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How best to remove body screws that wont come out!!


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I've bought a weathered Bachmann class 40 from e-bay some time ago and now that  want to fit a dcc decoder 6 of the 8 screws wont budge.....I think the heads may be treaded and I need advise on how best to remove them without damage to the body. Can anyone please give me some ideas as to how best remove and replace these errant screws please?

 

thanks 

 

B

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The usual solutions (at 1:1 scale) are : drill the screw out, or use a rubber band to create purchase between the driver and what remains of screw head.  I have to say, neither seem likely to succeed.  Maybe you could adhere the screw head to a driver somehow and (slowly) unscrew?  Sorry that's not more helpful, but it's a real headscratcher....

 

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On the class 66 which was infamous for problems unscrewing I found that using high quality screw drivers cured the problem.

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G'Day Folks

 

Try tightening the screw, before undoing them, just a fraction though. I know it sounds crazy, but it helps to break the seal.

 

manna

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Hi all,

 

I tried the tighten them but no use.....I’m using jeweller screw drivers which are those cheap one in socket sets and I can see them wearing down when they bite with pressure.

 

I thought about using super glue but wasn’t keen on that option in case the tip sticks the plastic in the screw shafts.......I’m not sure how the rubber band idea would work but worth a try I suppose. which brand of high quality screw drivers would you recommend?

 

thanks for you suggestions please keep them coming

 

B

 

 

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I had the same issue on a Bachmann 47.

If the heads are ok, then a better quality screwdriver might help.

If the heads are trashed, then the only solution is to drill them out. I used a sharp 3mm drill bit, turned very gently and carefully.

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Did you use a pin vice type drill or electric mini drill?

 

ive just recently started fitting Dcc chip to my collection of locos and frankly I’ve been amazed at the amount of problems I’ve had with body screws either being stuck or the plastic not holding screws at all. I’ve even had a Hornby 31 where along the same side a screw snap in the brass pocket completely and the other plastic body extension pocket from the roof snapped off.....I’ll have to drill out that  remaining screw tread some how and was thinking of gluing the drill bit once I’ve got a little way in and then using plyers  to see if it’ll screw out with out damage.

 

I’ve got a number of locos I can’t get the bodies off at all, chief amount them are a Bachmann 416 emu which seem stuck solid at the back and a Bachmann 24 which seems stuck on a chip already installed. It’s really infuriating. Any advice would be greatly appreciated 

 

B



B

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If the star heads are rounded off, sometimes a small flat bladed screwdriver will still grip them, if not drilling is the only option. Use a new sharp drill the same size of very slightly larger than the heads - 3mm ? Only the heads need to be drilled, once removed the body should come off, the remaining screw threads then removed with pliers.

HTH

 

 

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It is now possible to purchase special tools that look like reverse /  left handed drills , which they are, but when driven Anti-clockwise ( reverse ) bite into the b******* heads of Philips, cross head type screws SLOWLY and unscrew.  Look on that famous auction site or the fix you screw site!!?

In metal to remove frozen, rusted etc nuts of vehicles we used the welding torch to heat and expand  and allow spanner to shift.it.

Try the tip of a hot soldering iron CAREFULLY on the head for a few seconds.
The chewed up screws can be given a new lease of life by wire brushing the threads and then cut a slot with a cutting disc in your Dremel  or similar.

pete

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Probably too brutal, but it worked for me.  I needed to remove the screws holding a Bachman coach body on.  I tried a quality screwdriver but the screws were stuck so tight all it did was destroy the screw head.  So I recut a slot in the head of the screws using a cutting disc in a mini electric drill.  Then used a bigger screwdriver and the screws came out fairly easily.

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Thanks I’ve tried that with the jewellers screw drivers but no good. The problem is the screw are all deep in screw hole. I’ll have a look on eBay for those tools which I’ve seen for normal sized screws but not small ones.

 

anybody got any advice as to which Good quality screw drivers and where to get them as by the look the screws in my Bachmann fleet this issue is going to happen again.

 

Another issue today is getting all the light lugs on Bachmann bodies to line up correctly once I’ve chip the body.....Claas 37s are especially painful to get cab lights working. I must say Dapol have thought this problem though with easy to remove bodies, space for the chip not to foul the body, and wire lighting connections. I’m 20 locos done so far and more to go.

 

One good thing happened today I managed to get a model zone NSE 03 which I discovered wasn’t working on testing on dc back in to the land of the living. Lesson learnt test all locos as soon as I get them especially if bought from auction site. I’d only bought it as part of a package and want to sell it on eBay so wasn’t happy when it didn’t work.

 

B

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Its more about having a screwdriver which really bites into the screw head.  Its not just Philips vs Posidrive or good quality vs rubbish its about buying up everything cheap and experimenting until you find one which really works.   Some of the best tips are on Jewellers screwdrivers but the tip tends to slip in the handle on them.  I had a really tatty green screwdriver of very dubious heritage which was my go to tool for most model cross heads for many years, until replaced with a Chinese one which came for £1.99 inc postage together with a 3 leg screwdriver,    As said tightening first is always a good move, tapping the end can be good, or can break the plastic, and warming can be good.  Warming the screwdriver tip while turning might be the optimum.  My M.O is after an hour try hitting it with a sledge hammer.  It won't loosen the screw but it will stop you wasting any more time on it.

