View Full Version : Dremel sets

1st Sep 2010, 18:26
Does anyone own a Dremel set?

A mate of mine bought one of these miniature drill sets. Now he's collecting accessories for it, like a kid adding to a Thomas the Tank Engine set. He's turned over part of his shed to a sort of miniature engineering works. He talks about it all the time and is thinking of setting up a miniature foundry.

I have to admit, it's fun using it, but I suspect that once you start, you could get hooked, and terminal nerdism will not be far away.

Are there any views on these things?

tony draper
1st Sep 2010, 18:48
Once bought a set of spiffing stainless steel dental tools,you know. probes things with hooks, things with curved pointy ends and the little round mirror on a steel shaft thingy,truth to tell never really found a use for them but they looked so dammed sexy in their little case not shedite could resist them.
Bro Draper has on of those Dremels,I borrowed ot once but for the life of me I cant remember what for now,but I do recall it involved those wee sandpaper disks.

Jimmy Macintosh
1st Sep 2010, 18:48
They're okay, nothing special. The thing I had greatest use for was the cutting discs, but couldn't get a vertical cut due to geometry of the Dremmel. I think it's been sitting in my shed unused for about 3 years now.

It could be good for modeling...

Airborne Aircrew
1st Sep 2010, 18:51
The Dremel is the best little boo-boo fixer I've come across to date.

Though I will agree on the cutting disk comment above... Quite frustrating sometimes.

1st Sep 2010, 19:49
It's a great tool, if you have a use for it. Re collecting accessories, that reflects more on the individual than the object being collected. I expect if he wasn't down at the shop buying Dremel bits, he would be pasting stamps into a book or some such.

1st Sep 2010, 19:55
I have owned one for about 30 years.

It's a sturdy little tool, but the accessories are not. Especially those sanding discs.

1st Sep 2010, 20:01
That's it. I'm going to get a beginner set, then try to find something practical to do with it! :p

I think a miniature vise/clamp thing, and a magnifying lamp be useful items as well. Are there any other suggestions for a beginner?

1st Sep 2010, 20:27
I build model airplanes and I find a Dremel useful for various things. Working with plastic though you need a speed control, otherwise you'll melt the plastic if you try to work on it.

Loose rivets
1st Sep 2010, 20:31
35 years ago I got my first one. Still at home in storage, but one of the most important accessories is a foot pedal. Just by chance I picked up two sewing machine pedals in a sale in a big US store. $4 each I think.

I took the pedal home, but now it's here again, just can't use the tool without it. It does mean that you don't have to buy the more expensive variable speed one. Quite a saving.

The cutting discs are used 10X more than anything else. They're carborundum in ebonite I would guess. They're brittle but will work at red heats. I've reached into a car engine bay and cut off a half inch bolt with one.

What is available now is a chuck, I always found the cotter a severe restriction, though it's better to go back to those for cutting cos the particles would be difficult to clean out of the chuck.

Really, the old ones are best. If you can lay hands on one of the old Bakelite ones, it'll out live you. The fact that they seldom turn up second-hand says a thing or two.

Juliet Sierra Papa
1st Sep 2010, 20:41
Have a butcher's here (http://www.bidorbuy.co.za/category/2180/Business_Farming_Industry_Tools_Other_Tools.jsp) , about 11 or so entries down, also avail under some of the other sub headings.

1st Sep 2010, 21:04
Dremel - definitely a "cult" thing. I bought a cheapo lookalike to do a couple of small jobs and found it useful - till the "chuck" broke. I fudged a repair (out in my shed, of course) and it now does very occasional odd little jobs. The soldering iron does more.

The Leatherman Charge on my belt does far more than either. Now that really IS a cult tool.

1st Sep 2010, 21:07
I have an old cordless battery one that I tossed the batteries and stuck a cord in it. Runs fine off the 5v side of an old pooter power supply.
It runs like a buzz saw on the 12v side :E
Lots of generic but I suspect thems will be smoke filled Chinamese crap
Get diamond drum for sharpening things
Dont make model planes anymore:{ but, for that you couldnt be without one

1st Sep 2010, 22:04
Dremels are very, very handy tools but the quality is down on what it used to be. My new one (which cost $Aus125) had the commutator explode after a fortnight and promptly went u/s. I misplaced it and didn't find it again until well after the warranty had expired.

