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Stripped Sway Bar Nut


NAXJA Forum User
I have a basically stock 1997 XJ Country with front sway bar issues. The frame bushings were getting pretty wallowed out, so I headed down to NAPA to get some replacements. The bushing on the passenger side went on smoothly, but I guess that I cross-threaded the front bolt on the driver's side. I tightened it almost all the way down, but the weld on the nut inside the frame rail snapped and now I can't tighten or loosen the bolt. The frame rail is entirely boxed in, so even if I saw the bolt off, I can't slip another nut in there. I'd rather not saw or drill through the frame at that point, since it's close to the steering gear which is one of the weaker spots.

Any bright ideas?


The way I see it you are going to have to cut a hole into your frame to get at the nut!!! After you cut and remove the offending nut/bolt you will need to clean and weld another nut then weld a patch. Cutting and welding on the uiframe is not that big a deal, a lot of us do it!! If you cannot weld pay someone to do it right!!
If you take the front bumper off...

...you can reach in there and either re-install a nutsert or just throw a nut on that sway bar bolt. It's kind of a pain but you don't gotta cut into no frame rail.
X2, long needle nose pliers with the bumper off will easily get a new nut in for the sway bar. No need to cut the frame. There are large(ish) oval holes on the end of the "frame" rails behind the bumper and allows access to the inside.

dude this also happened to me.

this is what i did and nothing was removed.

first find a bolt, yes a bolt, that will fit the diameter of the swaybar bushings' mount. you want the biggest diameter that will fit. you also want the nut and two crush type locking washers.

there is a small hole on the rail, use a small magnetic tip pen extension and get it as close to the hole as possible, before pulling it through the hole with the magnet, slip a washer in the hole and finangle the bolt through.
slip the bushing mount back on, use other washer and nut. done, finished, no cutting needed. doesnt matter if metric or standard.

I'll take a pic when its not so dark here.
Sweet! These are some great replies. I checked the front of the frame earlier, and there is a hole in the front that I could fit a wrench through if the bumper was removed. Not a huge deal, I guess, and it wouldn't cost anything. I also have that large round hole in the side of the rail, and I'm sure that I could fit a magnetic retrieval tool through there to fish a bolt through. I might even be able to use a coathanger to fish a piece of fishing line through there, tie it to the end of the bolt, and drag the bolt through. One of these methods should work.

As an added bonus, I found an old Craftsman screwdriver jammed back behind the bumper while I was under there. A lot of stuff can happen in 170,000 miles. Thanks for the help!