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  Mustangsandmore Forum Archive
  Tool Time
  Tap and Die Set

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Author Topic:   Tap and Die Set
68 S-code GT
Gearhead

Posts: 3835
From: Sayreville, NJ, US
Registered: Mar 2000

posted 03-27-2006 04:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 68 S-code GT        Reply w/Quote
I want to get a decent set but there is no way I can afford the really good stuff. Any suggestions on what to look for?

Seams like Iím spending more money on tolls lately instead of car parts!

68 S-code GT
Gearhead

Posts: 3835
From: Sayreville, NJ, US
Registered: Mar 2000

posted 03-29-2006 07:09 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for 68 S-code GT        Reply w/Quote
For starters I see carbon steel, high speed steel and titanium coated high speed steel. I only plan on using these occasionally but I donít want to buy something that will crap out with the first use.

71RESTO
Gearhead

Posts: 1655
From: Oregon, USA
Registered: Oct 2000

posted 03-29-2006 10:29 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for 71RESTO        Reply w/Quote
I'm no expert, but I needed a set just for chasing the various threads on my restoration. Wound up buying a nice, but inexpensive set at the swap meet for around $35. Not sure if they'll hold up for cutting new threads on steel, but for chasing old threads they've worked just fine.

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Duane
71 Fastback (under resto-351C-4V C6 auto)
M & M Member #730

Ryan Wilke
Gearhead

Posts: 3237
From: Stanton, Michigan, zip 48888
Registered: Oct 2000

posted 03-29-2006 11:00 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ryan Wilke        Reply w/Quote
Ed,

I bought an english and then later a Metric Tap & Die set from Sears (Craftsman). I only use them as Duane does, for intermittent use, not every day or in a fabrication setting. They've served me fine. I highly recommend to use Tapping Oil whenever you use either the taps or dies. The work always seems to go much easier and smoother than if I where to use WD40, motor oil, or such. However, I would use motor oil if I didn't have tapping oil. I'd never suggest you use them dry......

Just my two cents,
Ryan

68 S-code GT
Gearhead

Posts: 3835
From: Sayreville, NJ, US
Registered: Mar 2000

posted 03-30-2006 07:26 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for 68 S-code GT        Reply w/Quote
I see that Eastwood is selling a set made of tungsten steel. I guess Iíll be using these for the same purpose plus some small fabrications jobs like locking in offset dowels or a roller clutch linkage setup that opentracker is helping me with.

Bloose
Gearhead

Posts: 888
From: Milwaukee, WI
Registered: Dec 2001

posted 04-30-2006 07:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bloose        Reply w/Quote
One thing to think about when getting a cheap set. Retreiving a busted tap from a hole is a huge PITA and will make you regret saving a few bucks. Cheap is fine as long as their not made in China or India.

For just chasing threads look at this,

http://www.sears.com/sr/javasr/product.do?BV_UseBVCookie=Yes&vertical=TO OL&pid=00952105000&tab=spe#tab

For a tap and die set,

http://www.sears.com/sr/javasr/product.do?BV_UseBVC ookie=Yes&vertical=TOOL&pid=00952343000&subcat=Bolt-Out%2C+Taps+%26+Dies

HTH

[This message has been edited by Bloose (edited 04-30-2006).]

68 S-code GT
Gearhead

Posts: 3835
From: Sayreville, NJ, US
Registered: Mar 2000

posted 04-30-2006 10:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 68 S-code GT        Reply w/Quote
Round dies? I thought Steve couldn't get a replacement at Sears.

SteveLaRiviere
Administrator

Posts: 48752
From: Saco, Maine
Registered: May 99

posted 05-01-2006 08:07 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SteveLaRiviere        Reply w/Quote
Of all the tools to go cheap on, tap and dies don't seem to me to be it.

------------------
'70 Mustang Mach 1 - '70 Mustang Convertible - '72 Mustang Sprint - '94 F-150 XL

68 S-code GT
Gearhead

Posts: 3835
From: Sayreville, NJ, US
Registered: Mar 2000

posted 05-01-2006 10:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 68 S-code GT        Reply w/Quote
So like I asked in the beginning, what should I look for? I canít afford the top of the line stuff (Snap-On, MAC, etc...).

Ryan Wilke
Gearhead

Posts: 3237
From: Stanton, Michigan, zip 48888
Registered: Oct 2000

posted 05-02-2006 09:03 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ryan Wilke        Reply w/Quote
I've got the 2nd set that B-loose listed; the 37-piece T&D set. This set has hexagonal dies.

I'd recommend it.

Don't forget to always use tapping oil.

Ryan

[This message has been edited by Ryan Wilke (edited 05-02-2006).]

