Captive rotors can go to hell

That wheel above? It’s the left-front wheel on my Mitsubishi Montero. The hub is a six-bolt setup, but at the moment it’s been downgraded to five bolts. Why? Because well testing the fit on my new wheel and tire combo, a wheel stud snapped. That bit of rifled metal sheared right off and left me scratching my head for how I’m going to replace it.

After a quick scan of YouTube, it seems that swapping out wheel studs is actually quite easy. You remove the wheel. Clear the brake caliper with a bolts or two, and then slide the rotor out of the way after removing two more bolts. That would be how I planned on clearing the way for a new wheel stud, until I learned that my Montero uses captive rotors.

Montero wheel stud broken

Someone please stop the bleeding…

For those unaware, a captive rotor is one that can’t simply be removed with the hub in place. That’s because it’s part of the hub essentially. I now need to remove the dust cap, snap ring, shims, drive flange, spring washer, lock nut, and all of the various bits of hardware holding those pieces in place. Once I do that, I can get to the dust shield and rotor.

And then I’m still not done. The hub is still attached to the brake disc at this point. I’ve just removed it from the front axle. So that means more bolts and likely a bit of prying as well. It’s a good idea to change the wheel bearings at this point, if they haven’t been done yet.

This was supposed to take ten minutes.

Once you’ve got the rotor free, it’s easy work to remove the old wheel stud and get the new one inserted. But now the battle is merely half over. Everything that was removed …yadda yadda, installation is the reverse of disassembly.

*deep breath*

I think I can handle this one myself. It’s just quite a bit more work than I expected. And to that, I say, captive rotors can fuck right the hell off… though that will take them quite a few steps to get there.

By |2019-03-28T11:04:19+00:00March 28th, 2019|All Things Hoon, Project Cars, The Montero|22 Comments

About the Author:

Jeff Glucker is the co-founder and Executive Editor of He’s often seen getting passed as he hustles either a dark blue 1974 Mercedes-Benz 280 or 1991 Mitsubishi Montero up the 405 Freeway. IG: @HooniverseJeff