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Old 16-04-2011, 09:09   #1
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Broken EZ Out

Now I'm certain that I'm the only one dumb enough to let this happen so consider this a confession and not advice. Besides, I'm probably the last one on the forum to figure this out.

Once again in the course of repair I ran into a screw that would not give. In this case a set screw holding the cutlass bearing in the shaft strut. Tried the usual technique; soak, heat and beat, resoak, wait a week, soak again, reheat, tap, tap harder, speak a few unkind words about the screw and demean it's family and beat on it some more. No joy.

So, last resort, drill a pilot hole and insert EZ Out. Very slowly and carefully apply pressure but still, snap and there it is, a piece of hardened steel broken off flush in the strut. First a few more unkind words about the screw, the EZ Out and boat repair in general then look for the toughest drill bits I have to see if I can drill out the EZ Out. No joy there either. Made a tiny little hole and a shiny spot, that's about all. Tried a stone grinding bit on the Dremel with no better luck.

So go to the local big box store to see what other bits and pieces they might have or see if they have a department that sells dynamite. Found some $10-15 high speed carbide and diamond bits for the Dremel and picked up three assorted sizes and shapes.

Next day, high speed carbide bit and 15 minutes I had a nice clean hole with no EZ Out and no set screw. Still have to clean out the hole and retap for a larger screw but that part is easy.

Not cheap but will keep a few of these little goodies in the tool box.
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Old 16-04-2011, 09:18   #2
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Re: Broken EZ Out

I always thought that easy-outs were made of some intergalactic hardened substance that was harder than anything on our planet. It
is good to know that I was wrong and I will get some of these jewelers bits or whatever they are also. Thanks for the tip to a lifelong, perplexing problem.
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Old 16-04-2011, 09:23   #3
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Re: Broken EZ Out

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Originally Posted by skipmac View Post
Now I'm certain that I'm the only one dumb enough to let this happen so consider this a confession and not advice.
Nope. You're not the only one.

Quote:
Besides, I'm probably the last one on the forum to figure this out.
Not quite. Mine is a self-tapping screw still stuck in fiberglass, with the bit of EZ-out still stuck in the head.
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Old 16-04-2011, 09:24   #4
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Re: Broken EZ Out

my ratio of snapped off easy outs to actual, successful broken bolt removal is probably about 20:1. I hate easy outs and try almost any alternative first. I second your use of Dremel tools for this.

Also, liberal use of PB Blaster.
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Old 16-04-2011, 09:49   #5
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Re: Broken EZ Out

And what is an EZ-out...??? I suppose it is some kind of device facilitating recuperation of stucked screws and bolts? But how does it work?
I'll Google it and see
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Old 16-04-2011, 10:02   #6
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Re: Broken EZ Out

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Originally Posted by Alecadi View Post
And what is an EZ-out...??? I suppose it is some kind of device facilitating recuperation of stucked screws and bolts? But how does it work?
I'll Google it and see
EZ Out is a brand name. It is like a drill bit but it is tapered and the threads go backwards. The way it is "supposed" to work. You drill a hole in the stuck bolt or screw and insert the EZ Out. As you twist backwards, the direction to unscrew the stuck screw, the EZ Out screws deeper and harder into the hole you drilled, thus (in theory) unscrewing the stuck screw.

However, my experience is the same as Doug86. I have much greater success at breaking EZ Outs than I do removing broken screws. And the EZ Out is certainly made from some intergallactic hardened substance that is stronger than dirt.

First time I have ever found something that would get one out.
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Old 16-04-2011, 10:14   #7
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Re: Broken EZ Out

I've always found it easier to grind off all the heads of stubborn screws or bolts (after trying all reasonable methods of pursuasion short of using a ezout) and remove the remaining part with a good set of vice grips! The use of an ezout is my last resort only when the area is inaccessible with reasonable tools and is preceded by prayer to the Gods of corrosion!
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Old 16-04-2011, 10:17   #8
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Re: Broken EZ Out

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Originally Posted by doug86 View Post
my ratio of snapped off easy outs to actual, successful broken bolt removal is probably about 20:1. I hate easy outs and try almost any alternative first. I second your use of Dremel tools for this.

Also, liberal use of PB Blaster.
Yes, PB Blaster is the stuff. And absolutely, based on past bad experiences with EZ Outs they are the absolute, last, final, no other options, resort.

In this case I really gave it a try. Soaked the set screws with PB Blaster several times and let it soak all day, then over night and until the next weekend and again. Started with a propane torch and when that didn't work got an acetylene torch on it.

The heads were already partly stripped before I started so took a spare Allen wrench and cut it on the grinder to fit the enlarged holes in the set screws then pounded the wrench in with a hammer to really seat it.

