View Full Version : Speedo/Tach/Gauges Spanner wrench to remove dash switches

10-29-2018, 08:52 PM
I've had no luck trying to find a small spanner wrench to remove the nut that holds the heater switch to the dash in my '51 Champion. The nut is about the size of a nickel with two small slots. one on each side of the pull-out shaft. I used to have the same type switch on a Chevy and I was able to rotate the nut using a pair of small screwdrivers, but that nut had not been there nearly 70 years when I did that. What is the approved method, or is there a source for a tool made to remove those nuts? Also, what is the best way to remove the knob from the shaft with damaging either part? Thanks.

10-29-2018, 09:02 PM
There are some tools on eBay, but I do not know their proper name. They are basically a cylinder with all but the two nubs milled out and flats on the other end for an open end wrench.

Here's one that says it's for a Studebaker

10-29-2018, 09:03 PM
Some knobs come out with the shaft when you pull out after pushing the spring loaded button on the switch.
Some other knobs come off the shaft when you pull forward on the spring retainer on the back side of the knob.
That flexing tin acts like the sliding lock on door closers, where you slide it down the shaft to hold the door open.

If you can get the shaft out of the way, then a flat washer or coin can be used on the nut.
If the slot if flat rather than concave, then a wide screwdriver should work.
I've also made a tool like Roy describes for those switches where you have to work around the shaft.

Mike Van Veghten
10-29-2018, 11:56 PM
Make one (or ?)..!

A piece of .125" or thicker steel, drill appropriate diameter holes ("straight" through), at the correct spacing. Insert drill bits into the new holes...go to work...
I've made a few over the years with different hole size and spacing. They work well.


Warren Webb
10-30-2018, 02:46 AM
Contact Chuck Collins at StudebakerParts.com He has the tools for the dash switches. I bought a pair of them a few years ago & found although you might not use them often but when you need them they are there. http://www.studebakerparts.com/ Go down the list of things to "special tools" , then 3/4 of the way down you'll see the tools needed for your switches.

10-30-2018, 06:39 AM
Like a lot of things we incurable tinkerers do is to accept such things as a challenge. What I did many years ago was to take one of those little co2 canisters that are used for power in BB guns. I cut the end off of it and filed the end down leaving two raised tips 180 degrees apart that would fit perfectly in the slots on the bezel. Worked great for years! I have not seen it (buried somewhere in one of my tool stashes) for a long time. Any hollow piece of pipe, of appropriate size or cheap flea market grade deep socket would be a good candidate for modification to accomplish the task.

If you would want an adjustable spanner, buy a cheap harbor freight type 90 degree snap ring spanner tool and use it. Keep in mind, depending on how delicate and careful you can control the dexterity of your hands...the potential for a paint scratching slip is very high with some of these innovated tool modifications. One of my two older (rip) brothers was very good at this kind of skill. However, the other was often heard making the comment..."It was working 'till I fixed it!" If your fingers have difficulty in following the intent of your brain...better to buy a specific tool made specifically for the task.

10-30-2018, 07:46 AM
I use a screw driver and small, soft hammer......works all the time...... except the 1st time I tried it on a $100. junker...

10-30-2018, 10:54 AM
I use a screw driver and small, soft hammer......works all the time...... except the 1st time I tried it on a $100. junker...

Yep, or a small punch. Light taps and don't get too close to the outside edge and slip.

10-30-2018, 12:46 PM
I used a metal rod that fit the switch hole, I think it is 1/4", drilled a small hole about 1/4 inch from one end a drove a small roll pin through it. Bent the other end 90 degrees. Works great both removing and starting the nut.

Dwain G.
10-30-2018, 12:59 PM
http://www.studebakerparts.com/ has these tools.