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Old 04-12-2005, 02:10 PM   #1
moparfreak
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Default Helicoil Kits and Questions...

So I'm rebuilding a transmission and have a few threads to repair in the case. I need a 1/4-20, 5/16-18, and 7/16-14 helicoil kit to put in new threads.

I went to the auto parts store and each of the kits were 20 bucks...all they had was one tap, a few of the thread inserts, and a cheap plastic tool to screw in the inserts.

Is there a way to just buy the thread inserts and plastic tools separately? Are the taps they use specific for those inserts, or are they standard taps that you would find in any tap set(which i own).

I just don't want to spend 60 bucks to repair a few threads.

Thanks,
Adam
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Old 04-12-2005, 02:19 PM   #2
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Taps are specific to the Heli-coil. The inserts can be bought seperately as can the insert tools. BUT....they are expensive. The best bet would be to find a machine shop and ask if they can do it for you. Either way it is going to cost, but a machine shop doing it would be considerably cheaper. I purchase Steel threaded inserts, taps, and inserters at work so I know what they can run. What you might want to do also is check with AutoZone as I guess they now rent out tools. Or check your local rental store and see if the repair area that repairs the equipment ever Helicoils stripped out threads. There should also be some machine shops around if you ask different people that gets things fabbed up.

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Old 04-12-2005, 09:08 PM   #3
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Unfortunately it's kind of a racket. You need the specialized taps in order for the Helicoil to work. Some of the kits provide not only the installer tool but the correct size drill bit for the tap. There are other brands that do the same thing as Helicoil but I've found the price to be similar. I love Helicoil, they've save my bacon a number of times.
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Old 04-12-2005, 09:34 PM   #4
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You can buy the inserts, taps and tools ala carte from places like McMaster Carr...or your local supply house for less than the retail kits....
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Old 04-13-2005, 08:48 PM   #5
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Thanks for the suggestions guys. I found someone selling a crapload of helicoil kits on ebay for $10 each, plus $10 for shipping. So, at least i'll save 20 bucks. that's 20 dollars that goes right back into the car!

Adam
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Old 12-03-2008, 01:49 PM   #6
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

http://www.autopart.com/tools/toolsm...rch/search.asp Use right side search and type in thread repair. As shipping is a big cost on ebay do a search in the stores. This autopart location is a reasonable priced supplier.
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Old 12-03-2008, 02:54 PM   #7
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

While wandering through Harbor Freight a while ago, I noticed that they carry "Thread Repair Kits". I think that they cost $50 or $60. Has anybody here had any experience with them? Personally I would have to see some people report success with them before I used them in anything that I cared about.
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Old 12-03-2008, 03:07 PM   #8
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

Don't forget HF -- they are expanding their lines with more quality solutions and they are less expensive than most suppliers

http://search.harborfreight.com/cpis...=thread+repair

I've used the metric kit on my bike --
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Old 12-03-2008, 03:14 PM   #9
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by goodfellow View Post
Don't forget HF -- they are expanding their lines with more quality solutions and they are less expensive than most suppliers

http://search.harborfreight.com/cpis...=thread+repair

I've used the metric kit on my bike --
I am willing to buy many things from HF but I doubt I will ever take a chance on their thread repair stuff. Don't get me wrong, the kits look very nice and I admit, for a moment I might be tempted. However, I then began to think of almost every time I needed to use a Heli Coil it was for an application I really could take absolutely no chance of a screwup. (you know, one of those hold yer mouth just right and don't breath type applications) Also, I have always held off buying things like drill bits and taps or the like from them. Now a ratchet, yea I will take that chance.
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Old 12-03-2008, 03:31 PM   #10
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

timesert kicks heli-coils butt
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Old 12-03-2008, 03:48 PM   #11
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

Timeserts here as well.
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Old 12-03-2008, 04:17 PM   #12
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by hholmberg View Post
I am willing to buy many things from HF but I doubt I will ever take a chance on their thread repair stuff. Don't get me wrong, the kits look very nice and I admit, for a moment I might be tempted. However, I then began to think of almost every time I needed to use a Heli Coil it was for an application I really could take absolutely no chance of a screwup. (you know, one of those hold yer mouth just right and don't breath type applications) Also, I have always held off buying things like drill bits and taps or the like from them. Now a ratchet, yea I will take that chance.
Yeah, I know where you're coming from, and can see your point. Like most things though, most of the heli-coil type thread repair solutions are now imports.

For real secure solutions (i.e. going beyond heli-coil) I use Tridair (now ALCOA) Keenserts. They're expensive, but they will stay put under heavy stress conditions.

