Step 11: Using the Wrench

To use the wrench, engage the teeth in the indentations in the nut.  Here the tub nut and the drive block are positioned in my vise very much as they would be in the washing machine tub.  Strike the arm welded to the pipe with a hammer.  The nut is right-hand thread, so strike to make the nut turn counter-clockwise.  The nut on my washer loosened almost immediately, even though I had tried several other strategies before with no success.
<p>Phil - Thank you for the inspiration. I did not do this exactly the way you did. Two things forced me to improvise. The nut was still installed inside the tub, and I couldn't find a piece of pipe the right size. Instead, I found a nut from a plumbing union. Its larger outer diameter made it harder to mark - I couldn't just scribe from the spanner nut. But, it is a nice heavy piece of steel with an appropriate ID. I hoped that being a nut itself would mean that I could just carve it up, and then use a wrench or pliers to turn it. However, anything that would get onto it was too long to use in the tub, so I ended up welding on a bit of rebar to take a hammer. Between the nut-cum-wrench and rebar is another chunk of flat steel that I used just to increase interface area between the pieces, to make it easier to weld.</p><p>Thanks again!</p>
Very nicely done! The nut from the pipe union is a good idea. Something like this sure beats paying lots of money for a wrench you will use once or twice. Thank you for the photo and for reporting.
Very cool!
<p>Thank you. The commercial wrenches for these washing machines cost too much. That washing machine had more and more problems, and I am now using its sheet metal skin for all sorts of projects. I also reconfigured this tool just a little and used it to dismantle a hydraulic floor jack I refurbished. That project also became an Instructable.</p>
I liked this project very much. I learned a lot from it even if I never make this wrench, I know more about repairing a washer. Though there are people I know who would love to make one of these through barter.
Thank you for looking and for commenting. Barter can be very helpful. This wrench can be used for many similar applications, too. Just choose the pipe to fit the nut you need to remove. I have used this same approach to solve a problem on an automobile I once owned.
Very Nice Istructable Phil
Thank you, Stelios. In forums on appliance repair I found a number of posts by people wanting information on how to remove this nut. Someone usually directed them to a page where they could order the factory spanner wrench. It is so much handier if you can make your own.
Some times is not the matter of the cost but the fact that you need it that moment or ASAP, so as you said is handier to DIY.
I feel sorry for those who cannot or will not do DIY, and also very thankful I am not one of them.
While you're feeling sorry for folks feel sorry for me when I've no alternative :) hehe J/K!
Well there's your problem! You see, you have a miller, but you should have a Lincoln. Hahaha. Just kidding. I personally have no loyalty to either, but I like giving people a hard time.
Or you could always pay the money get the tool and it is still goofed up. Here is my experience with a genuine Miller part that I returned and got another one only to find it had the exact same problem. Now it is a 3 hour round trip the the supply house do I go back and get another?
Good as always, Phil!<br><br>I liked the end paragraph of step 1: you and me are twin souls! (for some things).
Thank you, Osvaldo. In part I feel badly about publishing something that requires welding when many do not have the money to get a welder. I did not have one until recent years. I wish somehow I had gathered the money and gotten one years earlier, but the money was never available. There are so many impossible things that become possible with a welder.
No need to worry about those things that require money. Very recently (two years) I was able to buy my first zero miles car. When I fill the tank, I told the boy &quot;this is my recent first 0 Km&quot;. As is normal here waiting weeks and even months to receive a buyed new car, he asked me how much it had taken mine. I said &quot;64 years&quot;. At first he didn't understand the irony.
Good joke, Osvaldo. Thank you.
As I've progressed fabricating I've come to view welding a lot differently anymore. More as a glue than a legitimate fastening technique really. Some projects, some small parts I weld. Mostly I machine and use fasteners now.<br> <br> I'm totally with you Phil on not publishing projects of limited scope, either in their materials, utility, or methods. I've had requests to write up some of my hair brained stuff and I won't because I think it is just too odd to duplicate.<br> <br> Even I wouldn't do a lot of it again! Now if you wanted to eliminate welding from your project you could have simply drilled holes through the pipe and passed a bar through as a handle. Though I guess drilling through rounds isn't easy for everyone to accomplish. Center punch, mount pipe in vise attached to press, spotting the hole doesn't hurt either. Or just used the pipe with a pipe wrench. That is universally doable. Have to tension the wrench if you want to hammer it though. Been there, done that!<br> <br> Maybe you don't know about staining and scribing metal for layout Phil? Staining is usually done with an ink. Dykem Blue is the most popular brand. But any permanent magic marker appears to work. Personally I usually use Marks A Lot. Not that I don't have a bottle of real marking ink too, just well it can be a pain to use.<br> <br> If you want to see about tapes and pipe check out CURV-O-MARK WRAP-A-ROUND which is an interesting aside about pipes and a tape like device. I think you may enjoy it. It is really esoteric stuff though.<br>
Something I've always wanted to do was to make a custom spanner wrench. I always just end up knocking the nuts off with a hammer and a chisel though and move on. Nice to see someone took the trouble.
Thanks. I happened to have a piece of pipe the right diameter already. Years ago I needed to work on the front struts on the car I had at the time. There was a similar nut that had to be held while a nut on a shaft inside the larger diameter nut was tightened, but without allowing the larger nut to turn. I measured and bought a pipe nipple the diameter I needed and made a spanner wrench similar to this one. It worked well. There was no welding on that one. I did not have a welder at the time. But, I used a pipe wrench. It worked out well. I never had to use that wrench again, but it got the job done.

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Bio: I miss the days when magazines like Popular Mechanics had all sorts of DIY projects for making and repairing just about everything. I am enjoying ... More »
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