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Tap & Die Set Recommendation Needed

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Jackbequick

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I think that's all good advice, Music Man' with a couple of comments from my thinking ...I don't use spray as in my view it is inadequate in maintaining good/best lubrication and dissipating the 'hot spots' when cutting. Trefolux 'hangs around' though melting and has some mystery bits in its compound...maybe a light grinding material (?)

Sprayed oil (WD?) would have seen thread damage if I'd used it (it hadn't been yet invented then) in my first days of the apprenticeship Odyssey of which I wrote.

The starter (taper) intermediate tap and the plug tap should be all passed in order through the threading to achieve best or finest if you prefer, finish. Taps of quality ...even of low quality...can be quite expensive and should not be stored unprotected from each other. It is 'best practice to keep their very hard sharp surfaces 'off' each other.

I thought to extend the comments on dies, button dies being covered in your work. That tapered screw which can expand the die diameter ten allow reduction is useful for a deliberately reduced cut (to counter wear in the female part) and/or good finish. Though not always used, it is there for a purpose and 'should be used'...but competently..?

Conduit dies are/were not split up to inch and a quarter-inch an half, neither are some (water) pipe dies however there are, particularly in larger sizes, stocks which use 4 separate threaded sections rather the 'otherwise in one piece' or mono-block dies...Numbered for correct order in the cutting the purpose being to adjust the cutting depth...same with some large conduit dies, though rare in my experience.

Water pipe is much thicker than electrical steel conduit and can take deeper cut without distortion or breakage. The problems can arise when cuts become too deep and the joining into say a fitting becomes sloppy enabling unreliable earthing at high currents (electrical) or leaking water (Plumbing). I mentioned these to sort of round-off the information but also to just put it before people who haven't been exposed much to taps and dies.

Musing over this part of my life brought up some 'thoughts' of 'tool-collecting ' philosophy...which I realise is off the topic...nevertheless ...

Though perhaps an obsessive collection I have some envy of the chap on the forum here who has a drawer full of taps. I have more planes than I can ever use and only a couple get reasonably regularly used. I went through a period of similar addiction to shearing gear...why?...was it because I shore my own sheep and 'love'shearing? ...last time I shore my (merino's) was three..no four decades back...!...

Of course it could be 'borderline hoarder syndrome (chuckles) '.

Perhaps it's a way of pretending we are not ageing. and are holding onto our wonderment of tools from our earlier life...or just our earlier life. I have tools from my apprenticeship which I treat with a sort of respect, even awe and more power tools than I'll ever use...now I am out of contracting on construction sites. I miss those decades. I finally threw away some cordless Makita drilling machine sets, still in good order, and didn't have a break-down.

It IS then possible to cure the disease.

I had a collection of civil war pistols and early Winchesters...and at one stage as well as some big game doubles, black powder and nitro... all gone now I still have four or five rifles and pistols why?...as unless the world goes entirely crazy again I'll never use them. Target shooting is compulsory for concealable firearms but pretty boring and do not shoot animals for pleasure and egomania. I no longer shoot clays...so my only shotgun is an early hammer model 12 g needing tightening up. Why then keep them? I admire the engineering of some, my .458 Lott which I want to re-bed, for example, and the workmanship on my (Australian) 'Alpine' .... but does that justify $350 year 'club'fees?

The desire to have things and 'fix' things ...I wonder whence it really comes. Does it mostly exist in people raised in comparative financial or even emotional poverty? Why do people 'rescue' old machinery and come on sites such as ours/yours?...Is it a 'social thing'...like taking one's dog for a walk and hoping to be stopped by a pretty girl

I have many adjustable reamers ....same thing, likely never again to be used ...Somehow "some tools maketh the man" which Bacon might have uttered were he less into etiquette. Ah well..., as, perhaps, Ernie Entwhistle's father might have observed (1950's Radio Fun comics?) "daft I call it".
 

aebersold

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Hi Guys

I'm planning on doing some tap & die work at home (small size 3-4mm upto 12mm) and I want to buy a general good quality T&D set.
As we are in the UK I'm going to stump up for an SAE/Metric set to cover the usual range of frustrations we get in the UK.

I was looking at the Gearwrench 75pc set at circa £150 inc shipping. (They looked nice and owners seem to like the tools/quality) (Fear of import tax has me here)

I have no experience of buying these and couldn't name any brands, which is why I'm here.

I'd be keen to hear of people's experience of brands available in the UK (to avoid high shipping costs) hopefully with your UK avilable recommendation.
My budget is up to £150 inc of delivery costs.

I don't like using cheap tools and I'd like to buy once before I die (see what I did there ;)

The little research I've done has led me to believe I'd be best suited to a general set of 'PLUG' type taps set.

Many thanks :)
Bristol_Rob, I bought a HSS metric set from cromwell tools years ago under their ‘sherwood’ brand name. Nicely presented in a wooden box, they’ve been excellent, cut good quality threads and supplied with the tapping drill bits. I think zoro are the same company. They also supply the liquid cutting compounds. HTH
 

TFrench

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The starter (taper) intermediate tap and the plug tap should be all passed in order through the threading to achieve best or finest if you prefer, finish. Taps of quality ...even of low quality...can be quite expensive and should not be stored unprotected from each other. It is 'best practice to keep their very hard sharp surfaces 'off' each other.


Though perhaps an obsessive collection I have some envy of the chap on the forum here who has a drawer full of taps.
My collection has accumulated in the last few years where I've been buying job lots of engineering kit to set up my workshop at work. Obviously its mainly the metrics that get used but it ain't half nice to be able to find any of the "oddball" ones when you need them! My comment about expecting a rap on the knuckles from AES is because I know I'll get told off for having them all in a drawer together, unprotected! I have got a hot wax dip pot now, but the thought of going through all of them puts me off doing it. Especially as theres the end mill and reamer drawers to do something with as well. 😆
 

deema

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I would echo what many have said, only ever buy what you need and buy quality. You can’t go wrong with Presto or Dormer. Unless your restoring a variety of different machines / old iron from different industries you will be surprised how few you actually need.
 
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