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Removing Stripped Screws in 3 Easy Steps – Quick Tip

How To Remove Stripped Screws With a Rubber Band

Removing stripped screws can be incredibly annoying. There’s no way around it, literally. In the case of stripped screws, they can severely hinder your ability to get a project done. So we have once again consulted our fastener expert for a solution to this problem.

His first recommendation was a drill extractor bit, but those of you that follow our blog knew that already. We posted a blog about how to use a screw extractor a while ago.

But what about the everyday DIYer who doesn’t come across this situation constantly. You might not want to go buy a bolt extractor set when you only need to get rid of one pesky screw.

Enter the most useful tool ever created, next to duct tape of course! The rubber-band. A tool used for anything from a bracelet to a keep your favorite bag of chips from getting stale. A tool that is going to help you remove that screw as if it was never stripped to begin with.

Lets begin

So now that you have the secret tool you need to get that stripped screw removed, lets walk you through the process in three easy steps.

  1. Place the rubber-band over the screw head.
    removing stripped screws
  2. Place the drill bit against the screw head through the rubber-band and apply pressure.
    using a rubber-band
  3. Spin Slowly
    apply steady pressure when removing

And that’s pretty much it.



When you press the rubber-band against the stripped head, it fills in the spacing created by the stripping. We have done some basic testing and determined that this trick works best on semi-stripped screws but you can still get it to work on some of the more dramatically stripped screws as well if your lucky.

Most effective on semi-stripped screws

Have a question you need answered? Leave a comment below! If the question stumps us it may turn into a post of its own!


Removing Stripped Screws With a Rubber Band

Using a Rubber Band to Remove Stripped Screws
Rubber Band Trick For Stripped Screws Transcript

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Bob: Welcome back to Albany County Fasteners – Fasteners 101. I’m Bob and I’m going to show you today how to remove a stripped screw.

I’m just showing you here that these heads are stripped out. I’m going to show you how to remove them with a rubber band. So let’s get started.

I’m gonna put it here in my vise. Okay, so I have a rubber band. We’ll put the rubber band onto the head of the Phillips and we’re going to go slow and steady outward, okay.

You have to put nice pressure on this and we’ll back it out.

So basically what the rubber band does is fill the void between the Phillips head (and the driver).

There you go.

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How Do You Protect A Door From a Hurricane?

Hurricane Protection For Doors

With a number of record breaking hurricanes striking North America in the past few months, we’ve had many customers call in or email asking us what kind of equipment, hardware and fasteners they should buy to protect their doors during a hurricane. After some research, we set out with our fastener expert to demonstrate how to and build a temporary emergency hurricane barrier for our door.  We built this door cover with materials you may have handy in your garage, basement, or workshop.

tools for hurricane protection

The Tools & Materials

The first thing we had to do was get the tools we needed for the job. We decided on a list (see below) of simple tools that are common and not some fancy “hurricane protection kits” that we have seen popping up. We’ve also linked them to our website so you can find out more about them.



Step One

Now that we have all of the tools we need assembled, our first step was to cut our 2 x 4s to length. We recommend having two pieces running down each side and one piece on top to prevent anything from falling in from the top.

frame for door protection

The 2 x 4s, our fastener expert explained, are there to add space between the door and the plywood because the handle and lock stick out too far. This means we cannot simply press the plywood against the door archway as it will not sit evenly. This method allows you to cover the door without needing to remove the hardware you will use to lock it.  He then proceeded to flip the plywood on top and align the boards beneath to the edges. The Wood screws were then places around the edges of the plywood roughly 3 feet apart. He told us these screws actually aren’t very important as they are only holding the 2x4s to the plywood so we can properly install it.

Step 2

Hammer Drilling frame into door

The next step was to press the plywood over the door with the 2x4s facing the door. The added extra space in front of the door which in turn allowed the door knob to fit nicely. Taking the Hammer Drill and SDS Concrete Drill Bit, he then proceeded to drill 3 holes into each side of the plywood (directly through the 2×4’s). We recommends 10 or more per side. But use as many as makes you comfortable.

Step 3

Now that you have your holes you can take your impact drill and hex driver to work. Use the hex driver to drive the Tapcon screws through the wood into the concrete. We recommend at least an inch and a half to two inches of length be placed into the concrete for a proper and secure hold.  It is important to always comply with local building code, we also recommend researching if your town or city has specific requirements, however keep in mind that this is a temporary fix and would not be installed as a permanent hurricane shutter or guard.

screwing masonry screws into the hurricane protection

Aftermath

Once the hurricane is over, these Tapcon screws can be removed easily with the hex driver. Then the wood fixture can be stored for the next hurricane or simply used for other projects you may have.



Safety Considerations

Albany County Fasteners wants to help make your house as safe as possible during a hurricane.  Hurricanes are unpredictable and mother nature is not a force to be taken lightly. You should always follow the directions given by leaders, law enforcement and the government and evacuate or leave the area during a hurricane and go somewhere safe until it has passed.

