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How I looked for bolts.... talk about an adventure


PostMaster General
NAXJA Member
So as I'm working on my BPE's I realized that the bolt that I used from the rear sway bar mount is the perfect diameter (12mm) to go into the shock sleeves, but it's about 1/2" to 1" too short.... so off I go to Lowes... ok, they are out (the whole drawer of 12mm bolts is empty except for couple shorties)... Ok, Home Depot is around the corner.... guess what, they are out as well..... ok, next stop Kragen: they send me to Home Depot or Lowes for the length I need. Ok, no biggie, AutoZone is across the street...... guess what.... they don't carry metric in their drawers GRRRRRRR ok now it's time to hit Ace hardware. Guess what... they are closed!!! ok, I hit PepBoys now (actually a good thing came out of it now: I found the rubber thingies for grease for the tierod ends :D). PepBoys has plenty bins.... with one problem... THEY ARE EMPTY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! OK, I ask the parts guy and he says that he hasn't seen them for a while and after he mentions all my previous stops and I tell him: been there he says OSH. Ok, off I go to OSH. Well OSH has a great selection of standard bolts, but metric.... well they got those teeeny weeeny things (while the store assistant manager pointed to them and said I got metric too, I laughed at him). Anyways, as I'm ready to give up and go home, I go to yet another PepBoys and my jaw hit the ground. Those little bins for bolts were overfilled with all the sizes and lengths and grades!!!!!!!!!!!!! Hog Heaven, I found my bolts!!!! (it only took 2hrs and probably about 50 miles of driving in a spiral away from my home LOL)

SO.... anyone else had an interesting Sunday?
Yes, I got fried like a Lobster sitting at the NHRA Drag races in Seattle only to leave Early, (to beat traffic) and drive for 15 miles bumper to bumper traffic at 5 miles an hour on I-5.

Glad you found your stuff...I am usually lucky enough to find them in one of my coffee cans full of junk.:D
nope, the 7/16" is smaller to the point that it's loose in that sleeve, which at the very least would result in a CLUNK at the worst would break open the sleave.
Believe me.... I was close to either running with a 12mm which had the nut on about 3/4 of the way (in my defense, it was a big nut :D) or getting the 7/16"..... But, I decided that I should do it once.

Ah ha, I woulda just squeezed the sleeve and hoped for the best. I'm lame like that though.
lol... well if I was to squeeze the sleeve and push it into the bushing, the sleeve would be loose in the bushing (Although the bolt in the sleeve would be tight LOL)..... it's one of those things that you loose either way.....

To be completely honest, I woulda just made new sleeves. I was just attempting some screwy humor that didn't come out the way I thought it was gonna. Your Rancho shocks shoulda had several different sized(thickness) sleeves though. I am using 7/16 in my 9's and 5's and they had the right sleeves in the bags.
Hunt around for a good 'old time' hardware store, we have one here, has bins and bins of 'what the heck is that used for' like cotter pins you could use as a small hammer in a pinch in addition to what you need. But then we have alot of farms around here with 60yo and older tractors and tractor restorers. I've even gotten stuck behind steam powered ones with steel wheels that look like a steak tenderizer on steroids [bet they make the road crews happy] when they have the tractor and steam shows at the fairgrounds. Which reminds me, need to hit there on the way out, need a couple of big thick washers to level out the front hooks on the YJ, one bolt goes thru the bumper into the frame and the other goes into the frame, leaves it kind of unlevel. Need to pickup some bolts for the hooks too, the steel horse ones rusted over after a week.
lol.... well avoid the ones that have their hair slicked back, and the ones that look like they are ready to get into one of those lowered rice cookers.... look for an old timer :D He might not have it in stock but he will know if they carry it
HEY! i just got hired at pep boys (la mirada, about 15-20 mins from westminster). better be nice, i've just started taking my 20%discount out for a spin:)