Got a tool, and it was so amazingly simple that it almost hurt. I was waltzing around Princess Auto this AM when I came across a section of large threaded rods, and a rack full of rod joiners. These things were 1 1/4" six sides nuts, about 3" long with thread in the middle to match the large rods. BUT, they fit perfectly inside the star nut on the lower bracket. I then went to see if a 1/2" drive 1 1/4" socket would fit over the joiner. It did--perfectly and voila, I had my tool. Brought it home and extracted that locknut in about 10 seconds. Geeze I love it when I can make a tool for under 2 bucks.