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how can i remove stripped screw heads?!?!? Answered

how do i remove on with a messed up head sorry for bad pic


If there's any grooves at all left on the screw head, place a rubber band on the end of the appropriate screw driver, and then line it up with the grooves and press down hard and turn.

Sometimes it works, but sometimes the screw head is too far gone. :)

"O"? I guess you lost one of your marbles! It must be either oh or no or or or on or mo or go or ho..................

Read that sentence quickly everyone. Your tongue will hate you when you don't read it out loudly and quickly!!!

If the screw is not recessed in a hole, then you can grip the head with a pair of pliers or vice-grip-like locking pliers, and unscrew it that way.

Sometimes you can use a dremel-like tool for cutting a slot in the top of the screw.  Then you remove the screw by turning this slot with a flathead screwdriver.

Yes, I tend to use a hacksaw to make the slot in larger screws because it is normally easier for me to find (my wife borrows my dremmel-like tool).

If it is a phillips head, and is recessed, but the "rounded hole" is fairly big. a small piece of rubber band can sometimes be employed over the hole and then removed with the driver. If not, Canucksgirl flat head solution might work. If all else fails, a small drill bit to drill down into the screw and an extractor bit come in really handy.

If the screw stripped fairly easily (then it was likely a cheap, soft metal and), you have an advantage in getting it out. Take a smaller flat head screwdriver and place it over the stripped end. Then with a hammer, hit the screwdriver handle end a few times so that the flat head end presses into the stripped screw and gives you a new edge to work with (you might have to hit it with a hammer several times). Once you have enough of an edge, put some weight down on the screwdriver and turn slowly (keeping the screwdriver straight over the screw), until you've got it moving. Use WD-40 (a spray lubricant) on the screw if necessary.

Its hard to see from your picture, but if there's a spring behind the black area (where your screw is), then you might want to clamp that area down (or tape it down with duct tape), while you are trying to remove the screws. The spring will create some resistance, and may be the reason why the screw stripped in the first place.


6 years ago

A screw extractor re: Blkhawk's suggestion might just be the trick.

It's not always practical for small screws, though. I had to remove three stripped screws from a guitar pickguard recently, and here's what I did:

I have a cheapo rotary tool ($9) that came with a load of engraving cutters--shaped metal bits with a grit texture. I already have a Dremel, so I bought this junky tool just for the bits. Then I discovered they won't fit the Dremel... :>(

No problem--the cheapo tools works perfectly for this job.

Starting in the center of the screw, I started grinding down into the shaft. Once you've hollowed out the screw shaft below the head, you can take a drill bit (on a hand drill) and carefully chop the head off of the screw. Continue grinding down until you can collapse the screw shaft (which now resembles a hollow tube) with a small screw driver.

It sounds more difficult than it actually was--I removed three screws in less than an hour.

Safety glasses are a must...

the only thing is there is a powerful spring behind that black piece so thats not an option btw i broke ma dremel

Is it possible to clamp down the black piece?

Yeah, but you'd still need some sort of small rotary tool...

Left out one step:

Once the guard (or top, or lid or whatever the screws are holding) was lifted, it's easy to grab the part of the screw that remains with a vice grip and turn it out...

If it's metal-on-metal and the screw is really stuck, the extractor is probably the better bet...