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another t-slot/keyhole bit question

5721 Views 6 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  mpphoto
I recently purchased this keyhole bit to make jigs and things using 1/4 hex head bolts. Although the bolts fit nicely into the slot, the head of the bolt spins freely when inside. This will work for some things but I had envisioned a slot where the bolt head was "captive".
I haven't tried yet but I'm sure it will work better with 1/4" t-bolts.

What t-slot or keyhole bits are you folks using and with what bolts?

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HI Michael

Like you I use the key hole bit most of the time for T-Slots and I use Toggle Bolts (5/16 x 4" long the norm.) and cut them to size when I need a short one like a 1 1/2" and because they are full thread they work great and all I do is grind the head on two sides to make a T-Slot bolts.. it's quick and easy to make a T-Slot bolt and it's about 1/10 the price of the standard T-Bolts from like Rockler,Plus one size on hand I can just cut off the threads and grind it quick and easy. :)

I did get a little feed up with the hack saw so I got a little chop saw from Grizzly and put my HF grinder into to chop off the toggle bolts and other items like threaded rod and alike and I don't always use the side grinder anyway so I put it to work this way.

Here's one more link from Bj for a Grizzly item, but it's at a great price and it works great for small stuff, I have a BIG 14" chop but it's a bit over kill on small fastners.
18.oo dollar chop saw.. :)

Just a note***when I use the key hole bit I always run it down the stock and then set it just a bit deeper and make one more pass,I like the one that's yellow, I don't recall the name right now but I get them from HomeDepot they work the best.

Bj :)
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Hey that is a cool little set up. I might have to get me one of dem!

You've outdone yourself with that link Bj! Very sweet and useful little item.
I recently decided I had need for a little setup to cut bolts and aluminum bar and angle. I was going to get a mini chop saw at Harbor Freight but I like your solution much better.


By the way, I felt the same way. Although my keyhole bit will probably work with 1/4" t-bolts these are not always available locally and have to be mail ordered. It also bothers me that they cost 5 or 6 times more than regular bolts.

I Michael
Thanks,,At one time I sold fastners (Bolts & Nuts) for A & I Bolt & Nut and at that time the T-Track bolts cost 3.15ea. for 5/16-18 x 2 1/2" and if you look at one you will see how it's made ,just a flat stamped round head and it has been ground on two sides of the head to get the T-Slot fastner..., most toggle bolts are Truss Head M/S ,that's a low head type of screw with a big head, they use the same type(of die) to make the T-slot bolts and they stamp them out by the a day and then ship them out for a zinc job.
The mark up on fastners is about 800% that's to say a 1/4-20 x 3" carr. bolt cost .04ea. and you and I pay much more at the HD,Ace,etc.
And the T-Bolts are much higher markup, supply and deman thing. :)

Just a NOTE , you can save tons of money by buying toggle bolts from a fastners supply house in your town, i.e. 5/16 x 4" toggle ,should go for, (one box of 50) should be about 14.50 per 100 that makes a T-Head bolt .15 ea. :) in any size up to 4"...after just a little rework on you part and mind.

Bj :)

Bj :)
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Michael, the shank on the bit you posted tells you it is for 5/16" bolts. This is why your bolts are spinning in the wood. A bit for 1/4" bolts will have a 1/4" cutting shank.
Hmmmm. Well Mike, I feel a little silly. Yup...

In my defense I tried a 5/16 bolt and it was tight. I just tried again and it fit perfect. The difference; the first time I tried a lag bolt that wasn't threaded all the way up and the fit was no good. This time I tried a threaded hex head bolt and viola! Perfect fit and the head doesn't spin.

So the moral of the story is that a Whiteside #3050 Keyhole bit works well with 5/16" hex head bolts for making jigs that require t-slots.

Thanks Mike :)

Anyone else using keyhole or t-slot bits? What hardware are you using with it?

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