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Neck screw stripped

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by camelspotter, Mar 15, 2013.

  1. camelspotter


    Sep 21, 2005
    Hello there.

    I was dreading this might happen someday, then a luthier on my last setup (and the last pro setup for me, as i do my own now thanx to this and not only..) tightened one of the neck screws so tight even with a drill i couldn't turn it a bit, so i tried and tried and suddenly the screw hole (or head) is now stripped.
    Is there any way i could take the screw off now? well i would like believe yes, question is how?
  2. elgecko


    Apr 30, 2007
    Anasleim, CA
    A drill and one of these:


    BTW, a drill is the WRONG tool to try to loosen a tight screw...but you probably know that now.
  3. camelspotter


    Sep 21, 2005
    It was my desperate choice... :bawl:
    Thanx for the advice. will look it up!
  4. Dean N

    Dean N

    Jul 4, 2006
    Pittsburgh, PA
  5. jbrooks


    Sep 7, 2007
    If only the screw head broke off they you might be able to lock vise grips on the shaft if you take the neck off. Unscrew the remaining screws and see if the neck will come off. There should be enough of the broken screw in the neck to clamp the vise grips on.

    Typically the body screw holes are a little larger than the neck holes. This allows the screw to turn freely in the body, tightening in the neck; pulling it tight against the body.
  6. He said the head was stripped. Not broken off.
  7. pacojas

    pacojas "FYYA BUN"

    Oct 11, 2009
    pics please
  8. Beej


    Feb 10, 2007
    Victoria, BC
    Old timer carpenter's tip: before loosening a screw or nut, tighten it a little, helps it come out easier...
  9. jbrooks


    Sep 7, 2007

    Sorry, my bad.
  10. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned Commercial User

    Aug 21, 2008
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    Here's what I would do; assuming the screw really can't be backed out, drill the head off. Then remove the other three screws and the neck plate.

    Then you might have a chance at grabbing it with vice grips. if not, try something like this:


    Then find a new repair person/tech. And please don't call people who do setups and the like "luthiers" ;) Luthiers build instruments. They repair them too, but they shouldn't inflict damage to an instrument, as in this case. There's never a need to over tighten a neck screw.
  11. camelspotter


    Sep 21, 2005
    The guy is a luthier/repair. And the thing is he makes great instruments! don't know what got him to do that. And what got me to remove the neck was putting a shim on the front end of the neck making the action too high for no reason..
    Will post pics asap.
  12. Maz


    Jan 9, 2011
    If the screw head is just cammed out and you are handy with a dremel, you can use a cutoff wheel to re-slot the screw and then back it out with a flathead.
  13. georgestrings

    georgestrings Banned

    Nov 5, 2005
    Then how about having him take it out??? - and in all honesty, it was probably using a drill as a screwgun that stripped the head in the 1st place - a screwdriver is a more appropriate choice...

    - georgestrings
  14. georgestrings

    georgestrings Banned

    Nov 5, 2005

    I was thinking that once the head is removed, and the other 3 screws out, he may be able to remove the neck from the body - since the screw *shouldn't* be threaded into the body - just thru it, into the neck... If that's the case, it'll be easy to get good purchase on the remains of the screw - and since it won't have a load on it any more, it should back right out...

    - georgestrings
  15. georgestrings

    georgestrings Banned

    Nov 5, 2005

    This is a valid approach sometimes, but neck screws are typicaly countersunk into the neckplate - it would be way too easy to get into the neckplate with the cutoff wheel...

    - georgestrings

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