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Old 09-14-12, 09:37 AM   #1
kcash
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Rear dropout adjustment screws - orientation?

Hi all,

I'm planning on putting some adjustment screws in my rear horizontal dropouts. My question is: does the Phillips screw side (the end on the left of the picture) go on the inside of the dropouts or the outside? If they are on the inside, I suppose I would need to use some thread-locking stuff on the caps (right side of the picture) so that I could use them to make some adjustments.

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Old 09-14-12, 09:57 AM   #2
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They're designed to be threaded in from the inside of the dropout slot, and out the back. Then you add the knurled nut as a finger adjustment aid.

The spring stays on the screw when you thread it, so it ends up on the part in the slot.

BTW- the best way to get the knurled nut tight enough is to put a wheel in, so the screw can't move and force the nut a bit.

Here's a trick from back when these were in common use. Once you have the wheel set where you like it, either cut the remaining screw off flush, or at least shorten it so the nut only has a bit of room between it and the dropout. This lessens the chances of the screw getting bent accidentally. Trying to remove a bent screw,(even slightly bent) is the number one way folks break the screws off in side, and/or strip the dropout.
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Old 09-15-12, 02:24 PM   #3
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Thanks for the tips. I'll try to avoid getting the screws bent.
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Old 09-15-12, 03:35 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by kcash View Post
Thanks for the tips. I'll try to avoid getting the screws bent.
That's almost impossible, so reconcile yourself to it. Just remember to move the screw backward so you can cut off the bend, before trying to remove it.
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Old 09-17-12, 03:46 AM   #5
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They're designed to be threaded in from the inside of the dropout slot, and out the back. Then you add the knurled nut as a finger adjustment aid.
You know, I've never understood this. If adjusting with the knurled nut, you'd only be able to move the adjusters further in toward the BB; trying to move them away just unscrews the nut. Then you have to take the wheel out and awkwardly use a screwdriver to adjust them, IF the head of the screw hasn't been deformed by banging the axle against it when a wheel is inserted.

It makes a million times more sense to put the Phillips end on the outside, and the knurled nut on the inside. I can't help but think that the "right way" was a mistake fifty years ago and somehow stuck.
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Old 09-17-12, 04:15 AM   #6
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In theory maybe but in practice it works fine as long as there is some lubricant or antiseize on the dropout thread.

As FB says above, the trick is to "set" the screw head by tightening it against the axle. A drop of loctite medium strength doesn't go astray either.
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