Pirate 4x4 banner

1 - 20 of 38 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,097 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I need a very sturdy, and accurate tap and die set. I want it for sae and metric. Harbor freight sucks, and the Cornwell truck wants like 250 for a set. Should i just buy the cornwell tap & die or is there another place i could possibly buy off the shelf that won't fail me?

Does Sears sell that shit?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
486 Posts
I'm not a machinist so I can't vouch for accuracy, but I've been quite happy with my Sears set (after fighting with POS Harbor Freight crap, Great Neck I think, for years):

Sears.com

I think I paid a little less than the currently advertised $109 but can't complain in any way. It's solid enough that I don't want to lend it to anyone.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
926 Posts
Craftsman 74 Pcs SAE Metric Tap and Die Set 952377 | eBay

If you watch ebay you can probably find a deal on an older Craftsman 74,75,or 76 pc. set that is lightly used and old enough to be made in US. I have had a set like this for 10-11 years and have not had any trouble with them. My set is all US and German made. Taps and Dies look identical to Snap-On or Mac sets from the era.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,066 Posts
Any more I just buy taps in the size I need .The correct drill at the same time

Great to have the needed tap but have to go buy a drill bit.

Either McMaster Carr or MSC depending on which one I happen to order from at the time.

I don`t think I bought dies in years .

But I do get the thread restorers in the sizes I need.

The thread replacements in the sizes I need

At least for me most sets have pieces I will never use.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,277 Posts
all the tool truck taps are shit
hand taps that are sharpened with too much relief angle so that they break teeth off if you try and break chips with them, and they're hand taps so they aren't going to clear their own chips. Most of them look like shit roll formed carbon steel, with four flutes for extra snappiness.
Replacing the tap for free don't mean shit when it's broke off in a part I've just spent 30 hours on.

I dunno about sets, but all I'll buy any more is a decent brand, cut or ground thread, and spiral flute or pointed. "Decent brand" does not mean de facto american, just a few of a short list that's in my brain. OSG, butterfield, greenfield, and about ten or twenty others I'd recognize as good if I saw them in a catalog. Carbon steel's okay so long as it was designed by someone who has used a tap three or four times in their miserable lives.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,277 Posts
Buy a huot index on Amazon for NC and another for NF and buy single taps from Morse, OSG, Union Butterfield, etc and fill the drill holes with left hand cobalt drills assuming you deal with broken bolts.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,327 Posts
My Matco set has been fine, and my guy will replace them if they're dull, not just broken taps. However it's been religated to my travel tap set only, and I've been using OSG taps for everything at home and at work, they're so much smoother, sure they last longer, but more importantly they cut faster. As a weird added benefit, they seem to go from super sheep to dull as turds right away when they do wear out, nice little warning to replace it before you wreck a part.

Get yourself a thread repair set too, so much better than chasing boogered up threads with a tap.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
666 Posts
How much taping/threading do you do? Every day, week, once in a while? I have one of those Crapsman 75 (or something) piece sets, works fine for anything i do, even power tapping with a drill, which many cheaper taps can't handle. After working in machine shops for years, I would want OSG, greenfields or the like if i was using it day in and out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,097 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
How much taping/threading do you do? Every day, week, once in a while? I have one of those Crapsman 75 (or something) piece sets, works fine for anything i do, even power tapping with a drill, which many cheaper taps can't handle. After working in machine shops for years, I would want OSG, greenfields or the like if i was using it day in and out.
every once in a while. maybe once a week or so.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,580 Posts
An Irwin set, if still HSS, will do you fine. At least a couple of the tool truck brands are likely Irwin.

I've never experienced hate for hand taps, they work fine if quality and you understand how to use them, ie in a turn, back out 1/2 turn. Whatever floats your boat, but spiral point is only for thru-holes and spiral flute is very expensive if you try to piece together a full set. I had an import 8-32 spiral flute that did nothing but strip holes, never could figure it out as it looked fine. Thus I learned to only buy quality like OSG (I've never seen something like an Irwin spiral flute).

