Rusted bolts

I bought a used Perception Dancer and I am have a hard time getting the 4 bolts holding the seat loose to adjust it. I used WD40 on the bolts but no luck. There is just a tiny sliver of space to grip the nut with pliers so I could turn the bolt but it won’t budge. Anyone have an idea who I can get these suckers off?


Cheap fix
Dribble a little Coke on the rusty pieces!

PB Blaster
Nothing frees stuck bolts like PB Blaster. Just test it to make sure it doesn’t melt your boat.


Can you reach the spot with a drill?

– Last Updated: Jan-29-07 12:51 AM EST –

If you can drill it out, that'll be the quickest (if you can see back in there and it's a straight shot for the bit but the drive unit won't fit in there, weld your bit to a long piece of round stock or have a welder do it). Can you get at it with a little piece of hacksaw blade gripped by a tiny pair of vise-grips? Even if you can't cut it off, if you create enough of a nick it might be easier to break off with the little bit of twist you are able to provide. Maybe use a little Dremel type grinder to just grind the nut away. Whether any of these might work will depend on what sort of access you have. This is a situation where the "heat wrench" can't be used! Where a stuck nut is rusted and there's no easy way to really crank on it, no amount of anti-sieze type material is likely to be of much help - it will still be very hard to turn, just not "as stuck" if you are lucky.

whoa! Stop
i think your problem is not the rusty bolt but the fact you’re using pliers to hold the nut, usually not a good idea. Use a 1/4’’ drive rachet/socket combination, may need an extention and/or a U joint or a ‘wobble extention’ that Craftsman makes. With the right tools the job comes much easier. I am pretty sure the nuts are the nylock type so they’d have some resistance to undoing even when not rusty( i bet they’re also stainless so wouldn’t really rust much at all)

I found penetrating fluid sold at GM or Ford dealerships to be the best stuff for rusty nuts n bolts though theres no guarantees.

I have to agree. I doubt they’re rusty. All the nuts on all my kayaks are lock nuts. Get the right tool. If you’ve already worn the nut with pliers and can’t use a socket try 4" visegrip pliers.

I would suggest talking personally
or by phone to an “old hand” at a place like NOC who used to work on these nuts and screws all the time. They are stainless steel, so rust is not the problem. I have had to work with them on two Perceptions, a Dancer XT and a Corsica, and my own experiences were as frustrating as yours. Part of the problem is that the screws are tightened down very hard against the underlying plastic, so that pressure from the squozen (sic) plastic keeps the screws from turning. Careful not to ruin the allen slots in the screws. There is also a tool you can borrow (I have one from my days working on my motorcycle) called an >impact driver


If the bolts are rusty a good dose of white vinegar will losen them better than any thing I have ever used. An old farm trick, really does work.

And I agree with the other poster on using the proper wrench or screw driver not pliers, unless they have been damaged then you might need vise grips.

Good luck


Thanks everyone for your advice. I ended up getting a dremel to cut the bolts off. Turns out that they were more calcified than rusted and they had been overtightened into the plastic. I took the yak completely apart: seat, support columns and foam inserts. Scrubbed it out (filled with spider EEK) It was great learning experience :slight_smile: Took her out on Lake Merced here in SF and had fun weathercocking :slight_smile: A big change from my Cobra SOT. Will take another paddle when there’s little wind.