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Bought 40 taps and around 150 dies at a garage sale today with 2 Snap On Tap Wrenchs, and 1 other M.I.A. I figure if all else for $15 the box they're sitting ins worth it. How do I tell if the taps and dies are any good, other than use them?

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Snap On Brand Taps and dies ?

New taps should almost cut your hand when handled. I might just grab a selection of better quality nuts and screw them on the taps and bolts for the dies. If they are in a box that lets the stuff all bang together I would isolate each piece in some way (like wrapping in clean shop rags.) I would also clean and wipe them with something ( Marvel Mystery oil might be my choice) and then store. Call me picky but when you need good threads you need good threads. Some may be good for that and SOME may be better for cleanout on old stuff that a good tool might get torn up with.

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Me and my mentor together bought out almost the whole shop. I bought all the stuff I needed to ease my assembly and disassembly needs, breaker bars (Craftsman), indexible socket heads of all sizes, speed-bars, and then I found the taps and dies, at $15 I couldn't say no. (Last time I bought a die it was $18, I used a Gear Wrench ratchet as the wrench)

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I regularly buy small collections of old taps and dies-I figure if I use some obscure strange tap(out of a boxfull) just once my investment was just that an investment -just check out the price on "Special" taps etc. to date though I recon I have been a winner many times over.

So no regrets..................Odds on Hayden in time you will feel the same.

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To bad I went back and bought all the drill bits to go with the taps... Sad day... But seriously, I bought 150-300 drill bits from 3/8+ for $10. I ended up with 3 tool boxes, drill bits, tap and dies, grinder, bit sharpener with the grinder, C clamps, and 2 sets of Snap On lefty drill bits. I think the taps are HC and theres a few that may be carbide or something. Make a sound about like a silver coin on a granite table. Ching, ching, ching... Man I think I oughta be an investor

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for your smaller taps cut soda straws to make sleeves to slip over to keep sharp ...also Brownells sells clear plastic tubes and end caps up to about and inch ...

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How about trashed leather glove fingers? (Had to move around my shop to make room for it all. Found 9 odd gloves)

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They're kinda already oil saturated. My grinding gloves (have a pair dedicated to grinding) are soaked in 10W 30, transfer heat real fast. Time they get retired

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Leather gloves are also bad to work at the forge with, as your hand sweats the the heat from the fire steam cooks your hand .

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Or water. Steam burns aren't fun. I have had an unknown volatile substance flash of gloves before while grinding., I had a mild heart attack trying to get them off

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The tap wrenches already paid for themselves. The Snap On lefty drill bits may end up traded for a few odds and ends

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The tap wrenches already paid for themselves. The Snap On lefty drill bits may end up traded for a few odds and ends


That is TREASURE if you ever break off something. The lefty drills often remove a screw or bolt without further effort, if they don't then you have a hole for an extractor to go into. One time using them and the set is typically paid for because of how easy they make things.

Phil

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Do not get rid of the left-hand drill bits!! Use them to drill brokem right-hand threaded bolts as the left-handed bits will sometimes remove the broken studs and eliminate the use of the EZout Been there Done that!. Armand

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sounds like you need to drill a set of graduated holes in a block of wood to hold things---can even mark the size with a pencil on the wood.

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I think I'm gonna build a file and drill bit holder to wall mount all of them to ahve easy access. Got around 150 files now, and un-countable drill bits

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The part of the tap that matters is the first few threads. These do all the cutting the rest of the threads on the tap really don't do any cutting. So here is how I tell. Turn the cutting edge of the tap, the first 4-8 threads depending on the amount of taper it has (gun bottoming vs. taper tap) so you are looking right at the edge formed by the fluts and the section you would call the thread. With the light behind you if you can see the edge its likley worn or rolled off. Next run it against your thumb nail unless it's a very small >6/32 in the same cutting section, if its not catching your nail firmly its worn also. The bad part of using old taps if your cutting new threads with them, is if they break off in your part, you just spent a lot of time machining it make a new tap price look like a real cheap. Sometimes you can break out the bad tap or have it EDM'ed but bad none the less. I power tap most of the time and a nice new gun tap makes a lot of fine threads in a hurry.

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I don't usually tap anything new. I just re-tap holes so bolts fit. Or size-up the holes. I use dies all the time on odd things I've knocked out with a pin punch and marred threads.

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Good Morning,

I do a lot of steel stud removal in Aluminum housings. Drill a small pilot hole as close to center as you can (1/8" max), then drill one size smaller than the tap drill size, pushing the drill to center if needed. When you run the tap through, you will pick up the original threads. Works every time.

I never use an easy-out! They wedge into what you are trying to remove and expand, opposite of what you are trying to accomplish. If you never use them, they will never break in your work!!

just my $.02

I think Hayden got a good deal!! Quite often a tap can be sharpened, with the proper grinder.

Neil

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Grand score Hayden! As said, keep the lefthand drill bits for removing broken screws.

Even if a bunch of bits, taps and dies turn out to be worn out or broken, they'll make dandy pattern welded blade stock.

Frosty The Lucky.

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Bought 10 ogee (?) bits today and 10 short lefty drill bits for $1 at a junk shop, a bar light to hang on my tool chest top, abd 2 aimable lights to aim at my workspace, and around 30 micro wrenches. (All but one USA, commonly called carburetor wrenches)

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