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Bicycle Mechanics Broken bottom bracket? Tacoed wheel? If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance.

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Old 05-27-03, 01:35 PM   #1
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Taking my bike apart today

So I will probably have some questions every now and then. I just came up with a new one.

I was taking the racks off my bike, and I stripped the screw (accidentally, of course) for the eyelet. Does anyone have any ideas on how I can get the darned screw out so I can finish taking off my rack?

Easy question so far...
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Old 05-27-03, 01:41 PM   #2
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If the head of the screw is exposed you can use a wrench to grip on to it to pull it out. Another method I've used in the past on screws like that is use a file or saw and make a slot in the top so I could use a flat head screw driver, another option if phillip, torx or few others get oen size larger and use alot of pressure and push on the head and start turning. Don't reuse that screw, you should be able to pick up a new one at a hardware store, just take it as a reference to get the right size and threading.
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Old 05-27-03, 01:46 PM   #3
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If the head of the screw is exposed you can use a wrench to grip on to it to pull it out. Another method I've used in the past on screws like that is use a file or saw and make a slot in the top so I could use a flat head screw driver, another option if phillip, torx or few others get oen size larger and use alot of pressure and push on the head and start turning. Don't reuse that screw, you should be able to pick up a new one at a hardware store, just take it as a reference to get the right size and threading.
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Old 05-27-03, 02:17 PM   #4
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Koffee Brown,
were here to help you in anyway, so dude fire away with your question,
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Old 05-27-03, 02:40 PM   #5
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Dang.

I will have to go to the hardware store- I do not have a wrench, and at the very least, I'd like to try and get it out using a wrench. I checked with building maintenance. Either they are playing a cruel trick on me, or they really don't have a wrench! In any case, i've got most of the bike taken apart- at this point, I need to unloosen the handlebars, which is pretty easy, and remove the seat, which is nothing. Oh, and that stupid reflector in the front will have to come off in order for me to squeak by with the box I'm having made.

Thanks for your support, guys.

Oh, and don't worry- even in my most insane, demented mind, I wouldn't use the screw over once I do get it out! I used to be so happy they'd rusted in there- I figured no one would be able to easily steal the racks off my bike, but for this heartache, it's worth it to just replace the screws every three months.

Another problem I encountered earlier was that one of the screws on the other part of the rack actually disintegrated in the screw hole. When I began unscrewing it (of course, I had no idea the screw was in such bad shape!), the screw snapped, and now the other part of the screw is stuck in the hole. The head is out, but the body will be in there until I back. Oh well.
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Old 05-27-03, 09:35 PM   #6
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Ok- I got 5" straight jaw locking pliers to try and get this screw off, but nothing's working. Does anyone know of any magical tricks, solvents, etc. that will help me get this screw off of the rear rack? It's a Jandd rack, and the the screw that goes into the islet is stuck!

Heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeelllllllllllllppppppppppppppp!!!!!!!!

Koff
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Old 05-27-03, 09:43 PM   #7
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Did you put a lot of pressure on the locking pliers? The bolt is kaputt, so don't try to be gentle.

Penetrating oil sometimes does miracles. Put some on the threads, let it migrate into (sometimes, I have been told, 1-2 days might be good), and try again.

If the head is just barely showing, you might try to cut it with a metal saw, so the bolt looks like a pin. You will then:
1. be able to remove the rack by sliding it out of the pin;
2. have more leverage to squeeze the bolt afterwads (to remove it).

After that, the bolt is good for garbage. It means:
1 visit your LBS to get a few appropriate bolts (probably M5);
2. get a few 10-32 bolts with nuts at your local hardware. This American size is a bit smaller than the M5, so if your eyelets are stripped, you would be able to use a 10-32 nut and bolt.

Regards,
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Old 05-27-03, 10:19 PM   #8
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I feel you, Michel... BUT... I am leaving tomorrow. So I don't quite have 1- 2 days. I have maybe 5 hours to get this done before I conk for the night.

I sprayed some lubricant on it (for chains), and I'm hoping it may help some. I wish coca-cola would do the trick- there has to be some quick fire way of doing this.

I'm gonna call Walgreens. Maybe they may have some kind of liquid solvent this late at night I can apply to get this bolt off. Otherwise, I may get desperate enough to call maintenance and get a saw and just saw off as much of the bike rack as possible and just chalk up the rear rack as a loss and just get a new rack. I can't spend more than a few more hours yanking on this stupid bolt. The problem is that the screw has a round head, which means I can't clamp the pliers down to anything on the screw so I can pull on it.
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Old 05-27-03, 10:34 PM   #9
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Worse comes to worse, you might have to drill the screwhead off. You'll need a drill and a bit at least the size of the screw shank. Start drilling until the head pops off. Then you can take the rack off. Of course you'll have to deal with the now stuck screw body once you get back. That may require to drill out the rest and retap the eyelet to a larger size. Good luck.
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Old 05-27-03, 11:24 PM   #10
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I called down to maintenance. They're gonna check back with me at about 2am, and if it's not off, I think they're gonna bring the drill.... I'm willing to pull and all nighter for this- I am at my wit's end here, and short on sleep too!
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Old 05-28-03, 02:40 AM   #11
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Update-

Maintenance came- nothing worked. So I guess we'll be sawing it off. <sigh>

It's crazy... but it's like the screws are trapped inside the eyelets. The rack moves freely in a 180 degree motion, but the screw won't come out.

