My 2015 Ariens Platinum had a similar set-up and the vice grips needed a high pressure to prevent it turning. Ariens fixed that on my 2022 28 Pro Rapidtrak by having flats for a 12 mm wrench on the pipe and a depression in the flywheel cover for clearance on the 12 mm wrench. Here is a pic:Tried back and forth, held with vice channel locks and used impact drill. No good, tube spinning. Cleaned exposed threads, applied liquid wrench, letting soak. Anything else??
This change may apply to other Ariens models too.