Mister Auto are selling the rod with end included for comfortably less than £20 so there doesn't seem much point in going to a load of trouble to preserve the existing end.
I have both a new rod and a new end ready to go on. My concern is that if I chop off the end and then still can't get the rod off, the car is then immobile and will be stuck where it is until I can get someone to recover it, which would add even more expense.
Another stupid question: how does the lock washer thing work? I'm assuming it's there to stop the track rod unscrewing itself from the rack - so if I get a pair of Stilsons on the rod and start heaving will I not just be fighting against the lock washer?