Best Rotary Tools in the UK

Review & Comparison, Last Update April 15, 2018
If for the job you've got at hand using an angle grinder isn't possible and a hand file is simply not enough, what you need is a special rotary tool. Lightweight and versatile, rotary tools are suitable for a vast scope of applications, including rough jobs such as cutting hardwoods and metal. So for this rotary tool review, we've selected five best models to help you determine which one is best suited for your needs. ...Read more ...Read less
BEST 2018
PROS
CONS
OUR VERDICT
Type
Power
Speed
Attachments
Accessories
Weight
Warranty
 
PROS

The patented EZ Twist™ system lets you change attachments during work without any keys, simplifying your tasks and saving your time.

CONS

The number of accessories in the kit is relatively modest.

OUR VERDICT

Dremel is the leading manufacturer of professional polishing tools and most competitors are simply trying to catch up with the high standards set by the company. Any skilled craftsman will appreciate the high RPM rate of the tool and its durability.

detailed parameters
Type

Corded

Power

130 W

Speed

10000 - 33000 RPM (10 steps)

Attachments

15 accessories (2 x Mandrel, Mandrel with sanding band, 2 x Sanding band, Aluminium oxide grinding stone, 2 x Polishing Wheel, Bristle brush, 4 x Cut-off wheel, Drill bit)

Accessories

EZ Twist™ Accessory quick change system, Variable speed control, Integrated hang hook, Soft grip, Soft bag included

Weight

0.55 kg

Warranty

2 years

PROS

The special motor construction and smart arrangement of vents on the body of the device guarantee efficient cooling. The tool won't get too hot during operation even if used for a long time without breaks.

CONS

No anti-slip coating on the body of the device.

OUR VERDICT

Along with the rotary tool, the kit includes 243 accessories which will allow you to work comfortably on most materials, be it glass, plastic, stone, or even precious metals.

detailed parameters
Type

Corded

Power

135 W

Speed

10000 - 32000 RPM

Attachments

243 attachments total (Grinding belts, Cutters, Drill bits, Sanding paper, Cut off wheels, Polishing wheels, Grinding pins etc)

Accessories

Variable speed control, Compatible with Dremel rotary tool accessories, Accessory case included

Weight

0.7 kg

Warranty

2 years (product registration required)

PROS

The speed control dial lets you regulate the operating speed of the tool in the range of 8000-35000 RPM. You can choose the optimal level depending on the task at hand.

CONS

This model is rather heavyweight.

OUR VERDICT

A powerful motor and a massive body make this model perfect for sanding metal as well as drilling holes in walls. The process won't take much time or energy thanks to the high RPM rate.

detailed parameters
Type

Corded

Power

170 W

Speed

8000 - 35000 RPM

Attachments

120 attachments total (Sanding discs, Cut-off wheels, Sanding bands, Grinding stones, Drill bits, Collets, Mandrels etc)

Accessories

Variable speed control, Soft Grip, Compatible with Dremel rotary tool accessories, Accessory Case included

Weight

0.9 kg

Warranty

3 years

PROS

The cutting guide helps you make openings of any depth without using any extra measuring devices.

CONS

Some users have complained about this tool being too noisy.

OUR VERDICT

If you plan to work with a rotary multi-tool for a while with no pauses, we recommend you to use this model. It comes with a flexible drive, so your hands won't get tired during use. 

detailed parameters
Type

Corded

Power

135 W

Speed

10000~32000 RPM

Attachments

80 accessories (Sanding Discs, Cut-off Wheels, Sanding Bands, Grinding Stones, Drill Bits, Collets, Mandrels etc), 3 attachments (cutting guide, auxiliary handle, flexible driver)

Accessories

Variable speed control, integrated hang hook, soft grip, Compatible with Dremel rotary tool accessories, Accessory Case included

Weight

~0.7 kg

Warranty

2 years

PROS

The tool features a built-in battery allowing its comfortable application in places with no access to a power socket. The full recharge of the tools takes 1-2 hours. 

CONS

No RPM adjustment option.