And yeah, dies aren't used that often....I might just piece together nice taps from use-Enco.com hot deals catalog (just missed 20% off + free ship). The concept of buying the required drill is foreign to me though as I keep a Huot index stocked w all fractional, wire & letter (purchased in packs of 6 or 12 from Enco during sales).

Finally, yes, you need a thread restorer kit if you don't have one. The Craftsmans are identical to the....Matcos?.... and have been available for ~$40 for the full set off and on for like a year now. Discussions at the tool polisher forum:
Craftsman 48 piece SAE & Metric Thread Restorer Kit $40 - The Garage Journal Board

Craftsman 48 piece SAE/Metric Thread Restorer Set - The Garage Journal Board
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,277 Posts
I've never experienced hate for hand taps, they work fine if quality and you understand how to use them, ie in a turn, back out 1/2 turn.
Crappy hand taps is what I have hate for. When they've got too much relief angle from the cutting edge they'll fold over the chip you're trying to break, it wedges in there and pops off a tooth that then digs in and snaps off the tap.

Look at a decent one and it'll have next to no relief angle at the cutting edge, so that it snaps the chip off cleanly without wedging it between the hole and the tap.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,580 Posts
Crappy hand taps is what I have hate for. When they've got too much relief angle from the cutting edge they'll fold over the chip you're trying to break, it wedges in there and pops off a tooth that then digs in and snaps off the tap.

Look at a decent one and it'll have next to no relief angle at the cutting edge, so that it snaps the chip off cleanly without wedging it between the hole and the tap.
Good to know, I'm often bad about following up on these nuances; I just buy quality -- if it works I get the job done & move on. But paying attention to such things is NEVER bad & knowledge is power. I've often wondered if hand taps need soooo much taper at the start, and am definitely guilty of sanding down the noses to make a plug or bottoming tap -- seems to work (shrug)

Slightly related to tapping, one of my least favorite jobs involves tapping a shallow, blind hole M3x0.5 in Delrin. Shit, it's hard to know if you've bottomed before you strip out the plastic. But I learned the hard way on a part that I already had many hours in, and developed a feel for it very quickly after that LOL
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
890 Posts
I'm pretty happy with my big Craftsman set, but when they do wear out or break, I've started buying the 3-tap Irwin sets on Amazon. It's about the same price for a taper, plug, & bottoming tap as a single taper locally, of any brand.
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B003K15EQG/

...and they're made in USA. ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,011 Posts
I wouldn't waste your money on truck brand tap/die sets as most of them are just relabeled carbon steel Irwin/Hansen sets. Like others have said, go on ebay and look for a USA made Craftsman HSS set. As you break or wear out taps, replace them with a higher quality from MSC or McMaster.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,277 Posts
I've often wondered if hand taps need soooo much taper at the start, and am definitely guilty of sanding down the noses to make a plug or bottoming tap -- seems to work (shrug)
Whenever I break a tap, it gets ground into a bottoming tap on the bench grinder.

Another cheap bastard tip, toss a chainsaw sharpening wheel (3/16" or so thick, dressed to a radius) into a cheapo bench grinder, and run it down the flutes on the cutting side, takes about 30 seconds to make a dull tap cut like brand new again.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
666 Posts
Good to know, I'm often bad about following up on these nuances; I just buy quality -- if it works I get the job done & move on. But paying attention to such things is NEVER bad & knowledge is power. I've often wondered if hand taps need soooo much taper at the start, and am definitely guilty of sanding down the noses to make a plug or bottoming tap -- seems to work (shrug)
I've always ground the nose off taps, even at work when power tapping with a machine. As long as you leave a couple lead in threads it's not an issue.

Slightly related to tapping, one of my least favorite jobs involves tapping a shallow, blind hole M3x0.5 in Delrin. Shit, it's hard to know if you've bottomed before you strip out the plastic. But I learned the hard way on a part that I already had many hours in, and developed a feel for it very quickly after that LOL

M3 in delrin..lol.what a PITA. Drill an undersized hole you can run a screw/bolt into, it'll thread itself...lol I worked at a place we made delrin pump housings..20 mins of machining, an hour of deburring. I had a deep hate for delrin after that job.
 
1 - 20 of 38 Posts
Top