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How to remove a stripped neck screw?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by jessicabass, Jan 25, 2014.

  1. jessicabass


    Dec 22, 2009
    Had another thread abut dealing with this bass trying to get it setup properly. So trying some things i went to remove the neck and they were so tight that i got three out but the last one started stripping and now im at yet another issue.
    Walked to the garbage can but decided to try yet again to deal with this nightmare bass.
    How do you get the screw out?
  2. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    What stripped: the head or the threads?

  3. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg Keyboards
    Sears and many hardware stores sell screw extractors. Another option is to carefully chip away a very small amount of wood, just barely wider than the screw and just deep enough to get of vise grips on it. The neck plate will cover it so it won't be noticeable.
  4. shawshank72


    Mar 22, 2009
    The head.
  5. shawshank72


    Mar 22, 2009
    Thank you.
  6. Truktek2


    Sep 5, 2008
    Queens, NY
    If you have a dremel, use the cutting wheel to slice a new cut onto the screw head. Use a flat screwdriver to carefully work it out. Throw out and replace screw.
  7. shawshank72


    Mar 22, 2009
    Talked my sis out of trashing it.
    Just cant do that to a bass.
    Heading to hardware store tomorrow.
    Thanks guys.
  8. P Town

    P Town

    Dec 7, 2011
    Use the very best screwdriver you can find, (of the proper size). Snap On for example. Some have ridges on the tool tip, where it contacts the fastener.

    You can apply a small amount of valve grinding compound to the area of the fastener where the tool contacts it.

    Place the bass on a firm base. Hold the screwdriver perfectly in line with the fastener, and apply an extreme amount of downward force on the screwdriver, while turning it.

    You could try tuning it very slightly in the tightening direction first, because the head is not damaged in that direction, but that may break the screw loose, if it is stuck by adhesion to the wood.

    Do not use a Sears, or a Stanley screw driver for the phillips head fastener. I recommend Snap On.

    Vermont American makes, (in the USA) some phillips bits with the gripping ridges in them, that fit into a 1/4 inch hex socketed driver handle.

    Let me reinforce that pressing down as hard as you can on the (large) handle of the screw driver is very important. Stop if it begins to slip.

    If you can buy a replacement plate, you could use a dremel tool, with an abrasive cutoff wheel, and grind a slot in the head of the screw, and use a large flat blade screw driver.
  9. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    This is true. You can also use a burr bit and create a slot along one axis of the PH "X" without jeopardizing the surrounding wood or hardware.

  10. SactoBass

    SactoBass There are some who call me.......Sactobass Supporting Member

    Jul 8, 2009
    Sacramento CA
    It sounds like whoever attached the neck failed to coat the neck screws with paraffin wax before screwing the screws in.

    See 2:20 in this vid on attaching necks:

  11. pudge

    pudge Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2008
    I have cut a new slot with a dremel other times when it's broken off inside I made a hollow drill bit extractor from a piece of brake line or something similar.Cut teeth in the end a drill around the down over the screw making a round hole you can plug with dowel.I t worked so good someone walked off with it.Stewart mc Donald sells one similar.It's a cheap worthwhile thing to have on hand.I made mine in about 10 mins.
  12. pudge

    pudge Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2008
    Found a pic.This is almost exactly like the one I made easy to do and a great thing to have on hand.

  13. Please dont butcher your bass. Take a small drill bit and drill into the head of the screw about 1/8 of an inch. Repeat with slightly larger bits until the head of the screw comes off. At this point the neck should be able to be removed and the remainder of the screw should pull through the body. After that just grab the shaft of the neck screw with plyers and twist loose.
  14. Gasman

    Gasman Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 9, 2007
    South Carolina
    Great tips!
  15. P Town

    P Town

    Dec 7, 2011
    This is the correct method.

    Sorry for my previously incorrect suggested method.
  16. Ken R

    Ken R Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2007
    Howell NJ
    Bob's way is the right way.

    Ken R
  17. jessicabass


    Dec 22, 2009
    Thank you all very much.
  18. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011
    ^This^...don't knock out wood...^This^
  19. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    if this screw is in a neck plate then yeah, drill the head off and pull the plate away so you can deal with it now that everything will be safely covered up by the plate again.
  20. GlennW


    Sep 6, 2006
    Get a 22oz framing hammer and a Wonder Bar. Drive the Wonder Bar under the neck plate and pry it off.

    Second thought...don't do that.