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Author Topic: The Basics Of Thread Tapping  (Read 33515 times)

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Offline Aluke123

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #15 on: March 03, 2008, 06:17:10 PM »
Quote
I'm not 100% certain I understand the chart, so I'd like to confirm. Since it's an Ultrsaber kit (which says I need an 8/32 tap), I'm assuming this is what I want:

8-32 29  M5 x 0.8 4.20

Yup.

8-32 is the count of threads per inch. As far as the bit goes, I don't know what the 29 stands for. Can't help with your last question either. Hopefully Don or Tyranus will chime in  :)

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Offline Matt Thorn

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #16 on: March 03, 2008, 10:20:06 PM »
Thanks, Aluke123. I managed to do the whole conversion--except fixing the blade to the hilt--with no problems, in about two hours. Lots of firsts for me: first time soldering, first time using a rotary tool (I think), and first time using a glue gun. I've used a drill plenty of times, but that's precisely why I want to be extremely careful with the drilling and threading: I know how easy it is for the drill to wander. I'll wait till I get an answer about the metric tap before I do anything more. In the meantime, I'll go out and buy some fresh batteries.  :)
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Offline Matt Thorn

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #17 on: March 03, 2008, 11:35:26 PM »
Oh, wait. I think I've found what I'm looking for.
M5 is the name of this standard size tap, 0.8 is the "pitch" (whatever that means), and 4.2 mm is the size of the hole you need to drill before using the tap, right? BTW, in Japanese a tap is called a "tap" (pronounced "tappu"). Go figure. To be precise, it's called a "meneji kiri tappu" ("female-screw cutting tap"). Does this look right?
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Offline Matt Thorn

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #18 on: March 04, 2008, 01:27:58 AM »
Hm? Wait a second. The Ultrasaber DIY instructions explicitly say I should drill a 1/8" hole, which is closer to 3.2 mm. I wonder where the extra millimeter went? Oh, well. I suppose it's best to err on the small side here. I'll try drilling a 3.2 mm hole and threading it with an M5 tap.
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Offline Matt Thorn

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #19 on: March 04, 2008, 03:30:28 AM »
I just went to the home improvement shop and found the taps. It's a good thing they were out of single M5 taps (they had only 3-tap sets in stock), because I would have bought it without thinking only to discover it was the wrong size. I stared at the taps for about 20 minutes, and damned if the M5 didn't look too large. I forgot to take the screw to the store with me, but I was almost positive it wasn't that big. So I went over to the screw section and found the same kind of screws. The M4 looked like the right size. I decided I'd better double check, so I came home empty-handed. Googling "tap drill thread metric equivalents M4 M5", I found a PDF file titled "Guide for Specification of Imperial Bolts, Threads and Hole Fits in Advanced LIGO Parts" (http://www.ligo.caltech.edu/docs/T/T030118-01.pdf). I don't know what Advanced LIGO Parts are, but I downloaded it and found that, sure enough, it contained an imperial/metric equivalent chart. And, as I suspected, the metric equivalent for an 8-32 is apparently M4, not M5. As a lowly newbie who never even used a glue gun before today, I hate to point this out, but it seems the chart Aluke123 included in his (incredibly helpful and informative) post is off by one unit.  :-[ Googling again, I see that Aluke123's chart is identical to the one at http://www.engineershandbook.com/Tables/tapdrill.htm, and you would think the Engineer's Handbook would be definitive, but I'll be damned if the screw that came with my DIY kit is an M5. And the instructions explicitly say to use a 1/8" drill bit, and that equals 3.175 mm, not 4.2 mm.  ??? In any event, since I now know my local shop sells the same kind of screw, even if the tap I buy doesn't match the screw that came with the kit, I can buy one that does. I'll let you know how it turns out.
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Seth Ski-Woo

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #20 on: March 04, 2008, 04:48:07 PM »
Hi Matt - If you go M4 tap and 3.3mm bit you can always get hold of an M4 set screw easily enough if it's not a perfect fit with the one you have. Sounds like it should be ok, though.

I think in that chart (http://www.engineershandbook.com/Tables/tapdrill.htm) that it shows what imperial tap corresponds to what imperial drill bit and what metric tap and drill bit correspond, but it's not actually a conversion chart; i.e. the metric stuff directly across from the imperial stuff isn't necessarily the equivalent/corresponding size, it's just easy to interpret it that way at a glance.

Re: concern about the drill wandering, I'd suggest wrapping a couple of layers of masking tape around the hilt where you're drilling the set screw hole, and possibly drilling a small pilot hole first. Also to make sure the hilt is held firmly (but with wood or rubber rather than directly with a metal clamp to avoid dints and scratches) so you can get a stable stance and good grip with both hands on the drill.

There's probably better ways of doing those bits, but those things have worked for me, so I thought I'd share them in case they're helpful  ;) Good luck getting it done, don't rush and I'm sure you'll do a fine job!

Offline QUI-GON JINN

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #21 on: March 04, 2008, 05:14:56 PM »
The number 29 in the 8-32 tap size refers to the drill bit size for the proper hole for the threads.  It's very close to 1/8" but is the more precise size,  which makes sure the depth of the threads is correct.  A 1/8" bit will have shallower threads after you tap it.


Offline Matt Thorn

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #22 on: March 05, 2008, 05:49:38 PM »
Hi Matt - If you go M4 tap and 3.3mm bit you can always get hold of an M4 set screw easily enough if it's not a perfect fit with the one you have. Sounds like it should be ok, though.

