I sometimes get questions about how we build some of our custom projects, both musical gear as well as theatre props and special effects. Inspired by one of our favorite YouTube publishers, Applied Science, here is the first of what may become a recurring “Shop Tools and Tips” postings.
Shop Tools and Tips: Boelube
Instead of liquid cutting oil for your drills and taps, Boeing developed “Boelube Paste” is a wax based cutting lubricant that is simple to use and doesn’t run all over the place. It comes in a plastic jar as a blue soft waxy compound. You just poke your drill bit or tap into the Boelube Paste, then get to work. While not a perfect replacement for cutting oil in some applications, our shop in New Zealand as well as here in the USA both use it. It is a bit expensive ($30 for 12oz, $10 for 1.5oz, but the large large container is easy to divide into smaller containers (old school film cans) to keep at different work stations. Thanks to a video from the Stan Winston props shop for turning us on to this.
In the photo, you might notice the simple drill/tap set. This is an expensive drill/tap set that we really like. While our shops have several full sized sets of number drills and English/Metric taps/dies, this simple plastic kit has what I need most often, without looking up the drill number to go with a tap. It’s a small kit, but has what I use most often here in the USA shop: 1/4-20, 10-32, 10-24, 8-32, 6-32, and 4-40. I keep one in my theatre tool bag for retapping holes too. These are available under various brands such as Vermont American, Craftsman, and non-branded. They all seem to be the same.