OUR VERDICT

Lightweight and compact, this rotary drill grinder set will be good for people engaged in woodworking. While operating at rather low RPM rate, the tool can polish all types of wood with high precision and create etchings in a majority of delicate materials. 

detailed parameters
Type

Cordless

Power

3.6 V rechargeable battery

Speed

10000 RPM

Attachments

60 accessories (Grinding Stones, Metal Engraving Bits, Connective Posts, Wire Wheels, Brass Collets, Buffing Wheels, Drill Bits, Cut-Off Wheels, Sanding Drums etc)

Accessories

Accessory Case, Wall battery charger

Weight

~0.4 kg

Warranty

Amazon's 30-day return policy

Dremel 3000-15

Famous Dremel Quality

When working with delicate materials and precious metals, you need high precision and impeccable quality which can be achieved with a rotary tool like the Dremel 3000 -15. Made by globally renowned company Dremel, this tool stands out as one of the best and most effective rotary tools that can be used for woodworking, stone buffing, and even cutting fine materials.

The Dremel 3000 -15 can operate at an impressive speed rate allowing you to change it in 10 steps between the minimum of 10000 RPM and the maximum of 33000 RPM. Switching speeds is easy and can be done literally on the fly so that you can process different types of materials with ease and comfort. The operating speed isn't the only parameter that can be adjusted so quickly. Thanks to the innovative EZ Twist™ system used, it's possible to swap out any of the 15 accessories within mere minutes, and without any special keys. This helps save your time and effort.

If you often have to work on quite lengthy projects, don't worry. The Dremel 3000-15 is the perfect tool for that. Weighing in just 0.55 kg and with a soft coating, it's comfortable to hold in hand and it doesn't lead to hand fatigue.

For user's convenience of use, the manufacturer fitted the Dremel 3000-15 with a special hook, making its storage much more convenient, and included a bag to put the tool away for transportation.

Considering all of these advantages, it’s easy to see why the Dremel 3000-15 is one of the most popular and bestselling models among rotary tools presented on the market. Easily adaptable to any material, this one can easily cut, buff, sand, polish, and do whatever else you throw its way. Any woodworker or craftsman performing grinding jobs on a regular basis will appreciate having such an effective and high-performance tool at hand.

Review of Dremel 3000-15 Multitool, 130 W, 15 Accessories

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

VonHaus 15/065

243 Attachments: the Benefits

Working on tasking projects may take hours upon hours and not every tool would be able to endure such loads. Which is why if you need to keep your tasks going no matter what, it's best to turn towards the VonHaus 15/06 rotary tool that will withstand heavy use and let you work on your projects as long as you need.

What discerns this rotary tool compared with many others is a motor construction containing vents that keep it from overheating by letting cool air in. Thanks to this, the VonHaus 15/06 can work at its maximum load for many hours, allowing you to cut, buff, polish, and drill without wasting your time. While boasting such excellent performance, some consumers find it a bit frustrating that this tool doesn't have an anti-slip coating and that it weighs less than a kilo, making such tasks as processing rough materials, like stone and hardwood, tiresome. On the positive side, there are very few other rotary tools out there that come with such a number of additional attachments and accessories in the kit. In total, along with the tool, you get 243 accessories - from drill bits to grinding pins - making it one of the most multi-functional models of rotary tools. The best thing is, the VonHaus 15/065 is compatible with a majority of Dremel rotary accessories as well, so you will have more options if you find out that the kit doesn't contain some bits you need.

So choose the VonHaus 15/065 if you tend to work on time-consuming projects most of the time, that require a versatile set of tools. This set is a real find for any skilled worker who seeks multi-tasking and functionality in a single device.

Review of VonHaus 15/065 135W Rotary Multitool with 243pc Accessory Kit

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

Apollo DM-170

Cut Stone like Butter

If you’re planning a project that involves materials you've not processed before, you have to exercise caution, operate the tool at the optimal speed setting, and use the right attachment. The easiest way to do that is by using the Apollo DM-170 which allows precise adjustment of RPM rate and comes with 120 attachments, making it suitable for a wide range of grinding tasks and for any skill level. With the Apollo DM-170, you'll get a variety of sanding disks, grinding stones, and drill bits that should be present in any workshop. But what's more important is that you'll get the power to handle just about anything, even the hardest stones, thanks to the tool's ability to reach a maximum of 35000 RPM, the highest speed rate compared to the rest of tools in this review. Of course, the operating speed can be adjusted and lowered depending on the project.

Do note that the Apollo DM-170 is a bit heavier than counterparts, weighing in at 0.9 kg, but you're unlikely to feel it unless you've got a couple of rotary tools in your workshop. With that, because it's slightly bulkier than other models, it's also more balanced, making it suitable for lengthy jobs.

