I’m on the last roller that needs to be disassembled in order to replace all failed bearings and then reassemble the baler... and I have hit a problem. Four problems. Four very, very, very hard problems.

7/32nds? who the fuck uses 7/32nds heads on an application like this?

This particular section shows signs of previous failed attempts at disassembly, notably one welded-over bolt (who knows what’s under there) and one that had been partially drilled. I have been applying heat and penetrating oil to the two bolts with in-tact heads, so far fruitlessly, but I was being patient with them...

I’m not excited about taking the angle grinder to the welded one... but I decided while I’m waiting for the penetrating oil and heat to (hopefully) work, I’d finish drilling out that partially-drilled bolt.

You can see that I succeeded in making the already existing hole shiny. That’s about ALL I succeeded at.

I quickly discovered why it was only partially drilled out.

First I killed the left-hand bit in my shitty extractor kit. Not really a surprise.

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Then I killed a cheap Ryobi bit. Also not surprised about this.

Then I killed a decent Milwaukee bit. Hmmm, these things have proven to be pretty robust in the past, but maybe all the metal drilling I’ve done with them previously was a contributor.

Then I killed a pretty nice DeWalt branded bit that was kinda expensive and sold in a single pack, as opposed to part of a kit.

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uh oh.

This was a sharp, fresh, high-quality (though not tungsten) bit and in the past these things (not this exact bit, but others from the same line) have cut through 1/4" steel plate like butter, multiple times, without signs of slowing down after 10 holes.

Not just dull, blunted. And It was lubricated, and it made only a few small chips before giving up.

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whoever was here before me gave up, and nowI see why. These damn things have too-small heads and are hard as fuck. not just hard, but REALLY hard.

at least a couple of those chips came from the BIT not the bolt :(

I’m torn as to whether my next step is to buy another expensive bit and have at it again, or attack it with the angle grinder (or a die grinder), or attempt to weld a lever to it... I sort of think the welded-over one on the other side might have been the ultimate fallout of a previous attempt to do that...

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Oppo bolt-removal-expert suggestions?