long set?
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Re: Removing thruster anodes

Postby Red Raven on Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:31 pm

I do have a long set which makes it really easy but I can get in there with a regular set as well. The tunnel is 5 inches across and my needle nose handles only need to open to 3” to get a hold of it. That leaves an inch for fingers on each handle. I only need to open the tips a half inch or so because one tip is in the hole. Maybe your pliers are larger?
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Re: Removing thruster anodes

Postby Connerkip on Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:02 pm

Kip Conner
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Re: Removing thruster anodes

Postby CaspersCruiser on Wed Apr 18, 2018 7:20 pm

This thread came at just the right time for me. I removed the thruster anodes today. The bolts were 4mm hex head and I used these with a 3/8” socket wrench to remove them:

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Husky-3-8-i ... /202934858

To reach the bolt head in the bow thruster, a 4” extension was needed. The bow thruster bolt broke loose with just a little extra torque. Not so with the stern thruster. Wouldn’t budge. I sprayed it liberally with Liquid Wrench and let it sit for an hour or so, but it wouldn’t break loose. I let it sit for a while longer and then applied enough torque to where I thought either the hex wrench was going to slip in the bolt head or the bolt was going to break loose. Thankfully, the bolt broke loose.

After removing the bolts, the anodes were still stuck tight. I first tried needle nose pliers. No joy there with either the bow or stern. The bow thruster anode came off by twisting it with the basin wrench mentioned in a couple posts above, but I couldn’t gain a purchase on the stern thruster anode using it. What worked on the stern anode was grabbing it with a big pair of Channel Lock pliers and giving it a twist.

After getting the old anodes off, I used emery cloth to brighten the anode mating surface on the thrusters and cleaned the threads for the new bolt.

The Sidepower documentation says to use “thread sealer” on the bolts to keep them from backing out. I could see no evidence that thread sealer was used on the bolts I removed. For those who have done this job, did you use Loctite on the bolts?
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Re: Removing thruster anodes

Postby Brian B on Thu Apr 19, 2018 5:43 am

I've changed mine out quite a few times, never used Locktite, haven't lost one yet.
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Re: Removing thruster anodes

Postby knotflying on Thu Apr 19, 2018 6:58 am

I have not used locktite either. I have actually used a little anti-seize on the mating surfaces.
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