When it comes to rotary tools, it doesn’t get better than Dremel. Whether you need cordless, corded or kit variations that are sold with attachments and accessories, Dremel’s many rotary tool models can easily satisfy your choice. However, the abundance of choice also presents the problem of plenty. Which one is the best Dremel tool out there? How do you draw up Dremel comparison criteria? How many Dremel tool reviews do you need to read!? Well, hopefully after reading this post, this one rotary tool reviews post should be enough to give you a clear indication on which particular Dremel to buy.
Let’s get started with the comparisons of the various models. For the sake of simplicity, we are going to compare cordless Dremel tools with one another and do another comparison for the corded Dremel tools. After all, you are going to buy one or the other and it also doesn’t make a lot of sense to compare a cordless model with a corded one.
Let’s start with the corded Dremel tools reviews.
Let’s take a closer look at each one of the Dremel corded tools talked about above.
The Fortiflex features a 2.5 Amps motor, the most powerful in Dremel’s lineup. The motor actually puts out a mind boggling 0.5 HP of power, resulting in significant torque. With all that torque, it is no surprise that Dremel didn’t put electronic feedback control in this machine as the motor is rarely going to struggle with anything you throw at it. It is a high torque motor with a relatively low high-end RPM range that cranks out at 23,000. What’s really special about the Fortiflex, also called as the Dremel 9100, is that it allows for variable speed control using the foot. The precision crafted hand piece gives you a pen like hold that allows for very delicate work.
The Fortiflex also features a 3-jaw chuck system that will allow you to use any drill or accessory from the Dremel line up.
The Fortiflex is a hot favorite amongst jewelers. The pencil like hand held end of the tool is great for ambidextrous use and the rotary tool performs very quietly, allowing you to focus on your work. The stylus like pen does heat up after continuous use, but nothing that you can’t really handle. The 9100 comes in a kit with 21 accessories, most of which are for grinding and sanding purposes.
The Fortiflex doesn’t feature an EZ change or EZ Twist nose cap system for quick accessory changes. But, the custom wrench that comes with the machine will allow you to screw out and screw in accessories in just a few seconds. The foot control for speed variation works fantastically and you will in no time be able to master tuning to very precise RPM levels that you need.
We recommend the Fortiflex if foot controlled speed is a prime feature you are after. Also, it is a fantastic tool if you need a high torque motor with a stylus end, allowing for pencil or pen like hold.
After the Fortiflex, the Dremel 4300 has the most powerful motor, with a capacity of 1.8 amps. What also sets the 4300 apart from the rest of the 4000 lineup is that it features a 3 jaw chuck accessory change system as opposed to the EZ Twist and EZ Change systems that you will see on the lower end 4200, 4000 and 3000 models. The 4300 also has a rotating pivot light, always illuminating your target area just that little bit more.
The 4300 also features electronic feedback control, enabling very consistent speeds, regardless of feedback. What this essentially means is that the 4300 has a circuit that allows for RPM to be ramped up, if it is found that the machine is struggling a little.
There is a very convenient turn dial like speed setting that will allow you to go all the way from 5,000 to 35,000 on the RPM. The 3 jaw chuck system allows the tool to be coupled with any attachment or accessory from the Dremel line up. For some accessories to be used, you will have to switch out the chuck system with a collet system. But, the collet system is included with the tool, should this need arise.
We recommend that you choose the 4300 over the 4200. You will see why we either recommend that you choose the 4300 or go down to the 4000, while skipping over the 4200, when we get into a little more detail about the 4200.
The only downside to the Dremel 4300 is that it comes in kit variations with an accessory count of at least 40 accessories. This drives up the price a little. But then, if you worked out the cost of all those accessories, the price could be more than justified. It is just that you have to shell out more to buy the 4300 than you would for a 4000 or 3000.
The Dremel 4200 was introduced with the EZ Change system as its main feature. With the EZ Change system, all you had to do to change accessories was simply pull down on a lever, swap out the accessory and release the lever. This was an improvement over the EZ Twist nose cap feature that is seen on the Dremel 4000 and 3000.
But, though this is an advantage for the Dremel 4200, it is a bit of its weakness also. Why? Because the EZ Change system is great for accessories but not for changing out the collet to accommodate different drill bits. Changing out the collet is still possible, but several rotary tool reviews about the Dremel 4200 have particularly said that the EZ Change works quite badly for collet changes, resulting in a weak or compromised sit. This obviously leads to some durability and reliability issues.
That said however, if all you are going to be doing is change out accessories, the Dremel 4200 is a great choice as accessory changes will literally take just 2-3 seconds. Besides the EZ Change system, you get the electronic feedback control, an on/off speed control button switch, the variable speed setting and a nice and rugged construction that allowed for hours of work, with very little fatigue.