To sum up, if you need a versatile tool that could be adjusted for all kinds of materials, both hard and delicate, the Apollo DM-170 is the type of rotary tool that should be right up your alley. Capable of cutting through any material with ease, it will become your reliable assistant for a multitude of projects.

Review of Apollo DM-170 Heavy Duty 170W Rotary Multitool with 120 Piece Accessory

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

TACKLIFE RTD35ACL

Affordable Rotary Multi Tool

Purchasing a multifunction tool such as the TACKLIFE RTD35ACL is a practical solution. Coming with 80 additional accessories, this rotary tool can save you lots of hassle.

The set includes a number of sanding discs, grinding stones, drill bits of different sizes, and a special accessory case so you can use it straight out of the box. And if there aren't enough bits, the TACKLIFE RTD35ACL is compatible with Dremel accessories, which provides more options and versatility of use. In addition to the accessory kit, you get 3 additional attachments - a cutting guide, a flexible driver, and an auxiliary handle. The cutting guide will help you make cuts and openings of any depth without using measuring devices, which may come in handy when, for example, drilling holes in certain materials or doing etchings. Meanwhile, the flexible drive removes the need to hold the tool in hands, simplifying its use significantly.

The TACKLIFE RTD35ACL runs in the range of 10000-32000 RPM and has a variable speed control allowing you to choose the exact speed you need. On the downside, the tool does tend to get quite loud in operation when the applied load gets higher.

Overall, despite the fact that the TACKLIFE RTD35ACL rotary tool isn't as quiet as some other models, a plethora of accessories, precisely adjustable RPM rate, and a handy flexible drive make up for this shortcoming, making it suitable for many different projects around the house. It's a good choice for those working on construction sites where the noise level isn't that crucial and won't cause inconvenience.

Review of TACKLIFE RTD35ACL 135W Advanced Multi-functional Rotary Tool Kit with 80 Accessories

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

Bond Hardware 71008B

Cordless Performance

While using corded tools in a workshop is fine, it's not always possible to do so on sites with no power supply. For these particular use cases, it's best to use a cordless rotary tool. And the Bond Hardware 71008B is the one we can wholeheartedly recommend.

This compact device works at a stable speed of 10000 RPM rate. This means that it's perfect for processing wood and delicate materials like glass but it may struggle to buff and cut through metallic objects. Still, if you apply some pressure, you should be able to get the job done.

The Bond Hardware 71008B comes with 60 accessories and can be used for a great variety of tasks including engraving, drilling, buffing, cutting, grinding etc. All you need is pick the right attachment. The best selling point of this tool is that it recharges in less than 2 hours so that you can operate it without making too long breaks from work. Another advantage is the tool's light weight making mere 0.4 kg, which shows and proves that using it is going to be a piece of cake.

Review of Bond Hardware 71008B Cordless Rechargeable Mini Rotary Dremel Style Drill Grinder Set

 

What Is a Rotary Tool?

Probably, each of us has ever used a drill or angle grinder for perforating or buffing wood, concrete, or metal. But, what to do when a project is small and requires a tool more precise than a grinder or drill? In this case, a rotary tool is the best. Drilling holes up to 1 mm, polishing tiny pieces, engraving, and carving wood, glass, or plastic, that's what rotary tools can do perfectly.

Rotary tools, often referred to as dremel tools, are similar to engravers and feature cylindrical bodies with an electric motor inside. The motor is able to deliver high speeds for accurate materials processing. Dremel tools are usually used by workmen who engrave, grind, polish or cut various ware and may also prove useful for jewellers. Generally, dremel tools are irreplaceable for fiddly jobs.

If you deal with engraving only, consider our review on engravers that features vibrating and rotary models. If you are more into polishing and grinding, choose one of the die grinders driven by electric power or compressed air.

What Features to Compare

Type

There are two types of rotary tools: electric and pneumatic. Electric models further fall into corded and cordless tools, providing users with options to choose from. If you normally work in your workshop and don't often transport tools with you, it'd be best to opt for a corded rotary tool that would provide you with a sufficient amount of power to grind and cut through a variety of materials. On the other hand, if you often work on construction sites devoid of electricity, you'll be better off with a cordless tool. Most cordless rotary tools come with fairly capacious batteries providing enough time for performing a series of jobs. As for pneumatic tools, they are irreplaceable for large-scale projects that are typical of workshops. But you should keep in mind that they are rather heavy and noisy in operation which makes their application in households awkward and not always possible.

