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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
With the ease that the new Snake guns .050" Allen screws heads strip out, wondering on thoughts for installing new sights. Hopefully going to get my fiber optic sight off my King Cobra with a screw extractor I just picked up. If so, going to install the Tritium front sight with a new screw. Hence the question, should I use a little 242 Blue Loctite, or just leave it and risk the screw working loose (and loss of the sight)?

Does it help to put a small amount on the screw and let it set up before installation? Thinking that may still give some back off resistance, without making it excessive, hopefully being removable without damaging the screw. (Edit, that won't work, as pointed out below, thanks guys. Different kind of thread locker).
 

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You need to research the various types of Loctite to find one that breaks free with the lowest torque, and is made for tiny screws. Loctite 222 for example may be the one to use.

As far as should you use ANY of them, that's up to you. Do you want to check the lockscrew every outing before and after shooting, instead? That might be preferred to some that may swap the sight from time to time. Me, once I get a solid blued blade for my King Cobra, I'll never remove it again. So Loctite.
 

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Most thread lockers are anaerobic....they only cure in the absence of air. That means that if you put some on a screw and let it stand, the locker will never cure and harden.

As above, using a type made for tiny screws is the best option, but you usually have to get it from a specialty source since not many local stores carry anything but Red and Blue.

There are special thread lockers that cure in open air and provide a coating that holds the screw once it's installed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Thanks guys, got it done. Some interesting points, getting the old screw out turned out to be the easy part. I bought a set of screw extractors on Amazon, the smallest of which goes to .051 inch. It inserted easily and removed the screw easily also. I'll try to include a pic here, the set was a very good investment IMO.
Wood Rectangle Gas Office supplies Beige


Onto the installation of the new sight, a few observations. The screws I had (the original plus 3 replacements sent from Colt) all had a small amount of what I think is some type of thread locker on them. It was dried, yellowish, and in one spot midway or less up the threads. Thing is, every time I started to screw the screw in to secure the sight, the wrench would begin to spin when the yellow thread locker engaged the threads. This happened on several screws, I eventually removed the compound in order to thread the screw in.

I did use a small amount of 242 Blue, putting a drop on a paper towel, the dabbing a tiny bit onto the screw with a toothpick.
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One thing that is still concerning, did I get the screw tight enough? It is engaging the front sight, I grasped it and cannot pull it out by hand. But when the screw decided it was done (I felt no resistance), the wrench again began to spin.

I'm of the opinion that frankly Colt would be well off to use a larger set screw to secure these front sights, the screws seem far too delicate on the inside of the Allen head at this tiny size. Hopefully I now have a secured front sight and if so I won't be changing it anytime soon. Really hoping firing at the range Monday won't see the sight launching from it's perch.

ETA: Tools. I now have several .050" Allen wrenches. Tiny as they are, inconsistent and varied in quality.
My latest set was purchased for this job, Chinese junk as it turns out. Will be able to use larger sizes for work. Has Standard down to .050" and Metric down to 1.27mm (which turns out is also .050"). But the standard wrench began to spin very early, while the Metric wrench did not. Breaking out both Calipers and a 0-1 Micrometer, I found out why. The .050" wrench was actually .047" (ish) while the 1.27mm measures right about .0505".

I initially used a U.S. made folding key set that rounded off a slight bit (when I installed the fiber optic sight), so I cut the rounded portion off. Measuring that one, it showed right on .050". But I think anything that small, either the screw or the wrench is just bound to damage far too easily. Just my opinion, YMMV.
 

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Glad you got it done. China=junk. But everyone for the past 20 years wanted "cheap." I only buy and use quality American tools, which sadly were all made 50-75 years ago.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I think chances are good that it will be secure. The screw is definitely making contact with the sight (as I said, I can't pull it out by hand). The screw should not loosen (the little Loctite I used should prevent it backing out). So with luck, no launching the tritium. I'll be at an indoor range, so if it does launch, recovery should be an option.

Glad you got it done. China=junk. But everyone for the past 20 years wanted "cheap." I only buy and use quality American tools, which sadly were all made 50-75 years ago.
Yep. Actually China can (and does) make quality products, but you have to be willing to pay. They will build an item to whatever price point the Seller wishes to meet. Obviously with our thirst for "cheap", that is how they build many products.

Getting harder and harder to even find American made tools. But they are out there. I bought these initially because my American Made folding Allen key set that went to .050" had rounded off. At least I thought it had, I could have been mistaken (that was months ago).

I work with hand tools quite a lot (I'm a Union Millwright, we carry a lot of tools). My boxes have a mix of American and Chinese tools. I generally stick to some of the better brands for the Chinese stuff (mostly sockets, mostly impact and guaranteed for life). My ratchets are all Snap On, pliers Klein, Channel Lock, etc.

TBone ,funny you mention yellow. I like the pre treated . I got 4 snap on 1/4 drive. Micros .
You post your size , n I send it to you - if I got it
Thanks, are you talking Allen sockets? These screws are .050", I've never seen an Allen socket that small. Love the Snap On ratchets. I've got the long handle and standard in ½", ⅜" and ¼" drive. Nothing better out there I've found.
 

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I'd be tempted to try to find a slotted machine screw to replace the Allen screw.
Or use a screw slot file to convert an Allen screw to slotted.

Done right, you won't have the spinning Allen wrench problem and can get a tighter screw.

The smaller the Allen screw is, the easier to strip the hole or the wrench.
When they get really small like the front sight screw, it becomes almost impossible to get it properly tightened without damaging one or the other.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I'd be tempted to try to find a slotted machine screw to replace the Allen screw.
Or use a screw slot file to convert an Allen screw to slotted.

Done right, you won't have the spinning Allen wrench problem and can get a tighter screw.

The smaller the Allen screw is, the easier to strip the hole or the wrench.
When they get really small like the front sight screw, it becomes almost impossible to get it properly tightened without damaging one or the other.
That is an excellent idea. I do have a few spares, l may just give this a whirl.
 
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