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Does anyone know how to remove a stripped motherboard standoff?

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danielbourdon

Registered
Joined
Jun 10, 2010
Location
Tooele, Utah, USA
I just got a new Cooler Master Cosmos II Ultra tower case and began moving the parts from my old case. While removing the motherboard, there was a screw next to the I/O shield that would not come out, and then I realized the standoff under the screw was stripped out. I spent an hour trying to wiggle it out and then tried prying it, which was a bad idea. I ended up ruining the on-board audio chip. This is a $220 board, and since its the standoff that is stripped, I don't think a screw extractor would work any better without damaging it further. :( 2016-09-02.jpg
 

Lochekey

Senior Pink Member
Joined
Sep 13, 2015
What does that standoff connection look like in the backside of the motherboard tray? Can you grab it with a pair of pliers.
 

Robert17

Premium Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Location
Republic of Texas
Can you reach the back side of the MB in order to get a wrench on it? If so, try putting a drop of super glue on the end of your screw driver, place the driver in the phillips drive on the screw and hold it still for about 10 seconds. Then try unscrewing. Nuttin' to lose.
 
OP
danielbourdon

danielbourdon

Registered
Joined
Jun 10, 2010
Location
Tooele, Utah, USA
No, I cannot reach the standoff at all without breaking the motherboard. The stripped standoff is in the worst possible place, directly under the I/O shield where the board can't be pulled up. This is also the case with trying to pry the screw of the standoff using a flathead screwdriver, which is why I have already damaged the board.
 

Alaric

New Member
Joined
Dec 4, 2011
Location
Satan's Colon, US
From the back of the motherboard tray, use a small drill bit (hobby store model supply or a jet drill from a auto/motorcycle parts house). Using a pin vise to hold the drill bit, try tuning the standoff clockwise with the bit to unscrew it. Use sufficient pressure to get a good bite with the bit so it grabs and doesn't just drill in to the stand off. It the stand off isn't hollow you'll have to drill a small hole to try it. Or try long hemostats under the mobo after removing the other screws.
 

JrClocker

AKA: JrMiyagi
Joined
Sep 25, 2015
I like the super glue idea above.

You can try just drilling out the screw.

Or, Another choice is to go to a hardware store (or auto parts store) and get a screw tap. But you want one that taps backwards (i.e. righty loosy lefty tighty).

You drill a small hole (not too deep).

Then you use the tap to give the hole screw threads (but in the opposite direction of normal.)

You out a screw in the hole you just made.

Put one screw driver on each screw, and you hold be able to back it out.


 

trents

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
Would you clarify what exactly is stripped? Is it where the standoff mounts in the tray below it or is it the screw securing the motherboard to the standoff that is stripped in the standoff?
 

Nebulous

Señor Senior, Senior
Joined
Oct 11, 2002
Location
The Empire State
Either using:

Crazy glue or a dab of JB weld, and attach a small phillips screwdriver to the screw. Wait at least 12hrs for either to dry and screw that sucker out. Be careful not to put too much that it will bond to the mobo!

A pair of needlenosed visegrips will work too!


I would go behind the mobo tray and use a dremel to cut it out also.
 

trents

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
Is this one of those OEM cases where only one side panel comes off such that you can't get to the underside of the motherboard mounting tray? If so, I would drill a 3/8" hole in the side panel directly opposite the standoff in question so that you have access to the standoff from the back side. Then I would drill out the standoff with a smaller drill bit. You're moving to another case anyway so a few new holes in the old one won't mean much. Just make sure you take compressed air an blow off all the metal shavings from the motherboard before you power it back up.

Once you break the offset loose from the tray then pull the motherboard out. Then with a screwdriver and a pair of pliers you should be able to separate the screw from the offset.
 
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TazExtreme3

Member
Joined
May 3, 2003
The easiest way to remove that motherboard would be to go at it slowly with a #28 size drill to drill the head off of the screw, similar to removing a rivet; rather than going for the standoff itself.
 

trents

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
The easiest way to remove that motherboard would be to go at it slowly with a #28 size drill to drill the head off of the screw, similar to removing a rivet; rather than going for the standoff itself.

That would work as long as the screw/standoff don't spin with the drill bit. It's unclear to me exactly what the nature of the problem is and why it is so difficult to get at this thing.
 

wingman99

Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2003
Can you keep turning the screw till the standoff comes out of the hole, then you could take the motherboard out to remove.
 

habbajabba

Member
Joined
Oct 29, 2005
Location
Oregon
If you can get an appropriately sized bit and drill directly into the center top of screw, with luck you may be able to back it out simply by putting it in reverse. I;ve done it with shower head screws,
 

TransformedBG

Member
Joined
Jul 24, 2013
iF YOU HAVE SOMETHING LIEK A PAIR OF wire cutters that you could get under the head of the screw then pry as you turn. or get you a wood screw or something with a flat head that will just get under the screw (that would allow an upward force on it) may give you a shot at getting it out.
 

Tech Tweaker

Member
Joined
Dec 14, 2010
Would you clarify what exactly is stripped? Is it where the standoff mounts in the tray below it or is it the screw securing the motherboard to the standoff that is stripped in the standoff?

Looks as though (going by the picture) they stripped out (wallered/wallowed out (not sure on the spelling)) the head of the screw, so now the (or any) screwdriver has no bite and it is unable to be backed out or turned by said screwdriver.

I would ordinarily recommend needle-nosed pliers or vise grips. Not sure what to recommend for when the standoff is still stuck in the case. For my the standoff usually comes with the screw and I end up having to use two sets of pliers to unscrew them from one another.

I have used the method of drilling off the head of a screw/bolt a few times myself for stuck ones (though not in motherboards), that may work here. The JB weld idea is intriguing though, and potentially less destructive.
 
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bassnut

Premium Member
Joined
Aug 16, 2009
Take one of the crews to the tool store and find the appropriate nut driver or a small socket. Right beside the nut also looks like an I/O slot for a video card or audio card remove and I think you can get a slim needle nose pliers in to grab the underside of the standoff.
 

Robert17

Premium Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Location
Republic of Texas
switches.jpg tool kit.jpg screw drivers.jpg

Not trying to hi-jack the thread, but feel that the OP may benefit from this post.

I'm certain that most folks that mess around with their PCs have a decent assortment of tools. This is a good basic tool kit specifically for working on PCs that I assembled years ago; in fact, I haven't had to add to it in at least 20 years excepting the screw driver kit; it was a really nice upgrade that was gifted to me. There are other tools I do use occasionally including screw drivers and nut setters, files, snips and such. But the tools in the photos are the go-to for 95% of my fiddling around.

The two electrical items are a momentary switch and a wi-fi adapter. In the tool pic you can see that some of the items are miniature versions of some larger tools using the Handy Dandy ruler in the center.
 

WhitehawkEQ

Premium Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2010
From what I see, the MB is toast, I see a crushed cap next to the screw. So is it really necessary to save the MB?
When things like this happen, take it slow and easy and use the right size screwdriver.

standoff.jpg
 

trents

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
OP has not interacted with this thread in four days. He said in his original post that it was the audio chip he damaged. It's puzzling to me this was so difficult for him. I just can't imagine why he didn't just remove the motherboard from the tray. If the standoff was stripped in the tray it should just lift out. Once the board is out you can grip the standoff with a pair of pliers and extract the screw with a nut driver from the other side.

I'm guessing he just abandoned the project and bought another motherboard.