JWG (jwg) wrote,

Kettle repair engineering

I have this kettle that looks nice, pours well, doesn't burn your hand, can be filled without taking off the lid, and doesn't whistle. The problem is that the screws inside that hold the handle come loose. There is one small phillips screw at each end of the handle and it is almost impossible to hold a screw driver inside and tighten the screws which I have to do every few weeks. Fortunately, I do have a very nice small screw driver that fits in.

When bratman was harassing visiting he suggested buying a new one and we even saw some nice ones except that they whistled. I don't like the sound of the whistling and even worse, the sound of rsc complaining if he heard it whistling so that option is out.

I decided to add a tooth washer and therefore removed one of the screws. I discovered there was a lock washer but it was compressed and therefore it wasn't doing any good. Then the big problem was how to get the screw started because there is only room to get one hand inside (no, I wasn't going to wrap pancakes in the kettle) and to hold the screwdriver and the screw was impossible.

● First I tried rubber cementing the screw to the screw driver. That didn't work since it fell off quite soon.
● Then I tried some magic tape to tape the screw to the screw driver. It worked better, but not well enough and the screw fell off.
● Finally I had the brilliant idea of taking a slice of an index card, placing a small hole in it and screwing the screw into the index card. I then used scotch tape to hold the index card to the underside of the kettle top. It worked. I got the screw in. There was a bit of problem removing the index card because the screw was in too tight, but a pair of needle nose pliers yanked it off.

I won't try the second screw until I see if the first one stays. And reminder to me: the one I did is the one not near the spout.

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