View Full Version : Tip of The Day

Dave Russell
05-25-2003, 07:20 PM
There seem to be frequent discussions about how to remove damaged bolts/screws.

The methods often involve drilling the screw & application of some form of easy out. The easy out is not a very good tool. The tool is tapered & provides a wedging action. This action also expands the screw & makes it even tighter in it's hole. To make things worse, it is quite brittle & easy to break.

I have found that drilling the screw with a left hand drill bit in a reversing drill usually causes the screw to back out before the drilling is even completed.The drill digs in without expanding the screw shank & turns it in the removal direction.

Left hand drills are available in various sizes at many tool stores. I've not had to use an easy out since getting a LH drill set.

05-26-2003, 08:03 AM
I couldn't agree more, Dave...especially after I recall how many E-Zee Outs I've snapped.

One additional (and related idea) that can be useful in an emergency. If the bolt isn't real deep, I re-sharpen a standard drill with a "left-hand" face (so that the drill must turn backwards to cut). Obviously, the twisted flutes on the drill are the wrong direction, so this won't work if you're drilling out a long bolt....but "in a pinch", this has worked for broken bolts up to 3/4" deep (if I'm patient, and keep clearing the dril).