How to find QUALITY taps
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Posts
    96

    How to find QUALITY taps

    I'm tires of using crappy hardware store taps. Time to start sourcing some quality ones BEFORE I need them. Gonna troll eBay etc. What brands are worth buying?

    Usage:

    Hand tapping steel and aluminum up to 1/2" thick in various sizes.
    Possibly power tapping in the future with a tapping head for the drill press.

    Planing to search out 3 tap sets in my common sizes and buy them up as they come available. Just don't know what brands to but. Will NOT buy Irwin Hansen, Dewalt, etc... Looking for ACTUAL tools not junk.

    Thanks for the help.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    75

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    Depends on your budget. I have had great luck with Morse but they are expensive.
    Tom

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Outside of Raleigh, NC
    Posts
    758

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    Go to Traver’s Tool or MSC and buy US Mfg. They are a supplier to machine shops. Lots of good brands.
    Miller Trailblazer Pro 350D
    Miller Suitcase MIG
    Miller Spectrum 2050
    Miller Syncrowave 250DX
    Lincoln 210MP

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    West coast of Florida
    Posts
    240

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    I've had good luck with OSG and Guhring, also to consider number of flutes and coating
    Richard

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    central Wis.
    Posts
    4,079

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    I have had good luck with ones I got from Viking drill.
    Miller xmt304, Miller S22 p12, Miier Maxstar SD, Miller 252 w 30A, Miller super32p12, Lincoln Ranger 9, Thermal Arc 181I with spoolgun, Hypertherm 10000 ,Smith torches. Esab 161lts miniarc.

  6. #6

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    Look at Kodiak Cutting Tools. They are made in the USA. I've had good luck with them but I'm just a hobbyist.

    Spiral point tap for through holes and spiral flute for blind holes if you will be power tapping iirc.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    minnesota
    Posts
    1,922

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    Greenfield and osg
    Millermatic 252
    millermatic 175
    miller 300 Thunderbolt
    lincoln ranger 250
    smith torches
    lots of bfh's
    If it dont fit get a bigger hammer

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    n.w. of chicago
    Posts
    696

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    Do yourself a favor and lookup/try Emuge taps made I Germany, I'm a made in USA guy but.....

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    2,322

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps


    monte_santa_cruz


    Quote Originally Posted by monte_santa_cruz View Post
    I'm tires of using crappy hardware store taps -
    Time to start sourcing some quality ones BEFORE I need them -
    Gonna troll eBay etc. - Looking for ACTUAL tools not junk.
    There are great machine tool [US] Mfg. - the issue falls: to what is good - and how
    do I get it . . .

    In the machining industry: there are 100's of old quality producers that are unknown,
    and unavailable to 'small guys' - because, they are not buying 100s/1000s of cutters
    a month/year.

    This: is how you get access to a few [limited] quality tools - in small quantities . . .

    scsmith
    42's recommendations = 'first order' . . .

    Quote Originally Posted by scsmith42 View Post
    Go to Traver’s Tool or MSC and buy US Mfg. They are
    a supplier to machine shops. Lots of good brands.
    I try to buy local - but there is no ''local'- in the desert . . .

    Both: Big Book/Internet Companies - are the 'American Dream' . . .

    https://www.mscdirect.com/corporate/company-timeline
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Travers_Tool

    'You get what you pay for' - Good for you - to be willing to pay . . .


    Opus

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    1,266

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    Don't buy sets,
    don't buy from ebay
    Don't buy anything marked as carbon steel - get HSS

    Don't get straight four flute hand taps

    get spiral point taps. for through holes, spiral flute taps for blind holes.

    That way you only need to buy one tap per size instead of three and they work better.

    No need to spend fifty bucks on a quarter inch tap either unless you're in stainless, hardened toolsteels, monel and such.

    It's local to me - Sowa Tools
    I get their import line - say ten bucks or so depending on size and they are fine.
    Stainless and hardened steel would be time to upgrade though.

    Get a HOUT index and keep them organized

    I'd start with the Inch Coarse threads number six to to three quarter = most common fabrication for me

    If you're a car guy then metric will be common.
    Last edited by 12345678910; 01-11-2019 at 02:20 AM.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Location
    Cumbria, UK
    Posts
    317

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    Presto or Dormer is what we prefer. The newer Dormer stuff is supposed to be poorer quality, but I've had no problems with wear or anything. If spiral point is out of your budget then a No.2 tap will do everything except blind holes. (and usually you can get away with just drilling deeper)

    Also - key point for me - use proper cutting paste. It makes easier cuts, and leaves your taps sharper for longer.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Near Traverse City, Mi.
    Posts
    291

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    KBC tools sells good stuff.
    Miller Dynasty 280 DX, Lincoln 210 MP

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Posts
    96

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    Great info guys. Almost all those names are new to me as I don’t have a machinist background. I’d have never known what to look for!!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    ct.
    Posts
    1,130

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    I used to buy taps and drills from Enco
    whenever a good deal came around. Now
    that they were bought by MSC seems like
    everything winds up costing more, even
    with they’re “deals”.
    I’ll probably check out KBC next time I need
    yo order taps or drills. I’ve bought Hanson
    (Irwin) taps at HD, and they seemed ok.
    Miller a/c-d/c Thunderbolt XL
    Millermatic 180
    Purox O/A
    Smith Littletorch O/A
    Hobart Champion Elite

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Posts
    15

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    In the Netherlands where I live most company's who work in metal fabrication of any kind use Volkel or Dormer.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    May 2018
    Location
    Land of the Toxic Avenger
    Posts
    1,225

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    Ive found that whether I buy high quality or cheapo, if you don't use lubricant while drilling or tapping, they wear out fast.

    Bought Kodiak burrs a few weeks back. They're phenomenal. Better than any burr ive ever owned. Woiod definitely look into them if I needed any other machine tools
    T man.


    15 + years working for myself, and by golly, I still don't know what I want to do when I grow up.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    North Central Indiana
    Posts
    4,724

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    I buy mostly Hansen taps and dies from the hardware store because most times I'm in a hurry and don't want to wait for a tap or die to show up. There good enough for me, I take my time and always use a cutting paste and the right size drill bit. I have better quality drills and reamers for 5/8 up to 1"

    I bought some supposedly better Chinese dies off Amazon and Starrett tap holders and Champion die, holders. I don't do enough tapping and threading I worry about wearing a tap or die out, but I do insist on on having good tap holders and die holders.

    I read an opinion by a gunsmith once who said when tapping small holes it's best to use carbon steel taps instead of HSS taps.... because carbon steel taps can be chipped out with a center punch, pick or small chisel, where HSS taps will bend or mush down instead of chipping out. Just something I thought I would throw out to hear different opinions from guys that do a lot of tapping.
    Attached Images Attached Images      
    Last edited by tackit; 01-13-2019 at 12:53 PM.
    I've been everywhere but the electric chair, seen everything but the wind...the only two things I can't weld is the crack of dawn and a broken heart!

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Not there
    Posts
    3,789

    Re: How to find QUALITY taps

    Most of mine, now that I look, are Vermont American HSS and NOS from Cripe distributing. My Metrics are Tekton

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