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I was tightening the bolt on top of the stem ( forgot the name ) Anyways I realized the spacers had a lot of movement and thats when I ****ed up. The allen got stripped when I tried to loosen it. I tried to loosen it by pushing the side of the bolt with the key ( I dont know how to explain properly ) but it worked for a little bit till the bolt got more stripped. At this point I dont know what to do. I was frustrated because I have been working on this bike for a month and it was supposed to be finished today till my ass ruined it. You can make fun of me or whatever but please give me some advice.

Thanks


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Forever a Student
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First thing you can try is getting a torx bit that's a touch larger than the current hole. Hammer it in and press down and turn, something like this video.


 

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^Yup, that's step one. If it doesn't work, fortunately that's an easy bolt to drill out. Drill the bolt till the head breaks off and the top cap falls off. Then drill the star nut or compression assembly until it all falls apart. Flip the bike upside down to dump out all the peices. Then install a new assembly. If you really wanna save the assembly you can try drilling a small hole in the middle of the bolt and using an Easy-out but my time and effort are worth more than a new assembly.

Now, to make fun of you: Your mother's a hampster and your father smells of elder berries. Done. Now go ride.
 

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Start with a screw extraction tool:

https://www.amazon.com/5pcs-Damaged...76180341&sr=8-9&keywords=screw+extractor+tool

If that does not work:

1.) With about a 3/16" drill I would drill the top of the bolt until the head pops off.
2.) Remove the top cap and spacers
3.) Grip top of bolt with needle nose vice grips tightly and try to back bolt out.

is that an aluminum alloy bolt to get the fancy blue color? If so, that is your mistake. Galvanic corrosion will occur between dissimilar metals insuring it will bind...and then strip.
 

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If you don't mind ruining the top cap and there's enough bolt head metal left, dremel or hacksaw a slot into the bolt head so you can use a larger screwdriver to back the bolt out.

Drilling away whats left of the bolt head is the much better approach because the top cap is left intact. But you know how it goes, drills slip.....
 

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If you don't mind ruining the top cap and there's enough bolt head metal left, dremel or hacksaw a slot into the bolt head so you can use a larger screwdriver to back the bolt out.

Drilling away whats left of the bolt head is the much better approach because the top cap is left intact. But you know how it goes, drills slip.....
I'm with wim. The cap is a write off as it appears to be chipped up around the bolt hole anyway. I'd use a dremel wheel to cut a slot. Hacksaw would work too but I think you risk more damage if you cut too deep or not level. If that doesn't work then drill it
 

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With your demonstrated mechanical ability, take the bike to a bike shop & pay the price. Tell them your hamsters got out of their cage and for some reason attacked the bolt cause it had some sweat salt on it.

How do you strip an allen head? Really?
 

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With your demonstrated mechanical ability, take the bike to a bike shop & pay the price.
But only if the person doing the work at the bike shop has some demonstrated mechanical ability. You would think this is a given, but not so. The thought "I could have effed it up even more at home and for free" comes to mind.
 

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The one time I stripped one of those I wedged in an allen key and a very thin screwdriver at the same time to take up any play and then turned them together. Probably a stupid idea but it worked and it appears you have nothing to lose by trying at this point.
 

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In similar situation for me MMsRepBike's suggestion about using one size up Torx or allen worked, but takes some patience.

Since you managed to do this... fair to remind you: righty tighty, lefty loosey, except for the left pedal... :)

PS There are a zillion top caps out on eBay, you can find some fun/vintage/unique/etc ones...
 

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You said "I was tightening the bolt on top of the stem ( forgot the name ) Anyways I realized the spacers had a lot of movement and that's when I ****ed up. "


That top cap bolt needs very little force when it's installed. It's just for preloading the bearings. Just a light touch with two fingers holding the L wrench is all you need.

The two bolts on the stem are what holds everything together, not this top cap bolt. And they are tightened after the top cap adjustment is done.

So, the fact that it's so tight that you stripped it shows that you really don't know what you are doing here.

See this Park Tool how-to on adjusting the headset: Threadless Headset Service. It's pretty easy once you see how it works. It's not all that obvious, I can see how you got confused.

Cutting a slot in the bolt (and that will cut the cap too) with a fine toothed hacksaw sounds good--assuming the cap is rounded above the stem--some are flat or concave. A Dremel tool with a thin cutting blade would work, too. Then a flat blade screwdriver will remove it.
 

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You said "I was tightening the bolt on top of the stem ( forgot the name ) Anyways I realized the spacers had a lot of movement and that's when I ****ed up. "
I don't think tightness was the problem. That's what it kind of sounds like from his convoluted explanation. But what I think he really means is he used the allen wrench as a pry bar on the bolt head and boogered it up that way.

"Anyways I realized the spacers had a lot of movement and thats when I ****ed up.
I tried to loosen it by pushing the side of the bolt with the key."


I think he was jamming the allen key, on and angle, into the bolt to move the spacers. That's what it appears like from the chips in the carbon cap and the aluminum gouges on the (top) of the hex screw. If it was a matter of stripping out the hex from over tightening, those wouldn't be there.
 

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That top cap bolt needs very little force when it's installed. It's just for preloading the bearings. Just a light touch with two fingers holding the L wrench is all you need.

The two bolts on the stem are what holds everything together, not this top cap bolt. And they are tightened after the top cap adjustment is done.
This is a good reminder, though.
 

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Start with a screw extraction tool:/QUOTE]

Yes, that's would I would do, as I have a few on hand. Certainly try to save the Felt carbon stem cap if you can. You need to get the proper drill size to match the screw extractor, some times they sell them in sets with the drill bits.
Or just carefully drill out the top of the allen bolt.
Once the cap comes off, you can loosen and remove the stem, extract the rest of the bolt with vise-grips. At the that point it should be loose anyways.
 

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U're asking someone who... stripped an allen head, to drill ... a drill with powered moving parts... straight.... into the top of that and don't expect another CF?
You have lost your mind!

Does this forum have a spell checker... someone messed with what I originally said!
 

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Start with a screw extraction tool:/QUOTE]

Yes, that's would I would do, as I have a few on hand. Certainly try to save the Felt carbon stem cap if you can. You need to get the proper drill size to match the screw extractor, some times they sell them in sets with the drill bits.
Or just carefully drill out the top of the allen bolt.
Once the cap comes off, you can loosen and remove the stem, extract the rest of the bolt with vise-grips. At the that point it should be loose anyways.
The screw extractor that I linked is different than an easy-out as it does not require drilling a hole. The stripped pocket of the screw forms the hole for the extractor to bite into. The extractor also has a reverse cut drill face on it that helps to cut deeper into the screw as you use it in a drill set for reverse and extremely slow speed.
 

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Considering that is a Felt bike I spy I suspect the bolt is aluminum 2025. That is what it was for my Felt bike and I accidentally striped the hex on that bolt. Not as badly as the op though but I inadvertently didn't fully seat the the key and whoopsie.

Lucky for me I didn't do as much damage as the OP and was able to get it out with a ball end allen wrench crammed in there (light tapping of a rubber mallet to get it seated).

I get they like to put bits to save weight on there but an aluminum bolt is not a good way to save weight. That metal is so soft I can't believe there are suppliers that think an aluminum bolt is a good idea.

Anyways, good luck to the OP to get that off and replace it with a steel version. I replaced mine with a stainless steel one actually and now have 24 spares (had to buy them from McMaster since the local hardware store doesn't carry them in the same style heads or thread size and was stuck buying a bag). If you want PM me and I can send you one if you mail me a envelope with a stamp already affixed.
 
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