Getting the best tap and die set can prepare you for all situations in the tool industry. Being able to create and male and female end of a screw is something that is highly necessary for anyone who works with their hands.
Even if you don’t use it every day, these affordable kits are well worth the investment. Unfortunately, not all of them are designed with high-quality materials and longevity in mind.
Our Top Pick:
If you’re someone who finds themselves running up to the store or looking up videos on how to fix a stripped hole, then you need to get your hands on a tap and die set. These kits will save you more times than you can imagine.
Instead of asking you to look around for individual kits across the internet, this list has all of the best tap and die sets that you could search for!
- The Best Tap and Die Sets – Our Reviews:
- 1. IRWIN Tap and Die Set – Our Top Pick
- 2. ABN Metric and SAE Standard Tap and Die Set
- 3. Best Choice 40-Piece Tap and Die Set
- 4. Neiko SAE and Metric
- 5. Craftsman 75 pc Inch & Metric
- 6. GearWrench 114PC Tap and Die Tool Set
- 7. Tap and Die Set by Tirdity
- 8. Muzerdo 86 Piece
- 9. FunTrip Tap and Die Set – Best for the Money
- 10. J&R Quality Tools 40-Piece Titanium Coated
- How to Choose the Best Tap and Die Set
The Best Tap and Die Sets – Our Reviews:
1. IRWIN Tap and Die Set – Our Top Pick
Starting off the list is the IRWIN Tap and Die Set. This kit is something that every working person should have in their inventory. Not only does it come with nearly any tap and die size that you could look for, but it also has quite a few drill bits. Instead of sifting through your toolbox, everything is in one easy to access space.
Durability is always important in tools, but it doesn’t get much more crucial than with a tap and die set. If the materials used are too brittle, they can become dull and chip to the point of no return. Fortunately, this kit is made with carbon steel, which is one of the strongest materials that you can make tools from.
Making precise cuts is the entire purpose of a tap and die set. This kit is one of the best because of the expert craftsmanship throughout the building process. Each piece is designed with accuracy to fit right into its holder. Perfection is what you’re looking for, and that’s exactly what you’re going to get with this kit.
- Comes with additional drill bits
- Made out of heavy-duty materials
- Designed to last a lifetime
2. ABN Metric and SAE Standard Tap and Die Set
Another great choice for people who’ll use them often is the ABN Metric and SAE Standard Tap and Die Set. If you’re looking for something that’s going to last you for years or even decades, then you’re in the right place. It even comes with a guiding tool as well as a flathead for a variety of situations.
Quickly attach the tap or die with a triple locking system on their respective handles to ensure a strong grip. This will leave you without a worry in the world that they’ll slip or fall out in the middle of a project. You should also use cutting grease to preventing chipping and excess friction with any set.
Hardened alloy steel is the primary material used in this kit. You’ll instantly notice how strong the grip is and how well it holds onto the metal without missing a beat. It cuts ultra-smooth, leaving no grit or chips behind. All you’ll have left is the female or male end ready to be used as if it were cut by a machine.
- Made with high-quality alloy steel
- Comes with several other tools in the kit
- Perfect for a wide variety of uses
3. Best Choice 40-Piece Tap and Die Set
As it was stated earlier in the article, not all tap and die sets are created the same. Some of them, such as the previous two entries, have more than enough tools. However, you might not need all of the excess if you already have it. For a simple kit, try out the Best Choice 40-Piece Tap and Die Set.
One of the most notable features about this kit is that both holders come with a nice textured grip pattern to prevent your hands from slipping. You can also tighten the tap or die into place on their own holders with a quick twist of a flathead, which is provided with the kit as well. Due to the lack of excess materials, you’ll get this kit at a low budget-friendly price.
Another great feature to look at is the fact that this set comes with flat and tapered taps. These are both essential if you find yourself working on several types of projects. If you aren’t sure of which you’ll need, why not have them both? Both styles come in quite a few sizes as well, leaving you with everything you need and nothing you don’t.
- Comes with the bare essentials
- Made with gripping textured patterns
- Includes a quick-locking system for both holders
4. Neiko SAE and Metric
If you enjoyed the previous entry at number three on the list but you wanted to explore more options, then you’re in the luck. The Neiko SAE and Metric Tap and Die Set is a simple kit that has enough tools to repair and create anything that you could need with a tap and die set. It has multiple styles that are ideal for any situation.
