Stripped rear caliper allen bolts


Mar 10, 2003
Looking to ride next weekend and of course stripped the rear allen bolts trying to change brake pads. I tried gentle torch heat and cut a small slot in the bolt head to fit a large flat head screw driver in there but to no avail (can only go so deep with a slot before cutting the caliper metal since bolt heads are flush with caliper). I've searched the forum and basically only found the following 2 options: screw extractor or go to a machine shop.

The brake pads are worn to the nub but still might risk it for one last charity, toys for tots, ride of the season (Northeast rider here - that's my excuse for using worn Can't risk destroying the bolts with no spares on hand - this is an "over the winter project".

Any other options anyone has come up with besides the above two I mentioned?

Has anyone replaced these bolts with something else (ie hex heads) - doesn't seem feasible since no room for a socket due to the orientation of the caliper/allen setup?

Any thoughts are appreciated.


Moderator / SuperPowers
Jun 9, 1999
If you have some mechanical skills then I would try the extractor. Short of that I would take it to the shop. A mechanics bill would be a lot less than having to purchase a new caliper because of my lack of skills.



Damn Yankees
Nov 21, 2000
North East USA
That's a tough one. You are doing what I'd try. I have had luck using liquid wrench and impact driver (the kind you hit with hammer) to nudged it loose. You'll want to remove the caliper from the swing arm to support it well enough to use this technique. You may need a deeper slot in the head of the screw...of course that will mean removing some of the caliper. Just use good judgment.

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