Flow Drill & Tap

Flow Drilling and Tapping Service in West Yorkshire

Benefits of Flow drilling & Tapping

Many components require tapped holes for assembly. This has always been a problem area when using tubular materials, due to wall thickness being so thin particularly where a thread pitch is greater than the wall thickness. The Swanglen Metal solution is a flow drilling and tapping service.  Using the flow drilling and tapping process, problems of tapped inserts spinning are avoided.

With flow drilling and tapping,  the bush formed will give three to four times the original material thickness in most cases.

  • Flow drilling is a thermal drilling process producing a bush from the parent metal giving additional support as a bearing surface for the thread.
  • Flow tapping removes none of the parent metal which enables us to tap into thin wall materials with a range of M3 – M12 threads.

What is Flow Drilling and Flow Tapping?

Flow drilling (also called; flow forming or friction drilling) is a thermal process for producing a bush from the parent metal.
In flow drilling and tapping a rapidly rotating cone-shaped ‘drill’ point is brought into contact with the material surface.

As pressure is applied, heat is generated through friction.

As the material heats up it softens and the ‘drill’ is pushed through the material creating a hole and a bush is formed simultaneously from the softened material.
The bush increases the wall thickness ready for tapping.

So, instead of removing material which would weaken the joint, we use the parent material to form a strong connection.
This allows for a thread pitch greater than the original wall thickness.

Our Other Processes & Services processes include Laser CuttingPress Break, Tube Bending, MIG and TIG Welding, Powder Coating, Sub-assembly and Assembly and Packing for shipping


All work is carried out at our Swanglen Metal Products site, Riverside, Castlefields Mill, Castlefields Lane, Crossflatts, Bingley, Near Bradford, West Yorkshire BD16 2AB