Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

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baker's kilobyte
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Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

Postby baker's kilobyte » Tue Aug 19, 2008 3:27 am UTC

Um, so I have a Toshiba Satelite (A70 series) that I need to get open. I got it apart (relatively) easily up to the point where I needed to lift out the motherboard. It was kinda not moving so I turned over the case to make sure I hadn't missed a screw or something, and, lo and behold, there was still one miserable screw left. Unfortunately, I think the tech guy who last opened my computer screwed it back in too tightly because I couldn't budge it even a bit. To make a long story short, I ended up stripping the head, and now I can't get it out at all, which is a problem.

So yeah. Any advice? Has this happened to anyone here before? My brother suggested just melting it out with a drill. Is that a good idea? All help is appreciated. :)

[grumbling]
Why do they put so many damn screws in there in the first place? :?
[/grumbling]

Doodle77
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Re: Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

Postby Doodle77 » Tue Aug 19, 2008 3:35 am UTC

Try drilling off the head.

baker's kilobyte
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Re: Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

Postby baker's kilobyte » Tue Aug 19, 2008 12:21 pm UTC

It's countersunk, so that might be a little tricky... Plus, I don't want to take a drill to my machine, if avoidable. Is there anything else I could try?

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Red Hal
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Re: Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

Postby Red Hal » Tue Aug 19, 2008 12:50 pm UTC

Not really. If the thread is stripped, remove the screw, drill out the hole and insert a helicoil, then insert new screw.

Instructions here: http://coolercasesuk.co.uk/showthread.php?t=1211 . It is, however, a bit of overkill for your requirements.
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Endless Mike
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Re: Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

Postby Endless Mike » Tue Aug 19, 2008 2:09 pm UTC

Red Hal wrote:Not really. If the thread is stripped, remove the screw, drill out the hole and insert a helicoil, then insert new screw.

Instructions here: http://coolercasesuk.co.uk/showthread.php?t=1211 . It is, however, a bit of overkill for your requirements.

He stripped the head, not the thread.

Do you have a soldering iron? Solder the head to a small screwdriver and wait for it to set then turn it REALLY slowly. It may or may not work. Worst case, you have some extra solder stuck to your already worthless screw.

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hipp5
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Re: Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

Postby hipp5 » Tue Aug 19, 2008 2:41 pm UTC

Canadian Tire used to sell a special screwdriver kit made for removing stripped screws. I can't remember what the product was called but I imagine it was under the Mastercraft brand.

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Red Hal
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Re: Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

Postby Red Hal » Tue Aug 19, 2008 3:12 pm UTC

Endless Mike wrote:
Red Hal wrote:Not really. If the thread is stripped, remove the screw, drill out the hole and insert a helicoil, then insert new screw.

Instructions here: http://coolercasesuk.co.uk/showthread.php?t=1211 . It is, however, a bit of overkill for your requirements.

He stripped the head, not the thread.

Do you have a soldering iron? Solder the head to a small screwdriver and wait for it to set then turn it REALLY slowly. It may or may not work. Worst case, you have some extra solder stuck to your already worthless screw.


My bad. I misread the original post. (Makes note to be more careful in future).

< deep breath > Right, moving on, the solder idea is a good one, but I have had some success in the past with stripped heads using these tools: http://www.jmldirect.com/Screw-Extractor-PS5616/
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enk
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Re: Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

Postby enk » Tue Aug 19, 2008 3:59 pm UTC

Red Hal wrote:< deep breath > Right


Run 'breath' with file 'deep' as input and output to file 'Right'...?

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baker's kilobyte
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Re: Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

Postby baker's kilobyte » Tue Aug 19, 2008 4:44 pm UTC

Thanks for the replies!

Yup, I've seen those screw extractor things before, but I'm concerned it might not work since the head is so thin. The soldering iron does sound like a good plan; will try that as soon as I can get my hands on one. :P

heydonms
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Re: Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

Postby heydonms » Thu Aug 21, 2008 4:06 am UTC

How stripped is it? My local electronics store sells "Screwdriver helper" to increase friction. 90deg screwdrivers can also be useful because they make it a bit easier to apply downward force while turning. If it is too far gone for either of those, there are small screw extractor tools out there, use them with a handle not a power drill (even the Grabit tool which recommends you use a drill tends to work better when operated by hand).

wakawakka
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Re: Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

Postby wakawakka » Fri Aug 22, 2008 4:56 am UTC

Red Hal wrote:He stripped the head, not the thread.


hm well if you drill the screw enough to insert another one afterwards you will most likely damage the thread as well...

but you can also not put it back, I rarely screw as many as I took out when reassembling, unless it has heavy moving parts (see picture)

why not attach your screwdriver with a drop of crazy glue or epoxy?
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ronnie
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Re: Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

Postby ronnie » Thu Oct 23, 2008 2:57 pm UTC

If you have enough room to get the tool in, you could try cutting a slot along the head of the screw with a dremel (or equivalent tool). Depends on how big the screw is too, etc. It has worked for me before, but I haven't tried it anywhere near a motherboard. Avoid using an electric screwdriver unless you absolutely have to, in case it slips. Maybe hold a screwdriver in a pair of locked grips, push down with one hand, turn with other.

LikwidCirkel
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Re: Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

Postby LikwidCirkel » Sat Oct 25, 2008 2:56 am UTC

I hardly have suggestions for fixing the problem, but I have a tip for how to prevent it in the future.

Phillips screwdrivers come in two shapes: American and Japanese. I'm quite sure that virtually all laptops will have Japanese variety screws, but unfortunately, hardware stores in North America will typically have American screwdrivers in tool kits. It's hard to tell what kind they are, but electronics kits or precision screwdrivers or something you buy in a computer store are more likely to be the Japanese shape. You most likely will never strip screws if you match them to proper drivers.

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Mr. Beck
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Re: Stripped laptop screw--any advice?

Postby Mr. Beck » Sat Oct 25, 2008 6:35 am UTC

LikwidCirkel wrote:I hardly have suggestions for fixing the problem, but I have a tip for how to prevent it in the future.

Phillips screwdrivers come in two shapes: American and Japanese. I'm quite sure that virtually all laptops will have Japanese variety screws, but unfortunately, hardware stores in North America will typically have American screwdrivers in tool kits. It's hard to tell what kind they are, but electronics kits or precision screwdrivers or something you buy in a computer store are more likely to be the Japanese shape. You most likely will never strip screws if you match them to proper drivers.

Do you perhaps mean Pozidriv? Last I checked, those are pretty American too.


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