Dunlop Straplock Problem

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by MVPBASS, May 17, 2012.


    MVPBASS Inactive

    Oct 29, 2010
    I am so tired of the cheap screws that Dunlop uses for their straplocks. By the time you do manage to get them in, the screw heads are almost completely stripped out. Sometimes I even have to change to a bigger screwdriver half way in because the head gets bigger. I have already called Dunlop and they sent me 4 new screws for free, now I have to call again.
  2. I noticed that with the first set I installed. Drill the hole slightly bigger than most stock screws and rub the screw threads on a candle or bar of soap before you screw em in.
  3. Deepwoods

    Deepwoods Supporting Member

    Dec 5, 2003
    St. Louis
    I have had that problem before as well and it's not like you can use a generic screw because the head it narrowed as to fit into the strap button. I like the product overall, they work really well when they are installed though.
  4. My first advise, is to throw away the worn out philips screw driver! Get a new #2 Phillips and don't loan it to anyone. Drilling the hole a little larger is ok, but not much. The most important thing is to go to your shower and get that sliver of soap that you've been itching to finish off so you can start a new bar. Then wipe your screw on both sides of the soap and install your strap pin.
    I think you will be much happier with the result.
  5. sayman


    Dec 14, 2009
    I had the same problem - even with a brand new phillips head.

    I am definitely trying to soap trick next time.
  6. The soap is essential, particularly since the screw is longer and the original hole is not as deep. That would be the main reason to drill, not larger, deeper.
  7. sayman


    Dec 14, 2009
    I had one where the damn screw snapped. Trying to drill a broken screw out is no fun!

    MVPBASS Inactive

    Oct 29, 2010
    My screwdriver is new, the screws are cheap
  9. Worldeeeter

    Worldeeeter Inactive

    Mar 29, 2010
    Asheville, NC
    Schaller makes great strap locks so that you don't have to use Dunlops!
  10. levis76

    levis76 Defender of the Low Ender

    Apr 14, 2007
    Metro Detroit
    +1 on the soap. No bar soap? Use candle wax or a crayon.

    You need lubrication for the screw or it won't go in easily. ;)

  11. You must remove the friction and the hole needs to be deeper. The screws are 1/4 to 3/8 longer than a stock strap button screw. I've been using Dunlops for 25 years and never broken a screw.
    You'll never drill out the screw without tearing up a lot of wood. If you drill right next to the broken screw, the flange on the strap button will cover the broken screw hole.
  12. mech

    mech In Memoriam

    Jun 20, 2008
    Meridian, MS, USA
    Best method I've found for waxing a screw is to hold it in a flame for just a few seconds and then rub it on the wax. Doesn't take much heat for the wax to flow on the screw and coat it well. Works much better than dry soap or wax. You can also turn down the head of a generic screw by chucking it in a drill and spinning the edge of the head against a file. I replace all the strap button screws on anything I work on with 1 1/2" #8 even if it means drilling the hole in the button and pilot hole to a larger size and turning down the screw head.

    A 1" #6 is ridiculously small for the purpose. Seems like the companies would have caught on by now. I guess they own stock in toothpicks.

  13. mech

    mech In Memoriam

    Jun 20, 2008
    Meridian, MS, USA
    You should use a piece of small metal tubing with teeth filed into the end to drill around the screw, then drill and dowel the hole. If your lucky and can find tubing the perfect size you can run the drill in reverse and the tubing will bind on the broken screw and back it out.

    Small brass tubing can generally be found at hobby shops.

  14. +1
  15. hdracer


    Feb 15, 2009
    Elk River, MN.
    I have installed 16 sets on mine and my sons basses. I have never had the problems you describe. Wax on the screw and a Snap On screw driver.

    Nothing wrong with their screws.
  16. sayman


    Dec 14, 2009
    I'm lucky that way :)
  17. 1. I've probably installed a dozen sets- no issues, but it's been a couple of years at least.
    2. +1 on soap/wax, same goes for a good driver & the right pilot hole.
    3. I have used a non-stock screw in a pinch; chuck one in a drill & gently grind away w/a file until it fits. Cave-man but functional.
    4. I have only had VERY GOOD experience w/Dunlop- they sent me free strings when I couldn't find my gauge & rebuilt a wah cheap(that was also some time ago).
  18. Craig_S

    Craig_S Inactive

    Oct 15, 2008
    Metro Detroit
    I agree. Several installations with no issues.

    When the screw doesn't want to go in any further and you try to force it, something is going to give. Usually, it's the slots in the screw head. Your best bet is to pre-drill the holes with the proper size drill bit.
  19. sayman


    Dec 14, 2009
    I use Dunlop on all my instruments - love 'em.

    My snapped screw seemed to be an instance where I didn't drill the hole wide enough. Oops. The soap or wax trip would have probably solved that.

    Next time I'll do it right!
  20. +1
    Great method for removing broken screw, and plugging is the proper way. The only thing is, most of the folks here don't have the tools to execute.
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