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  • Need new Rotary (Dremel) Tool

    Hey guys, up for helping me purchase a new tool?

    My Chicago Electric (Harbor Freight) 1.3 amp rotary tool just died on me yesterday and I need a new one. I really liked it, it had plenty of power, but it sputtered a few more times, then just gave up and won't run. Seems from reviews that the speed controller section may have issues in that model.

    Anyway, just looking for a few recommendations for a good Dremel type rotary tool so I won't have to purchase another one in a few more years.

    Gracias,
    TomZ
    Zarbo Audio Projects Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEZ...aFQSTl6NdOwgxQ * 320-641 Amp Review Youtube: https://youtu.be/ugjfcI5p6m0 *Veneering curves, seams, using heat-lock iron on method *Trimming veneer & tips *Curved Sides glue-up video
    *Part 2 *Gluing multiple curved laminations of HDF

  • #2
    No recommendation, but if I was going to buy one now I'd look at cordless. You never have an outlet where you need it.
    www.billfitzmaurice.com
    www.billfitzmaurice.info/forum

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    • #3
      I purchased a Dremel 3000 kit at one of the big box stores a couple years ago and really like it. I have used it on almost every project and have never had a problem. Seems well made and very easy to hold securely. Comes with a nice plastic case to hold all the grinding wheels, bits, polishers, etc. Runs on 120V AC only, no batteries.
      SideTowers: http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...corundum-build
      Totally Flat: http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...5-totally-flat
      Plumber's Delight: http://techtalk.parts-express.com/fo...notech-winners
      Linehopper: http://techtalk.parts-express.com/sh...Esoteric-build

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      • #4
        I've fried at least 2 of the older lower-end Dremels, but their newer stuff seems a lot better designed. I bought a Trio that I like several years ago, and I still use my driver/stylus kit. but both are obsolete and officially "retired". So, I've been thinking about an upgrade, also. I would hold out for a brushless motor with a decent-sized battery, but that puts you into the 8250/8260 products, which are pricey (starting at $150). Wen also has a brushless battery-operated unit at a good price, but I prefer the Dremel configuration, and I'm starting to think the Dremel 8250 is worth it. It looks like Bosch is selling a version of the 8250 under their own name at a much higher price.

        Just some ideas...
        Free Passive Speaker Designer Lite (PSD-Lite) -- http://www.audiodevelopers.com/Softw...Lite/setup.exe

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        • #5
          I have an actual Dremel brand tool, I don't use it very often but it has lasted almost 20 years and it still works fine.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Billet View Post
            I have an actual Dremel brand tool, I don't use it very often but it has lasted almost 20 years and it still works fine.
            +1
            Craig

            I drive way too fast to worry about cholesterol.

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            • #7
              I've had my Dremel for a long time now. Favorite bits?
              Tungsten wood shaping wheel
              Of course, the sanding and cutting wheels; I have the EZ lok system for quick changes..
              Stone bit for grinding
              Engraver
              Drywall spiral and coarse bits, as well as drill bit.
              The extender cable is good to have in a pinch, but I've rarely used it.
              I have the mini circle jig, but a router is better. I did not have a router when I bought it, and have not used it since. I can see where driver hole usage in veneered material may be beneficial if you have them cut before veneering and need to remove the overlaid veneer cleanly.
              I have the mini-saw, and it can come in handy in hard to reach places.

              Caveats:
              I have yet to wear out the collet flats where the wrench is used, but I'm getting close.
              The tightening on the sanding drums is a pain in the rear. I need to see if they've improved those...

              I have a cheap off brand unit to use in case the Dremel dies, but will replace the Dremel if it croaks.

              Wolf


              "Wolf, you shall now be known as "King of the Zip ties." -Pete00t
              "Wolf and speakers equivalent to Picasso and 'Blue'" -dantheman
              "He is a true ambassador for this forum and speaker DIY in general." -Ed Froste
              "We're all in this together, so keep your stick on the ice!" - Red Green aka Steve Smith

              *InDIYana event website*

              Photobucket pages:
              https://app.photobucket.com/u/wolf_teeth_speaker

              My blog/writeups/thoughts here at PE:
              http://techtalk.parts-express.com/blog.php?u=4102

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              • #8
                Yeah, I never thought to look at actual 'Dremel' tools for some reason. Could someone please pass me a Kleenex, um, I mean a tissue? : )

                Based on your insights and some resultant digging on my part, I've got a 'corded' 4300 on the way.

                I don't use this type of tool much, mostly for small cutting and grinding with a drum sander... all speaker-related of course which is why I never opted for a 'good' one. I haven't needed a rotary tool where I couldn't easily plug it in so I guess I'll skip the battery thing, but I do see that being a benefit if you're a frequent user.

                I have an idea to make a rig to do speaker recesses with this thing with some 1/8" up/down-cut bits if it has the guts to get through MDF at a decent clip without flexing.

                Thanks again!

                TomZ

                Zarbo Audio Projects Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEZ...aFQSTl6NdOwgxQ * 320-641 Amp Review Youtube: https://youtu.be/ugjfcI5p6m0 *Veneering curves, seams, using heat-lock iron on method *Trimming veneer & tips *Curved Sides glue-up video
                *Part 2 *Gluing multiple curved laminations of HDF

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                • #9
                  Just a follow-up on this:

                  I decided to take it apart since it's already broken, and I had just cleaned up my worktable so I could actually do something on it.

                  I didn't see anything wrong on the speed control board, nothing smelled or looked burnt. I plugged it in and still nothing... until I rotated the speed dial up to max... when I put a bit more rotational force on it... it "clicked" like the old volume knobs would click off and be a volume knob as well.

                  This took more force to get it to click than an on/off volume dial though. I actually wasn't aware that it clicked to a full-on position... I never turned it up with that much force. It is a HFT tool after all, I don't know... I guess I thought it would break.

                  Anyway, it actually still does work, but only in the 'high' position and that's with max speed.

                  I then plugged it into my HFT variable speed router controller, which I have attached to my router table and which runs around $20 on Amazon, though it looks like HFT doesn't carry it anymore. It did control the speed just fine. The rotary tool is much less powerful than the larger sized router I use it for on my router table, so I imagine it would be able to adjust the speed on a little rotary tool like this for days with no issues. I use it on my router table to "slow the roll" on my big bits, like 3" wide 1 1/2" roundover bits which tax it considerably I would imagine.

                  I already purchased the Dremel tool and it should arrive today, but had I known, just might have purchased one of those variable speed controllers from the rainforest site and be done with it. There are times when I want less speed, like when I'm using little drum sanders in it which I do a lot. Those things tear up with too much speed.

                  Anyway, I thought I'd relay what I found for future generations.

                  TomZ
                  Zarbo Audio Projects Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEZ...aFQSTl6NdOwgxQ * 320-641 Amp Review Youtube: https://youtu.be/ugjfcI5p6m0 *Veneering curves, seams, using heat-lock iron on method *Trimming veneer & tips *Curved Sides glue-up video
                  *Part 2 *Gluing multiple curved laminations of HDF

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