How to Fix a Loose Tap
Tap attached to shoe with nails.
First, let’s talk about the different ways taps are attached to shoes and what that means when they are “loose.”
- Childrens’ tap shoes and less expensive tap shoes (generally designed for older/beginning students) are usually attached to the shoe with a nail. These taps do not normally loosen with use. If it appears that a nail is loose or is missing, you can use the same gluing method described in “How to Fix a Loose Tap Screw.”
- Oxford style and character shoes with taps are attached to the shoe with screws. These are designed to loosen slightly with use to create a clearer, fuller sound. It is important not to tighten your tap screws unnecessarily or you risk stripping the holes holding the screws in place.
- How do you know if your taps need to be tightened? There are two tests you should try. First, if you can move the tap slightly from side to side with your fingers and there is a very small space between the tap and the sole of the shoe, the tap probably does not need to be tightened. Next, do some tapping in the shoe. If you can feel the tap moving up and down when you shuffle or moving from side to side, it’s time to tighten your taps.
Tap attached to shoe with screws.
- DO NOT OVER TIGHTEN! Just an easy twist or two is fine. Don’t lean into the shoe and twist as hard as you can or you run the risk of stripping the holes holding the screws in place.
- If you have a screw that seems to keep loosening or finally falls out, follow the gluing method described in “How to Fix a Loose Tap Screw.”
This article was written by pmccormack