They're bringing the saw in another hour, and I will saw off the rack, leaving the ends on. Then I guess that's it for my rear rack...

Drastic measures, but oh well. The end of an era for my touring bike, I think!

Koff
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Old 05-28-03, 06:08 AM   #12
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Wowzer...This seems a rather strange problem to me...When I have a stripped screw(lol) I put my fingernail under it and put upward pressure, then with the other hand I rotate the screw driver or pull the trigger on the drill..

You need to buy some tools koffee!! LOL
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Old 05-28-03, 06:24 AM   #13
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Problem is that I have the tools- the screws just will not come out.

I don't have a drill, and that's a problem. I've used every other tool available, and then some, and they just don't come off. It is a really strange problem. It's also very frustrating. It is now going on 7:30am, and I STILL can't get the screws off. At this point, I've been trying all night long. I'm exhausted, I'm sleep deprived, I have a list of stuff that must be done this morning still, I haven't eaten in at least 15 or so hours, and I may have to drag my bike up north to Home Depot and have them physically remove the rack.

This sucks. I mean, it really sucks.
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Old 05-28-03, 06:40 AM   #14
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Removing broken studs from a cylinder head is part of the aircraft mechanic's test, and one of the hardest. What you have sounds similar. What the mechanic would do is drill into the seized fastener, using the appropriate drill bit, and use the e-z out or generic equivalent. A trip to Sear's tool department might be more in order than a trip to home despot. You still need a drill. The good news is that corded drills are a relative bargain, and a good 3/8 inch drill should be more than enough. The bad news is that drilling a fastener is really tricky and something worth paying an expert to do, rather than ruin the eyelet. You could always drill the whole thing out and tap for the next larger size, but again there is a risk of ruing the underlying material (your frame)
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Old 05-28-03, 04:26 PM   #15
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How the heck did you get your bike into such a fix Koffee?? I think from now on you should stay away from anything remotely mechanical on your bike, and make good friends with someone his is mechanically inclined...
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Old 05-28-03, 06:53 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally posted by fubar5
How the heck did you get your bike into such a fix Koffee?? I think from now on you should stay away from anything remotely mechanical on your bike, and make good friends with someone his is mechanically inclined...
I got my license to fix aircraft out of high school, and believe me, the only way to learn is to do, making mistakes, but learning from them. Keep it up Koffee.
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Old 05-28-03, 07:27 PM   #17
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I think we all have stripped a screw, I tightened a screw to much on the valve cover on my engine and it broke about 1 inch down in the engine block. So don't feel bad.
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Old 05-28-03, 07:48 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by Kev
I think we all have stripped a screw, I tightened a screw to much on the valve cover on my engine and it broke about 1 inch down in the engine block. So don't feel bad.

AAAH!!! I hate working on cars!!

Once in a tire shop I broke off the lugs of someone's car..ARG that was frustrating...Though not really a big problem.
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Old 05-28-03, 07:54 PM   #19
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Dont' mention lug nuts, years ago on my dads car I was taking the tire off to change the brakes. Broke 3 of the 5 lug nuts at one time. Those things are a pain to replace on some cars! As for the valve cover who the hell uses aluminum bolts on a engine?!?!?!
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Old 05-29-03, 06:34 AM   #20
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Just happened to me last night. I was putting my rack back ON. I was screwing the sucker back in with an alan wrench and the head broke off. I thought it was goin in just fine until the head broke off. I tried a wrench, but the thing won't budge. I now have about a 1/8" piece sticking out. I'm afraid I have to go to the LBS as I'm worried about bending the frame or making it even worse....what a drag.
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Old 05-29-03, 02:20 PM   #21
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A drill and an easy-out is what you need.
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Old 05-31-03, 04:39 PM   #22
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Yup, I got the bike taken apart, and just in time. I packed all the way to the airport in a taxi!

I will probably pick up a whole basic took kit when I get back from vacation. I need to be able to be a little more creative at times to get something accomplished, and the basic Topeak Alien doesn't cut it!

Hmmmmmm.... now to just get this bike back together is quite another story!

Thanks to everyone who had the great advice for me!
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