I have a square metal pole (probably 3x3 inches) that sits in the ground in a metal sleeve. It's been there for a long time and I want to pull it out. In order to prep for this I've been soaking between the pole and sleeve with WD-40.

The suggestion that's been made is that I use a Farm / Automotive Construction (Jeep or 4x4) Jack and then tie a rope around the pole and jack it out. Problem is I don't know how you would tie the rope around the pole. The solution does seem reasonable though.

My objective is to get the pole out of the ground. If you think that the rope and jack is the right answer can you describe how to tie it? Otherwise if you have a better idea I'd love to hear it.

  • are you going to replace it? Or is it gone for good? A sawzall with a hack bimetal blade will solve your problem real fast! Mar 27 '14 at 21:58
  • Don't you want to pull out the metal sleeve too? Wouldn't it be easier than trying to separate rusted together components?
    – wallyk
    Mar 28 '14 at 5:26
  • The poles are on my sports court. I need to remove them so that the full court can be used and then put them back later when I want to use part of the court. The poles are used for the volleyball or tennis net but are inside the outside lines of the basketball court so if setup as a basketball court they'd be a hazard.
    – Guy
    Mar 28 '14 at 5:28
  • If the pipes are fully rusted into the sleeves it will be most likely that it will be impossible to separate them. It depends a lot on how tight the original fit was, how long they have been together with the ability for water to enter the gap and lead to the rusting of the parts.
    – Michael Karas
    Mar 28 '14 at 11:08

Instead of using a rope to wrap the pipe I would use a piece of heavy chain. The technique is to wrap the chain around the pipe several times and then connect the ends up short together leaving enough of a loop to poke a timber such as a 4x4 through the loop. Use a 4x4 about 8 to 10 feet long and use it as a lever over the top of a short fulcrum post. If the ground is soft you may may need to lay a 2 to 3 foot length of plank flat on the ground under the fulcrum. Arrange the chain loop so it binds tight against itself and around the metal post and use the long 4x4 as a lever to lift the post up some. You then repeatedly reposition the chain loop lower down on the pipe and lever again to lift a step at a time.

  • 1
    Upvote for the overall approach. I'd add this: 1. Use PB Blaster instead of WD-40. It's way better at breaking free rusted parts. 2. If you absolutely cannot get it to move, use heating and cooling to break the rust bonds: Heat the base of the pole with a torch (preferably acetylene, but propane if that's all you have) and then blast it with a can of compressed air duster held upside down, so that liquid comes out. (The liquid is -67 degrees F) Repeat that process a few times to break the bonds between the metals, then re-treat with PB Blaster.
    – Bob
    Mar 28 '14 at 13:26
  • I had never heard of PB Blaster until now. Some research shows that it might work where WD-40 has failed so far. It's on my list to pickup on my next trip to Home Depot. Thanks!
    – Guy
    Mar 29 '14 at 22:43

Try Kroil from Kano labs. Works the best for fully rusted parts on our tractors and other machines.

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