So I took it to be repaired. A month later it was - and cost $Aus185. Could have bought a new one and a few accessories for the same money! :(

Still, they'll do jobs few other tools can touch. The abrasive cutting-wheels work well for small jobs and in confined spaces, but they also wear down very quickly. I just buy twenty or so at a time.

I like the idea of a foot-operated speed-control pedal. I wonder if an electric-light dimmer could be cobbled up, inside a volume-pedal enclosure forma music shop or something similar? Have to look at that.

Lon More
1st Sep 2010, 22:12
Sets of tools turn up regularly on Ebay. For the price that many of them bo for you can afford to use them then chuck them. It's not the best tool around but for plastics, with a speed control to stop the plastic melting it's pretty good. I use it often if I can't be bothered or don't need the accuracy of, a milling machine.

1st Sep 2010, 22:31
I have one in my woodwork shop. It's useful, mainly for sharpening bandsaw blades, but I also use it occasionally for carving and buffing small stuff. I rarely use the attachments that came with it, but use chain saw sharpening stones and a couple of bits that I've bought separately.
A useful tool if you have a use for it.:rolleyes:

Lon More
1st Sep 2010, 22:33
They now make an attachment for sharpening saws I believe

1st Sep 2010, 23:41
I came across the 11.1V Li-Ion cordless Dremel when building test pieces for a solar powered UAV a couple of years ago. It was superb for cutting and grinding composites, piano wire etc. So when the flight test team went off with it, I bought my own, rather than use the corded Dremel I was offered as an alternative.

I've since been using the cordless one whilst working on a 45ft catamaran, and its the D's Bs. The batteries charge fast enough to have the first available again when the second runs out. What sets the Dremel apart for me from the 'competition' are:

Properly supported good quality front bearing
Thermal cutout to prevent motor burning out
Battery voltage cutout to prevent battery damage
I used my Dremel a couple of months ago whilst sitting on the side of the boat in the round the Isle of Wight race to grind a damaged spinnaker track to refit the traveller, and again last week whilst sailing to Guernsey to modify the main sheet connection on the boom to fit a larger bolt. In this case I was grinding 1/4" stainless.

One of the most useful tools I bought for it was a set of six diamond cutting discs. These were under a fiver on fleabay and last for ever (ok, so one bent when I trod on it...) They will cut just about anything without wearing down.

Unlike Nicads and NiMHs, the Li-Ion batteries will still have enough charge in them after a month or two for you to be able to do small jobs before charging it up.

I class the Dremel, like Permagrit tools, as tools for which you will appreciate the quality long after you've forgotten the price.

Loose rivets
2nd Sep 2010, 04:55
Can't believe the price of things these days. I got the first one in a Texan flea market. Sealed in the box with the odds 'n ends, all for $14. Beside it was one of the old Bakelite ones. $7. I felt I shouldn't be too extravagant and didn't get it.:ugh:

I knew about them cos of my mates Bakelite one. He's had his since 1973. (I gave him the other pedal.)

2nd Sep 2010, 05:39
Daughter bought mer a cordless a few good years ago. Looked at it and said "Thank you darling."

Can't tell how many times it has pulled me out of a corner. Cuts bolts from my dump and hold it box when they are too long, I use the cutting blade to sharpen auger bits, it worsk better than the grinder head, fine shaping of small Al parts and I am amazed at what it will cut through.

Wouldn't be without it. Seriously considering getting a mains powered too.

2nd Sep 2010, 06:11
I've decided on a corded '400' kit. Can't wait to get to the hardware shot to see the real thing!

2nd Sep 2010, 06:20
The planer attachment is good for trimming plywood edges in enclosed spaces - eg when rebuilding a yacht. Used in conjunction with a Fein Multi master you have a pretty versatile power tool combo.

