Patches are incredibly rare (according to the posting). Don’t waste time running around looking for them. I’ve spent most of my time running around human areas where I thought I might find or remove some extra screws from wooden beams, radios, etc., only to be disappointed. I hope this saves people time.
Screw Location Guide
Go to Clue first.
You may have passed the sand key by the river before reaching the Great Owl and thought, “There aren’t patches…” even though you passed it in your early gameplay. Yeah, I don’t think they expand until you get the compendium entry for the grinding wheel.
From the starting area, head to Great Owl Island after talking to the Padded Armorer and the Elder to get the first three people on the map. Before crossing the river to reach the island, hang a little left along the shore until you see a house key in the sand. You can check to see if there are any screws around the base of the tree trunk next to it now, but they weren’t there for me when I first got the key.
Cross the large owl island (don’t go up unless you want to get the owl statue) and then go behind it and build a bridge at the narrowest point between the sandbars. Go across and find Kalio, the Stone Armorer. Talk to them about how to make a grinding wheel and pickaxe.
Build at least: a foundation, a wall, a roof, a bed and set your spawn point before heading to the mine. While you’re there you have to kill a few red ants to get the parts you need for the pickaxe and if you die you don’t have to run back from the starting zone. Pick up the bottle cap (in the basket at the end of the rope that you probably peeked on the way down) and if you go into the cave, there’s a patch just behind. There are bugs inside. If you’re not playing in no-risk mode, be prepared. A pickaxe is essential for further crafting advancements, including a grinding wheel (requires stone). Don’t skip this part. Also, other ants will attack you if you attack a member of their colony and they see it happen. Even in threadless mode.
You can pick up four more screws by going back to the key and looking around the stump again.
The location is almost here, at the point of my arrow.
P.S I recommend carrying at least one grinding wheel mat with you at all times. There is no fast travel in the game and you will need it to process seeds and wood. This will be easier (yes, you can move your tree base around, but you’ll still be running around a lot and none of them are particularly close to the spider armourer).
PPS Bottle caps are very common and easy to replace. You’ll find them mostly in human areas and along sandbars. Usually with a large, glass bottle.