EDIT: To the OP -- the guys are right. For high stress applications it's better to go with something like this ...
Attached Images
File Type: jpg PICT0123-400.jpg (13.3 KB, 76 views)

Last edited by goodfellow; 12-03-2008 at 04:41 PM.
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Old 12-03-2008, 04:45 PM   #13
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by nissan_crawler View Post
timesert kicks heli-coils butt
Never heard of them, but I am a pencil pusher by day, so I will take your word for it. I was only aware of Heli-Coil. So the other brand would be available at say MCS or the like?
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Old 12-03-2008, 05:21 PM   #14
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by moparfreak View Post
Thanks for the suggestions guys. I found someone selling a crapload of helicoil kits on ebay for $10 each, plus $10 for shipping. So, at least i'll save 20 bucks. that's 20 dollars that goes right back into the car!

Adam
Be careful, I have noticed that many of the cheaper Ebay Helicoil kits aren't actually Helicoil, but knock-off's. They just use the name to get hits (keyword spamming).

I bought a Helicoil 1/4"-20 kit that had a tap, steel insert tool and 12 inserts for $26CAD and installed three of them in an aluminum casting in a matter of several minutes. They saved me a bundle. Well worth the cost.
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Old 12-03-2008, 10:51 PM   #15
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

Time certs are the way to go by far, heil coil's are a thing of the past. With time cert you have the abality to take the bolt in and out multiple times. If any one needs some demo pics let me know.

On a side note I still stock heil coil inserts for those stuborn people lol

And I have full stock on just about every Time cert Kit
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Old 12-03-2008, 11:47 PM   #16
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blwnsln View Post
Time certs are the way to go by far, heil coil's are a thing of the past.
There are many other thread repair systems besides Heli-Coils and Time Certs. The "expansion" feature on the last few threads of the time certs are their real claim to fame. This is an effective anchoring method that locks the insets into the parent part. This also tightens up the last few threads on the bolt at the bottom of the inset and makes the repair feel artificially tighter then it really is.

Now lets all be fair, there are a few draw backs to the great all mighty time cert. First off, they require a counter bore to properly accept the insert. In addition, the major diameter of the required tap is larger than a Heli-Coil. In thin wall applications a Heli-Coil may actually be a superior repair.





The magic installation tool for a Heli-Coil is actually nothing special. Elroy posts this detail as a service to the board. A bench grinder will make a common bolt into the special tool.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blwnsln View Post
On a side note I still stock heil coil inserts for those stuborn people
Some people may actually find the Heli-Coil superior to the time cert in some applications. It may well pay to be stubborn and well informed. Time certs are fine and in many applications are a better solution than the time honored Heli-Coil. But they are NOT superior in every repair.
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Old 12-03-2008, 11:53 PM   #17
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blwnsln View Post
Time certs are the way to go by far, heil coil's are a thing of the past. With time cert you have the abality to take the bolt in and out multiple times. If any one needs some demo pics let me know.

On a side note I still stock heil coil inserts for those stuborn people lol

And I have full stock on just about every Time cert Kit
Well it sounds like I am getting ready to learn something new. From what you are saying above you cannot install and remove a bolt/spark plug etc from a Heli-Coil repeated times after it has been installed if I read your post right. I have used HC around a half dozen times with several being spark plug applications.

I do not recall anything about not being able to install and remove the bolt/plug repeatedly after installing the HC? I must be misunderstanding what you are saying, cause the HC does nothing more than restore the thread to 100%, where does HC prevent the removal of a bolt installed in the HC?

BTW, Not knocking the other brand you speak of, but I have had a different understanding of how the HC performs.

Last edited by Uncle Buck; 12-03-2008 at 11:56 PM.
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Old 12-04-2008, 12:05 AM   #18
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Elroy View Post
The "expansion" feature on the last few threads of the time certs are their real claim to fame. This is an effective anchoring method that locks the insets into the parent part. This also tightens up the last few threads on the bolt at the bottom of the inset and makes the repair feel artificially tighter then it really is.
Actually the last HC I used was for a spark plug, and the HC kit had a small punch about 5/8" diameter with a shoulder on it that you were to rap the outboard end of the HC with which disturbed the HC enough to set or anchor it to the hole you had just mounted it in. This just sounds like a different twist on the anchoring system Elroy described above. So if this is true, one would have nothing over the other as far as the securing of the thread repair to the hole goes.
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Old 12-04-2008, 12:36 AM   #19
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

The aerospace industry use keensert alot. You can get them in light duty, heavy duty, and super heavy duty. They are mainly used in aluminum parts. Helicoil tends to back out when removing the fasterner.
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Old 12-04-2008, 01:31 AM   #20
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Default Re: Helicoil Kits and Questions...

This video showing installation of a TimeSert helps explain why Helicoils sometimes fail to stay anchored:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RvmL0pEphQI
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