The tool for removing circlips with your own hands

Pliers for snap rings

Retaining rings are a fairly common type of fastener used in automotive and other light and heavy industrial applications.

Typically, they are used to secure parts on shafts or in bores of other parts. Differentiated into external and internal, according to the method of attachment.

For example, the outer ones are mounted directly on the shaft, and the inner ones on the holes.

The most convenient way to dismantle and install the retaining rings is with specially designed pullers. They are very often called pliers, combination pliers, ring pliers and pliers for snap rings.

This is not quite correct in terms of terminology, since the device is a pliers. At the moment manufacturers offer a wide range of such tools, we will analyze the pros and cons of each type and tell you about the most interesting models.

We hope that this information will help you choose and buy a circlip puller that will be most convenient for your tasks.

The design and features of a circlip puller

So, a kind of circlip puller is a kind of swivel-nose tool. They have a classic design. two handles with jaws are connected to each other by a swivel joint. Their key difference is the design of the working profile.

The jaws of the tool are tips that are inserted in the slots of the rings. And they can differ from each other by certain design features. The following types are the most widely used:

  • The so-called “Japanese type” locking ring pullers, which are characterized by extremely high strength. Their jaws are sharpened and have notches. Objectively speaking, the disadvantages of this type: On rare occasions the lugs may not stay securely in the groove.
  • The “European type” has a special chamfer on the end of the working part, due to which a decent fixation of the ring is achieved. The main disadvantage of the European type is that it significantly weakens the handpiece and reduces the service life of the tool.
  • Also encountered are circlip pullers with pressed-in carbide tips. Such tools do not have the disadvantages described above, but their price is significantly higher than the price of the two previous types.

Classification of circlip pullers and their characteristics

The key characteristics of the circlip pliers include:

  • Jaw grip range.
  • Handle length. Determines the force that the tool can transfer. The longer the handles, the harder the pliers can act on the rings.
  • Material of manufacture. Directly affects the strength characteristics of the fixture. We recommend pliers made of reinforced alloys such as chrome vanadium.

In terms of classification, all locking ring pliers are divided into two types: squeezing and expanding. Also important is the shape of the tip. it can be straight or curved. Thus, all pullers can be classified into four types:

Types of circlip pullers

There are two basic types of locking ring joints:

  • Internal. Serve to secure parts inside holes. Used for fixing bearings. The lugs protrude into the inside of the axe. To install them, squeeze so that the length of the outer circle is reduced, enter the part in the inner slot and release the ears. The part will be straightened and partially fall into the groove, and partially protrude from it. This projecting part will prevent the bearing resting against it from moving axially. To remove the fastener, the ears must be apart.
  • External. They are used to fasten parts on shafts, axles, rods. Slipped on the shaft from the outside, the ears protrude on the outside of the product, the incision between them is minimal. To assemble, the ears are pulled apart, increasing the inner circumference of the part and allowing it to slide onto a shaft or axis and slide into a chamfered slot. After that, the ears are released, the part is compressed under the action of elastic forces, sits tightly in the groove, leaving an annular rim on the outside. It will not allow the part to move axially. To remove such a detail, the ears are brought together.

Locking rings also differ in size, thickness, deformation force, and metal of which they are made.

tool, removing, circlips, your, hands

Retaining rings without holes or lugs are sometimes used in engineering. They are simply an incomplete coil of spring wire placed in a groove on a shaft or hole.

They are used in assemblies with light axial loads, such as starter drives and oil level gauge glass mounts.

Retaining rings and what they do

To limit the movement of a bearing, axle, shaft or other parts, many machines use retaining rings (also called split washers). These parts have similarities to lockwashers, but their main difference is the presence of a through cut. High-strength spring steel is used for making the split washer. Structurally, this part has the appearance of a washer with a slit. There are two pads with holes near the slot, which are called lugs. It is these ears that are used to remove and install the parts.

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The principle of operation of such devices is simple enough. when the ring is compressed or uncompressed by a special tool on the ears of the part, the length of the circle is changed. The split washer is inserted in the groove in compressed or unfractured state, and then released. This compresses or uncompresses it, which encompasses the shaft, securing the bearing and preventing axial movement.

Lock washer removal

Removal of locking split washers takes place by 2 key methods:

  • With partial disassembly of the key mechanism. The assembly that contains the ring is removed. It is clamped in a vice or other jig on the work table and the part can be removed in good conditions in a warm, well-lit workshop.
  • Without partial disassembly. The unit to be repaired is not removed, it is disassembled and its parts are replaced in less good conditions, often in clean air.

In both cases, it is better to remove the locking part with the use of specialized pullers that match the type and size of the retainer.

