View Full Version : Loosing a slotted screw?

March 7, 2008, 11:33 PM
I have a frame screw that is slotted. I have boogered up the screw and scratched my wife's table trying to loosen the darn thing. I can't get it loose. Any ideas? I have tugged, screamed, and to no avail. This is a new gun from the factory with floor plate screws so tight I could scream. I have bent the head of every screwdriver I have tried. I have used gunsmithing screw-drivers and everything in between. I thought about freezing the gun, but I don't have a freezer big enough. The thing is not rusted?

Please, give me some idears?

March 7, 2008, 11:38 PM
You need a good quality screwdriver that fits the slot. You might try giving the handle a couple of sharp taps with a hammer, that might loosen it up.

March 7, 2008, 11:40 PM
What make/model of gun? Was the screw locktited? If so, you need to heat the screw head with the tip of a soldering iron to get the locktite to turn loose.

Grandpa Shooter
March 7, 2008, 11:58 PM
First buy yur wife a new table----------------then worry about the gun. Gotta get things in the right order.

March 8, 2008, 01:18 AM
Use a soldering iron to heat the screw and see if this helps, it will help on screws that have a sealer on them.

March 8, 2008, 01:22 AM
Hint: As I have been learning about the wonders of oil finishes on gun stocks, I have also found that boiled linseed oil works GREAT for making even bad scratches on oak doors completely disappear. The dog, you see, occasionally gets insistent about being let out... or waking people up when he's been shut out of the bedroom. Lin-Speed seems to be better for the oak floors, it doesn't darken the grain and leaves a little glossier finish.

It's happening slowly, but the wife is developing the attitude that perhaps my hobby isn't ALL bad.

March 8, 2008, 07:32 AM
Try tapping on the end of a well fitted screwdriver while applying lots of down force at the same time as twisting.
Kind of poor man's impact driver.

March 8, 2008, 08:39 AM
Have you tried break-free or other similar oil around the head of the screw? I have a small pin torch that I have used in the past *if* there is nothing but metal around the area. Tapping the screw with a driver and a hammer helps sometimes. The worst I ever delt with had to be re-notched with a dremel at a slight angle so I could use a screwdriver and a hammer to apply force on one side of the screw. I have never been successful with screw extractors, but I don't have a drillpress to get a clean pilot hole.

45Marlin carbine
March 8, 2008, 05:19 PM
if all else fails use a sharp center punch to carefully catch the side of the slot and use a small hammer to tap the screw counter-clockwise to loosen it. will usually ruin the screw beyond salvageing but sounds as if you've done that already.

March 8, 2008, 06:40 PM
I am going to Lowe's tonight to see what they have to expedite the job. I may look for a new screwdriver or a solder iron. Will see and inform.

March 9, 2008, 12:34 PM
Is it too late to reconsider the need to remove the screw?:D

March 9, 2008, 05:03 PM
AlleyKat, the thought of having a gun that I couldn't remove the screw would drive me crazy. Anyway, I removed it easily once this was used...


James K
March 9, 2008, 06:48 PM
The major reason screw heads get buggered up is that the screwdriver slips out when it is turned. Here is a simple trick if you have access to a drill press.

Chuck one of those short stubby drivers meant for power tools into the drill press. Pad the press table, then set the gun up so the screw is under the chuck. Bring the chuck down, turning it and/or moving the gun until the screwdriver fits into the slot. Then hold the chuck down with the handle and turn it manually (no power) back and forth until the screw breaks loose. You can even insert a rod into the holes for more leverage if necessary.

(If things are really tight, back off. You can break or twist a screwdriver or break a screw head this way!)

The same trick can be used with a nipple wrench to free tight pecussion nipples.


March 9, 2008, 07:40 PM
Try one of these.


I use one at work all the time. Just make sure your bit is fitting
tight in the screw head.

March 10, 2008, 04:39 PM
So, unless I'm not grasping something, the OP has removed the screw before, so, if there's Loctite on the screw, then the OP would know what kind of Loctite, right? If it's Loctite, then heat's the answer.

If the only reason to remove the screw is because of the compulsion of the OP, then perhaps a psychotropic drug is in order? ;)

March 10, 2008, 05:16 PM
How about some Kroil soaking in for awhile. I have a used target rifle with a hooded front sight with target inserts. Now the outside of the gun and the sight show some scratchs and typical wear from years of reasonably careful target use, but no rust. Well I wanted to change the blade insert so I tried to remove the threaded insert in the sight. Nothing would budge the knurled part, and I was not gonna grab it with bare pliers and super bubba the thing. I tried plastic jawed pliers, etc. and nothing, even after Kroil sat all night. Finally I gave up and the gun sat for like two weeks before I came out with another idea to get it. Actually it came out pretty easy then, even though there was actually rust in all the fine threads, with the outside pristine! So I cleaned up and greased the threads so it would not be a future problem. The moral: if it is not locktite and heat does not loosen it, there might be rust in there, no guarantee that a factory gun will not have such defects. Just look at some Colts I bought with rust in. Let the Kroil soak in for a long time, no hurry before you get extreme!