Mark Gregory

Slotted Screw Removal

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I am trying to remove the slotted machine screws from the door latch dovetail piece on my 1931 Reo Royale . I have soaked the screws with Krown Lubricant and have successfully removed 3 of the 6 slotted screws . 3 of the slotted machine screws slots are not deep enough to catch the blade on the screw driver . I do not want to round the slots . I have run a pointed hack saw blade - metal reciprocating saw blade in the slot with hopes of deepening the slot . I am hesitant to use a Dremel as I might split the screw . Anyone have any advice on how to handle the problem .

Edited by Mark Gregory (see edit history)

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One thing I do is try to TIGHTEN the screw first to break it loose, THEN loosen. The Dremel is what I would use if the previous idea does not work. Just gotta be real careful.

Edited by keiser31 (see edit history)

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I almost mentioned the impact driver, but it is probably not going to be too good for the wood (if you are trying to save it).

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I don't know if you would want to consider center punching in the middle of the head, drilling a small hole and using a screw extractor on them. 

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I would prefer to try an electric cordless impact driver rather than the hammer type. I have always to make a mess with the hammer drive and had limited success. I think there is more control of the electric impact driver (or even a pneumatic) than with a hammer etc. The most important thing is to use a screw driver bit that is in xclnt condition and fits the screw!

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good time to try a 50-50 mix of acetone and atf. supposed to penetrate better than anything else. (i have not tried it.)

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All good suggestions. My best luck is with impact driver, tightening slightly, then withdrawing the screw.

And, that doesn't always work, either. Good luck!

Phil

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2 hours ago, cahartley said:

This

 

xvxhd_-_b04_half_inch_impact_diver_with_

 

Worked like a charm every time I used that tool

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A very small cut off wheel, turn the slotted head in to a phillips. The impact driver as stated above, or take a junk screw driver, clean the screw head with a wire brush, tack weld the screw driver to the slotted screw. The heat will break loose the screw, back it out, cut off the welded screw, grind down the weld on the driver.:) 

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Thank you very much gentlemen all the ideas are great . I never heard of that impact punch before . Thanks very much .

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The impact drive is a necessity to anyone that removes and reinstalls field coils in starters or generators

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1 hour ago, Tinindian said:

The impact drive is a necessity to anyone that removes and reinstalls field coils in starters or generators

I made my own for that job. And I didn't damage the screws. I made a screw driver that fitted perfectly - ground and filed from a grade 8 bolt. Put a dimple in the centre of the head than set the generator up in a bearing puller and used that to push the screwdriver into the screw. Then use a spanner to turn the bolt. Beautiful job.

 

The old books show a lever arrangement to push and hold the screw driver in, with a spanner to turn it.

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Put the screw driver in the slot. Turn the screwdriver as hard as you can with your left hand. REALLY HARD. Now with your right hand smack the end of the screw driver with a hammer. If left handed reverse the procedure. Works more often than you would think. 

 

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4 hours ago, Restorer32 said:

Put the screw driver in the slot. Turn the screwdriver as hard as you can with your left hand. REALLY HARD. Now with your right hand smack the end of the screw driver with a hammer. If left handed reverse the procedure. Works more often than you would think. 

 

 I would agree with that, I also would put a channel lock pliers on the screw driver for added leverage as I leaned into the screwdriver, and try tightening a little first to create movement  

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if you have a wire feed welder try taking a nut setting it centered on the screw fill the center of the nut and top of the screw with the weld,get a wrench and turn the nut the screw will come right out,ive been doing it this way for years,    I think the  low heat from the welder helps loosen it also       dave

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Try tapping the end of the screwdriver with a small hammer while trying to turn the screw. Try turning in both directions to break the rust, paint etc. Impact drivers maybe a bit much for the old wood. You still may need longer screws when you are done. 

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Not sure if the screw is anchored in metal or in wood.  Does the screw goes through a piece of wood that is trim over a metal structural component.  A picture of the problem might be a big help for those trying to offer safe suggestions.

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Are you able to get a piece of wood, a 2x4 for example, and prop it up against the other end of the door frame?  Cut the wood length to enable the screwdriver to fit very tightly between the wood and the screw.  Using a screwdriver with some wrench flats on it makes the job even easier.  I've used this method, works very well.  Good luck.

Edited by Real Steel (see edit history)

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Sort of what Xander mentioned: Use a Dremel or other rotary based tool with a small carbide bit and deepen the slot in the screw. One of the reasons I use Snap-On tools is their screw drivers have a hex on the base to use an open end wrench to put extra torque on the screwdriver while pressing hard on the screw driver into the screw.  An alternative is to use screw driver bits in a 1/4 socket and use the mini breaker bar to twist.

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21 hours ago, Tinindian said:

The impact drive is a necessity to anyone that removes and reinstalls field coils in starters or generators

 

and car door hinge screws too!

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I have had that problem, too. What has helped several times is using a very good quality screwdriver. Like Friartuck, I recommend buying a few Snap-on screwdrivers. Believe it or not, they are the best screwdrivers you can get. 

 

I've damaged the slots on stuck screws, switched to a Snap-on, and been able to remove the screw (don't ask me why I just don't use Snap-on in the first place). 

 

In another forum thread, someone recommended applying a tiny bit of valve grinding compound in the slot. Gives you better grip.

 

Snap-on screwdrivers are the only tool where I can see a measurable difference from other brands.

 

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I've got four that are stuck.  They are beveled screws into metal.  My body man said use ONLY a Snap-on screw driver because the shaft is hardened.  He said tapping the screw driver with a hammer helps relieve any rust or oxidation in the threads.  I'm going to let him try it since I have five thumbs.  I've ordered four new screws in case he has to resort to a drill of some type.  I'd hate to mess up the threads on the door locks.  That could lead to terrible problems since the interior door panels are original and perfect material.

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