That's what I was thinking.

I think in that chart (http://www.engineershandbook.com/Tables/tapdrill.htm) that it shows what imperial tap corresponds to what imperial drill bit and what metric tap and drill bit correspond, but it's not actually a conversion chart; i.e. the metric stuff directly across from the imperial stuff isn't necessarily the equivalent/corresponding size, it's just easy to interpret it that way at a glance.

A-ha. Now it makes sense. Thanks.

Re: concern about the drill wandering, I'd suggest wrapping a couple of layers of masking tape around the hilt where you're drilling the set screw hole, and possibly drilling a small pilot hole first. Also to make sure the hilt is held firmly (but with wood or rubber rather than directly with a metal clamp to avoid dints and scratches) so you can get a stable stance and good grip with both hands on the drill.

There's probably better ways of doing those bits, but those things have worked for me, so I thought I'd share them in case they're helpful  ;) Good luck getting it done, don't rush and I'm sure you'll do a fine job!

Wow. Great advice. I would never have thought of using masking tape. Thanks a lot. I'll see if I can find a small (and cheap) vise, and if I do I'll be sure to use rubber to prevent scratches, as you suggest.

Jay-gon Jinn, thanks for the note about size!
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Offline Katarn

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #23 on: March 06, 2008, 06:28:02 AM »
Matt! where in japan are you?!
i am on the navy base in yokosuka (kanagawa).

i'm going through the same ordeal right now with my MHS saber. i have ordered an 8-32 thumbscrew and button head allen screw. i forgot to think how i was going to tap some threads in that size, being in japan!  :-[

now being on a navy base, i do have access to some american tools from the stores on base. however i keep forgetting to see if the have a tap set. i doubt it. anything besides hammers and nails is a bit out of thier league.  ::) (although i did buy a drill here and i have seen dremel kits...)

so i will check if they have the tap kits soon, and if they do, would you like me to grab one for you as well? or do you feel comfortable doing what you've been talking about? if so, let me know how it works out and i might make a trip to Homes myself!

well, ganbatte!
matta, ne!

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Offline Matt Thorn

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #24 on: March 06, 2008, 07:18:41 AM »
Matt! where in japan are you?!
i am on the navy base in yokosuka (kanagawa).

Hi, Katarn. You asked me that before and I forgot to answer. Sorry. I'm in Kyoto.

i'm going through the same ordeal right now with my MHS saber. i have ordered an 8-32 thumbscrew and button head allen screw. i forgot to think how i was going to tap some threads in that size, being in japan!  :-[

now being on a navy base, i do have access to some american tools from the stores on base. however i keep forgetting to see if the have a tap set. i doubt it. anything besides hammers and nails is a bit out of thier league.  ::) (although i did buy a drill here and i have seen dremel kits...)

so i will check if they have the tap kits soon, and if they do, would you like me to grab one for you as well? or do you feel comfortable doing what you've been talking about? if so, let me know how it works out and i might make a trip to Homes myself!

Thanks for the offer, but I'm pretty confident the M4 tap and a 3.3 mm drill bit will do the trick. And if they don't, I'll just get an M4 screw to use instead of the 8-32 that came with the kit. I've been too busy with real work to get around to buying the stuff and trying it. I'll probably do it this weekend. The home improvement center in my neighborhood is called "Kounan". I think the closest one to you is the one in Kamakura. But Googling around I see there are at least two home improvement centers in Yokosuka: DAIK and AV. I can send you Google Maps links to them if you like.

well, ganbatte!
matta, ne!

Ganbarimasu! Katarn-san mo ne!
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Seth Ski-Woo

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #25 on: March 06, 2008, 01:44:11 PM »
Sounds like you're sorted out ok - good luck and let us know how it goes!  ;)

Offline Katarn

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #26 on: March 07, 2008, 06:35:44 AM »
hey matt.
yeah i was in kyoto for my anniversary last november. got lost at the giant train station / mall.  :-[

thanks for googling those places for me. i actually go to AVE and HOMES quiet often. they are both about 5 minutes from base.
i've seen thread taps at both places, but wasnt sure what size to get.
let me know if those work!
thanks!

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Offline Matt Thorn

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #27 on: March 08, 2008, 08:23:09 PM »
Well, I drilled and threaded using an M4 tap, and rather than trying to use the 8-32 screw that came with the Ultrasaber DIY kit, I just bought a similar M4 screw. I don't know if I messed up somewhere, but the blade is a bit wobbly when screwed in. I'm sure part of the reason is that the Ultrasaber blade does not fit as snugly in its holder as the original blade fit in its holder. It doesn't seem to make any difference when I'm swinging the blade around, but I wonder if the chances of the blade being damaged in dueling are increased by the wobbling, which obviously increases stress on the threaded hole in the blade. Is this normal, or did I (pardon the pun) screw up somewhere?
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Seth Ski-Woo

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #28 on: March 08, 2008, 08:37:04 PM »
When I've put in a set screw myself, I've just drilled and tapped the hole through the hilt/blade-holder, rather than throught the blade as well, so that it presses and holds the (undrilled/tapped) blade in place.

You may find it works better if you unscrew the set screw from the blade and twist the blade round a bit, then tighten it up again so it's just holding it in place by pressing on it rather than actually going into the blade.

Offline jpbeck

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Re: The Basics Of Thread Tapping
« Reply #29 on: March 08, 2008, 08:42:30 PM »
He's right-- your not supposed to drill and tap the blade. I use M4's in my sabers and they are all very stable, and very tight.