The Dremel flexible lead attachment is also good for polishing carby bodies.

2nd Sep 2010, 07:22
Dremels are OK, but a proper sheddie gets himself a dental kit. More expensive but more versatile and durable. Why, with a magnifying mirror you can even polish your own teeth.

Or save a few bob on fillings. :}

2nd Sep 2010, 08:45
Are there any other suggestions for a beginner?


When those wee cutting discs let go, they really pack a punch. I was "lucky" and stopped it with me forehead. Had a couple of drill bits snap too, the thing is pushing some ridiculous rpm. About 4,000?

2nd Sep 2010, 09:04
the thing is pushing some ridiculous rpm. About 4,000?

Try 20,000 RPM at full chat.

Mine packed up two days ago, pulled it apart for a look but couldn't see any obvious fault. I have an agency agreement with the company that distributes them here so just ordered a new one, will have a deeper look at the cripple when I'm bored.

2nd Sep 2010, 09:17
My relatively new variable speed one packed in a couple of days ago, checked all the usual points, took it apart found power to the speed ciruit board and nowt after.

Very usefull tool but cutting disks have a short life span especially when used in awkward locations/angles.
I'll be looking at a new one when I get home this time.

2nd Sep 2010, 10:12
Oooh a Dremel thread. :ok:
Been hoping for one of these.

A fellow Jetblaster recommended I get one to take the hassle out of dog nail cutting. She was right, no more bloodbaths, no more yelping dog, easy peasy.
Thing is, thereīs lots of other bits and pieces apart from the sanding cylinders. Bits and pieces that look useful for odd jobs and projects.
I have tried the instructions, google and youtube without any luck whatsoever.
Donīt know anybody who owns a Dremel either, so unable to ask what itīs all for and how to attach the various bits and to what, and too thick to figure it out by myself. :8

If you gentlemen have the patience to explain, Iīd be most grateful!


What does it do?
How do I attach 1, 2 and 4 to the Dremel?

2nd Sep 2010, 11:12
As much as that eh Mini?

Thanks, I was going from memory of 4,000 and 6,000 course, that's a mini-gun I was thinking of.

Funny ol thing Juud, I've got those bits too (unused).:O

2nd Sep 2010, 11:23
The Leatherman Charge on my belt does far more than either. Now that really IS a cult tool.

Keef !! Remember the First Commandment :=

You'll be telling us next that your neighbour had one, and you coveted it

2nd Sep 2010, 11:28
Doesn't item 6 serve as a mandrel for the polishing pads (items 1 and 4) whilst item 5 should, I believe, have a retaining screw for holding the discs (item 2).
Item 6

Item 5?

What happened to item 3?
I think we should be told.

2nd Sep 2010, 12:15
Dog nail cutting ? How will you get the dog to hold still ?

For my own monsterous toe nails I use a Bosch drill with a B & D sanding disk in the chuck. It saves a lot of time but you do have to watch the heating of the nail which can be quite painful and causes the nail to discolour.

(Picture available if you insist !)

2nd Sep 2010, 12:55
1 and 4 - Buffing wheels, used to impart a shine to metals and dog toenails. Can be used in conjunction with a buffing compound that looks like a big bar of fudge but doesn't taste as good.

2 - Flexible sanding discs. To be used in conjuction with the arbour in G-CPTN's lower picture. Could be used on wood or metal, or tidying the cut edges of the hound's toenails.

7. Burr - for creating concave hollows or blending in concave corners. Ideal for DIY dentistry? Useful for grinding away hardened glue in dining chair legs before reattaching the cross pieces for the umpteenth time, after the kids have been leaning back on them. This has formed teeth rather than relying on cloggable grinding media.

8. Grinding disc for DIY engine blueprinting, tool sharpening etc.

9. Bristle brush - For cleaning corrosion away when a wire brush would be too harsh

10. Small grinding cylinder - For radiusing edges, deburring, slotting out holes in sheet metal, also useful for engine blueprinting.