Tapping threads dead straight - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 03-24-2018, 09:15 AM Thread Starter
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Tapping threads dead straight

I donít do a lot of threading, maybe thatís why I often get threads that arenít perfectly square. Most of the time this doesnít matter so much, but sometimes it does. Iím working on a project now where it would be very helpful to have the tapped threads perfectly straight. I thought about doing it on the drill press or lathe, but Iím not so sure thatís a good idea since I canít really get either one that slow.

Any ideas?
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post #2 of 10 Old 03-24-2018, 09:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Quickstep View Post
I donít do a lot of threading, maybe thatís why I often get threads that arenít perfectly square. Most of the time this doesnít matter so much, but sometimes it does. Iím working on a project now where it would be very helpful to have the tapped threads perfectly straight. I thought about doing it on the drill press or lathe, but Iím not so sure thatís a good idea since I canít really get either one that slow.

Any ideas?
You can still do it on the drill press or lathe, but turn it by hand. I would never turn the power on.
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Don in Murfreesboro, TN.
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post #3 of 10 Old 03-24-2018, 09:39 AM
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You might drill a hole in a piece of hardwood large enough for the tap to fit through with your drill press so you know it's square. Then clamp the wood over the hole and drop the tap through. This would be a guide to hold the tap square with the surface.
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post #4 of 10 Old 03-24-2018, 09:39 AM
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I use my drill press, but I turn the chuck by hand and advance the quill with the other hand. No electricity used.

Jim Frye
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post #5 of 10 Old 03-24-2018, 09:48 AM
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https://www.mscdirect.com/browse/Thr...navid=12105970

Use a tap wrench that has a centering dimple in the top (Starrett has one ,not sure about the cheaper brands) and use a tap guide chucked up in the drill press to hold the tap wrench straight.

Small taps you may get away with just chucking up in the drill press and either rotating the chuck by hand or for better leverage rotating the pulley by hand.

Yes drill press rpm is to fast....I've done tons of power tapping on a mill (back gear..slow) but pick and choose what I know I could get away with.

Knot Stumped ...just confused once in a while.
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post #6 of 10 Old 03-24-2018, 11:15 AM
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threading vs tapping

I done my fair share of both, but threading is a bit more difficult. I use a battery powered drill for tapping, BUT it's easy to break the tap.

If you look up the proper sizes of drills for tapping, you'll find there may be more than one drill that works. The difference is the % of threads, or gripping strength and for different materials. All this means is that the tap may go in with less effort than if a different (smaller) drill were used.

Here's a chart:
https://littlemachineshop.com/Reference/tapdrill.php

As far as getting the tap square to the surface, use a pre-drilled block of any appropriate material to guide the tap into the hole.
The hole in the block should be drilled on the drill press so get it square to the base of the block. Starting a tap in the D/P is difficult because the quill is spring loaded to stay UP, pulling it down while rotating it is not that easy. I rarely use this method.

You will get better with practice, and by checking from 3 o'clock and 6 o'clock to keep it square in all axis. Pretty soon you won't need the guide block.

There are 2 types of tap handles. The most difficult one in my opinion is the long fixed handle because any tip in either direction will cause the tap to be slanted, AND it is difficult to apply downward pressure to get the tap started:


The other type is a sliding "T" handle, easier to apply downward pressure AND often comes with a countersunk center on the top end to start it under a drill press:

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)

Last edited by woodnthings; 03-24-2018 at 12:58 PM.
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post #7 of 10 Old 03-24-2018, 11:27 AM
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Drilling and tapping accurate holes on the late is something that pool cue makers have to deal with all the time. Here's a tap handle that makes that easy -

https://www.cuecomponents.com/prtaaid.html

... and it's on sale now.

Dave in CT, USA
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post #8 of 10 Old 03-24-2018, 01:01 PM
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for use on a lathe, but......

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Originally Posted by Maylar View Post
Drilling and tapping accurate holes on the late is something that pool cue makers have to deal with all the time. Here's a tap handle that makes that easy -

https://www.cuecomponents.com/prtaaid.html

... and it's on sale now.
It could also be chucked up in the drill press and that would keep the tap in a vertical axis. Not a bad idea, in my opinion. Not meant for powwer tapping in the D/P however.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #9 of 10 Old 03-24-2018, 02:29 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all those great ideas. I ended up doing it by manually turning a chuck in the large. I did it by putting a bolt in the hole for the chuck key. It would have been a whole lot easier with that fancy pool cue tap handle. Might have to get me one of those!
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post #10 of 10 Old 03-24-2018, 02:49 PM
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Go to a machine shop auction and pick up one of these, sometimes they go dirt cheap, but sometimes they go for more than new, greatest thing for tapping there is, with down pressure it spins the tap to go in and up pressure automatically reverses the tap

But I have them because I also do quite a bit of machine work

There is no app for experience
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