Tapped on them for 10-15 minutets at a time several times (for those that don't do the tapping, that can sometimes break the corrosion bond at least paritally and allow the PB Blaster to soak into the joint between the screw and housing to work on the corrosion better).

After this I may just give up on EZ Outs; go ahead and drill out any stuck fasteners and retap or use a Helicoil.
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Old 16-04-2011, 10:21   #9
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Re: Broken EZ Out

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Originally Posted by Hodidoo View Post
I've always found it easier to grind off all the heads of stubborn screws or bolts (after trying all reasonable methods of pursuasion short of using a ezout) and remove the remaining part with a good set of vice grips! The use of an ezout is my last resort only when the area is inaccessible with reasonable tools and is preceded by prayer to the Gods of corrosion!
Agree, but in this case a recessed set screw. No heads. Also too deep so no option to cut a slot for a flat blade screwdriver.

Maybe should have tried the prayer since blasphemy didn't work.
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Old 16-04-2011, 10:25   #10
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I fell your pain on the EZ outs.

EZ outs are good for screws/bolts that are not all corroded up, meaning nearly useless for marine applications.

These have worked well for me on pan head screws:



BET7, Set, Extractor, Power Fastener, Hex, 7 pcs.


Sometimes it is just easier to drill out the screw/set screw from the beginning and tap it.
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Old 16-04-2011, 10:27   #11
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Re: Broken EZ Out

Quote:
Originally Posted by skipmac View Post
Now I'm certain that I'm the only one dumb enough to let this happen so consider this a confession and not advice. Besides, I'm probably the last one on the forum to figure this out.

Once again in the course of repair I ran into a screw that would not give. In this case a set screw holding the cutlass bearing in the shaft strut. Tried the usual technique; soak, heat and beat, resoak, wait a week, soak again, reheat, tap, tap harder, speak a few unkind words about the screw and demean it's family and beat on it some more. No joy.

So, last resort, drill a pilot hole and insert EZ Out. Very slowly and carefully apply pressure but still, snap and there it is, a piece of hardened steel broken off flush in the strut. First a few more unkind words about the screw, the EZ Out and boat repair in general then look for the toughest drill bits I have to see if I can drill out the EZ Out. No joy there either. Made a tiny little hole and a shiny spot, that's about all. Tried a stone grinding bit on the Dremel with no better luck.

So go to the local big box store to see what other bits and pieces they might have or see if they have a department that sells dynamite. Found some $10-15 high speed carbide and diamond bits for the Dremel and picked up three assorted sizes and shapes.

Next day, high speed carbide bit and 15 minutes I had a nice clean hole with no EZ Out and no set screw. Still have to clean out the hole and retap for a larger screw but that part is easy.

Not cheap but will keep a few of these little goodies in the tool box.
Well, it looks like you got the job done.

But now to prevent this from happening again; do not put SS setscrews back in. Just put them in a baggie and store them on the boat. Yet, replace the set screws with some bronze screws, using anti-sieze to install them. Then just bottom paint over them.
The next time you just easily unscrew the bronze screws and install the SS, or whatever you want to use, and wa-la!
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Old 16-04-2011, 10:32   #12
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Re: Broken EZ Out

Went back to confirm the exact bit. I used a Dremel Tungsten Carbide Cutter 9910 but they have various size and shapes, round, tapered, straight, etc with part numbers 9901-9911.

I also bought a Dremel diamond bit but didn't need it so no report on how it might have worked.
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Old 16-04-2011, 10:34   #13
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Re: Broken EZ Out

EZouts almost never work. For the amount of grief created by these things, better off not even having them in the tool box. The comment about 20:1 above is probably conservative. It takes very little pressure to break them off. Better off just drilling and retapping. If you take your time getting the drill bit centered with a good, sharp punch, then drill carefully so the drill does not wander off center before you get a hole started, you can usually drill close enough to the threads so the old bolt threads will just drop off from the heat created. Starting with a small hole as a guide for the final size is also helpful. Running a tap in afterward cleans them up. Of course these things are usually located in a spot where there is 1/8" less clearance than you have for the drill but this is one of the tenets of Murphy's law
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Old 16-04-2011, 10:35   #14
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Re: Broken EZ Out

Quote:
Originally Posted by Opie91 View Post
I fell your pain on the EZ outs.

EZ outs are good for screws/bolts that are not all corroded up, meaning nearly useless for marine applications.

These have worked well for me on pan head screws:



BET7, Set, Extractor, Power Fastener, Hex, 7 pcs.


Sometimes it is just easier to drill out the screw/set screw from the beginning and tap it.
Got a set of these waiting for my next battle. Have to remove a SS wood screw broken off in the teak cap rail. Should be easier than the last one.
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Old 16-04-2011, 10:35   #15
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Re: Broken EZ Out

This what we use in machine shops.


.
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