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Dremel buying advice

Discussion in 'The DIY Tool Shed' started by therealfindo, Jun 26, 2015.

  1. therealfindo

    therealfindo Tele-Holic

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    I reckon a dremel tool might be in order (to clean up the edges of the pickup cavities etc. & drill out the filler which plugged up the string holes). Any advice on which model to go for? I also saw a similar looking thing at the store.. I forget the name (it's green with yellow)..
     
  2. john_cribbin

    john_cribbin Tele-Afflicted

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    I would be looking at mains powered rather than battery.

    Having both a Dremel and a similar copy, in reality I don't see much of a difference in use. Unless you are going to use them to destruction, you probably will be happy with whatever you choose.

    The only thing I can say for sure. Spend the money for fittings at the business end. Good quality sharp cutters do the best job and put the least strain on the drill.
     
  3. Jupiter

    Jupiter Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Proxxon.


    For the Dremel, I got the 4000, and I'm very happy with it.
     
  4. Mike Simpson

    Mike Simpson Doctor of Teleocity

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    You need one with variable speed, not 1 or 2 fixed speeds.
    Buy one with a cord, I would not buy a battery powered cordless one.
     
  5. funkymann1

    funkymann1 Tele-Holic

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    i just use routers for everything...
    but if you buy a dremel buy the expensive one that you can buy the fixed base for....
     
  6. Davecam48

    Davecam48 Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    Buy a model which is compatible with their metal chuck accessory which allows you to use dental tools/burrs for engraving, inlays etc.

    DC
     
  7. Hudsonduster

    Hudsonduster RIP Ad Free + Supporter

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    About ten years ago, the front bearing arrangement on the Dremels changed, and the feel of the tool became mushy and you could actually deflect a bur with side load. I'd like to know if this situation's been improved: Dremel's a venerable name and I'd hate to see it slip.

    I've been buying (I'm a moldmaker and do a lot of polishing, & run through a Moto-Tool every two, three years) the Black & Decker RTX unit. What they call "3-speed" gives you a smooth spool-up through the L and M settings, then jumps to high, so you can have a good range of adjustment for low-speed hogging. The collet parts are interchangeable with Dremel, and they got the same fat thread collar on the front so you can screw it into all the StewMac tools. Best of all, the spindle don't mush around like the Dremel's.

    If Dremel got their act together, I'd jump on 'em again. Meanwhile, for thirty bucks you got an acceptable stand-in.
     
  8. Alamo

    Alamo Doctor of Teleocity

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  9. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Telefied Ad Free Member

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  10. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    I've been through a number of Dremel tools, both name branded and a Crafstman knockoff. In each case the bearings have gone wonky. To get more reliable performance I've done two things: (1) invested in a Foredom handpiece with a separate motor on a flex shaft, and (2) only use a rotary tool for high-speed, light duty precision work and don't try to pretend that it's a router (sure, I use the router base to clean up acoustic bridge saddle slots, but never for any real wood removal).
     
  11. orangedrop

    orangedrop Friend of Leo's

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    from what I read over at LMI, this is the way to go for now if the "Dremel" is what you seek.

    I am still running an old (read, Olde) 3000 varispeed, and a newer 4000 varispeed.

    How are you liking the Foredom?
    The HD one looks like a good motor and the handpieces do feel quite nice from the two I fiddled with at a wood turners convention.

    For light hogging and binding The Ridgid 2401 has been doing well so far for lightening up motor weight, but pickup, electronics, trem cavities, neck and bridge routes all feel much more smooth with 2.5 HP or more cranking behind a 1/2" shanked bit.
     
  12. dsutton24

    dsutton24 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I've got a Dremel and a Foredam, and I rarely use either. In fact, I couldn't even tell you the last time I used either one. Frankly I'd spend the money on hand tools or router bits.
     
  13. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    The flex shaft has been my best Dremel-related purchase. I use it for just about everything.
     