Quickly adjust the triple locking mechanisms on the die holder or lock the tap handle into place in seconds. Thanks to the micro flathead screwdriver that comes included with the kit, you won’t have to worry about spending extra money. That’s the best part about this kit… You don’t have to buy anything else to get it to work!
All of these long-lasting steel tools are wrapped up into its own tool case. You get a carry case that’s made out of hardened plastic to prevent any damage from impacting your valuables. Open it up with the flip of a lid and you’ll be back in business. With so many cheap cases on the market, it’s nice to have something that’ll last for years.
- Comes with a heavy-duty carrying case
- Everything you need to get started
- Repair tools and create threaded pieces quickly
5. Craftsman 75 pc Inch & Metric
Craftsman has long been known for creating high-quality, long-lasting tools and equipment that everyone loves to own. Their dedication to their kits is one of the main reasons why it’s on the list. The Craftsman Tap and Die Set has both inch and metric measurements and pieces to give you everything you need for any job.
With 7 different drive tools and a plethora of taps and dies, you’re bound to have anything and everything for repairing old tools and driving new holes. One of the most unique design additions that helps this kit stand out among the competition is the satin finish that helps it prevent rust from showing up.
Carbon steel is used throughout each piece in the kit, making them last for an incredibly long time. Even the carrying case itself is designed with heavy-duty materials that can take quite a few drops before even showing the slightest sign of damage. Keep your tools safe with the durable case and use them with the confidence you need to fix the problems ahead.
- Comes with metric and inch taps and dies
- Made with a satin finish to prevent rust
- Includes a heavy-duty carrying case
6. GearWrench 114PC Tap and Die Tool Set
Traditional tap and die sets are always useful, but why not make it even easier? The GearWrench 114PC Tap and Die Tool Set is a multipurpose kit that uses a ratcheting motion to make a simple job even simpler. If you’re familiarized with ratcheting screwdrivers, then the convenience here will feel equally as helpful.
Much like all of the other kits included on this list, this one is made with heavy-duty materials like steel and aluminum. To make it an even better deal, the company created the carrying case out of a mold for an incredibly precise fit for each and every tool piece. You won’t ever have to worry about them falling out of place while moving it around.
While the case is well-designed, it is also durable. Drops, bumps, and other activities that usually cause problems don’t show up on this kit. Paired with the aforementioned ratcheting motion of both handles, it doesn’t get much better than this. Compared to other tap and die kits of this caliber, it’s a steal for the price.
- Comes with a molded carrying case
- Uses a ratcheting motion for easy spinning
- Made out of heavy-duty metals to prevent wearing
7. Tap and Die Set by Tirdity
While most of the additions to this list are designed for daily use, you might not need a kit that has to be so heavy-duty. If you want a lightweight, low-budget tap and die set, then this one is going to be your best bet. The Tap and Die Set by Tirdity might be cheap, but it’s certainly not one to skip over in your search.
Perhaps the greatest feature of this kit is the multiple screws that are used to completely secure the die into place. You won’t ever have to worry about it falling out, which is something that could potentially ruin the project at hand otherwise. For such a low cost, this kind of trust is hard to find in a kit like this.
You’ll get both wide and tapered taps in this kit as well. The combination is nice if you don’t know what you’re getting yourself into, or if you have different projects often. The included flathead is perfect for opening and closing the screws of these tools quickly without having to rummage around for a new one of your own.
- Comes with several tap and die sizes
- Low cost with high-quality
- Easy to secure into place and use quickly
8. Muzerdo 86 Piece
If you’ve used tools for a long time, then you know the frustration that ensues when they start to rust or corrode. It’s an unfortunate sign that you have to run out to the store and buy a new set soon. Fortunately, the Muzerdo 86 Piece Tap and Die Set uses chromium to prevent corrosion for much longer than traditional metals used in tools.
It might not necessarily be a sought-after feature, but the bronze golden coloring of these pieces helps them stand out much easier. You won’t have to look through your toolbox across hundreds of silver pieces. Speaking of a toolbox, the carrying case that encloses all of your new tools is heavy-duty as well.
Each tap and die handle has special grooves cut out on both ends to ensure a steady grip. This is a huge essential piece to making the job much smoother than usual. You’ll also be getting tapered and flat-ended taps as well as die with numerous sizes to choose from. Overall, this kit is hard to beat for a handful of reasons.
