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Stuck Bridge screw removal Q

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by dannew02, Jun 26, 2014.

  1. dannew02

    dannew02 Friend of Leo's

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    Guess which screw I forgot to lube when I was installing the bridge on here...:oops: You think I would have learned after doing the same thing to my other project (that I had to drill out and dowel the hole :rolleyes: )
    I got it this far in, it totally stopped and the slots started stripping. I just left it alone, because I didn't want it to actually break off. I couldn't unscrew it either. Is there a way to get it back out without breaking the screw off, or do I just have to suck it up, snap the screw off, dowel, etc. or can I, I don't know, heat it up to loosen it or something? This is a body from the GFS sale thingy, so I think I spent more on the bridge than the body so we aren't dealing with a valuable vintage piece here, or anything.

    THank you
     
  2. Captain Nutslot

    Captain Nutslot Friend of Leo's

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    You can try using a hacksaw or something and give the head a new slot for a flathead screwdriver. It's worked for me :).
     
  3. nickhofen

    nickhofen Friend of Leo's

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    What captain says.
    Another option is to remove the saddle, take a lock plier, grab the head of the screw and unscrew it but try not to bend it.
    You will get surprised, how easy you can do it this way .
     
  4. Glen Smith

    Glen Smith RIP

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    You can heat it if you have a soldering gun or high wattage soldering iron.
     
  5. ecoli

    ecoli Tele-Meister

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    Try a screw extractor bit. They don't always work, but in this situation you may have some luck.

    The cutting a new slot does work too. I'd use a Dremel with a cut-off disc. Just be careful not to slip with it!
     
  6. dannew02

    dannew02 Friend of Leo's

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    THank you guys. I can't believe I screwed this up...
     
  7. KevinB

    KevinB Doctor of Teleocity

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    I wouldn't cut anything off that screw. The more material left on it, the better chance you have of gripping it.

    I'd use a pair of locking vise grips on it to get the best possible purchase.
     
  8. Tom Pettingill

    Tom Pettingill Tele-Holic

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    A big dose of heat from a soldering iron is well worth trying.

    On screws in general, I've gotten in the habit of junking the cheap supplied screws and replacing them with stainless steel versions. Stainless can easily be polished to a high chrome like shine and is generally tougher than the cheap mystery metal you often see supplied.
     
  9. viking

    viking Friend of Leo's

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    If you buy cheap parts , you get the parts that cheap guitars are made of...
    Grab it with a set of pliers of some kind. There is nothing even remotely difficult about getting that screw out , but you will have to get another one.
    I always measure the core of the wood screw , and drill the hole that size. In really hard wood , you sometimes have to go a bit bigger , but thats where I start.
    Never , ever , try to force a screw in to wood without drilling a hole first on anything guitar related.
    The quality of screws are sooo much worse these days than a few decades ago. The samll ones for vintage tuners come to mind........Take care , take your time , and it will work. No lubricant of this world will be good enough , if the hole you drill is too small.
     
  10. Jfellows

    Jfellows Tele-Afflicted

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    Yeah, I'd remove that saddle, then grab the screw head with needle-nose type locking pliers, then unscrew it. Viking is right, if it got that tight, chances are your screw hole wasn't large enough. I get my micrometer out and measure the screw body between the threads, and then use a drill bit the same size as that, so the only thing cutting is the threads. I also agree with Tom, try to find alternate stainless screws, you'll be much happier overall.
     
  11. joeford

    joeford Friend of Leo's

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    whats the chemical stuff you spray on car parts? PB Blaster or something like that? that stuff works really well for nasty rusted up car parts... should work like a charm on something as minty fresh (by comparison) as a bridge! spray some into a glass bowl and let the thing soak overnight... then grab your pliers (or flat head if you slot the tip) and get that sucker out!
     
  12. PapaWheelie

    PapaWheelie Tele-Meister

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    I've always had good luck using a Dremel with the thin cut-off wheels and grinding a slot in the head to get a good size slotted screwdriver to remove it.
     
  13. dannew02

    dannew02 Friend of Leo's

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    image-739261455.jpg

    Thank you guys, heating the screws with both my soldering irons and then grabbing the screws with vice-grips got them out with NO fuss. Thanks for saving my butt again. Tomorrow I'll hit up the hardware store for Stainless screws, so I don't botch this again.
     
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