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  #1  
Old 11th May 2009
JR-Boston's Avatar
JR-Boston JR-Boston is offline
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Question Derby Cover Screws Stuck

Ok,

After procrastinating for years, I finally bought my first motorcycle, a 2005 XL883. It's a sweet little ride, and I'm really liking it.

I go to take the derby/clutch cover off, and the screws are frozen. They're T27 torx, and the driver is twisting/breaking before they turn. So far I've got 1 of the 6 to loosen up.

Any secrets to getting these out? A little heat maybe? Am I missing something here?

Cheers,
John
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  #2  
Old 11th May 2009
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Those screws are a pain in the a**. I would suggest getting some replacements before you continue, I stripped out two taking my cover off.

What I had to do was slightly tap on the end of the driver ( screwdriver, ratchet, ect..) with a hammer as I turned it. Turned out to be loctite on the threads, the tapping helped to break up the loctite while I turned them.

Good Luck
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  #3  
Old 11th May 2009
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Had to use an impact on mine, and one stripped so I grinded a slot in it then replaced it. I think replacing the stock ones for a better grade steel is a good idea. Most of the ones I have taken off ( cam, primary, fender, shock mount, all I've messed with) are a bit chewed and seem like a super cheap grade metal.
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  #4  
Old 11th May 2009
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Impact driver with a T27 bit. Failing that, drill the heads off leaving a stud behind when the cover is removed that can be removed with vice grips.

Fox
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  #5  
Old 11th May 2009
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Yup, same thing happened to me. I F'd with it till I got all out but one, and had to cut it out.
I carried one of the damaged ones up to Ace hardware and got chrome allens to replace them.
(I was gonna do that anyway...I HATE torx!!!)
Everytime I work on by bike, I throw away the Torx and replace them with allens...torx are as useless as wasps...
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  #6  
Old 11th May 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blaze View Post
Yup, same thing happened to me. I F'd with it till I got all out but one, and had to cut it out.
I carried one of the damaged ones up to Ace hardware and got chrome allens to replace them.
(I was gonna do that anyway...I HATE torx!!!)
Everytime I work on by bike, I throw away the Torx and replace them with allens...torx are as useless as wasps...
Torx work when properly used. They allow for better engagement of the tool. Just have to use them properly. I've never had a torx bit strip when used properly.

The previous owner of my bike used red loctite on my derby cover. I was finally able to get them out using some heat and some banging. I bought a box of t27 bits from home depot (screwdriver style) and banged them into the bolt. Then heated the bolt with a torch. Then quickly pulled out the hot bit and inserted a fresh one on a socket wrench and they came out no problems.
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  #7  
Old 12th May 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blaze View Post
Yup, same thing happened to me. I F'd with it till I got all out but one, and had to cut it out.
I carried one of the damaged ones up to Ace hardware and got chrome allens to replace them.
(I was gonna do that anyway...I HATE torx!!!)
Everytime I work on by bike, I throw away the Torx and replace them with allens...torx are as useless as wasps...
I am with you Blaze, Torx suck, and worst yet if they are in something Chrome.

I know they work, but I just think they are in the wrong application.
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  #8  
Old 12th May 2009
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Default Thanks!

Wow - you guys are awesome! Much thanks! I guess I'm not the first to struggle with derby cover screws.

Here's my plan; I'll put a bit of PB Blaster on each screw and let it soak. I'll take the bike for a ride to warm things up. Then, I'll go at them with the T27 while tapping the driver with a hammer, applying heat if needed.

If all goes well, I'll be able to get a look inside, see that I put the right amount of tranny fluid in, and put my nice new HD derby cover on.

Thanks All!

JR
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  #9  
Old 12th May 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JR-Boston View Post
Here's my plan; I'll put a bit of PB Blaster on each screw and let it soak. I'll take the bike for a ride to warm things up.

That should work. Be careful, they'll probably vibrate right out while your riding.

Seriously, this seems to be one of those common issues with these bikes. Mind boggling that those little bolts have caused so many (myself included), so much anguish.

Next up, you get to do battle with the rubber gasket on the inside of the cover. There is a whole bunch of posts on dealing with this. Some suggest a dab of grease to hold it in place.
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  #10  
Old 18th May 2009
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It worked! I dripped a bit of PB Blaster on each screw, then let it sit a few days (and rode the bike now & then). This weekend I dripped a bit more PB Blaster on each screw, and rode the bike for an hour to warm up the tranny. With a good quality T27 socket, and the tranny nice and warm, each screw popped and let go! None stripped or broken!

A word of caution on PB Blaster - it melts gaskets. It's much better at loosening frozen parts than WD-40, but don't spray it everywhere. It will melt every bit of plastic, rubber, and gasket material it finds. That's why I apply it in drops off a popsicle stick. I think the warm tranny helped loosen things up too. I didn't have to use a heat gun.

I also learned that if the bike is on the kick stand when you pull the derby cover off some tranny fluid will spill out onto the ground. But, if you have somebody hold the bike up straight, or leaning a bit to the other side, you don't lose any.

Lessons learned!
JR
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