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Ron Crandall of Ron's
The Screwdriver: Part 2
This is the first of an intermittent series of articles about the tools needed to do your own reel maintenance or repair.
The Cross-Point Screwdriver
Most currently manufactured reels use crosspoint screws. While they may look like what most people and screwdriver manufacturers like to call Phillips screws, they are different. The crosspoint screws are 58 degrees and have a blunt point, while the Phillips screws have an angle of 55 degrees and are more pointed at the tip. Most screws now used, either for reels or in your home are cross-point screws. A Phillips screwdriver does not properly fit a crosspoint screw. Most American made screwdrivers sold to fit these screws are designed for Phillips screws. (Go Figure)
Using an unmodified Phillips screwdriver, the ones commonly found at your local hardware store, will cause you to have difficulty because the screwdriver taper is longer than the taper of the screw. You must use a bigger Phillips screwdriver to fit the crosspoint screw. The improper size of Phillips screwdriver will cause the points of the blade to override the grooves on the screw and ruin the head.
Since you cannot conveniently buy a crosspoint screwdriver, one modification that can be made to a Phillips screwdriver is to grind off the tip of the blade thereby shortening the taper.
Again, a simple alternative is to use hex tips that are made for power drivers, (not the 39 cent ones at the cash register.) with a hand adapter. (A discussion of hand adapters is in Part One.) Most are made to fit the cross point screw.
In some cases, you will come across a "modified crosspoint screw". These have one of the cross bars extending all the way across the head of the screw. On this type of screw, you can use a hollow ground flat bladed screwdriver, as discussed in Part 1. This type of screw can be found on the new Shimano and Daiwa Reels.