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Anyone who has assembled a PC will understand the frustration evoked by dropping a screw into the confines of the case and spending the next out digging it out. Only to drop it again! The good people at Startech seem to have undergone this process one too many times and have gotten so annoyed by it to develop an entire product to solve the issue.
Okay, so thumbscrews aren't an amazing advance in computing. They've been around for years in electrical engineering and other mechanical disciplines. This however is the first time I've seen them used on personal computers.
The screws themselves are of a standard size and are black anodised aluminium, of which I'm not sure but it's the same size on all computers I've ever taken apart or put back together! They're 8mm long according to the manufacturers specs but in reality they're long enough for any desktop application. The thumb screw portion is about 8mm in diameter and 8mm long as well. It may sound small but I've found them perfectly sized for easy turning. I may be an exception however as I spend the majority of my working life using smaller than average tools (surgery). That being said my school teacher girlfriend is perfectly able to turn them without spending hours in the OR!
Screws for assembling your computer are hardly a luxury item and most people won't even think twice about them. If you do think twice however go for the Startech Thumbscrews, they're only a fiver from ebay and will be worth their weight in gold when they take away your frustration. A plus product!
My computer tower has the standard screws at the back which require a screwdriver. I am always opening me case for one reason or another to give it a clean or to change something.
I purchased these thinking I would only get 4 screws - the amount required for the back of the case; but to my amazement I was staring at a pack of 50! And they were only £4.99 from ebuyer.
They match my case (colour black) - which didn't really matter anyway because none looks at the back of the computer anyway! - but these have been really useful; me not needing to go fetch the screwdriver every time.
They are a nice size too. The thumbturn part is a nice size to grip hold of with striations so you can get a nice grip on it.
Its shocking how something so small can make a big difference in your life - and if you loose one - you have the leftover from the 50 pack!!