By continuing to use this site, you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more
Forum sponsored by:
Forum sponsored by Forum House Ad Zone

Tap Chuck ?

All Topics | Latest Posts

Search for:  in Thread Title in  
WALLACE30/08/2012 17:09:35
304 forum posts
17 photos

Hello all.

I seem to remember one of the regular suppliers doing a 2 jaw 'drill chuck' specifically to hold taps on the flats so they don't slip - I think it was highlighted in a MEW 'new products' page.

Did I dream it or do they exist - and if so, who were they as I can't find them anywhere !



David Colwill30/08/2012 18:34:45
778 forum posts
40 photos

Chronos did them. I thought they were a great idea. When I went to order one they were out of stock so clearly everyone else thought they were great too. I haven't seen them again

I.M. OUTAHERE31/08/2012 03:08:50
1468 forum posts
3 photos

The old style auger drills had a square drive head and the chuck from one of the hand brace style drills could possibly be adapted as they were two jaw but i'm not sure how small the square hole was when fully closed .

Must grab one next time i go to the local junk yard !

I recently purchased a hand tapping chuck from little machine shop ( usual disclaimer and freight was a killer) that is designed to fit in a standard drill chuck mounted in the tailstockor drill pess.

This allows the tap to be aligned but is only turned by hand so very sensitive and made for small taps .

Looks a bit like a big pin chuck with a turned section on the end to fit the drill chuck.


Michael Cox 131/08/2012 10:38:22
550 forum posts
27 photos

Hi Wallace,

I made a special chuck for taps that grips the square end of the tap. Details are here:



Ian S C31/08/2012 10:41:26
7468 forum posts
230 photos
Strange you mention a cerpenters brace, among the tools mum's father bought over in the early fifties when he retired as plumber at Brown and Poulsons, in Paisely, was(I'v still got it), a 1\4" whitworth tap, with a tapered square at the drive end. Ian S C
HasBean31/08/2012 16:10:18
141 forum posts
32 photos

Is this **LINK** the one?


Clive Foster31/08/2012 17:21:37
3135 forum posts
109 photos

Power tapping by holding and driving only by the square is can unsatisfactory due to alignment issues. There are good reasons why the professional devices, like my Archer and Pollard ones, include a three jaw to grip the shank for alignment. Interestingly the very simplest form of three jaw, as used on hand driven drills, is deemed sufficient. Presumably as there is no requirement to drive so only light jaw pressure is needed.

For geometrical reasons a self centring square is inherently unreliable at holding to close limits, especially with small components. Also, as has been previously mentioned, tap makers do not take special precautions to keep the square truly concentric to the shank and thread form. The way things are done pretty much ensures that the square will be close to concentric but how close is a bit of a lottery. The point is concentric. Examination of the blend from point cone to square gives a reasonable idea of how concentric the square really is.


Michael Gilligan31/08/2012 17:32:37
20183 forum posts
1053 photos
Posted by Michael Cox 1 on 31/08/2012 10:38:22:

Hi Wallace,

I made a special chuck for taps that grips the square end of the tap. Details are here:



That's very neat, Mike

Quite a lot of work; but looks worth it.

[... Clive's point regarding concentricity is well made, however.]


pcb196231/08/2012 17:56:14
65 forum posts

I've had my eye on this for a while: **LINK**

Clive Foster31/08/2012 18:36:24
3135 forum posts
109 photos

The device linked to by pcb1962 is essentially similar to those fitted to drive the square on my Archer and Pollard tapping heads. I imagine that, like those there is a certain amount of float to let the device auto centre.


WALLACE31/08/2012 19:20:01
304 forum posts
17 photos

Thanks everyone for the replies.

SlotDriller - yep, hadn't thought of that, my Dads ancient bit and brace has a 2 jaw chuck but its a bit on the heafty size for the M2.5 tap I want to use.

Mike - I did see your website with the 4 jaw - very nice, but definetly outside my skills limit .

I suppose it might be easer to modify a new or boot sale special Eclipse type - but I wondered about it's accuracy - although if the flats aren't ground 100% accurately (which sounds like they're not !), it's a bit academic. I'll have a look at my collection of taps at the weekensd - meantime, if anyone from ARC or Chronos wants to introduce them, it does look like there's a couple of buyers all lined up for you !


Clive Hartland31/08/2012 19:27:51
2820 forum posts
40 photos

Look on Amazon on the page for Tap Wrenches, there is a tap wrench on the same design as WITTE that has a ratchet drive bothways and a fixed position and has two jaws to cover your tap size.

