Drill/Tap/Hex-Bolt set for mounting fets on heatsinks - Page 2 - diyAudio
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Old 26th August 2013, 03:03 PM   #11
Enzo is offline Enzo  United States
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Thanks Andrew. SOme methods may be preferred to others, but I have seen all those approaches in commercial equipment.
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Old 26th August 2013, 03:20 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by kasey197 View Post
Thanks for the help so far.. As you might have guessed I can't recall having bought screws even once my stash comes from a few hours in front of the tv unscrewing bits from equipment headed for the trash heap. You can't imagine the number of screws and bits that come off a VCR or a mini photocopy machine.
It's just that they don't come with size labels

From what I've read so far that self tap screw thing sounds like a treat - but all the ones I have and the ones I can google are the very coarse type with very tapered threads and look almost like wood screws instead of the cylindrical metal type screws with hex heads.

Are there screws with the little slit or notch at the end like that ? Three step taps into a soft material is a bit too much of a fine touch for me..
They sound like self tapping screws to me. Not good for mounting onto heatsinks.
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Old 27th August 2013, 12:12 AM   #13
AVWERK is offline AVWERK  United States
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When you tap, start working from the opposite side from your device (If available) - Why?
The exit of your tap will always be tighter than the start side.
So the first threads of the component side will be nice and tight rather than weak and slightly loose from trying to start the hole.
This is especialy important on thin metal thickness with those of little experience in tapping
Use cutting fluid also.

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Old 27th August 2013, 12:42 AM   #14
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I have this set, for US threads

Tap and Drill set

I'm sure you can get a similar for metric threads.

Use oil when you tap, and don't force it. Turn the tap until it gets hard to turn, then back it out, and clean off all of the bits of metal, then do it again.

It takes some patience, but you'll get a threaded hole eventually.

My system is here
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Old 27th August 2013, 02:19 AM   #15
dangus is offline dangus  Canada
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If the heat sink thickness is limited and you don't want to drill all the way through, get a bottoming tap (or grind the tip off a regular tap) as well. That will help cut threads closer to the bottom of the drilled hole.

Chucking the tap in a small drill press and turning it by hand can help to insure that the tap goes in perpendicularly.
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Old 27th August 2013, 02:02 PM   #16
The Dastardly Dad of Three
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Hi all ! Based on the advice received here I went out and bought these - M3 tap, handle and 2.5mm drill bit.

Worked like a charm ! It didnt take much more than maybe 2 minutes to drill and tap one hole. It seemed easier to just twist the tap in all the way instead of one turn in vs half turn out - not sure if I should bother with that ?

Anyway I'll figure it out. Just wish I had tried this earlier - it's much easier than I thought it would be - if you get the right bits together that is.

And for that I owe you a big thank you chaps!
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Last edited by kasey197; 27th August 2013 at 02:08 PM.
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Old 27th August 2013, 02:14 PM   #17
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"... not sure if I should bother with that ?"

That depends.

As long as there is little resistance when turning (often the case in shallow holes in aluminIum) there is no need.

In the general case, if resistance is felt, than play cautious and back out. Taps are extremely hard and brittle. They snap easily!

Working out how to remove the snapped-off buried part of a 3mm tap in your otherwise pristine work is a life-enhancing experience .....
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Old 27th August 2013, 02:40 PM   #18
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Be careful, the tap is made of hardened steel which breaks very easilly. I always do half turn in quarter turn back.
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Old 27th August 2013, 11:22 PM   #19
Enzo is offline Enzo  United States
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What they said^^^

The stop and start method clears your chips out. Like they said, taps can snap, and they are very hard. Once one breaks off in there, you won;t be drilling it out anytime soon.
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