Author Topic: Removing hidden nails  (Read 585 times)

Removing hidden nails
« on: 28 February, 2024, 02:37:42 pm »
I have a piece of wood about 50cm long which I want to use as the base of a bike support in the rear of my Touran. I have a fork clamp mount.
The problem is the wood has thin nails in it which were driven in so the heads are hidden below the surface of the wood. This wool was originally a door threshold.

Any ideas on how to get the nails out? I don't have a Dremel tool to cut them off cleanly, which might be an alternative.

Update - Youtube says I need a pry bar called a Cats Paw. The drive the forked end into the wood and lever out the nail.

Jaded

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Re: Removing hidden nails
« Reply #1 on: 28 February, 2024, 03:18:18 pm »
Use a punch to put them further in, but under the surface?
It is simpler than it looks.

Feanor

  • It's mostly downhill from here.
Re: Removing hidden nails
« Reply #2 on: 28 February, 2024, 03:22:37 pm »
Is the problem that the pointy ends are sticking out of the bottom?

If so, then place the strip of wood upsides down, on a couple of offcuts, with the pointy ends facing up.
Use a hammer to gently tap the nails back through the wood, till their heads become accessible, then use a normal claw hammer to pull them up and out.

If the nails are long and bent, and reluctant to be tapped back in without bending, then cut them back to shorter stubs which are more willing to take a bit of a whack.

T42

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Re: Removing hidden nails
« Reply #3 on: 28 February, 2024, 03:53:05 pm »
When I was dismantling our old barn door a couple of years back I found the cross members were clinch-nailed in place.  I got them out by hammering an el cheapo chisel in under, from the point to the bend, then levering the nail up straight and hammering them out a bit.  Then I claw-hammered them out.

The chisel was part of a 5€ set from local DIY supermarket. Wouldn't use my 100-year-old cast steel jobs on them.
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Re: Removing hidden nails
« Reply #4 on: 28 February, 2024, 04:06:11 pm »
Thanks all

Mrs Pingu

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Re: Removing hidden nails
« Reply #5 on: 28 February, 2024, 06:43:26 pm »
I've got a cats paw bar and have never been able to get submerged nails out without doing what Feanor says first.
And mind you don't ping yourself in the face with a nail using the bendy end either (DNAMHIKT)
Do not clench. It only makes it worse.

Re: Removing hidden nails
« Reply #6 on: 29 February, 2024, 08:53:04 am »
I demolished an old coal bunker last weekend.

They'd fastened the wood frame for the lid by concreting 6" nails in, point up, then hammering the boards down on the nails, then bending the nails over to a U and hammering them flush.

Credit to them, it was a very solid job.

Every single bastard nail had to be prised up and straightened before I could get the boards off. Took ages. I have a Stanley clawbar and bent it.
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Re: Removing hidden nails
« Reply #7 on: 29 February, 2024, 02:59:39 pm »
My thanks to Feanor. The technique you suggested was perfect.
For future reference these were thin wire nails. Cut off nail about 1cm from surface, using decent side cutters.
Place wood on a support and hammer till head shows a decent amount above surface.
I pulled the nails through using a large set of plumbing grips. No claw hammer handy and the heads would have pulled off I think.