Removing brass stews from keel?

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Chrisrjwood
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Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by Chrisrjwood » Sun Nov 29, 2015 4:47 pm

Can anyone suggest a reliable way of getting the brass screws out of the keel on my Uffa 14? These are the long screws that hold the centreboard case on and they are impossible? To unscrew, usually half the slotted head breaks off and I have tried to drill off the rest of the head but often the drill runs off into the wood!
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Re: Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by Garry R » Sun Nov 29, 2015 7:12 pm

I have found that there are two problems. Firstly the screws can have become brittle over the years hence the breaking of the head. To give yourself a better chance try holding a soldering iron on top of the head. I know these screws are long so keep the iron on the head for a reasonable time then wait. Repeat this a few times to let the heat get down a bit further and also get hotter. Make sure the screwdriver is a nice fit in the slot and doesn't slip out. The heat helps to break the corrosion holding the screw tight. When refitting a nice smear of candlewax on the screw thread can help a future generation. Hope this helps.

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Re: Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by roger » Sun Nov 29, 2015 8:14 pm

I know Chris has used roll pins in a drill in reverse slowly to draw out damaged screws,



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Re: Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by realnutter » Sun Nov 29, 2015 8:24 pm

roger wrote:I know Chris has used roll pins in a drill in reverse slowly to draw out damaged screws,
That will only work if you can get a hole in the screw in the first place...

Brass screws tend to dezincify over time, and become copper screws... and copper is a useless metal (except as a conductor)..

There's not much that can be done to get them out.... I usually carefully drill around them, and fill the resulting hole with epoxy..
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Garry R
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Re: Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by Garry R » Sun Nov 29, 2015 9:32 pm

I think that the idea of the roll pins is to core around the screw before drawing it out. Thus you never drill the screw itself which I certainly have found to be nearly impossible. Can someone clarify that?

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Re: Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by trebor » Sun Nov 29, 2015 9:36 pm

If you can remove head ,(if it is useless), use the roll pin like a small hole saw.
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Re: Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by Michael4 » Sun Nov 29, 2015 11:24 pm

I gave up and ran a 'multi tool' saw along the centreboard/hog seam cutting through all the screws in minutes... OK so a bit violent but effective.

Removed what bits of screw I could, filled the holes and drilled anew for new silicone bronze screws.

Word of warning, one must cut at the right 'flat' angle or you'll make mess that is difficult to seal.
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Re: Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by roger » Mon Nov 30, 2015 12:01 am

Garry R wrote:I think that the idea of the roll pins is to core around the screw before drawing it out. Thus you never drill the screw itself which I certainly have found to be nearly impossible. Can someone clarify that?
That's exactly as I understand it, the roll pin actually grips the outside of the screw or whats left of it and unscrews it leaving a lot less damage than other methods.
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Chrisrjwood
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Re: Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by Chrisrjwood » Mon Nov 30, 2015 1:08 am

Thanks to everyone for the suggestions.

I have considered sawing through the screws along the line of the hog/keel.

What sort of saw would be best and should the boat be upside down or right side up?
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Re: Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by Ed » Mon Nov 30, 2015 9:59 am

Chris's Roll-pin method is the way to go. Minimum damage, easy and fast to do.

I used to use assorted bits of small tubing, but a roll-pin is a brilliant way.

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Re: Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by Michael4 » Mon Nov 30, 2015 10:20 am

Chrisrjwood wrote:Thanks to everyone for the suggestions.

I have considered sawing through the screws along the line of the hog/keel.

What sort of saw would be best and should the boat be upside down or right side up?

Something like this, there are many cheaper that should be OK.

http://www.screwfix.com/p/erbauer-250w- ... wgodLDQEXw

I did the job on a simple traditional clinker boat, dunno the construction of yours.

I had the boat right way up and had marked the position of the screws inside first. As mentioned before, the key is to make the cut at the same plane as the mating faces of the hog/case join so as to avoid messing up the hog. If you can't get the tool low enough then you can bend the blade of the saw to suit. If you plan to replace the case then you can cut clear of the join and save the chance of damage to the face of the hog.

Don't be tempted to wiggle the case around before you have cut all the screws, the leverage caused can split the keel.

I've done this twice now with no problems, the tool is useful for lots of other things. I fully accept that this is not the correct way of going about the job but if done carefully the result is the same. The thing that gave me a shock was the price of silicone bronze screws...40 quids worth to do a Tideway!
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Re: Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by Michael4 » Mon Nov 30, 2015 11:18 am

Or...a hacsaw blade...
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Re: Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by PeterV » Mon Nov 30, 2015 1:48 pm

I'm such a bodger, a crowbar got the centreboard case out of the Finn, epoxy repaired the damaged hog ready for the new case. I didn't think of trying to undo the screws!
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Re: Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by Rupert » Mon Nov 30, 2015 9:42 pm

PeterV wrote:I'm such a bodger, a crowbar got the centreboard case out of the Finn, epoxy repaired the damaged hog ready for the new case. I didn't think of trying to undo the screws!
We need a like button... just for this post...
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Re: Removing brass stews from keel?

Post by realnutter » Tue Dec 01, 2015 12:18 am

Rupert wrote:
We need a like button... just for this post...
And for this one!
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