- Made with a unique coating to prevent corrosion
- Comes with numerous taps and die sizes
- Textured grip for easy handling
9. FunTrip Tap and Die Set – Best for the Money
If you’re someone who uses tools all the time, then this kit will be a blessing in disguise. The FunTrip Tap and Die Set covered all bases, giving you everything you could possibly need to complete a tap and die job. You can fix tools, repair stripped holes, and creates new ones whenever you need to.
The die is held in by 5 screws that go in with a flathead screwdriver. It doesn’t get any easier than this kit, and you also won’t be able to find such a good bundle deal for the price. Other than the pieces themselves, you’ll also get a heavy-duty carrying case as well as a pair of antiskid gloves to use.
The tapered edge on the taps makes them easy to screw in and set the groove quickly. Add a little bit of cutting grease and you’ll be finished in under a minute. There’s also a textured pattern for grip on the edge of both handles, which pairs well with the previously mentioned globes that are included with the purchase.
- Comes with a carrying case and gloves
- Includes several styles of taps and dies
- Secures quickly and spins even faster
10. J&R Quality Tools 40-Piece Titanium Coated
Another option for people who simply want the basics from their tool sets is this entry at number 10. Last but certainly not least on the list is the J&R Quality Tools 40-Piece Titanium Coated Tap & Die Set. All 40 pieces of this kit are heavy-duty and guaranteed to last for many years to come.
The titanium coating on these tools is a heavy assurance that they’re going to keep pushing on through numerous uses. Where most tools will dull down and require replacement or fixing, this kit won’t require either. It even helps prevent rust and corrosion when you’re taking care of them as you should.
Much like most of the other sets on this list, this kit comes with a carrying case to keep your tools protected from any possible damage. It’s also slotted to have a special space for every single piece to lock into. This means you won’t have to worry about everything falling out of place when you’re moving it around.
- Comes with a titanium coating to make them extra durable
- Includes a heavy-duty carrying case with slots for each tool
- Easy to use for beginners and experts alike
How to Choose the Best Tap and Die Set
When you’re ready to pick out the best tap and die set for your situation, this guide will help you navigate to the perfect selection. There’s no doubt that all of the options on the list above are great for nearly anyone, but some are better than others for specific jobs. If you’re on the fence between a few options or you simply want to learn more about how to use a tap and die, then check out the FAQ and tips below.
What is a tap and die set?
A tap and die set is designed to help you fix broken or dull tools as well as create male and female ends for screws and screwdrivers. If you’ve ever used hand tools and screws, then you’ve probably had to deal with stripped areas that usually seem to ruin the job or make it a whole lot worse. Some people even give up or settle with a damaged result if they don’t know any better. However, a tap and die set will let you deal with those common issues in seconds without ever having to do too much work. What makes it even better is that they’re relatively affordable and they don’t dull out quickly since their job is to fight dullness!
Who makes the best tap and die set?
There are quite literally hundreds of tool companies, and almost all of them make some form of a tap and die set. Certain companies even have multiple sets to choose from, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they offer better quality. The truth is that there isn’t any single best tap and die set brand out there. However, you might be more comfortable trying out a set from a company who’s been in the business for a while. This is generally an indication that they know what they’re doing.
Getting a Craftsman tap and die set like the one on the list above is a solid place to start. Craftsman has hundreds of tools, almost all of which are praised by their customers for lasting an incredibly long time and continuing to perform at a higher level than most of the competition. For beginners and people who enjoy supporting companies who know the ropes of the business, Craftsman is probably going to be the top choice.
That all being said, don’t give up on the lesser-known companies. They’re sometimes the ones who provide incredible quality at a much lower price since their name isn’t well-known yet. You wouldn’t want to let a great deal slip through your fingers simply because the company isn’t one of the top contenders! You can also rest assured that every company on the list creates great products, which is why they’re all listed as the best tap and die sets that money can buy.
How do you fix stripped screw holes?
We’ve all had the unfortunate occurrence when you put too much into a screwdriver and suddenly it gives way. This usually spells the end of the screw and whatever it’s going into, but that’s not the case if you have a tap and die set on hand. Any of the kits listed above will help you fix the problem, and the good news is that you can fix it in less than a minute. All you need is a little bit of force and some patience.
You want to start off by taking the tap and hooking it up with the handle that came with your kit. This will give you the leverage you need and a place to hold it to make the job much easier. You should also apply cutting grease before you start anything to prevent chipping, breaking, and possible dulling of the material. You can then twist the tap into the hole about half a turn, spin it back a quarter of a turn and continue repeating the process. Make sure that you apply firm pressure, but don’t overdo it. You don’t want to end up with an even worse issue than what you started with.