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Thanks......that’s funny.....but so true....I have    felt like get the mighty hammer to it on many occasions but I like it as it had a professional weathering job when I bought it on e bay and does look good, once again the fitting of Dcc chips had taught me some locos more than others are “Dcc ready”.

 

The one thing that’s been good is that it reminds me of the old school Lima and Hornby which need to be stripped down regularly to get the best from them. Now day I find I’m afraid of breaking something. I just come to term with amount of details I need to repair......pipes ,battery boxes, steps,hand rails  ....some thing drops off once handled!

 

I ordered a magnetic screw drivers and one of those screw extraction kit which looks like a bit small enough to try so I see how that goes.

 

B

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1 hour ago, davefromacrossthepond said:

I've found Wila screwdrivers, nut drivers and hex drivers to be high quality tools. A bit more expensive, but worth every penny. 

Thanks I’ll look them up.... I guess they are USA based?

 

B

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It's less about the quality of the screwdriver, though being able to grip it really well is important, but much more about the head fitting the screw exactly. If there is any slop, then the screwdriver will slip and mash the head. I suggest the jewellers screwdrivers do not give you enough grip. You want something with a decent handle.

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Yeah I think your right about that I can’t really get good purchase with the jewellers screw drivers

 

I’ll see how this magnetic driver goes when it arrives 

 

B

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Squirt a bit of lighter fuel in the hole to soak the plastic gripping the screw. (It softens it briefly to release the grip) and immediately start unscrewing with a sharpened screw driver. If that has no effect, try again, but light the petrol in the hole for 1-2 seconds, blow out and then squirt with WD40 and try again. Sounds worse than it is, but has done the job for me with Airfix diesel and recessed coach screws that had rounded off. 

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Sounds interesting.....lucky in just got some lighter fuel the other day....I’ll try that if the magnetic screwdriver doesn’t work 

 

thanks

 

B

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5 minutes ago, brenn said:

Sounds interesting.....lucky in just got some lighter fuel the other day....I’ll try that if the magnetic screwdriver doesn’t work 

 

thanks

 

B

Good luck, we're all counting on you.......First attempt...

20200622_025657.jpg

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Another vote for left handed drill bits, I have used them to remove sheared bolts on my land rover a couple of times and as has been said they bite in to the old screw and them unwind it.

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20 hours ago, brenn said:

Thanks I’ll look them up.... I guess they are USA based?

 

B

Actually, they're from Germany.

https://www.wihatools.com/wiha-features/made-in-germany

 

But a quick search shows there are quite a few retailers (stockists?) in the UK. 

https://www.screwfix.com/c/tools/screwdrivers-hex-keys/cat831030?brand=wiha

https://www.axminstertools.com/wiha

What sold me on Wiha was how they felt in my hands, very comfortable, and how tightly the hex drivers fit tighly reducing the risk of rounding corners off.

 

Dave

 

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20 hours ago, ikcdab said:

It's less about the quality of the screwdriver, though being able to grip it really well is important, but much more about the head fitting the screw exactly. If there is any slop, then the screwdriver will slip and mash the head. I suggest the jewellers screwdrivers do not give you enough grip. You want something with a decent handle.

 

Entirely agree. Also about the grip on jeweller's screwdrivers of which I have a set, however on occasion when I can't get a screw to start budging I've resorted to gripping the screwdriver with a pair of pliers with decent 'teeth' so it gets a good grip on the handle, and easing slowly. It helps if the model is upside down in a Peco servicing cradle or similar, otherwise you need three hands....!

 

To go OT for a moment, the comment about lighter fuel reminded me of a TV motoring show some years ago where drivers regularly took their four-wheel drives off-road into the snowy wastelands, I forget where, maybe Iceland. To spread the tyres' contact area they let most of the air out, but during the ensuing fun there was a high risk of the tyres separating from the wheel rims. The solution was gobsmacking - lighter fuel was squirted around the exposed rim and a lit match thrown at it - the tyre instantly jumped back onto the wheel....... I nearly choked on my tea! I still haven't figured out the science - the flash causing an instant vacuum? - but fair play to whoever came up with that one as a jack would be next to useless on the snow!

 

Back to screws in models, I have a Bachmann Class 47 which came my way with one body screw protruding through the roof! How on earth....? That completely defeated me so it was carefully filed down and patch painted over. Three screws will have to do. I must admit that the use of small self-tapping screws in modern models did bother me - I treat these with great care, use whichever screwdriver fits best, always reverse a turn when refitting so the screw finds the existing thread and so doesn't try to cut a new one, and never overtighten. I recall the original Tri-ang Hymek which had a brass threaded boss inserted into the roof for the body securing screw. They were never a problem, it was the Mark 1 coach roofs without this luxury which regularly ended up with stripped threads - fortunately they had an unused third boss in the middle which could be brought into use in emergencies....!

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