strap button problem

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by 12strings, Dec 10, 2005.


  1. 12strings

    12strings Supporting Member

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    Need some advice. I have a 70s Les Paul Special. The strap button and screw came out of the wood. When I try to screw it back, the screw just spins in place and just comes right back out. Any tips - wood filler, etc? Thanks!!
     
  2. Jim Collins

    Jim Collins Member

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    You could use wood filler. You could also use a combination of pieces of toothpick and carpenter's glue (Elmer's is fine). Toothpicks are usually made of hardwood, so they will do a fine job. You don't have to fill the hole, completely, just line it with pieces of toothpick and glue. Then, you won't have to drill a hole -- the screw will tap the hole, itself.

    You could also get a longer screw.
     
  3. axpro

    axpro Member

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    Or you could do both :D

    I am kinda new here, but i think I've seen this question like 3 times!

    "Toothpicks, is there anything they can;t do?"

    Dave Mc
     
  4. 12strings

    12strings Supporting Member

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    Thanks for the replies! Just used toothpicks for now and they have done the trick.
     
  5. omensixaxe

    omensixaxe Member

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    ive used toothpicks and an epoxy glue on a stripped LP screw. Im confident, however, that wood glue would work better.
     
  6. oxtone

    oxtone Member

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    +1 on the Toothpick trick! I've used that on stripped wood holes on my Strat, and it works great every time.
     
  7. The Golden Boy

    The Golden Boy Member

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    When you just use toothpicks, you're only relying on the friction of the body of the guitar and the toothpicks to hold the screw.

    The idea of the toothpicks and glue is that you put the glue in the hole, then you pack the hole with toothpicks, break off the excess, wipe up any glue that came out- let it dry. The toothpicks are then bound to the body of the guitar, and your screw bites into the wood that is bound to the guitar making a more reliable hold than just toothpicks alone.

    The reason you don't want to screw into the hole immediately after the toothpicks and glue is because the glue will dry into the threads of the screw, making it difficult to use the screw again should you ever remove it.

    This isn't just a jerry-rig temporary fix- if you take your guitar to a tech, unless the hole is reamed, that's what a tech is going to do. Drilling, doweling and redrilling is completely unnecessary.
     
  8. John Phillips

    John Phillips Member

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    The reason you DO want to put the screw in immediately while the glue is still wet is that it will compress the fibres of the toothpick hard against the remains of the old damaged thread, and act as a 'clamp' while the glue sets. When it's set, you've created a cast-in thread, which is much stronger than uncompressed wood fibres and glue. Wood glue doesn't bond to metal, so there's no problem if you do want to get the screw out again.

    I do completely agree that while this sounds like a 'bodge', it's actually extremely strong and the best way of fixing stripped screw holes. I've used this method successfully many hundreds of times for fixing anything from pickguard screws right up to neck-bolt holes in Fenders (using about four toothpicks) and it's actually stronger than drilling out and doweling - because the remains of the old thread are left for the glue and wood to bond to.
     
  9. matte

    matte Senior Member

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    Great to see you back here!
     
  10. trisonic

    trisonic Member

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    Quite!! Hope he's not teasing us.......

    Best, Pete.
     
  11. Chiba

    Chiba Gold Supporting Member

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    I prefer John's toothpick plus wet glue fix, it's worked for me and my friends dozens of times since I learned it from him. Really horribly stripped holes get drilled & dowelled, though, especially on heavy instruments like Les Pauls, Thunderbirds, etc.

    --chiba
     

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