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Crude but effective Tap Guides

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  • Crude but effective Tap Guides

    With 300 plus 4-40 holes to drill and tap, and a timely "for noobs" post from That Old Dog Ray, I whittled up a couple of tap guides out of wood closet pole material. They're ugly but they worked.

    Never broke a tap and as a matter of fact I did 'em all on a single tap. Thought it might wear the tap out along the way but it was still cutting good threads at the end.

    If you was nearby Ray, I'd buy ya a beer!


  • #2
    Yep, YOD is right on the mark. Makes ya want ta plant a big wet one, eh?


    • #3
      When I need a quick and dirty tap guide (more and more in these days of old fartdom) I table saw a notch out of the corner of a little block of hardwood. Notch? It's actually a little rabbet about 3/4 the tap diameter in each dimension. Size the block to fit the application. Make the block about 1/2 the tap length in thickness. Make the notch 90 degrees.

      Gently push the block up to the tap so the tap bears against the notch and the whole business of getting a square start immediately becomes much easier. Once the hole is well established you can slide the block away.

      If the notch gets a little chewed up you can refresh it many times in the table saw until the block size gets too small to be practical. The wood will not harm the tap threads. I use wood, not metal or plastic. It's an aid thats deteriorates with use and is cheap enough to discard and easy to refresh. Make a nice permanent one ouf of hard steel and the tap will wear aginst it. Make one out of aluminum, brass, or plastic and you need to mill it to refresh it. Trust me. Wood is best.
      Last edited by Forrest Addy; 12-17-2006, 05:17 PM.