Broken little screw

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    Hi Guys/Gals,  hoping someone can help me out.  The handle/tote on my veritas plough plane was loose and being the ham fisted individual that I am I torqued on it too much and the little hex screwdriver bit broke off in the screw.  The handle is tight now but I can’t get the piece of metal out of the screw.  Anybody have any suggestions on how to remove it, its wedged in there pretty good…




    The typical way I can think of is to drill the center of it out, then ideally tap it or just drive a bolt into the drilled out hole and then pull it out. The problem is that broken off bit is probably pretty hard, so you may not be able to mark it with a center punch, or drill it. The center punch might be enough to dislodge the broken bit though.

    If that doesn’t work, you might be better off getting a replacement screw from Lee Valley and then drill into that until you can get enough grip on it with whatever you have at hand. That or a dremel tool with an abrasive wheel to score a groove that a screwdriver could get in to.

    Rob Young

    Take Tim247’s advice one step further and simply contact LeeValley about sending in the tool for repair.  Let them give you a quote on the work and then make your decision.


    I wonder if a strong rare-earth magnet could be used to liberate the broken piece from the screw. Use a plier to grip the magnet and slowly lift the magnet off the screw.

    -Scott Los Angeles


    I don’t think a rare earth magnet would be strong enough, but welding or soldering a rod to the broken bit might work. The heat from the soldering gun might be enough to dislodge it too.

    I also realized my earlier post wasn’t that clear. I meant drill the old screw until you can get a grip on it, with whatever you have or a screw extractor. Then replace it with the new screw of course.

    Here’s an article with some more ideas for removing a stripped screw, but you might be able to adapt them.



    I second Rob Young’s suggestion.  It’s such a nice tool, maybe Lee Valley can repair it for you with undue violence.  It would be a shame to mess it up with trial and error attempts (at least that is likely what would happen if I did myself).

    D. Paul


    Another vote for contacting LV, they are great people and I am sure they have had this happen to them on occasion so hopefully it shouldn’t be a problem for them.

    Good Luck !



    Steve Massie, I live in the great State of Florida, US

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