Light pole anchor bolts sticking up too high

New here so hello everybody and thanks in advance for any help you can give me.


I've searched through other threads and can't find an answer to my question, possibly because it is a dumb one but here goes. I'm currently working on a parking lot and preparing to set some light poles on pole bases that were formed and poured by the concrete contractor. I watched the pour to make sure my conduit didn't get damaged but didn't stick around to watch him sink the anchors in. He insisted on placing them after the pour which was new to me. Long story short, the anchor bolts ended up sticking up six inches above the top of the pole base. The trim is only about four and half inches tall which will leave an ugly gap. The only ideas I have are to try and get deeper trim from the pole manufacturer, which I'd rather not pay for, or to cut the top of the bolts down to clear the trim I have. The anchor bolts are 1" x 36" with a 4" leg. They are sunk to where the threads start so I imagine they are as deep as they need to be. I'm probably over thinking this I just don't want to do something stupid and create more work for myself. Has anybody else dealt with this? Maybe this is common, I usually do industrial and service work so parking lot lighting isn't my specialty.
 

Cow

Senior Member
Location
Eastern Oregon
Cordless portaband. You aren't hurting anything by shortening them up. I had to do this on a job recently for the same reason, the bolts were too tall for the trims.
 

Sierrasparky

Senior Member
Location
USA
Occupation
Electrician ,contractor
If you cut them before installing the lights, make sure you place some nuts on the bolts first so when you remove the nuts you chase the threads clean.
 

junkhound

Senior Member
Location
Renton, WA
Easiest ways, assuming grade 8 bolts or stronger alloy/temper - after every thing bolted down.

a.
Cut'em off with an angle grinder if you have power available.

b. Even for 1" grade 8 bolts, if you have all of 6" sticking up above the nut, a good solid 21" crescent wrench and piece of pipe on the end of that you can bend the bolt back and forth 10 or 15 times and it will break off.

c. hacksaw last, lot of effort (at least for old men) to cut thru 1" horizontally.

d. torch them off , flame away from pole
 
Thanks for the replies guys. I'll just use a cordless bandsaw and cut them off after the poles are set. Customer and general are pretty anal about things and I wasn't sure if it was common or acceptable to just cut them off. The last thing I want is to be told I am buying 8 new pole bases.
 

hurk27

Senior Member
Thanks for the replies guys. I'll just use a cordless bandsaw and cut them off after the poles are set. Customer and general are pretty anal about things and I wasn't sure if it was common or acceptable to just cut them off. The last thing I want is to be told I am buying 8 new pole bases.
Or sawzall, cut many off with my dewalt saw-zall allot lighter to hold then a band saw, and makes quick work of it with a 24 pt per inch bi-metal blade.
 

SceneryDriver

Senior Member
Location
New York, NY
Easiest ways, assuming grade 8 bolts or stronger alloy/temper - after every thing bolted down.

d. torch them off , flame away from pole

You REALLY don't want to flame cut a grade 8 bolt. Flame cutting high strength fasteners will ruin the metallurgy and weaken the bolt. Weak anchor bolts on a light pole can't be a good thing. To say nothing of how hack-job it will look. It will also screw up any galvanizing or coating farther down the bolts.

Use an angle grinder with a cutoff disk. The alloy bolts will go through Porta-Band blades quickly. I also recommend hitting the raw ends of the bolts with some spray paint to prevent corrosion over the long term.



SceneryDriver
 
You REALLY don't want to flame cut a grade 8 bolt. Flame cutting high strength fasteners will ruin the metallurgy and weaken the bolt. Weak anchor bolts on a light pole can't be a good thing. To say nothing of how hack-job it will look. It will also screw up any galvanizing or coating farther down the bolts.
All true. I'd use a reciprocating saw with a carbide or diamond blade. (An 18volt DeWalt saw with a carbide blade will cut an old jeep in half in ten minutes. I have this from the person who did it; part of the junkyard wars competition.)

After cutting, chase the threads with a real tap or a triangle file. I've also seen people grind a bevel around the cut end. Re-galvanize as needed.
 

junkhound

Senior Member
Location
Renton, WA
You REALLY don't want to flame cut a grade 8 bolt. Flame cutting high strength fasteners will ruin the metallurgy and weaken the bolt. Weak anchor bolts on a light pole can't be a good thing. To say nothing of how hack-job it will look.

SceneryDriver
Good point given the OP needed to ask the question in the first place: I'd put flame cut at the bottom of the list, assuming anyone with a torch knew to put a wet rag around the nut first. OP also stated he had covers for the bolts, so looks of no account. I'v flame cut high strength bolts within 1" of a nut with a wet rag around the bolt and found that 1" away the hardness of the bolt was not affected -- heh, heh, assuming one know how to flame cut and just does not try to melt the bolt away!

A later post suggesting painting (galvacon or similar) the cut end - no matter the cut method - should be done.
 

cdslotz

Senior Member
Thanks for the replies guys. I'll just use a cordless bandsaw and cut them off after the poles are set. Customer and general are pretty anal about things and I wasn't sure if it was common or acceptable to just cut them off. The last thing I want is to be told I am buying 8 new pole bases.
I have to ask... was the GC supplied with the anchor bolt templates? Also there is usually a drawing supplied with the fixture showing proper placement.
Did you submit cut sheets (submittals) to the GC for approval?
 

RichB

Senior Member
Location
Tacoma, Wa
We cut them off-use a grinder w/ cut-off wheel or porta-band-Level and final tighten first then cut--remember to leave at least 2 threads above the nut and then spray with a cold galvanizing paint
 
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I was given a template that said 4" bolt projection. I gave it to the concrete foreman to make templates and pointed out the 4" requirement. I guess he didn't pass it on to his guys. I went to another area of the jobsite after watching the pour before they sunk the bolts. They just stuck them in to the end of the threads. I cut a couple off with an 18v portaband and it works great. I hit the top with some cold galv too. The poles are already set and tightened down and I've got about 3 or so threads above the top nut. Thanks for the help and suggestions.
 
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