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Dust cover screw stripped on 1873 rifle


The Revenuer
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The small screw on the dust cover of my 1873 is stripped.   I have new screws coming but would like some advice on how to remove the stripped one.   
 

Anybody have experience with this? 

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1 minute ago, Phantom, SASS #54973 said:

Why not just leave the Dust Cover off?

I can’t get it off, the head of the screw is stripped out.  
 

Maybe drill the head of the screw off?

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Use a small drill bit to drill a hole in it and use an Easy Out to screw it out.  Sometimes you can drive an allen wrench into the hole to turn it if you don't have an Easy Out.

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1 minute ago, The Revenuer said:

I can’t get it off, the head of the screw is stripped out.  
 

Maybe drill the head of the screw off?

Oh...I miss understood :P

 

It turns but that about it? Can you apply pressure on the dust cover while unscrewing?

 

Phantom

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Just now, Phantom, SASS #54973 said:

Oh...I miss understood :P

 

It turns but that about it? Can you apply pressure on the dust cover while unscrewing?

 

Phantom

Sometimes using a small impact screwdriver will work too.

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Once you have it out, we tear down and clean these guns so often that many just leave the cover off...

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A pointed diamond bit on a dremel can recut the slot too.

Just now, Jailhouse Jim, SASS #13104 said:

A pointed diamond bit on a dremel can recut the slot too.

Can everyone tell I've broken and messed up a bunch :-)

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Once you have the screw out.  There is a small block that it screws into under the cover.  You may have to replace this piece also.   Also watch out for the spring and indent ball when you remove the cover sometimes they can pop out and get lost.

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4 minutes ago, The Original Lumpy Gritz said:

Clarify, is the screw turning, or is the screwdriver slot all buggered up?

OLG 

Slot is all buggered up. 

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Sometimes it is possible to use a Dremil tool with a small cutoff wheel to make a new slot in the screw so you can get a screwdriver in there to remove the screw.  This method sometimes puts marks on the area around the screw so be carefull.

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On occasion, I've been able to remove a damaged head screw by chucking a driver in a drill press and bearing down 'moderately' while rotating the chuck ccw by hand.  Soak it first with penetrating lube.. 

 

If all else fails, a Jeweler can remove the screw for you, using a micro-impact hammer, like is used in gemstone setting.  Or If you happen to have a friend with a pneumatic engraver, like a Gravermeister or GraverMax, that is the same tool.  Just slowly hammer the screw out from one side of the damaged head --OR engrave a new deeper slot.  

 

AFTER-THOUGHT

If you take it to a Jeweler, call first.  Don't just walk in with a rifle.  

Edited by Dusty Devil Dale
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Or, If the dust cover still moves like it is suppose too, just leave it there.  Unless you need to pull the Breach Block (Bolt).  If you can just leave it there, color the screw head with a Sharpie and call it "good"

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Just now, Colorado Coffinmaker said:

Or, If the dust cover still moves like it is suppose too, just leave it there.  Unless you need to pull the Breach Block (Bolt).  If you can just leave it there, color the screw head with a Sharpie and call it "good"

Frankly, I'd drill the screw head off and chuck the damn Dust Cover as far as I can.

 

But...that's just me...

 

Phantom

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25 minutes ago, Dusty Devil Dale said:

call first.  Don't just walk in with a rifle.  

:lol::D:lol::D

 

Solid advice.

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37 minutes ago, Nickel City Dude said:

Also watch out for the spring and indent ball when you remove the cover sometimes they can pop out and get lost.

More solid advice right there.

 

I definitely launched that little ball into the ceiling when I removed my dust cover.

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15 minutes ago, Fretless said:

More solid advice right there.

 

I definitely launched that little ball into the ceiling when I removed my dust cover.

Finding the little ball and spring are half the fun of taking it apart. 

 

 I bet a #6 or #4 steel shot would work fine as a replacement. 

 

But keep in mind the dust cover really performs no essential function, except keeping out some of the dust about 1/4 of the time when it happens to be closed.  It is mostly cosmetic----- unless you carry the gun in a truck that looks like mine.  Then dust, dirt, mud and various animal hair might be an issue.  

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