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Discussion Starter #1
Included in the 1914 Carpenter's box I purchase last year was a nice mortising/marking gauge, pictured below. On its second use, I tightened the brass thumb screw and proceeded to strip the steel nut embedded in the fence. I pulled out the brass pins and removed the brass face, the knocked out the nut, figuring I can just replace it, and maybe I can, but I noted that it is not a standard nut, but what looks like perhaps a short steel bar that was drilled and tapped. It looks like a second set of brass pins partly when through the steel to hold it in place, or keep it from rotating. I am hoping to find a nut that fits the brass screw and fits into the hole. Not sure how I'm going to get the nut into the existing hole, from the side where that the arm goes through. Has anyone done a similar repair and can offer some advice? Thanks.

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Assuming you can get a nut to fit the brass screw, it looks like you could grind/file it down to fit over the brass pins from the top. I'd then use epoxy to hold it in place permanently.

If you can fit it from the top, I'd remove the beam before epoxy is applied so you don't get any drips/spill that lands on the beam and causes movement problems. You could also fit it from the bottom if that would work better - hard to tell without looking at it in person.

If you can't find a nut to fit the brass screw, you could always use a standard nut and make a new brass screw. I made a screw from brass rod for the marking gauge swap about a year ago.
 

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Adding to trc65's post, I would use a coupler nut for the nut. These are used to connect two pieces of threaded rod, so will be a lot deeper than regular nut. Likely need to cut off a little.

The hex shape on the outside should hold well with the epoxy.

Select the nut to match the brass screw diameter. Likely 5/16in or 3/8n dia.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Partial Success

I went to the local hardware store and quickly discovered that the brass thumb screw I have is far coarser than what was available. I picked up instead a steel screw and matching nut ($4.79!). I carefully chiseled out a little of the fence until i could get the nut to sit in then finished the job with a hammer and nail set. Only problem was that the new thumb screw was gouging the brass inset on the beam, so i tried grinding it down a bit but unsatisfactorily. I should have used a file, and I suppose that will be my next attempt to keep the screw from marking the brass so badly. I haven't yet glued in the nut so at this point the work is reversible.

But then I was looking at the pins for the mortise marking side, and one of them is barely a nub. I think this can be replaced, but that would be additional work figuring out how, then doing it, just to get a tool I need right now into working shape. SO, I've decided to lay this one aside for now; I will certainly come back to it in the future and finish the job, but its too much fettling and not enough woodworking for me at the moment. Separate thread on purchasing marking gauges going up now.
 

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See if you can find a nylon tipped screw to replace the set screw. It won't damage the brass and shouldn't slip when properly tightened.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Woodenhorse said:
See if you can find a nylon tipped screw to replace the set screw. It won't damage the brass and shouldn't slip when properly tightened.
Thanks. I will look for one when I come back to this and am ready to replace a pin too.
 

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Why not use a brass screw instead of the steel screw?
 
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