  14. VintageMike

    VintageMike TDPRI Member

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    Consider a trim router depending on how much cutting you will be doing. No sense tearing up a Dremel when you can get a trim router for about the same price. My neighbor was trying to cut out the waste from window openings on his new pole born with a trim router which smelled like it was burning. I went and got my PC 890 and zipped 'em out in five minutes.
     
  15. jefrs

    jefrs Doctor of Teleocity

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    One that fits the Dremel mini-router base (as noted, don't try to use it as a real router)

    But it is amazing at how good a wood chisel is at cleaning up cuts.
     
  16. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    It's all about using the right tool for the job.
     
  17. Cat MacKinnon

    Cat MacKinnon Friend of Leo's

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    The B&D's are pretty good, especially for the cash. Considering Dremel's change in QC over the past several years, I'd rather just spend $30 on the B&D and still have a bunch leftover for a few nice accessories. They do come in handy occasionally, but I learned a long time ago that a Dremel is one of the fastest ways to wreck a project :lol:.

    Honestly, I'd rather have a small "laminate trimmer" router for most things. They're a lot more useful (and accurate) for guitar work, and can do almost anything you need a router to do for guitar work, short of routing out entire body blanks (although they can, it would just take a long time.) But for stuff like binding channels, acoustic saddle slots, Floyd nut slots, and cleaning up routes that have already been hogged out with a Forstner bit, the compact routers (ie, "laminate trimmers") are great. I think they're a bit easier to handle for those of us with smaller hands, too.

    StewMac sells the Bosch Colt, and there are a couple other good ones in the $100 range as well. Even though DeWalt seems to be more hit-or-miss these days, their DWP611 gets high marks from some woodworking publications; you can get the DeWalt for about $115 on Amazon, and I regularly see the Bosch Colt there for $99 too.

    Actually, I'm looking at Amazon as I type this and they have the Porter-Cable 450 1.25 HP Compact Router - Power Routers - [email protected]@[email protected]@http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/[email protected]@[email protected]@51fybiijxuL for $92. Aside from the color, it looks like it's identical to the DeWalt but about $15-$20 cheaper.

    FWIW, these are all fixed-based, but you can buy plunge bases for them if you want (most of them seem to also be available with a fixed and a plunge base combo deal that'll save a little cash, too.) I'd go with just the fixed base at first and see if you'd even feel the need for a plunge base.

    Otherwise, if you want something super-compact, I'd got with one of the B&D RTX's and then pick up some accessories from StewMac or something. Quality aside, Dremels have always had a bit of a markup simply for the name, and virtually all Dremel accessories work with the B&D anyway.

    If you're giving Foredoms away, I'd be happy to give it a nice home and a hot meal. :D
     
  18. hotpot

    hotpot Tele-Afflicted

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    About the only thing I use my Workzone varispeed dremel type tool for these days is to polish up the frets with the felt buffing pad & jewellers rouge, I use my steel fret protector of course, Does a fantastic job in no time at all & zero elbow grease used:)

    [​IMG]
     
  19. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    Great tool - but it's mandatory to rig up something to hang it above your bench (I have a board screwed to the floor joist and a big hook on the end). Sometimes I wish I had it closer to the center of the bench in order for the shaft to reach, but the foot treadle and variable speed are great. Solid tool that does everything a Dremel will do, just quieter and with less vibration.

    The specialty Foredom handpiece that Stew Mac sells to fit their router base works very nicely (the coarse thread at the end is the same as a Dremel if you unscrew the front part of the handle, so it will fit any accessory base made for a Dremel). Great for pearl inlay work (which I wish I had a chance to do more of) but it's still the right tool with a cutoff wheel for slicing bolts.

    Most of the time however I use the standard handlpiece with the built-in three-jaw chuck.

    I would up drilling out most of the holes in a carousel to fit the larger shanks of my collection of bits and burrs. Jewelry making catalogs carry lots of great things for the Foredom, like buffing compounds and really big, thick abrasive cutoff wheels.
     
  20. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    Did I mention I use a battery powered Dremel with a sanding drum for the dog's claws? Cordless is the way to go because you don't want to do that inside the house (trust me on that one).
     
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