Performance

Now, speaking of tech specs, the major criteria to check on when selecting a rotary tool are the motor capacity and torque. The motor capacity is the number that will tell you how long you can run the tool without any damage. The speed will show you what types of jobs can be done with the tool. While the rule the higher the better is applicable here, it's recommended to go for a rotary tool with variable speed control so that you could easily change it while engraving, cutting or grinding, for example. Another option to look for is a chuck speed adjustment which allows processing such fine and delicate materials as glass and precise metals. But if you mostly work with hardwood and metal, the numbers you should be checking on are potential RPM rates.

Convenience features

No matter whether you're buying a gas chainsaw or such a simple instrument like a rotary tool, it should pose no inconvenience or discomfort during use. With that in mind, make sure to check the weight of the tool. You want it to be lightweight enough to not strain your arm yet heavy enough to withstand vibrations during operation. For additional convenience, many rotary tools come boxed with flexible shafts with which the tool can be suspended in a vertical position so that only the chuck would be manipulated. For hard-to-access areas, that's the only real option. One of the other things making the use of a rotary tool more convenient is the option to attach a foot pedal for additional speed control. Finally, you should check on the package to see what accessories come included with the purchase. Many of the kits pack quite a number of bits to spare you additional expenses.

FAQ:

Q: What are rotary tools used for?
A: Equipped with standard bits and accessories, rotary tools are capable of performing such operations as cutting using special wheels, shaping, hollowing and carving using cutter bits/points, engraving using engraving bits. These tools also can do grinding and sharpening using grinding stones, sanding using bands and drums, polishing and cleaning using polishing wheels, and drilling with drill bits. Dremel tools can be applied to a pretty wide range of materials like metal, wood, plastic, glass, stone, and even dog toenails. Dremel tools may come with carbide and steel bits for handling softer materials, whilst tungsten-carbide and diamond bits are good for harder materials. There are Dremel attachments, such as a router attachment that allows edging and routing wood and plastic.

Q: How to hold a Dremel tool?
A: There are at least 3 ways to hold your tool.

1. The way you hold a pen. The tool grip is at the base of the shaft.

2. The way you hold a knife. The grip is the middle of the shaft.

3. With both hands. Hold the tool along the length of the shaft.

Q: How to change bits and attachments?
A: To change a bit/attachment, you need to do the following.

1. Hold the spindle lock button.

2. Loosen the collet nut with the wrench.

3. Change the bit by removing the current bit, and inserting a mandrel/spindle of a new bit or the bit itself into the collet. A wheel usually comes with a mandrel you attach, while bits are permanently attached to spindles.

4. Tighten the collet nut with the wrench and make sure the bit doesn't wobble. Release the spindle lock.

5. If your Dremel has the EZ Twist™ mechanism, you can change the bit without a wrench, by simply loosening the collet and changing the bit.

Q: How can I repair my Dremel tool?
A: Before repair, make sure to check the following things.

1. The motor brushes aren’t worn out.
2. The power outlet or batteries are intact and functional.
3. The interior of the tool is free from debris and sawdust.
4. The tool is used according to it’s intended purpose (and is not overloaded).
5. Only properly sized accessories or attachments are used with the tool. 

Once you have checked those things, check if your model is still covered by its warranty. If it is, call Dremel and ask for service.

Surely, you can try to fix the problem yourself by following these steps.

1. Disconnect the tool from the power source.
2. Remove the plastic cap on the tool head.
3. Depending on the model you use, there will be screws securing the shaft. Remove these screws with an appropriate screwdriver.
4. Access the tool internals to address the issue.
5. If the tool shaft does not spin up, the most probable cause of the problem is that the coupling is worn down (the little ring between the shaft components). Always check this coupling for integrity.

Sources:

1. What Size Rotary Tool is Best Suited to My Needs? eBay. March 3, 2016.

2. How to Use a Dremel Tool, wikiHow

3. Kit Stansley Get the Most out of Your Rotary Tool With These Attachments, Lifehacker. August 22, 2014.

4. Everything you need to know about rotary tools, Yellow Pages

5. Rotary and Oscillating Tool Buying Guide, Lowe's

6. Die grinder, Wikipedia. February 14, 2017.

7. Rotary Tools Buying Guide, eBay. March 3, 2016.

8. Rotary-Tool Basics, DIY Network. 

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Publish Date: 2018-03-20 20:56:45