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Old 04-07-2017, 08:50 AM
dtec1 dtec1 is offline
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: ny
Posts: 1,442
Tap info

Hey Guys. so the question of the day. I need some info about taps. Oh all of this applies to taping TITANIUM. So with building flipper folders there at many holes that need to be drilled and taped. What I have been doing is using a tapered 2-56 tap. When they are new they are ok. But they dull quick and I have found my self breaking taps off in the hole. I have been getting better, I don't break anywhere near as much as I did a month ago. But its still a pain not only the cost of the taps but if I break one off now I have to let the whole thing sit in acid wich wont do anything to the titanium but will burn the taps out. But it takes time and is a pain. I saw a video of a guy that had a TAPMATIC and I think he used thread forming taps with it. The tap matic attaches to the drill press. However looking for this tapmatic they are expensive deffinitly more than I can spend at the moment. So I am wondering if anyone has found a way to either keep the taps from dulling as quick as they do or keeping them from breaking. Is there anyway to use a tap in a drill press or a mini mill with out the tapmatic? Or what would also help is has anyone found a quicker way to remove a broken tap from the hole without destroying the hole?
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Old 04-07-2017, 10:07 AM
Ray Rogers's Avatar
Ray Rogers Ray Rogers is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Wauconda, WA
Posts: 9,793
First off, you do not want a Tapmatic for this job. The only way they can work on titanium is if you drill the pilot hole very large so there is almost no thread cut in the hole.

Buy your HSS tapered taps a dozen at a time, or at least a half dozen. Sometimes you can find them on eBay pretty cheap. Every new folder you make gets a new tap. That's how you avoid breaking taps because you will surely break it as soon as it shows any sign of getting dull. Titanium is very hard on cutting tools.

You've seen my videos, you should have seen the hand tapper I built. It's also on my Shop Tour on my website. You can buy tappers of that same general design. There are also chucked tappers that can be chucked into your drill press. All the drill press does is hold the tapper steady, you turn in by hand, not with the drill press motor. As always, when you need a tool like this check MSC ...


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Old 04-07-2017, 11:39 AM
jimmontg jimmontg is offline
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Now live in Las Cruces NM.
Posts: 1,276
Also Dave I used a tapping block, a one inch thick piece of metal where I drill a hole the taps fit into, but don't have much wiggle room. It helps you to hold the tap perpendicular to the part being tapped so there is less chance of breaking the tap or getting started crooked.
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Old 04-10-2017, 06:46 PM
WNC Goater WNC Goater is offline
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: NC Mountains
Posts: 469
One other trick if you want to stay away from acid, boil the piece in water with plenty of alum in it. Yep, plain ole pickling alum. It will dissolve a steel drill bit so I assume a tap as well.

Trick we learned when you break a bit off drilling gold. The alum won't hurt the gold and if acid doesn't hut titanium I doubt boiling in alum solution would.

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