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Bridge screw broken off IN bass

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Planet Boulder, Jan 3, 2005.

  1. Planet Boulder

    Planet Boulder Hey, this is a private residence...man

    Nov 10, 2001
    6,482 feet above sea level
    I once had impure thoughts. Oh, and I pluck my ear hair.
    Saw a similar thread, but it concerned a bridge screw that broke off outside of the bridge screw hole. My issue concerns a screw that has broken off IN the bass (i.e., there is no tip sticking out that I can latch onto).

    Is there any way to get the thing out without gouging a gigantic hole in the bass? Any help would be much appreciated!
  2. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    method one- get an EZ Out (screw extractor) and matching pilot drill. Do not let the pilot drill slip off the screw stump and into the wood-- a drill press is recommended.

    method two- same as the advice offered in other threads- make a hollow core drill out of some tubing, to cut some free space around the screw to get some vice grips on it. Then redrill and dowel plug when done.
  3. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    I also want to advocate the drilling out method, but remember to use a center punch to mark the spot where you will be drilling. I had to do this on a strap pin on a $5000 custom guitar, and I iused the sleve of a rivet to align my bit so I wouldn't drill out any wood.
  4. There isn't enough material in the middle of the standard bridge wood screw to punch, drill, and then use an extractor. Wood screws have far to large a thread. Best thing is a hollow extractor, either homemade or storebought.

    And don't worry about having to dowel up the hole and redrill. It's under the bridge and will never be seen.
  5. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    what I have done is just drilled out the screw with progressively larger bits until I just about had it gone. There may be bits of the thread left in there, but usually it won't affect anything.