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These days everything ratchets: screwdrivers, box end wrenches, adjustable wrenches, hex key sets — so why not bring your old drill press or power drill into the 21st century with a ratcheting chuck key from Ratchkey? If you’ve ever pinched or skinned your fingers trying to use an original chuck key, or had problems loosening the chuck to remove a bit, you’ll appreciate Ratchkey’s design.

The ratcheting chuck key can apply up to 120 inch-pounds of torque with its highly visible, red, high-impact, polymer handle. Ratchkey designed the handle to be comfortable to hold, unlike the small steel rod on most chuck keys. The ratcheting action works in only one direction — you use one side to tighten the chuck, and the other side to release it.

Ratchkey makes their ratcheting chuck keys in four sizes:

  • The HC-10 for 0 – 3/8″ drills, Jacobs KG series chuck keys.
  • The HC-12 for 3/8″ – 1/2″ drills (10 mm), Jacobs KK series keys.
  • The HC-14 for 1/2″ (13 mm) – 1/4″ pilot – Jacobs K-32 series.
  • The HC-15 for 1/2″ (13 mm) – 6 mm pilot – Röhm style S32A chuck key.

If you don’t know what size key you need, a table on the McFEELY’s link below describes which Ratchkey key fits which chuck for each model on their web site .

Made in the USA with a lifetime warranty, each Ratchkey ratcheting chuck key runs about $5 — about the most cost-effective upgrade you can make to your keyed chuck drill.

Ratchkey [Corporate Site]
Street Pricing [Google Products]
Ratchkey [McFEELY’S]


10 Responses to Ratcheting Chuck Key

  1. Frank Townend says:

    At five bucks a pop how could we go wrong. I like the ring hanger; more for the drill press than a hand held. A quick check shows another model from a different manufacturer having 3/8″ and 1/2″ on the same tool with a flip switch for tighten/loosen.

  2. Frank are you talking about the TwinKey? It was a toss up on which tool to write about. I chose the standard Ratchkey figuring you’re going to keep the key with the drill rather than move them around from drill to drill.


  3. PutnamEco says:

    With all the keyless chucks these days, I wonder if the chuck key will go the way of the skate key.

  4. Hank says:

    Nice idea if it is a durable tool and cheap. I bought one a few years ago and it lasted for 3 shop days. Not Hot for me.

  5. Bart'sDad says:

    I sure hope keyed chucks aren’t like the Do-Do bird. Keyless is great for light duty work with a cordless drill, but doing serious drilling and reaming requires a chuck you can really crank on. The racheting key seems more of a gimick than a useful tool.

  6. Frank Townend says:

    Actually Ben I was referring to one on eBay called “UNIVERSAL FIT RATCHETING CHUCK KEY” an example here: http://tinyurl.com/2mm9xk. I’ll agree the chuck tool belongs with the drill, but many of us have a drawer full of drills and chucks floating around that drawer. I like your RatchKey as it appears to be better made than the eBay one (suprise!).

  7. Fred says:

    My old Walker Turner Drill Press (I have a more modern Delt too) uses a Morse Taper chuck – which is even more secure than any hand tightened chuck. I’ve never galled up any of the large morse taper bits – drilling ito cast iron etc.

  8. gene elson says:

    I’m searching for the manufacturer for the Ratcheting Chuck Key to publish and distribute in our catalog and website.
    Can you help?
    Thank you,
    Gene Elson

  9. PutnamEco says:

    gene elson says:
    “I’m searching for the manufacturer for the Ratcheting Chuck Key

    Can’t guarantee they’re still in businees, it would appear their website went dark. Looks like the domain name hasn’t been renewed either.

    Ratchkey Corporation
    100 Weymouth St,
    Rockland, MA 02370

    (781) 982-1581

  10. Mark Ebersole says:

    I bought one (don’t remember where) for my drill press. It is a piece of crap. the center hub is not long enough for the key size to be stable and stay in the chuck.

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