A warning story about BCAA and McGard
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Thread: A warning story about BCAA and McGard

  1. #1
    Foreign Devil Array ThunderAce's Avatar
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    Dec 2007
    '08 R1 Canadian Edition

    A warning story about BCAA and McGard

    This story started about two years ago, when I was in Japan and my car was stored at my mothers place. She emailed me, telling me that she had called BCAA to get one of my tires fixed as it had gone flat. They had come over, removed the tire and put the spare in its place.
    AS I am not comfortable having someone mess with my car at all, and expecially when I am not there, I immediately emailed mom back and asked her to call BCAA and get my tire put back on and to do nothing to it. I'd much rather have it fixed myself - if necessary (it wasn't!) than pay for them to drive all over the place and have me pay a fortune for it.
    So, they came and put it back on. Should have been end of story, but, no.
    When I got back to Canada, I had to get my car going again. No problem with the tires, put a bit of air in them, a bit of tire sealer, and they are good to go.
    Now, as I am servicing the car, I had to remove the front wheels to replace the starter (the solenoid had seized). After I put them back on, I thought I'd check the rear wheels too. Easy to do, except for one lug nut. The locking one.
    It was tight. Really tight. So tight, that it broke as I was trying to remove it. It's really poorly designed, upon further inspection, as the lock only engages into the lugnut about 1/8". That's not very much.
    As you can see from the pictures, the damage from the initial break was enough to prevent me from removing the locknut without some considerable work.
    After banging and hammering and fighting, even using a hydraulic jack to press the socket against the lugnut to apply force wasn't enough.
    Fortunately, I have a small grinder and was able to grind some grooves into the nut, eventually enough to be able to smash hammer a socket on and with my 1/2 prybar plus a three foot long pipe I was able to break the nut free.
    It was really tight. Too tight. I got out my torque wrench and checked the tightness of the remaining lugnuts. The proper torque is 100 ft/lbs (give or take 5 or 10 depending on who you refer to). These nuts were tightened way past the limit of my wrench, over 150 ft/lbs. Geez, like 50% over the rated tightness. No wonder the locknut broke.
    Lesson to be learned? Most tire "mechanics" or tire shops tighten your wheels totally improperly. Yes, I've seen this done numerous places.
    The only way to do this properly is to tighten the lugnuts just reasonably tight and then use a torque wrench to tighten the nuts to the proper tightness.
    Most places use an impact driver to ram the nuts on and then will use a torque wrench to make sure they are tight enough (maybe). Of course, a lugnut tightened to 150 ft/lbs or even more will certainly 'click' the torque wrench set to 100 ft/lbs. That is a very incorrect way to check the tightness. If you see your shop or mechanic using an impact gun on your wheels, get mad. Tell them to do it properly and then never go there again. If not, be prepared to be unable to get your lugnuts loose when you need to and have to resort to those useless tools that come with your car.
    Just imagine your Mother trying to do this alone by the side of the road at night during a snowstorm. she'll be in serious trouble.
    Please, check your lug nuts now and tighten them properly.
    If you don't have the ability or tools to do so, contact me and I'll help you.
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    I am warning you!
    Last edited by ThunderAce; 06-24-2014 at 09:43 PM.
    PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer #261822
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  2. #2
    Moderator Array Shovelhead's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    This is weird,
    You just posted that today and looking at the pictures,
    It's like déjà vu.
    R.I.P #48 Shoya Tomizawa (December 10, 1990 – September 5, 2010)
    R.I.P. #58 Marco Simoncelli (January 20, 1987 – October 23, 2011)

  3. #3
    just having fun Array
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    not red
    Lol you don't want to hear my BCAA story. Regardless, I think in general poor service is the way things are done around here. Period.
    don't click here

  4. #4
    I'm a she-male. Array integra298's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Scooty Puff Junior.


    Last edited by integra298; 07-14-2014 at 11:51 PM.

    Hello? Anyone still out there? d:

  5. #5
    Registered User Array bigdyno's Avatar
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    May 2011
    Cow town
    848 EVO Dark
    There are a number of shops that use these:

    Personally, I insist on hand torque, not air tool mumbo-jumbo. I often get weird looks, but when I bring my torque wrench and check , they know I mean it.

    I lost a key to my wheel locks, and before I realized I could get new ones from a Toyota dealer, I bought some of those sockets for removing stripped nuts/bolts. It worked pretty good, but mine weren't 150lbs plus.

    Another thing to note, when you torque something, it will take more torque to get it to move (either way) due to static friction. So if you torque your wheel nuts to 80ft/lbs, you will have to use more than that to remove them. Just remember this when you are checking your torque specs.

  6. #6
    Registered User Array sprinter 27's Avatar
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    Dec 2004
    Fwiw after being in the car repair industry my whole life the smartest thing everyone could do is lose those stupid wheel locks. It's a very regular occurrence to contend with lost lock keys, or broken locks. The likely hood of them saving your wheels from theft is nill, as its safer and easier to steal the vehicle over stealing your wheels.
    And while proper torque is a given , most auto repair will error on the tight side as very few will ever re torque an installed wheel after a customer gets their car back,but everybody will bitch if it comes loose
    Vihss ss 2013 class champion

  7. #7
    Tai-Pan Array XdtesZombie's Avatar
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    Aug 2008
    port coquitlam
    2001 zx-12r 2009 drz400sm 2003 Ktm 525sx 2007 yzf-r1
    I had the same thing happen when a shop used an impact gun to put my wheels on.
    I made them take the security lugs off and replaced them with normal lugs.
    Infidels Rule!

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