Saturday, October 19, 2013

A Broken Wing Screw

I went to take a photograph of something on my workbench with the aid of my mini-tripod, and something didn't feel quite right as I tightened the little wing screw that secures the head of the tripod. It turns out there was a good reason for that.

The plastic wing affair broke. Here's a view of the screw removed and on its own.

Piece of junk.

I'll have to get the remnants of the wing off the screw however I can, and see if I have a wing nut that will fit that I can glue on for a replacement wing.

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Here's a method for clamping a screw thread in a vise without marring the thread.

Cut through one side of a hex nut, and use that as a primitive 'collet' to grip the thread in a vise, like so.

Now I can get pliers onto that wing remnant and crank it off the screw.

- - -

That worked fine, but my 'collet' didn't want to unscrew easily after having been clamped onto the screw in the vise. I hammered a chisel tip into its saw cut gently to persuade it to open up a bit, and it unscrewed. The chisel's tip never reached the screw's thread, so no harm was done.

- - -

I happen to have exactly one M5 wing nut in my stash of M5 stuff. Here, I've attached it to the screw using CA adhesive as a threadlocker.

Back in business.

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