Tapping a Metal Upright with a Drill

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One method of tapping a hole is with a drill. This method requires a little more finesse than tapping with a hand tap but can be used to tap all types of metals, including stainless steel. 


Tips:

  • Use a high grade cutting fluid such as the kind pictured above and re-lubricate the tap for every hole

  • Use a good quality tap (not the kind found at Canadian Tire). A tap such as this one 10-32 HSS 2 Flute H3 works well. 

  • Ensure that the tap is well secured in the drill. 

  • Do not use pressure; let the tap pull itself into the hole.

  • Use a drill with variable speeds (like most battery powered drills) not a drill which only has an ON/OFF setting such as drill presses and most corded drills.

  • Hold the drill straight at a 90 degree angle to the work piece.  Any lateral movement will snap the tap and/or result in an improperly tapped hole.

  • When you feel it binding or hear it squeaking stop the drill, reverse and back off the tap, then tap again.

  • Make sure the piece being worked on is well secured in the vice.