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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
'07 Cobalt LS. I (finally) replaced the passenger-side CAB. On the driver's side, the 'nut' has broken free in the cage. I don't see any way to get at the nut/cage from below, and I can just sort of reach it through the wheel well.

I think it would be much easier to get at it from above, by drilling a hole in the floor pan. I've seen this suggested, but no details on where to drill the hole. It looks like it would be more-or-less under the brake pedal, but I'm not very sure.

If anyone has done this, ... where? Thanks.

Bonus question: How did you go through the 'rubber' floor liner (under the carpet)? It looks like a PITA to remove, and feels like there's a considerable thickness of soft (air?) behind it. Can I just knife-out a chunk?
 

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When mine broke free I removed the rear engine mount and slipped a wrench in, I had to cut a very small piece of metal by the nut to bend a piece for my wrench to access it but i did it. Then 4 months later I did it again for my brother on the same car.

I do own a hoist so that may have made it easier.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
... I removed the rear engine mount and slipped a wrench in,
Not to doubt your experience, but I think what's in the way for me are the mounts for the rack and the stabilizer bar.

I had to cut a very small piece of metal by the nut
Would that be the turned-up right-angle bend forward of the nut? I was concerned that might have some structural function. (If I can figure a way to post an image, I'll add a picture.)
 

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My mechanic just welded the nut to the cage before trying to undo the bolt and the heat from the welding broke it loose from the nut.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
,,, the heat from the welding broke it loose from the nut.
Well, if the other side is any guide, this bolt will be seriously rusted into the bushing sleeve. So, having the nut threads loose wouldn't help. I can cut the bolt/sleeve, and punch the old nut out the top. The problem is, to install the new (lock) nut, I need to be able to get pretty good wrench action on the nut. There was just enough room on the passenger's side to fit a cut-off end wrench from underneath. I don't see any chance on the driver's side.
 

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My car was a manual transmission which gave me some more room over an auto transmission. I can't exactly remember how I did it but I did get the 1" or whatever wrench in there.

That is the piece of metal, I just cut and bent enough to lock the open end of my wrench on the nut which is more of a rectangular piece of threaded steel. Mine also seized into the sleeve and I ended up burning the bushing out and heated the sleeve until I could get the bolt out with my airgun.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
My car was a manual transmission which gave me some more room over an auto transmission. I
What year was it? (The car, that is.) Some of these responses make me think, either I'm really missing some way to get in there, or they tweaked the design.
Mine also seized into the sleeve and I ended up burning the bushing out
LOL. The smoke. The fire. The melted rubber.
 

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Mine was a 2005. Yeah the smoke was horrible but it was a Sunday and I needed the car for Monday. 7 hours of headache is what it was.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I decided not to put a hole in the floor/firewall. It would be quite close to the frame attachment, and I was concerned the hole might weaken that. Instead, I removed the rack and the stabilizer bar. That gave enough room so I could get at the cage and nut through the wheel well.

... Which turned out to be a good idea. The cage was solidly attached to the mounting plate - I had to cut it out. I'd have needed a very large hole in the floor to do that.

What a PITA. This car is made like a really crappy Swiss watch.
 

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I just cut through the control arm bushing and the bolt, after which just pulled the bolt out. I then removed the cage. I went to a chevy dealer bought a new bolt for $11.00 and got a washer and and nut with nylon. Put a small dab of lock tight on the bolt and bam. I haven't had any issues with it.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
... and got a washer and and nut with nylon. Put a small dab of lock tight on the bolt and bam. I haven't had any issues with it.
Just FYI, this site says to use all-metal flanged lock nuts:

Grade GT Flange Style Lock Nuts Properties
Description An all metal, one-piece flanged hex nut which gets its prevailing torque characteristics from controlled distortion of its top threads from their normal helical form to a more elliptical shape.

Applications & Advantages Has a lower, more uniform bearing stress to clamp force ratio. This style reduces inventory (by eliminating a washer) and in-place cost. It is designed specifically for use with, but not exclusively, grade-8 frame bolts.
They don't sell metric (AFAICT), but I found some on Amazon.
 
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