Any advice on threading aluminum

C Craft

Well-Known Member
I have to thread some small screws in aluminum. I got to thinking about it and I have never threaded anything in aluminum. I know aluminum can gall a file and sometimes a drill bit. So is there anything I need to do to keep my tap from gumming?? Is there anything different from working steel???
 

Smallshop

KNIFE MAKER
Use hss or coballt....preferably not carbide as a cutting tool. The smaller the thread and finer the pitch...the more critical the accuracy of the tool grind and getting the 60 deg tool square to the axis of the thread become....if you are older than 25...use magnifiers. Tool height needs to be dead on c/l...keep it wet while cutting the threads....something small like that...wd-40 or diesel / kerosene work well as cutting fluid.
 

KenH

Well-Known Member
Ted summed it up nicely - I'll also add pay attention to hole size. Maybe look at 60% threads, for sure don't try for 80% threads. Be sure to use plenty of lube, kerosene is as good as anything and better than most. OR - get some TapMagic that's designed for aluminum. That's good stuff!
 

Daniel Macina

Well-Known Member
I've tapped aluminum a little bit. Just got to keep it lubed up real good and clear out chips A lot. Also if you're going to be taking the screw out a lot or whatever else your threading into it I would use A heli coil insert. aluminums so soft it will mess up the threads pretty quick without the insert
 

C Craft

Well-Known Member
Thanks guys. I do not fabricate with aluminum because I have no way to weld it. I am an old school arc welder. When I got to thinking about what I had to do with this project. It hit me, I don't ever remember tapping a hole in aluminum!! I know how bad it can be to gum a file and a bit at times and I got to thinking. There must be a trick to threading aluminum.

I appreciate all the info!!!
 
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