While we have shown you a way we believe to be sufficient to protect your doors, it is impossible to know what is going to happen and we can only prepare for the worst. If the storm coming your way is strong, add additional plywood sheets or thickness to your installation to make it as durable as possible and resist penetration.

temporary hurricane protection door - DIY

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Prevent Screw Stripping and Scratching

How to Prevent Screw Stripping and Scratching

black oxide phillips head screw

Screw stripping and scratching commonly happen when the driver bit slips out of the drive and causes imperfections in the head of a fastener. This can result in either a burring effect which can remove the finish from a fastener. You definitely don’t want to mess up on a screw going onto a finished product!

We chose to use a black oxide stainless steel screw. Black oxide is a coating that goes over stainless steel to add an extra layer of corrosion and abrasion resistance. This screw is commonly used for its sleek black look so you definitely don’t want to mess it up.

To quickly mitigate the effects of slipping, simply take your favorite roll of painters tape and wrap the bit with it. This will make the drive fit more securely to help deter that slide out effect while also protecting the head of the screw in the event of a slip out.

use painters tape on the drill bit                                        prevent screw stripping and scratching

Make sure you use proper drilling form when you’re drilling. Always keep a good amount of pressure on the screw and make sure you don’t try to drive it too quickly as this may lead to driver slippage. For an even more secure hold, you might want to check out Torx or square drive screws which are designed to decrease the chance of stripping even more!



And here it is! Our fully installed black oxide stainless steel phillips head screw. Free of any burring or stripping. Follow this tip to keep your fasteners looking brand new!
installed screw clean of stripping and scratching


How to Prevent Screw Stripping

Stop Screw Stripping
Preventing Screw Stripping Transcript

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Bob: Welcome back to Albany County Fasteners – Fasteners 101. I’m Bob and today I’m going to show you a tip using blue tape to prevent scratching or damaging the heads of your screws. And we now have our evolution saws in stock so check it out on the website we can ship immediately. So let’s get started.

I have here a black oxy (oxide) screw. You can see there the head is perfect. No scratches or anything. To prevent making marks to your screws as you’re installing them – this is a sheet metal screw, same thing goes if you’re just using a hand screw driver – to prevent the scratching or damaging of the heads, what I recommend you do is, take a piece of blue tape, this is painters blue tape, and just put it over the head like so.

Then put your screw into the bit and screw it in.

You will see here, the head has no damage to the to the Philips Drive (recess) so you won’t see any marks or imperfections to the metal.

This is a little quick tip for you guys. It’s something that I use when I’m putting in screws that are going to be visible on the finished product, and that’s my tip of the day.

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Jobber Vs. Mechanics Drill Bits: The Difference Between Drill Bits

What Is The Difference Between A Jobber and Mechanic Drill Bit?

Jobber drill bits? Mechanics Drill bits? I JUST WANT TO DRILL A HOLE!!

Have you even felt frustrated at how much you have to learn to do something as simple as drill a hole? We feel the same way; that’s why we here at Albany County Fasteners have taken some time today to help you understand the difference between a jobber length and mechanics’ length drill bit so you can be sure to choose the right tool for your job.



Jobber Drill Bits

A jobber drill bit is a bit that has a long length compared to its diameter. Jobbers have a length anywhere from 8-12 or 9-14 (depending on who you ask) times the diameter. These bits can be measured using a number of different systems including a basic number range (1-80), letters (A-Z), wire (increase by whole number), standard metric sizing or in fractional sizes.

As far as fractional sizes are concerned, there are three different size increments used to measure jobber bits:

  • 1/64 inch to 1 inch
  • 1/16 inch to 3 inches
  • 1/8 inch to 3 1/4 inches

Mechanics Drill Bits

The correct terminology is actually a mechanics length drill bit. A “mechanics drill bit” is actually a jobber drill bit. Did you get the joke?

A mechanics length drill bit is simply a bit with a shorter flute length and shorter overall length than a standard jobber bit. This shortening of the bit makes it considerably stronger and less prone to breakage and shearing, making it suitable for harder drilling.



When To Use Each…THE ANSWER!

Determining if you should use a jobber bit vs a mechanics length (jobber) bit, is actually quite simple. A regular jobber bit is best used in softer materials such as wood, composite, and soft metals. For harder materials and hard metal drilling, a mechanics length drill bit is recommended as they are a stronger bit.  Jobber length drill bits are the most common and popular type of drill bits.

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Figuring Out Drill Speeds: RPMs and Bit Life

What Speed Should I Drill At?

Rivet Removal 5

Figuring out RPM speed for your drill can be very confusing. Sure, there are recommended drilling speeds all over but they seem to vary from place to place. Instead of creating another chart for you with our recommendations, we want to actually teach you a bit about why we should drill at different speeds for different circumstances. Knowing this information, we can create a determining drill RPM best practice guide.