If for some reason they are not available nearby, craftsmen adapt this or that multi-purpose tool or finalize it by making puller by your own hands. Such an approach is justified if one or two retaining rings need to be removed immediately. For large workloads, factory-made pullers show their own superiority in a number of ways:

Skilled craftsmen have formulated a series of tips on how to remove the lock washer from the front suspension hub bearing:

  • The rack is removed from the car and clamped in a vice.
  • Use a hammer to dislodge the hub.
  • Lightly tap the small hammer on the bead of the inner retaining ring to loosen its contact with the groove.
  • Next, the ring must be removed using a suitable type and size ring detent. In the absence of standard tools, some craftsmen manage to remove the stopper with 2 thin screwdrivers.
  • After pressing out and replacing the bearing, check its position: the front end must be at the level of the far wall of the groove to install the retaining part.
  • Squeeze the ring with a puller and bring it up to the groove. After combining around the perimeter of the handle, gradually loosen and the part is in place.

Tips on how to remove the rear hub bearing, and its retaining ring, look like this:

  • Unscrew the wheel and brake drum.
  • Use a flat screwdriver to gently pry up and remove the oil seal.
  • Remove the ring from the inside diameter using a puller of a suitable size and type.
  • Remove bearing inner ring.
  • Knock out the outer ring with light tapping on the bead and remove it.

After lubricating or replacing the bearing, assemble the assembly in reverse order.

Assembly and disassembly of lockwashers

To position the locking washer, it is inserted between the heads of the threaded fastener (bolt, screw, etc.). п.) and the surface into which it is screwed.

When the connection is tightened, it shrinks, which is prevented by its elasticity.

As a result, a friction force is created that prevents the connection from self-loosening.

Since the strength of the connection using locking washers is rather high, their removal is more difficult than installation.

It should be noted that in some cases you have to use tools such as a hammer and chisel for this.

The main task, however, is to move this fixing element slightly from its place, as a result of which the connection is loosened, and the threaded element can be simply unscrewed.

Another method is to use pullers designed specifically for “removing” lock washers and rings from connections.

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Please note, however, that the use of these lugs almost always results in damage to these parts.

Subject of section Electric motors, regulators, motor units in category Airplanes. Electroplanes

; while poking around in the turgi motor broke the retaining ring (I think that’s what it’s called) something can replace it? 3 mm shaft diameter. They are.

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The main ways to remove the retaining rings

Mechanics distinguish three basic methods for installing retainers:

  • Manual. The most common in common use.
  • Mechanical. In order to put the outer ring, a setting cone equal in diameter to the shaft and centered on it is used. A special pusher moves the part along the cone to the place of installation, sliding it off the cone into the slot.
  • Automatic. In mass production on automated lines, the parts are put by hydraulic or pneumatic actuators.

There are many ways to remove the retaining rings without tools specially designed for this purpose. Sewls, nails, thin Phillips screwdrivers, and other handy tools are used.

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To remove the retaining rings without a puller, you can modify the usual pair of needle-nose pliers.

Their ends are turned under the cylinder, with a diameter slightly smaller than the hole in the ears.

Modify also the pliers, in the side surfaces of the jaws, at the very end drill holes, into which pieces of a hardened bar of suitable diameter are inserted. The split retaining washer can be removed and put back on with this method.

The question often arises: How do you remove circlips without washers?? For this you need two screwdrivers. With one, unclamp the locking ring in its cut so that its diameter slightly increases, and it partially comes out of the groove. Use a second screwdriver to grasp one end of the ring and pull it out onto the surface of the shaft. The first screwdriver to pick up that end, preventing it from slipping back into the slot. With the second screwdriver it is necessary to pass it through the groove to pull out the remaining part of the locking washer.

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Retaining ring pliers. design and types

To remove and install split washers, special tools are used, called ring washers. These tools are available in various designs. They have a handle and cone shaped jaws that work in common. The handle consists of two elements connected to each other by a hinge. Jaws have a conical construction, which serves to engage with the lugs of the retaining rings. Ring pliers are made according to the standard. Foreign tools are made in compliance with DIN 471, and Russian pliers have GOST 13942-86.

Circlip Installation and Removal Tips, Tricks, and Tool

Ring detents for lock rings are divided into two types, and they are used depending on the type of part (inner or outer).

  • The puller for the outer rings allows the rings’ ears to be unclenched. The principle of operation of this tool is based on the fact that when the handles are brought together, the part is stretched, so its inner diameter is increased. To remove the outer retaining rings, the jaws must be placed in the holes in the ears and the knobs squeezed
  • Wiper for inner rings. the principle of its operation is similar to the operation of conventional scissors, pliers or pliers. When the handles are brought together, the jaws also compress, thus acting on the workpiece. This action causes the ears to be compressed, and the outside diameter to be reduced, allowing the part to be removed from the seating slot
  • Universal pullers. allows to install and remove retaining rings of different types. inner and outer. Change the operating principle by means of a special selector lever. Additionally, the universal ring removers can be supplemented with a screw drive, locking mechanisms and lever mechanisms, which greatly simplifies the use of devices

When choosing a tool for dismantling split rings, it is important to determine the thickness of the jaws. Tools with thick jaws cannot dismantle small split washers and vice versa. That’s why the pullers are often sold in sets of 2 or 4 with different size jaws.