Once you’ve reached the bottom of the hole or you’ve made it through the other side if it’s a through-hole, you can start slowly reversing the tap out of the hole. While you do this, apply light pressure upwards to prevent the tap from stripping the screw hole again. Once you’ve completely removed the tap, you’re good to install the new screw into its place. Keep in mind that since you tapped the screw hole, it’s now slightly bigger in diameter. This requires a slightly larger screw now, so make sure that you have the right size on hand before you start the job.
How do you fix a stripped screw with a die?
Fixing a stripped screw is actually quite a bit easier than fixing a screw hole. The die that you’ll get with your kit does almost all of the work, so you just need to stay persistent. Hook up the correct die size into its handle and tighten the handle. This is usually done by using a micro flathead screwdriver to screw in and get a good grip on the die. Most of the kits listed above come with their own micro screwdriver to save you even more money in the long run. Once you’ve tightened the die into place, it’s time to get to work.
Before you dive right in, apply cutting grease to the surface to prevent any damage. You can make the situation ten times worse if you don’t use grease since it can overheat or cause chips. Place the tapered end of the die towards the object that you’re fixing and slowly apply firm pressure. Much like the previous instructions for using a tap, using a die also requires that you go half of a turn followed by a quarter of a turn backwards. Continue this motion until you’ve gone down the screw as far as you wish, then slowly reverse the die off of the surface. Remember to apply light force upward to prevent it from dulling out or stripping over itself again.
Do you need cutting grease for a tap and die set?
In short, yes, you absolutely need cutting grease when using a tap and die set. Some people try to work around the issue without using it because they don’t have any at their workstation or because it’s too far out of their way. Without using cutting grease, you put yourself and your project up for failure before you even start. Cutting grease prevents excess friction that leads to chipping, dulling, and stripping. Unless you want these problems to occur, then always use it!
Think about how a car would run without oil, or how you would get your lawnmower to function without it as well. There’s even the necessity of using oil or grease for hair clippers, bicycles, and a variety of other equipment. Wherever metal makes contact with more metal, you need some sort of lubricant to prevent any damage. If you’re going to buy a tap and die set, you should always buy cutting grease without a question.
What materials make up the best tap and die set?
One of the biggest factors of a tap and die set is the materials that it’s made out of. You wouldn’t want to use plastic to fix metal, nor should you use some form of a malleable metal to get the job done. Any metal that you plan to work on should be equal to or less dense than the tap and die that you’re using. You’re trying to indent and fix the metal itself, not the tools! Fortunately, all of the tap and die sets on this list are made with durable, high-quality materials guaranteed to help you get everything exactly as you need it.
Metals like titanium and steel are generally the best options to go with. Steel alloy is also okay as long as it’s still mostly hardened steel. You could also opt for a kit that has a satin coating to prevent rust and corrosion, which is a huge bonus for anyone. Steer clear of aluminum if you come across a set made from it. While aluminum is durable and lightweight, it’s not strong enough to make the indentations that you need. It can work for a little while, but you’ll slowly notice that it begins to dull out over time. Again, none of the items on the list above use any weak materials such as aluminum.
How do you make tap and die kits last longer?
When you get the best tap and die set on the market, you obviously want to make it last longer than usual. Nobody wants to buy something that’s going to last a few months, especially when it’s a tool. Tools usually last several years, but there’s no reason why you can’t extend the life up to well over a decade. Aside from the aforementioned cutting grease as an absolute must, there are a few other steps you can take to ensure that your new tap and die set will last for quite some time to come.
For starters, always make sure that your tools are cleaned off when you’re done using them. Metal chips, grease, and any other substance should be wiped off with a rag or shop towels before you’re done for the day. The biggest problem causer for metal tools is water. If you let water sit on your tools for too long, they’ll rust out quickly. You could even lose your tools to rust and irreparable corrosion in a matter of days if they’re too soaked. You should dry them off thoroughly, even if they only have a little bit of water on them.
Surfaces like satin that was previously mentioned in the guide are good for repelling water, but they’re not completely waterproof. Nothing will fully protect metal from the dangers of rust, so stay on top of it at all times. Other than that, your tools are designed to last for a long. After all, that’s just one of the many reasons why they’re the best tap and die sets on the internet!