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HELP! Best way to remove these screw plugs? *NEW UPDATE* It's a mix!

Shadowsix

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EDIT: See post 12!

Ok, I want to start on my Klingon Disruptor Green mod but I need to know what would be the best way to remove these plugs that cover the screws and still preserve the plugs to put back in later.


Here is a side view where you can see the 10 screw plugs running from middle to back.

I know I can either drill them out or use my dremmel tool to remove them but that would also be destroying them too at the same time.

I've thought of seeing if I could use acetone or something to destroy the glue (without it staining or even melting any plastic) but I'm curious what you people think.




Here are the best close ups I could get.

IF I need to destroy them to remove then it's really no biggie but if I can preserve them somehow that would be cool!

:beer:
 
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Rifter

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Re: HELP! Best way to remove these screw plugs?

I would try heating it up with a heat gun(ON LOW!!!!) to see if you can heat the glue enough to loosen its hold then gently pry them out.
 

Pi R Squared

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Re: HELP! Best way to remove these screw plugs?

I would try alcohol first because that dissolves adhesives and most glues.

Alan
 

Shadowsix

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Re: HELP! Best way to remove these screw plugs?

Interesting idea Rifter. Unfortunately I don't have a heat gun (I use a lighter carefully to heat any shrink tube I use on wires), also since the housing itself is plastic I'd be afraid on melting it unless you guys think the glue would give way first before the plastic started to melt?

Thanks Alan. You're right rubbing alcohol would probably be safer to use than acetone! The question is how strong an adhesive do the use on these plugs?
 

djQUAN

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Re: HELP! Best way to remove these screw plugs?

Don't use acetone. It will destroy the plastic and paint finish.

They are usually only press fitted but if they are glued, it may be a little more difficult. I usually pry them off using a small screwdriver or sharp pick but might end up damaging the edges of the holes if you're not careful.
 

Rifter

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Re: HELP! Best way to remove these screw plugs?

Don't use acetone. It will destroy the plastic and paint finish.

They are usually only press fitted but if they are glued, it may be a little more difficult. I usually pry them off using a small screwdriver or sharp pick but might end up damaging the edges of the holes if you're not careful.
This is why I suggest heating it, more likely you will deform the plastic instead of breaking/cracking it it if its hot first, then you can try and repair any damage while its still hot and form it back to shape a little and might be able to hide a lot of the damage you do while removing them this way.

Just make sure not to overheat.

If you don't have a heat gun a hair dryer will work as well.
 

Shadowsix

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Re: HELP! Best way to remove these screw plugs?

Thanks djQUAN, I had a feeling acetone might be too much for the plastic. Surprisingly it is barely painted but I do worry about staining or it dissolving the plastic. If they are press fitted they are in really good. I had tried using a tiny jeweler's flat head screwdriver and the screwdriver tip broke! So I think there is glue holding them in place.

Well Rifter, unfortunately at 50+ I haven't owned a hair dryer in 15 years. The only time I see one is when my girlfriend comes out to visit. I may have to go pick one up but it would be for a single use so if there is any other way I'll try that first. Thanks for the idea, it may come to that.
 

Shadowsix

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Re: HELP! Best way to remove these screw plugs?

OK now I'm not so sure these are screw plugs! I first tried 91% alcohol on the supposed screw cover at the bottom of the grip, nothing. I then even tried acetone (very carefully with an eye dropper), nothing! Not even the plastic was affected.

I looked closely with a magnifying glass it looked less like a screw plug & more like an screw hole cover tab from manufacture that wasn't popped. I took my Dremmel tool and carefully removed what was only as thick as the housing and not on top of a screw.

Here are the best pics I could get of it:


Is that a rivet? Is this thing just glued together and the covers are only an option they didn't take on in actual production?

If it's a rivet I guess I can drill them out? Any ideas guys?
 

Rifter

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Re: HELP! Best way to remove these screw plugs? *UPDATE* May not be screw plugs!!!!??

That does look like a rivot so yeah drilling it out is probably the only way to get into it.
 

Pi R Squared

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Re: HELP! Best way to remove these screw plugs? *UPDATE* May not be screw plugs!!!!??

That really sucks, I hope you don't have to destroy this one to figure out how to best take it apart and then buy another one. You might also be able to cut it in half or pieces and then glue it back together and repair the visible damage but that seems like a bad idea. Maybe you could get Mrcrouse to make a Klingon Disruptor host, he did a great job with the German hand grenade but I don't even want to think about what it would cost.

Alan
 
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Shadowsix

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Re: HELP! Best way to remove these screw plugs? *UPDATE* May not be screw plugs!!!!??

Thanks Rifter & Alan, I needed other eyes to be sure.

I carefully drilled that one out. Turns out they are actually plastic rivets. From removing that one it seems the body itself is not glued (fortunately!) at the seams so just removing those should work.

Hopefully if I'm able to be careful enough in removing the rivets that when I'm done modifying it I'll be able to use screw & nut to put it back together (with the nut glued in place in the lower half of the body). If I do by some chance end up destroying it (being unable to securely hold it back together once opened) then I'll chalk it up as a lesson and move on to one of the next mods I have waiting.

:beer:
 

Shadowsix

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Re: HELP! Best way to remove these screw plugs? *UPDATE* May not be screw plugs!!!!??

Ok, seems all was still not quite even what is was looking like.

First of all my luck I open the ONE cover that had a plastic rivet instead of a screw (the plug at the bottom of the grip), the rest had screws!!! Don't get the reasoning behind that but whatever.

Fortunately the screw hole that had a rivet in it will still fit one of the screws so all I need to do is find an additional one at Home Depot or somewhere (only have 9 of course).



Ok, now back to my regularly scheduled modding! :beer:
 
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The Lightning Stalker

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Damn, too bad I just found this thread now after it was too late. I have a method for removing these
without damage.
 

Shadowsix

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Damn, too bad I just found this thread now after it was too late. I have a method for removing these
without damage.
Oh well, such as life!

But since you do have a method please explain it to us anyway. Not only in case someone else may want mod one of these (or if I run into the same thing on another potential host) but if anyone on the web using a search engine trying to find out what to do may run across this thread and see your method and so for posterity please do so!

:beer:
 

The Lightning Stalker

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Well, it's actually 2 different methods. Sometimes, if you're careful you can get them out with a mat knife
and no one would ever know the difference.

Method #2 involves some removable adhesive such as hot glue. Put a drop of it on the plug and then stick
something to act as a "handle" such as a pen tube or the back end of the mat knife. Then wiggle it out
and stick it in the freezer to release the glue.
 

Shadowsix

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Well, it's actually 2 different methods. Sometimes, if you're careful you can get them out with a mat knife
and no one would ever know the difference.

Method #2 involves some removable adhesive such as hot glue. Put a drop of it on the plug and then stick
something to act as a "handle" such as a pen tube or the back end of the mat knife. Then wiggle it out
and stick it in the freezer to release the glue.
Well I did actual try method #1 and that didn't work but method #2 is quite intriguing and should I run into this type of issue again on another mod I will definitely try it. Thank you! :beer:

As for my Klingon Disruptor mod I thought to myself "Wait, this is a Klingon weapon, what does clean & pretty have to do with it anyway!" :crackup:

And so my Klingon Disruptor green mod is almost completed. I'll put up a thread on that in the next couple of days!
 




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