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Drill bits and tap sizes?

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clang

Registered
Joined
Nov 28, 2003
Location
Ontario, Canada
I'm not sure if this is the correct forum for this post, but here goes..

I am in the early planning stages of creating a case out of lexan or plexiglass (probably lexan, as I heard it is better, assuming I can find it locally). I will need to create threaded holes for the various mountings (motherboard, disk drives, psu etc).

According to what i've found on google, the motherboard standoffs are a size of 6-32, and the same goes for the screws I will be needing. I have never attempted to cut or drill plexi/lexan before, nor do I have much experience with drill bit sizes or a great familiarity with screw sizes (although i've done some reading and have a general understanding now).

I looked at home depot for some 6-32 screws and found some, with a different type of head than is normally used in PCs, not that is matters much.. as long as it fits I guess.

From reading other posts here I know that I need a drill bit for making the proper sized hole and then some kind of "tap" to thread the hole for the screws/standoffs. The problem is, I don't know what kind of drill bit I need (I've read in a few places that normal bits don't work well with plexi/lexan, and that I need something special), nor do I know what size drill bit I need, or for that matter the 'tap'. Can anyone suggest some drill bit and 'tap' types that I should be looking for, and the size required for this?

Another question I have, the only tool I have to make these holes is a cordless hand drill. Will that do the job, or do I need a drill press or something to make these holes accurately?

Thanks
 
OP
C

clang

Registered
Joined
Nov 28, 2003
Location
Ontario, Canada
Thanks for the link, I'm guessing from this chart I need a size 27 drill bit to make the hole, and a size 36 tap to thread the hole afterwards.

Can anyone give me an example of the kind of drill bit I need, I had a look in the hardware stores and on a few websites, there are many different kinds of drill bits.. most are made for metal/concrete/wood.. I saw a few different ones that list plastic as well as metal. Is there a name for drill bits used on polycarbonate?

Also, home depot sells a scraping tool for cutting plexi, i'm guessing this works fine on thin sheets, but I will likely be using thick lexan. Some people have suggested a router for cutting plastic I think, which I don't have. Are there any other tools suitable for cutting thick (half inch I guess?) lexan/plexi?
 

tbones1337

Member
Joined
Jan 5, 2004
metal bit work with what you need.. i have wood/metal bits by black and decker.. works very well with the acryllic i drill..

About cutting.. got a dremel? thats what i use.. the drill like bit for it. but drilling.. the metal blades for saws and metal drill bits work fine..
 

Stedeman

The Half Asleep Member
Joined
Aug 29, 2002
Location
Lewiston Maine
Any High Speed Steel, HSS for short. 118 degree bit wood metal working bit will be fine odds are thats 90% of what your look at. And a 6-32 will use a size 36 drill bit for 75% thread (and yes that is good for your use ;)).
Enjoy,
Stedeman
 
Last edited:

CheeZeTM

Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2004
Location
Louisiana
1/2" may be a little thick, it's all in your style, also plastic insulates heat, my case has... 5mm top, right left side and bottom, 7mm front rear and walls for mounting drives
 

Diggrr

Underwater Senior Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2001
Home Depot also sells drills and taps as a matched pair, the bit you need with it's corresponding tap. You'll find them with the single bits in the hand tool section, hanging on a peg.
A hand drill is fine, that's what I use. I use a small nail or punch to put a divet in the right spot to drill so it doesn't wander when I begin drilling. Place the tip of the bit in the "divet" and check for straightness from two sides, and drill it.
I also mark the divet if I've got more than one hole to drill with a sharpie marker to make sure I'm drilling the right spots.
Drill smaller pieces against something that'll stop the piece from spinning around if the bit or tap catches...you don't wanna start over because your plexi "helicopter" got all scratched up.

Buy a tap handle to manage the tap better. A wrench does work, but a tap handle is easier to make a straight hole with, and IMHO, worth the cost.
Plexi/lexan really shows off your mistakes well...
 
OP
C

clang

Registered
Joined
Nov 28, 2003
Location
Ontario, Canada
Thanks for all the replies, I have found the drill bit and tap I need, next step is to find a local place for plexi (home depot seems a bit expensive, and they only sell huge sheets of plexi, for now I just want some scrap to practice with), I think i'll try to find some local places dealing in plastics and see if they have any useful scrap.

Again, thanks all for the info. This forum is such a great resource for learning!