Stripped screw in 15-inch Macbook Pro

Jynto

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jan 16, 2012
357
92
Nottingham, UK
My friend and I were trying to replace the optical drive in his 15-inch Macbook pro (mid 2010, in case that matters) with an SSD. But we found a screw head that was completely worn down. Tried at least four small screw heads on it, and it didn't budge. Removing that screw is a necessary step in taking out the optical drive. The screw is located here, it's the one highlighted on the right:



At this point we are considering hammering a screwdriver into the problem screw to create a new groove - could be risky, are there any fragile components under there? Or we could break the plastic bracket that its attached to, so is that bracket used for anything?
 

Tiki35

macrumors 6502
Oct 25, 2009
305
0
Nanoose Bay, BC, Canada
My friend and I were trying to replace the optical drive in his 15-inch Macbook pro (mid 2010, in case that matters) with an SSD. But we found a screw head that was completely worn down. Tried at least four small screw heads on it, and it didn't budge. Removing that screw is a necessary step in taking out the optical drive. The screw is located here, it's the one highlighted on the right:

Image

At this point we are considering hammering a screwdriver into the problem screw to create a new groove - could be risky, are there any fragile components under there? Or we could break the plastic bracket that its attached to, so is that bracket used for anything?
Do not hammer or press hard. You will guarantee create a bulge on the aluminum on the keyboard side. Don't ask me how I know.
 
Comment

Dark Void

macrumors 68030
Jun 1, 2011
2,614
478
Place a rubberband over the screw head and firmly use the screwdriver to unscrew as you would normally. If you can get it to unscrew at least a bit, try going in with some pliers and twist it out.
 
Comment

Spikeuk76

macrumors newbie
May 4, 2012
9
0
I had exactly the same problem, i gently tapped a flathead into the head and managed to get it out with a consistent downward force with the screwdriver. I think I also used a pair of (small) pliers around the edge of the screw to help a bit. I managed to replace the from a seller on ebay who had the screw sets for a couple of quid.

Dont panic, it will budge eventually just go careful.
 
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macmastersam

macrumors 6502a
Sep 14, 2011
515
0
Essex, england
If there is anything to learn in engineering, is to NEVER use anything to take a screw out other than a screwdriver. Anything else could potentially damage the grooves, meaning the screw can't be out back in nor even replaced possibly.

Funny how a £1500 computer can completely go wrong with just a tiny screw :rolleyes:
 
Comment

Opstech

macrumors 6502a
Jan 5, 2010
525
6
California
Go to a hardware store buy a cheap screwdriver and super glue the screw to the driver. let it dry and slowly turn the screw out! Works every time.
 
Comment

Dark Void

macrumors 68030
Jun 1, 2011
2,614
478
I would not recommend using glue. I am sure it's doable but with a screw that size, it's going to be difficult to keep surfaced, plus for the simple fact that if such a small amount of glue is used then it probably won't hold if you try unscrewing after applying it.

Seriously, try the rubberband technique. I used it with a pair of pliers the other week to remove a stripped screw off of a hard drive bracket in one of my notebooks with great success.
 
Comment

hackerwayne

macrumors 6502a
Feb 17, 2012
789
8
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
My friend and I were trying to replace the optical drive in his 15-inch Macbook pro (mid 2010, in case that matters) with an SSD. But we found a screw head that was completely worn down. Tried at least four small screw heads on it, and it didn't budge. Removing that screw is a necessary step in taking out the optical drive. The screw is located here, it's the one highlighted on the right:

Image

At this point we are considering hammering a screwdriver into the problem screw to create a new groove - could be risky, are there any fragile components under there? Or we could break the plastic bracket that its attached to, so is that bracket used for anything?
Use a driller, find the smallest head and drill thru the screw, be advised that by using that way you will destroy the screw completely.
 
Comment

Jynto

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jan 16, 2012
357
92
Nottingham, UK
Thanks for the help, guys. In the end we cut the bracket with wire cutters. My friend said he planned to glue it back afterwards. SSD is working fine now.
 
Comment

--Al

macrumors newbie
Nov 8, 2014
1
0
I had the same issue with the left most in your picture. As much as I tried to not strip it I did. These screws get really tight probably due to heating and cooling. The rubber band trick did not work.

Ultimately, that screws in only attached to a plastic bracket. So with a pair of pliers I just bent the plastic bracket carefully to get to the screw beneath and remove the optical drive. then I bent it back reattaching the other screw in the diagram to keep it in place. worked fine after that.

Not the prettiest solution but that screw for me is never coming out.
 
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