How to Use Vice Grips to Stop the Flywheel From Turning

Written by kristopher riggs
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How to Use Vice Grips to Stop the Flywheel From Turning
Vice grips allow a mechanic to easily secure a flywheel to stop it from turning. (model steam tractor image by Christopher Dodge from

Flywheels are round devices used to turn various components using a belt or chain. These are usually found on engines, which produce linear energy transferred to a crankshaft. The flywheel spins with the crankshaft, and is used to power various other units. Stopping a flywheel from spinning, especially when attempting to remove the flywheel, can be difficult. Vice grips can ease the difficultly by allowing a mechanic to hold the flywheel into place at a better angle, rather than attempting to hold the flywheel directly.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Vice grips
  • Ratchet wrench
  • Socket set
  • Wooden block (if necessary)

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  1. 1

    Observe the area around the flywheel. Look for any flanges or groove spots nearby. Use the vice grips to clamp one side against the flywheel and the other again the flange or groove. Ensure a secure bite, and hold tightly in place.

  2. 2

    Locate a nearby pulley that can act as a stopper for the vice grips. Secure the vice grips on both sides to the flywheel. Place a wooden block at the contact point for the vice grips to the pulley. Use the ratchet wrench to spin the flywheel in place by attempting to loosen the securing bolt.

  3. 3

    Look directly at the flywheel for any open gaps on the face. Clamp the vice grip inside the face opening on a gear pillar. Ensure a secure hold on the vice grips with one hand. Tighten and lock the grips into place.

Tips and warnings

  • Ensure the engine is off when attempting to stop a flywheel from spinning. There is no safe or easy way to stop a flywheel from spinning when the engine is engaged.

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