Frustrating Situation


May 12, 2013, 06:54 PM
I just bought a new (to me) rifle. It has a crappy scope on it, and I have a much better one to mount. The thing is, I CANNOT get any of the screws out. Most of the screws are at least somewhat stripped, and I cannot get them to budge. I've tried using gun oil/wd40 on them, but that didn't work either. I'm about ready to just cut through the darn scope. LOL... Any suggestions? I'm sure I"m not the only one this has happened to.

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May 12, 2013, 06:55 PM
Drill out with small drill bit, smaller than head of bolt/screw.

May 12, 2013, 06:58 PM
what kind of rings are on it? You probably could cut through the screws with a thin Dremel abrasive cutting wheel. The rings would be trashed, almost certainly, but who cares? Probably about a 2 minute job.

May 12, 2013, 06:58 PM
Use a reverse thread drill bit.
They're specifically made fro removing stripped screws using standard thread.
The thread goes the opposite way when drilling in, so it applies opposite force to the screw, when the bit binds on the screw, the screw gives and unscrews itself!

Lowes sells them as a kit.

May 12, 2013, 06:59 PM
Liquid wrench and an easy out.

Texan Scott
May 12, 2013, 07:07 PM
A hammer. Not sayin' it's the best thing to do, but you know you want to.... ;)

Jed Carter
May 12, 2013, 07:08 PM
Can you just remove the rings from the rifle? I would just replace the complete scope and rings. Drill and EZ- Out will work if you want to save the rings. Tools to fix may cost more than a fair set of rings.

May 12, 2013, 07:22 PM
Go to Harbor Freight and get their drill bit and Easy Out set, its under $10 and all you do is drill a hole suitable to the particular easy out you are going to use, then insert the easy out and remove those screws easily.
I have two sets, One in the workshop and one in the garage, I would never be without them.
There aren't too many screws these wont remove!!!
Best of luck and they WILL come out using the right tools.

May 12, 2013, 07:37 PM
Thanks for the suggestions!

@Jed Carter... You got me thinking. This mount was a little different than I'd seen before. I'm pretty much just used to the picatinny rail. This looked like the rings were screwed into the mount. Well, after tinkering with that for a bit, the rings DID simply separate from the mount.

However, a new problem. There is a screw connecting the mount to the receiver that's even MORE stripped than the ones in the scope rings. I guess your suggestions still apply, though, so I'll look into them. I probably just need to be a little more careful now as I don't want to damage the actual rifle.

May 12, 2013, 07:59 PM
I'll bet the screws at some point were loctited in, try a little heat on the screw, if there is enough of the crew head left you might be able to turn it, you could also try tapping on the screwdriver into the screw the jarring effect can sometimes loosen the screw. Good luck with your endeavor, sir

ole farmerbuck
May 12, 2013, 08:09 PM
Take a good soldering gun and heat the screw as much as you can. Heat rises so you might want to turn the gun over while heating.

May 12, 2013, 10:38 PM
Sounds like they used Red loctite versus Blue.

May 13, 2013, 05:22 AM
:)If you have a drill press you could tighten a screwdriver bit in the chuck and use the press to apply pressure to the screw while YOU MANUALY TURN THE CHUCK
with a pipe wrench

May 13, 2013, 05:31 AM
I had exactly the same problem.

"Bolt Off" worked in about a day.

I got it from either Lowes or Home Depot.

May 13, 2013, 05:32 AM
"Stripped" literally means the threads are missing, and the joint would be so loose the parts are in danger of falling off. It sounds more like a case of "If they aren't tight enough to warp the tube, tighten them so more." along with red loctite. In that case heat is the correct answer, it takes over 200 degrees to get it to loosen. One common method is to soak the part in boiling water.

It's "common knowledge" to overtighten optic screws, and ommercial gun practice to use tiny screws has led to the overuse of thread locking compounds. It's basically a recipe for disaster, and makes a lot of work for gunsmiths.

Jolly Rogers
May 13, 2013, 07:33 AM
Throw out the WD40. Get some Liquid Wrench, Kroil or PB blaster. WD40 is not a penetrant worth the effort.

May 13, 2013, 07:40 AM
I have found that "Kroil" is the best (IMHO) 'penetrating oil'.

Hint: the name "Kroil" comes from 'Kreeping Oil'

May 13, 2013, 09:19 AM
Kroil or liquid wrench and let it sit overnight. WD40 is a better solvent than a penetrating oil- (I only use it to remove tar from wheels). Tap a screwdriver into the screw and heat the screwdriver close to the screw with a small torch to transfer heat to the screw.

May 13, 2013, 11:03 AM
If heating the remaining screw doesn't quite do the trick you may be able to break it free by heating it and then touching a candle to it. As long as there is a bit of an opening so that the molten wax can flow into the screw hole this may do the trick. Make sure that there isn't a bunch of crud blocking any penetrating agent from getting under the screw head and into the threads, you may need to clean a bit around the screw head to achieve your goal.

Remember slow and easy wins the day. Be sure to use a good fitting screwdriver, if the screw head is boogered up you may need to dress it up with a file so that the screwdriver fits properly.

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