drilling/tapping aluminum - diyAudio
Go Back   Home > Forums > Design & Build > Parts

Parts Where to get, and how to make the best bits. PCB's, caps, transformers, etc.

Please consider donating to help us continue to serve you.

Ads on/off / Custom Title / More PMs / More album space / Advanced printing & mass image saving
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 3rd March 2004, 02:32 AM   #1
elizard is offline elizard  Canada
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Winnipeg, MB
Send a message via MSN to elizard
Default drilling/tapping aluminum

well, i know this question's been answered before, but its not the easiest thing to search for

what speed is it best to drill aluminum at?
Also, should I use any sort of lubrication?

What about tapping, as far as lubrication goes. What should i be using?
  Reply With Quote
Old 3rd March 2004, 02:52 AM   #2
tiroth is offline tiroth  United States
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Pittsburgh, PA, USA
I use WD40 for tapping. I don't bother for drilling until I get over 1/2".
  Reply With Quote
Old 3rd March 2004, 02:56 AM   #3
BrianGT is offline BrianGT  United States
diyAudio Moderator Emeritus
 
BrianGT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: near Atlanta, GA
Send a message via AIM to BrianGT
I have been using TapMagic for Aluminum as the lubricant, along with the aluminum taps that McMaster sells. I originally started using standard taps from Home Depot, and standard lubricant, but normal lubricant can tend to stain the aluminum, and the taps didn't work nearly as well. I would rather spend 2x the amount for a good tap that works, and never breaks.

--
Brian
  Reply With Quote
Old 3rd March 2004, 02:57 AM   #4
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Salt Lake City
The speed(and feed) of a given drill bit depends on the size of the drill you are using. There are formulas in "Machinery's Handbook" for calculating this properly. It does make a big difference on the diameter accuracy of the hole and generated friction and wear and tear on the bit.

For tapping I use Tapmagic for alumnium. It seems to work the best and does not evaporate rapidly like alcohol does. It also prolongs tap life considerably. BTW, once you use a tap in alumnium only use it in alumnium from then on. Moving the same tap from steel to alumnium then to stainless, etc. is not a good idea to do.

Although some may disagree with me I perfer to use L.H. spiral flute taps on alumnium as they have alot of clearance for the chips produced and are less likely to bind and break off. They are available from many machinery supply sources.

Mark

Here is a link to a helpful chart that reccomends certain types of taps for certain types of alloys.

http://www.tapmatic.com/tech_manual/...endations.html

Here is a link to information about Tapmagic For Alumnium.....

http://www.tapmagic.com/TMaluminum.htm


A Link to the company that publishes the invalualable "Machinery's Handbook"

http://www.industrialpress.com/mh.htm
  Reply With Quote
Old 3rd March 2004, 03:02 AM   #5
elizard is offline elizard  Canada
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Winnipeg, MB
Send a message via MSN to elizard
I'll try looking for tapmagic at home depot/rona locally ..

as far as speed goes, i don't have a handbook to calculate it .. what's the approximate speed to drill at? I'd be drilling 1/8" and 1/2" aluminum with a drill bit around 1/8" (not 100% sure on the size, but it will DEFINITELY be <= 1/8")

btw, the speeds available on my drill press are 570, 900, 1390, 2050, and 3050 ..

as far as getting taps, i'll see what it'd run me to get them from mcmaster ..
  Reply With Quote
Old 3rd March 2004, 03:10 AM   #6
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Salt Lake City
McMaster is wayyyyyy to expensive! Try Enco Tools or Manhattan Supply Co. Both are located just outside Reno, NV. Actually they are the same company for the most part but one offers more machinery than the other does.

You will find it lots less expensive to deal with these places.

Mark

Enco.....

http://www.use-enco.com/CGI/INSRHM

Manhattan Supply Co.......

http://www.mscdirect.com/
  Reply With Quote
Old 3rd March 2004, 03:10 AM   #7
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Colorado
If you're drilling big holes in sheet metal, the only way to get good results is to use a Unibit.

Once the drill diameter gets much bigger than the material thickness, a standard two-flute drill wants to make a triangular hole. The Unibits have a single flute and make beautiful holes in sheet metal.

Without looking up the answer in Machinery's Handbook, I'd guess use the middle speed for your 1/8" bit and the slowest speed for the 1/2" bit. Always use a cutting or tapping fluid for best results and longest tool life.

Hope this helps,
Charles Hansen
  Reply With Quote
Old 3rd March 2004, 03:11 AM   #8
elizard is offline elizard  Canada
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Winnipeg, MB
Send a message via MSN to elizard
Quote:
Originally posted by Charles Hansen
If you're drilling big holes in sheet metal, the only way to get good results is to use a Unibit.

Once the drill diameter gets much bigger than the material thickness, a standard two-flute drill wants to make a triangular hole. The Unibits have a single flute and make beautiful holes in sheet metal.

Without looking up the answer in Machinery's Handbook, I'd guess use the middle speed for your 1/8" bit and the slowest speed for the 1/2" bit. Always use a cutting or tapping fluid for best results and longest tool life.

Hope this helps,
Charles Hansen
sorry for misunderstanding, but both of the bits will be <=1/8"

the thickness of the material will be 1/8" and 1/2" ..

also, as far as the msc and the other company suggested, do you have any taps you would suggest for me to buy? (for a 8-32 thread btw)
  Reply With Quote
Old 3rd March 2004, 03:25 AM   #9
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Salt Lake City
Take a look at this page in the Enco catalog. I perfer TIN coated taps for alumnium. They also last just about forever....at least till you break one off. The 891-6588 would work fine. There are also alot less expensive taps on the other pages just before page 38.

Mark

http://www.use-enco.com/CGI/INPDFF?PMPAGE=38
  Reply With Quote
Old 3rd March 2004, 03:29 AM   #10
diyAudio Member
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Colorado
Oops! Sorry, I misread your post. For an 8-32 tap you will need to drill a pilot hole with a #29 drill (0.136 diameter).

If you are drilling through holes your life will be much easier than if you are drilling blind holes. Blind holes require a lot of patience to avoid jamming the tap with the chips. There is *nothing* worse than breaking a tap in your work.

For through holes I like to use a "spiral point tap". These taps have a special cut at the tip that forces the chips forward. You can just go one direction with these instead of back and forth to break the chips.

For blind holes a good alternative is to use a "roll" tap. This deforms the metal instead of cutting it, so there are no chips to worry about. However, the pilot hole must be bigger in this case. I don't have the correct number in front of me for an 8-32 roll tap.

MSC is a great place to get these kinds of supplies.

Best regards,
Charles Hansen
  Reply With Quote

Reply


Hide this!Advertise here!
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Tapping master clock habsrock93 Digital Line Level 10 8th November 2008 01:41 AM
Drilling aluminum mantisory Everything Else 53 21st November 2007 05:19 PM
Tapping into GC power supply MikeFarad Chip Amps 0 9th March 2007 05:36 PM
Firewire or USB device for tapping I2s lucpes Digital Source 1 8th November 2006 05:44 PM
tapping I2S of a philips CD930 hacknet Digital Source 2 20th June 2004 03:12 PM


New To Site? Need Help?

All times are GMT. The time now is 01:34 PM.


vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Copyright 1999-2014 diyAudio

Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.3.2