How do you get copper debris out of brass threads?

I screwed in a Home Depot Everbilt C604 3/4 male adapter into my NPT isolation valve. I could only get four or five threads, when I determined something was wrong and tried to pull it out. I had to use a pipe wrench on the last few turns and after struggling, finally got it out, though leaving behind half the threads.

Reading another post on this forum, I suspect the Everbilt was out of tolerance, but I am interested if others have an idea of what went wrong.

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  • Pipe dope seals and lubricates threads, it looks like none was used. However it is unusual for copper to gall against stainless steel . Stainless to stainless is prone to galling. Jun 1, 2019 at 15:23
  • Possibly it is galvanized or German silver ( white brass ) but that would be very unusual. Jun 1, 2019 at 15:26

2 Answers 2


If the bits of thread are loose, then I always find a small screwdriver to gently prise them out is sufficient.

If the threads are seriously damaged, then you may need to use a tap to clear the damaged bits.

  • 1
    Angled dental picks work quite well too, given the threads aren't near-welded in.
    – stevieb
    Jun 1, 2019 at 15:04

I took this to a friend who made an NPT tap out of a black pipe cap, which restored it after some working. He had a Nibco fitting that screwed in several turns easily. A new Ace hardware fitting had the same result. I tried the second Home Depot Everbilt fitting (first is shown in pic above) and it was tight after 1 turn, so, I think those fittings are out of tolerance.
I did not use pipe dope originally as I did not intend to tighten it down, but did on the retries. Probably out of tolerance and made worse with no dope.

Stevieb: the dental pick worked for a while but then broke. A screwdriver worked in combination with the improvised tap.

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