Universal retaining ring puller (pliers) with interchangeable attachments

In today’s review, I want to share with you my impressions of a universal retaining ring puller with interchangeable attachments that I purchased on eBay. Though this tool is not very much in demand, but without it the process of removing and reinserting the circlips turns into a kind of torture, especially if it all takes place in the depths of an assembly with limited access to it. Personally, the last straw that made me realize I needed a puller was the pulley of the air conditioner in which the bearing needed to be replaced. The tool comes in its original factory packaging, which is a blister with a sliding cardboard back wall. From the front side, the packaging looks as follows: On the back of the cardboard back panel is a schematic representation of the puller, how the removable bits fit, and information that it is suitable for working with both inner and outer retaining rings. If you believe what is written on the product page, this puller has the following characteristics:

Features:. Material: High Carbon Steel;. Effective Range: 10-50mm.Attachments: 45 degrees / 90 degrees / 180 degrees.

Set includes: 2 x 180-degree nozzle; 1 x 90-degree nozzle; 1 x 45-degree nozzle; 1x handle with spring.

One 90-degree, one 45-degree and two straight nails. They are fixed to the puller with 2 fixed pins and one central peg equipped with a spring and a quick-release mechanism (lock). I have not found any problems with quality of these tools and pliers: plastic handles without burr, metal without nicks, no rust, gaps in coating and other little things. Side pins are available on both sides of the puller. This allows the puller to be used comfortably both for loosening rings (if located on any shaft) and for compressing them (if the ring is hidden inside). That is, when installing tips on the upper pins, the puller works on expansion: And when you install it on the bottom. on compression: The maximum difference between the jaws about 17 millimeters, so when working with bulky rings of large diameter this puller is not useful. However, for operation of it in a garage, this parameter is quite enough. To replace the bits you need to remove the center pin. You do it by pushing on its head and then opening the T-lock. For the whole procedure takes, literally, a few seconds, there are no complications with the process. Now a little bit about the actual operation. I’ll tell you that the extractor works. It is not ideal, but there are no major problems. I re-pressed the bearing of the pulley of the air conditioner, it took a minute to remove the retaining ring. Last time I needed an awl and some flathead screwdrivers. And I “killed” time on this procedure 40 minutes, if not an hour. But since it is quite cool in the garage, I did not take photos of this action. For this photo shoot I used a third-party locking ring with much larger diameter.

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If suddenly who is not familiar with the process, then briefly outline the essence. Inserting the jaws into the holes: Squeezes the pliers, thus bringing the springtips together. You can see that the distance between them has decreased by 2 times, which would be enough to pull the stopper out of the tube where it could be installed.

But most of all I want to see what marks are left on the jaws after compression, because I pressed with almost all my might. Let’s see: Of the consequences. the coating on one tip is rubbed off. If you look at the jaws from above, you can see that they are still flat. No deformation is observed. In summary I can say that the puller has turned out to be a quite serviceable tool. And it is a multi-purpose tool, because of replaceable jaws and peculiarities of the construction of the pliers. But in the same feature lies the main disadvantage of the puller. backlash of the jaws relatively to the handles. When you try to insert the jaws into the ring and if they bump into something through the holes, they immediately “come off” from the grips. This can be clearly seen in the photo below: I think to pick up bushings of suitable diameter and fix them on the bottoms of the fixing pins, then this problem will be solved. As an alternative, you can also try to find a stiffer spring. But for now I have used them as they are and I can say that this backlash not only gives some discomfort, but also has a significant influence on the performance of the tool. No, it is possible to use the pliers, but I would not say that it is comfortable to use. If I had known, I would have bought a pair of ordinary pliers without the removable parts.

How to use the needle-nose pliers

There are two ways to remove the retaining rings with pliers:

  • Partial Disassembly of the Main Mechanism. To do this, the assembly where the retaining rings are located is disassembled. To dismantle a device, you need to fix the device in a vice or clamp it, and only then proceed to the removal of parts with pliers
  • Without disassembling the mechanism, there are assemblies that do not need to be dismantled from the technical object in order to remove the locking devices. Perform disassembly in this case is more difficult, but it is easier than removing the entire mechanism to gain access to the part

Often there is no puller at hand when carrying out work, or the tool is not the right size. In this case, it is not necessary to rush to the store, as you can make round pliers with your own hands. For this you will need the original tool as well as an emery tool. To make round pliers to remove the retaining ring, you can use defective wire cutters, pliers and other similar tools. To do this, the working part has to be ground to fit the cone. Some craftsmen have found such a way as to remove the part using two thin screwdrivers twisted with a wire at one point.

This is interesting! The main advantage of factory-made round pliers is that they are directly designed to perform the corresponding work, so there are no difficulties with their use. In addition, performing work with this tool is simplified and facilitated, so it is worth thinking about buying quality round pliers.

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