SteveLaRiviere
Administrator

Posts: 48752
From: Saco, Maine
Registered: May 99

posted 05-02-2006 07:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SteveLaRiviere        Reply w/Quote
I have about 25 years on my Craftsman Kromedege set.

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'70 Mustang Mach 1 - '70 Mustang Convertible - '72 Mustang Sprint - '94 F-150 XL

2FarGone
Journeyman

Posts: 97
From: Kent, Oh,
Registered: Nov 2004

posted 05-08-2006 04:36 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 2FarGone        Reply w/Quote

Actually, yes, you CAN afford the best taps and dies out there.

First get a generic cheap set. Craftsman, Sears, Harbor freight, take your pick, because your not actually buying a 'tap and die' set, your getting a thread chaser set with tool holders.

Then go and buy the best taps and dies that fit that set, but buy them as you need them. A couple bucks here, a couple there, it adds up but as has been said before, snap a tap inside something you care about and you'll be very, very sorry.

Plus you won't get all the taps you need in a set anyhow. There are tap taps, semi bottoming and bottoming taps. Usually tap kits have only regular taps. If your doing a blind hole and need to thread to near the bottom your going to be buying the bottom and semi bottoming taps anyhow.

Theres more: Usually a tap and die kit has one style of tap. There are 3 flute taps, 4 flute taps, and gun/power taps. There are taps where the flutes are spirald. You may find you like one style more than another, and if you lay out a whole bunch of cash for something yu don't like as well as another your not going to be happy. And you'll love a power tap if you need a whole lot of threaded holes for tube clamps in say, a trailer frame.

You'll also find you will not need every tap in a set. No need to spend a whole lot of money on something you'll loose before you use.

Then there are the additional acccesories, I have a set of tap drivers for ratchets and such that I don't know what I would have done without sometimes. I don't remember how much they cost, probably because they were Snap-On and have put a mental block on it. I have a really nice Starrett tap holder I got for $5 at a garage sale.

Why am I focusing on taps .... because a die breaks and you can usually get the die off without a whole lot of problems. Not so with a tap. Believe me, you don't want to snap a tap.

Finally, lube. Spit is better than nothing. The standard seems to be sulfurized oils, least they seem most common. I can't tell hw many lubricants there are for drilling and tapping, at times it seems every alloy has it's own speced cutting juice. Believe it or not the proper lube can make a big difference.

68 S-code GT
Gearhead

Posts: 3835
From: Sayreville, NJ, US
Registered: Mar 2000

posted 05-08-2006 05:08 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 68 S-code GT        Reply w/Quote
With all of that said, what do you recomend then?

Brand wise!

[This message has been edited by 68 S-code GT (edited 05-09-2006).]

exlocal
Gearhead

Posts: 1552
From: hacienda hts., CA, USA
Registered: Dec 2004

posted 05-14-2006 12:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for exlocal        Reply w/Quote
I bought a big set (cheap price) from Harbor Freight. One of the pieces broke on the second use. I then bought a small Craftsman set with the most common sizes. You could almost feel the quality! I think it was $20 or so. You get what you pay for. One thing though. Sears will not warranty this set as a hand tool, so if you break it, they won't replace it free.

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reliving youth

68 S-code GT
Gearhead

Posts: 3835
From: Sayreville, NJ, US
Registered: Mar 2000

posted 07-16-2006 06:37 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for 68 S-code GT        Reply w/Quote
Is Irwin good?

SteveLaRiviere
Administrator

Posts: 48752
From: Saco, Maine
Registered: May 99

posted 07-16-2006 03:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SteveLaRiviere        Reply w/Quote
They seem to make good stuff, they are made in America, right?

------------------
'70 Mustang Mach 1 - '70 Mustang Convertible - '72 Mustang Sprint - '94 F-150 XL

mellowyellow
Gearhead

Posts: 8198
From: So. Fl.
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 08-22-2006 12:19 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for mellowyellow        Reply w/Quote
I have some taps and dies that are about WWII. Always use oil and back out to get rid of cutting curlies. Same with dies. Got to chase all the threads to receive intake bolts. Same with timing cover-got a bottom tap. Sears seem to be OK but be gentle with them. Another area to tap are the threads in the door attaching plates. Take them out, short soak in acid, sand and paint, then chase threads. Doing this makes fine door adjustment easier.

SteveLaRiviere
Administrator

Posts: 48752
From: Saco, Maine
Registered: May 99

posted 08-22-2006 06:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SteveLaRiviere        Reply w/Quote
I've been meaning to get a set of thread chasing taps, that way I can clean the threads without removing any material.

------------------
'70 Mustang Mach 1 - '70 Mustang Convertible - '72 Mustang Sprint - '94 F-150 XL

[This message has been edited by SteveLaRiviere (edited 08-22-2006).]

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