Cost, £5.99.


Clive Foster31/08/2012 20:18:46
3135 forum posts
109 photos

I have what looks to be the same device as that linked to on Amazon in both sizes. Bought a goodly few years back the innards of the larger one failed in fairly short order. Investigation revealed a less than stellar detail design and execution inside the attractive case. As I recall nothing that couldn't be rectified with patience and ingenuity but, in 20 odd years I've not been able to summon up the enthusiasm to either fix or throw! Not exceptionally concentric as I recall matters.

Probably the Sealey set lower down are better but I've got 2 or 3 different breeds of those Vee jaw or collapsing square type tap wrenches and none are truly concentric. Or for that matter terribly firm in the grip. Starting a tap square needs even more than the usual concentration. Certainly no good for power drive. I've no idea whether the relatively poor performance is concept limited or simply a result of compromise to meet the marketing constraints of cost that the customer will pay against performance he can live with.

The common battery drill works well up to 5 or 6 mm given regular reversals, with a suitable torque limit set on smaller sizes, before chuck slip becomes endemic. I've often wondered if a chuck could be reworked to include a square gripper drive behind for the larger taps just like my proper heads. May be a nice project to extract the torque limiting innards etc. for an inexpensive DIY tapping head.


Michael Gilligan31/08/2012 20:19:43
20183 forum posts
1053 photos

John [and all],

A timely word of warning about the total cost of importing stuff these days ...

The Customs & Revenue rules changed [November 2011, if I recall correctly]

My Summary:

The UK Customs/VAT threshold rule is:

  • If the base price is £15 or less, then no VAT is chargeable, BUT
  • If the base price is more than £15, the VAT is chargeable on the base price plus shipping & handling!
  • Added to which; ParcelForce makes an outrageous charge for the "service" of collecting the VAT.

... This makes it a very significant threshold. [as I know to my cost]

Caveat Emptor indeed


Ady101/09/2012 09:18:54
5091 forum posts
736 photos

I think they were called little goliaths when Drummond did them

2 jaw tapping chuck


They hold taps very firmly

You will have to make your own arbour to fit a B22 back taper socket

In all the time I squirrelled about on fleebay I only ever saw one original 1930s chuck come up for sale, they are quite rare but their usefulness and gripping strength is obvious

Edited By Ady1 on 01/09/2012 09:41:10

Niloch01/09/2012 09:37:55
371 forum posts

Is this any use?


Michael Gilligan01/09/2012 09:42:22
20183 forum posts
1053 photos
Posted by Niloch on 01/09/2012 09:37:55:

Is this any use?


That looks quite a bargain.


WALLACE01/09/2012 17:05:44
304 forum posts
17 photos
It doesn't look bad ! Just wonder if it slides axially or just rotates ?
Worth a call to find out - although I was slowly talking myself into buying the castings for the George Thomas pillar tool...


Edited By WALLACE on 01/09/2012 17:06:32

Niloch01/09/2012 18:18:09
371 forum posts

I have the smaller of the two versions available from Warco, total axial travel is approx. 30-32mm minus the amount used to hold it in the tailstock. I have yet to use it but it seems nicely made considering the price.

Gordon W02/09/2012 10:17:10
2011 forum posts

I have some drill bits with 3 flats ground on, these can not slip in a 3 jaw drill chuck. I was thinking of grinding similar flats on taps, and maybe on a chuck spindle, so can then be held and driven by 3 jaw chuck and battery drill. Trouble is , how? I have a grinder, drill press and lathe, with a drilling spindle for lathe tool post, guess it does not need great accuracy.

All Topics | Latest Posts

Please login to post a reply.

Magazine Locator

Want the latest issue of Model Engineer or Model Engineers' Workshop? Use our magazine locator links to find your nearest stockist!

Find Model Engineer & Model Engineers' Workshop

Latest Forum Posts
Support Our Partners
Eccentric July 5 2018
Rapid RC
Eccentric Engineering
Subscription Offer

Latest "For Sale" Ads
Latest "Wanted" Ads
Get In Touch!

Do you want to contact the Model Engineer and Model Engineers' Workshop team?

You can contact us by phone, mail or email about the magazines including becoming a contributor, submitting reader's letters or making queries about articles. You can also get in touch about this website, advertising or other general issues.

Click THIS LINK for full contact details.

For subscription issues please see THIS LINK.

Digital Back Issues

Social Media online

'Like' us on Facebook
Follow us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter
 Twitter Logo

Pin us on Pinterest