Drill Bits

The goal of most is to balance the life of a tool (drill bit) and the speed of the drilling(RPM) while not compromising the material. This is often how the optimal RPM is found.

We know that not everyone is looking for this cross point however, you may want to save money by burning through less drill bits or get a job done more quickly by speeding up the drilling pace. With the following considerations you will be able to determine what direction you need to move in to get the job done how you need it to.

Drill Bit SpeedSpeed

The first thing to consider is speed (RPM’s) of a drill bit. When drilling into a harder material the general practice is to go slower. As the bit turns it begins biting or cutting into a material. This causes friction which will heat up the material and the drill bit. If the material begins to show signs of discoloration or smoke there is a good chance that the drill bit is creating too much friction which, in turn, will cause the material to overheat. This over-heating will result in a warped or damaged material and a quickly spent drill bit.

We can look at the graph to the right for a visual representation of how this effect works. As you can see when our RPM (speed) decreases the life of the bit will be extended. Most manufacturer recommendations will attempt to find the best compromise here while someone who recommends speeds to save drill bit life will obviously aim lower. We also recommend using drill bit lubrication for metal-cutting to extend the life of your drill bit.

Size

Another factor to consider is the size of the drill bit. A larger drill bit has far greater surface contact per revolution when compared to a smaller one. This means that a larger drill will generate more friction per revolution as well. So while it is perfectly fine to use a small bit at a higher RPM in a material, you may notice the larger bit causing some of those warning signs we talked about earlier. If this is the case, simply slow down and let the bit do the work.

drill bits 101316

Drill Bit Function

Different drill bits are specially designed to cut through different materials. This can be done either by altering the design of the bit itself, making it from a harder material, coating it or just adding a stronger tip to the bit to make the initial cuts. Making sure you have the proper bit for material is also incredibly important.

Material

Drill Bit

The other consideration you will need to factor in while drilling is the material you are drilling into. If you drill at the wrong speed your bit will cause the material to heat up and can actually change the properties of the material you are drilling into. You can also ruin materials this way such as burning wood.

Hardness

The hardness of a material is the consideration you should make when beginning to work on it. Different materials have different hardness and as a result, different temperaments to heat and drilling. Choosing the appropriate bit for the material can cut down on wasted bits and damaged materials.

Outcome?

So now that we know all of the different factors that should be considered when drilling, let’s come up with an order of operations for determining the best drill speed for you.

*Note: This is a very generalized overlook of how materials can react to different temperatures caused by friction.

Determining Drill Speed

  1. Identify the material you are using.
  2. Find the appropriate drill bit suited for your material.
  3. Determine the size of the hole you need to drill into the material.
  4. Decide what is more important: getting the job done faster or preserving the life of the drill bit.
  5. Begin on a slow RPM setting and test out the bit.
  6. ALWAYS (especially at high speeds) pay attention to the material.
  7. If the bit is cutting fine and you desire a faster pace simply increase the RPM of the drill
  8. Adjust as necessary.


Considerations

  • Watch for discoloration, smoke and bit chipping as these are all signs of drilling too quickly.
  • If it is your first time drilling into a material, always drill slowly and work your way up to the speed you want.
  • This method will take some practice to find comfortable ranges have fun with it do some experiments.
  • Keep a notebook on hand so you can record your findings and keep your own recommended drill speeds on hand.
    • You can also record other information in this notebook such as which bit and size you used etc.

Power Drill Adjustable Slip Clutch / Torque Control

Power Drill Adjustable Slip Clutch / Torque Control Thumbnail
Power Drill Adjustable Slip Clutch / Torque Control Transcript

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Bob: Welcome back to Albany County Fasteners – Fasteners 101. I’m Bob and today I want to demonstrate to you a clutch that’s built into your drill.

Basically, you have a clutch on the head of your drill that goes anywhere from a number one up to, at least on mine, is a number 15. Okay, and then you have what they call drill mode and it has a little drill bit there so there’ll be no slippage.

So I want to show you so you don’t over-drill your product into your material. Now that could be into steel, it could be into to wood, or finish materials so you don’t dimple the wood. Right now, I have set this to a number ten on my drill. I’m going into a piece of 2×4 pine and once the screw starts to hit the face of the wood, the clutch in here will start to slip and I just want to demonstrate this to you.

I’m going to start it now and you get no resistance as far as driving it in but once it hit, the clutch slips and it stops the drilling. It doesn’t go any deeper into the wood.

Now if you wanted to drive that in less you would put the clutch at a number, let’s say number eight or number nine and then obviously the clutch will start to slip even more. However, as you’re driving if you would have set this to a number one then when you get about half way in the clutch is going to start to slip and you’re going to stop driving the screw in and you’re going to have to readjust the clutch.

That’s your quick tip for today. Thanks for watching.

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