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Taps and dies

mickri

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#1
Haven't been around much since I took on a new project last spring. I am resurrecting a 1966 MG Midget from the dead. Dragged it out of a field. Most of the nuts and bolts are all fine thread and luckily not British witworth (sp?) All of my taps and dies are coarse thread. I have decided to fill in my set with the sizes that I need instead of buying a new set which would duplicate my coarse threads. It also allows me to buy better quality. Besides staying away from chinese junk, what brands should I look for to buy?

I had 4 bolts shear off when I tried to remove them and need to drill them out and clean up the threads. I also have several parts where the bolts or nuts were missing and the threads are too rusted for a bolt or nut to thread on. None are on critical parts.
Thanks for any advice and suggestion you guys can provide.
IMG_3506.JPG 20170330_184239.jpg

I do have a machining project coming up when I rebuild the rear axle. I'll start a separate thread for that project.
 

Silverbullet

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#2
Penetrating oil ,number 1 , buy good taps and dies to match . Wrenches too. Use cutting oil or tapping fluid. If it's rusted spray and go away for a day or two spraying often.
 

Billh50

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#3
Rust can dull a new tap easily so be carefull.
Send me a message about what taps tou may need. I have many taps that are both new and used so can send you some of my extras.
 

strantor

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#5
Check your local ACE hardware. I went in there a couple weeks ago and they had taps & dies on clearance. Irwin brand. Good but not the best. They were $1 each. I couldn't believe my eyes. I asked why they were marked down from $4-$9 to $1 and they told me the taps & dies sat on the shelf for years and never sold any so they were getting rid of them and wouldn't stock them anymore. I don't know if that was nation-wide or just my store.
 

mickri

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#6
The midget has been a fun project. I had also dragged a 69 Sprite out of the same field for parts. The tub of the sprite was pretty much rusted out but had many usable parts that were either missing or beyond repair on the midget. Stripped off all of the usable parts and hauled the remaining hulk of the sprite off to a scrap yard.
These cars are collectively called spridgets. I have a true spridget now. Hope to have all of the basic work done by the end of the year. I am currently doing minor body work and refurbishing the brakes and suspension. The motor is frozen and cost prohibitive to rebuild to only end up with 50hp. Project for next year will be swapping in a toyota 4ac 90hp engine and transmission from a early 80's corolla. Hope to have it on the road by next summer. I am documenting my project on the MG experience forum.
Thanks for the tip about the Irwin taps. I have bought some but didn't know the quality. The Ace hardware stores I frequent seem to sell them. I will look to see if they are still on sale.
Bill I will send you a private message.
 

Bob Korves

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#7
The current Irwin taps seen at hardware stores are made in China. It is written very small on the packaging and is difficult to find. Wonder why? If the Irwin taps are NOS and say USA on the tap, then buy 'em up at $1 each. No Chinese tap in a hardware store is worth me buying it, at any price...
 

Ken from ontario

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#10
I don't have an answer for you but that MG reminds me of the MGB a close friend resurrected from the dead in his backyard and I had the pleasure of helping him restore it( well, mainly watching and learning), what a great nimble car it was, the best thing I remember about it was the short gearbox shaft and how easy it was to change gears. unfortunately the car was stolen soon after it was restored , one of the locals who probably watched the whole restoration from scratch probably stole it according to the police,what a patient thief he must have been.
Good luck with your project.
 

Bob Korves

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#11
I rebuilt a '65 MGB from stuff I got from a buddy who had several, one skeleton uni-body, an engine that was complete but needed rebuilding, a box with three completely disassembled transmissions in it, etc., etc. He told me he was selling me 4 chrome wire wheels for $100 and letting me take away all the other "scrap." He said if I ever got mad about the deal, just remember that I only got 4 wire wheels for $100, and they were worth more than that. I was between jobs at the time, and spent almost a year restoring that MGB. Total cost of the restore was $1100 in those days, 1977. Painted it GM red. I did not buy one part from the BMC dealer, ever! Drove it for about 20 years, no problems besides regularly rebuilding the Lucas starter and generator, then sold it for 'well' more than I had in it.
 

mickri

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#14
I would like to say a big thank you to Bill for his generosity in providing me with the taps and dies that I needed. Thank you Bill.

Chuck
 

Groundhog

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#17
Penetrating oil ,number 1 , buy good taps and dies to match . Wrenches too. Use cutting oil or tapping fluid. If it's rusted spray and go away for a day or two spraying often.
Just an aside; WD-40 is none of the above.

A big undertaking, but it looks like you have it well handled.

I had a Sprite in high school (in 1964 or so). If I ran it too hard it would blow soft plugs out of the engine!!
 

mickri

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#18
The midget is a big project. I am doing it in little steps. I started at the rear and am working my way towards the front. Currently doing body work which is not my strong suit. Hope to have the body work done by the end of the month so I can get back to mechanical issues. Next year I will be replacing the engine which is frozen and prohibitively expensive to have rebuilt with an engine and transmission from an early 80's toyota corolla.
Sprites and midgets have a reputation for breaking axles. Especially the pre 67 models. A racer down under discovered that by making the axles more flexible solved the problem. When I get to that I will start a new thread for help with the machining.
Thanks again Bill for your generosity.
 

Bob La Londe

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#19
The Irwin tap that I bought a few months ago at Ace has USA on it.
Probably a Hanson die.
WOW! I wonder if its new old stock or if Irwin still has some manufacturing in the USA. When I go to swap meets or yard sales I look for older Irwin tools that say USA on them. I have some first generation Chinese Irwin Vise Grips and they have not held up as well as much older ones I have from the USA. When they first went to China you could find Vise Grip brands in Harbor Freight even.
 

ddickey

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#20
HJE has US made Irwin dies for $2.50 piece up to $14 for 1"er's
 
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