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Old December 1st, 2008, 11:07 AM
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Matt J.
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looking for small tool suggestions

I'm working on our boat... slowly.

I've got a near blind fastener situation, and don't have a tool right for this job.

It's a slotted flat head #12 silicon bronze machine screw, with its head counterbored over a 1/2". I could only just reach the nut with a ratcheting flat wrench (what a wonderful invention!). I need to back this fastener out to finish removing the frame.

There's no room for a screwdriver, even a stubby, let alone to turn one, even with a needle nose set of vice-grips.

There's no room for a standard 3/8" socket wrench with a socket and bit.

I used a doubled articulating swivel sockets and a series of adapters and extensions with a small socket holding a screwdriver bit to remove a similar screw on the other side of the bolt, but this one's worse and the swivels are jumping JUST enough to cause stripping...

Do the pinless swivels turn SMOOTHLY through 360*?

Are there micro socket wrenches that are little if any bigger than a 1/4" socket in head diameter?
I CAN get to it with a single swivel, but it requires ~5-10* turns. If I could get a socket wrench right onto it, I'd deal with the 35 minutes of 1/8 turns to back it out like on the other side... THe standard pinned-swivels jump too much (Causing stripping yesterday)

I MAY be able to get a nut onto the end, though I can see spending a hour or two trying to get that to happen, as I can't tough the end of the fastener with my fingers at all... I thought of locking 2 nuts onto the end, backing the head out to expose it, cutting the head off, and then pulling it through with hte locked nuts... but getting a nut, let alone two... yikes.


I know it's no Rover, but you all have more mechanical sense than any other board I've read.

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Old December 1st, 2008, 11:45 AM
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Charles Galpin
'94 D90 ST, '63 SeriesIIA
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A picture might help, but wouldn't a right angle screwdriver do it? Not sure if the ratcheting kind are too big, but they do have basic screwdrivers with a bend in them (or bend an old one)

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Old December 1st, 2008, 12:13 PM
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Matt J.
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No pics available...

I'm going to Sears tonight to see what craftsman has - I hadn't heard of ratcheting right-angle screwdrivers... the old fashioned bent kind *may* work... but the turns are so small, that unless the two ends are twisted to one another just right... I'd get it turned a bit, and couldn't reach it.

ratcheting right angle screwdrivers, eh? It's as if someone else has had this problem before jes' lil' ol' me in the hundreds of years they've been building plank-on-frame wooden boats...
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Old December 1st, 2008, 12:59 PM
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Andrew Najarian
'93 NAS D110 #43
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They also have gear driven angled screwdrivers which may work for you. I also have a set of very stubby screwdrivers that came with a cam-grip ratcheting handle that you can slide over the shaft. I can't find a picture to describe it, but it is a 4 piece set with three stubby screwdrivers and a short ratchet looking piece that just has a hole in it. You slide that piece over the shaft one way or the other (to either tighten or loosen) then just hold the stubby against the head and turn it with the handle. They work really well in tight areas.
"I have taken more good from alcohol than alcohol has taken from me." - Winston Churchill
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Old December 1st, 2008, 05:43 PM
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Eric Lindstrom
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Sears has the modern day yankee ratcheting screwdriver.Sounds like you're heading to the right place.
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Old December 1st, 2008, 05:51 PM
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Jeff Briggs
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Will a 1/4" ratchet wrench on a screw driver bit work?

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Old December 1st, 2008, 07:02 PM
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Uncle Douglas
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Doug Crowther
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I always look to cheat on old fastners. These are hard marine silicone bronze ? Can you get a dremil tool in there to the nut to cut it off or drill the head off and push it through with a punch ?
Sears in Annapolis doesn't have much of a tool dept.

Good judgement comes from experience,experience comes from bad judgement.

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