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Stuck pipe unions on steering box - can I heat it?

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I'm replacing my steering box and struggling to get the two unions off the top. I got the return one cracked ok with a 16mm spanner but the pipe is stuck to the nut and I can't seem to free it without damaging the pipe. A 14mm spanner on the feed union is quite sloppy but hopefully once I've got the first one off I will have better access. I was just wondering if I could use heat, obviously the old box is done but I'll be sending it back once it's off so I don't have to damage it.

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Before you worry too much about not damaging the pipe have you checked that it is worth saving?

Currently rebuilding my 90 onto a new chassis and replaced the PAS pipes this weekend as the steel sections are showing signs of corrosion, especially under the fixing clips. Replacements are cheap enough and while not a difficult job it is easier to do at the same time as the box.

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It’s a good point - if the unions are that rusted, how confident can you be that they will seal up in the new box, or that they won’t strip their threads and fail the hydraulic assistance at a particularly bad moment.  It’s not a system worth taking risks on to save a few quid.

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Thanks for the replies. I've ordered up some new hoses. It always works out more expensive than you planned! What started as a steering box and a UJ, has become a steering box, steering column and pipes. Also had to get a 33mm socket to torque the drop arm up. Still, better to do it right once and then forget about it. Watch this space for requests for help with a knackered steering pump!

Edited by Sharp
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