The 4200 comes in 3 kit options that give you more freedom of choice to choose one that matches your budget. The lowest priced kit option is just about the $100 range and comes with a 36 piece accessory kit coupled with 4 attachment pieces. The higher end kit comes with 8 attachments and 64 accessories.
The Dremel 4000 is an incredibly popular and what is often considered the best Dremel tool ever, because of the high value for money it offers. The basic 28 piece kit retails for just over $50 and offers tremendous value for money.
Though it features a 1.6 Amps motor as opposed to the 1.8 amps motor that you see on the 4300, the RPM range is still very plentiful at 5,000 to 35,000. The accessory change system is also a very reliable one, albeit one that takes about 20 seconds. Called the EZ Twist Nose cap system, all you have to do to change out accessories is unscrew the nose cap, push it up against the collet until it tightens, unscrew it, change out the accessory and tighten it back.
You will be hard pressed to find any Dremel or any other branded tool that can beat the Dremel 4000 in value for money, as it can offer variable speed control, an easy accessory change and a wide RPM range motor. You can read through many Dremel tool reviews and you will eventually end up reading about the fantastic value for money that the 4000 offers.
The Dremel 3000 has been succeeded by the Dremel 4000, the 4200 and even the 4300, but still remains a hot favorite among Dremel fans. Many even still continue to call this the best rotary tool out there, for the price it is offered at and for the features it comes with.
It features the same 1.2 Amps motor that is of lower capacity than the 1.6 motor used in the 4200 and 4000 and a lot lower than the 1.8 Amps motor used in the 4300. But, the RPM output range is still pretty impressive, between 5,000 and 32,000.
The Dremel 3000 also lacks a little when it comes to electronic features found in the 4000 and up. For starters, it does not have an on/off button for speed control. This can be a little annoying for a little while. But you can easily get used to it. The other drawback is that the 3000 does not feature electronic feedback control.
In other words, there is no automatic tuning of RPM speeds to keep it consistent. What this means is that the RPM can possibly drop to levels that are lower than your set RPM, because of feedback like friction and traction. In models like the 4000, 4200 and 4300, the circuitry in the tool will increase RPM automatically. With the 3,000, there is no auto tuning and you just have to use your experience to back off on the grinding or sanding so the motor eases out a bit, so you can slowly work your way back in.
The 3000 comes in 3 kit options and features an EZ Twist Nose Cap accessory change system, just like in the 4000 series.
The wrap up on Best cordless Dremel tools
Between the Fortiflex, the 4300, the 4200 and the 4000 and the 3000, you will have to choose what makes the most money sense for you. They are all great tools and will serve your grinding, cutting, sanding, etching, cleaning, polishing and carving needs very well. If there was any caveat we should point out, we will only say that the EZ Change system on the 4200 doesn’t work very well if you are going to be changing collets. However, it does work very well for changing out accessories.
If budget really isn’t a problem for you, go for the 4300 that gives you the 3 jaw chuck system that will allow you to use any Dremel drill bit in addition to any Dremel accessory. But, if you want maximum value for money, you can choose between the 4000 or the 3000, since they are great priced tools with also great kit options to choose from. The Fortiflex is a bit of a specialty tool and you are probably going to choose that regardless of whether or not we recommend it anyways, because of its uniqueness in design and use.
The 8220 is easily the best Dremel cordless tool out there. With a powerful 12 V motor powered by Lithium Ion batteries that hold charge for a very long time, this rotary tool can put out RPM in the range of 5,000 and 33,000, almost matching the corded models that max out at 35,000 RPM. The 8220 is sold in two kits, one with 1 attachment and 28 accessories while the other has 2 attachments and 28 accessories. Buying the kit with 2 attachments is actually buying the tool with two Lithium Ion batteries. This is ideal as you can always have one fully charged should juice run out or begin to run out on the battery you are using. A fully charged battery on the 8220 will last about one hour.
The 8220 is sold with a 1-hour charger that will quickly juice up your 8220. The battery is one with fantastic quality as it can hold a charge for more than 2 years, without memory effects. The variable speed setting allows you to choose between 5,000 and 33,000 RPM in preset increments of about 5,000 RPM. All Dremel accessories will fit on this cordless Dremel tool.
This is the best Dremel rotary tool to get if you need a high power rotary tool that is also cordless. Take advantage of the one hour charger and get the kit with an extra battery or simply pick up an extra battery as a separate item. With a standby battery, you can just switch out to a fresh battery and have almost the same power as a plugged in corded Dremel drill has.
The 8100 has a smaller footprint than the 8220. It is largely due to the smaller capacity motor, an 8 V CRDLS motor. Just like the 8220, the 8100 also features an EZ Twist nose cap accessory change system that will enable 20 second accessory bit changes. Please note that while the 8220 can be used with all Dremel accessories, the 8100 cannot be used with accessories numbered 231, PL400, MS400 and 335. Everything else fits just fine.
The average battery life that you get from a full charge is about one hour. Thus, it makes sense to buy a spare battery for this or any other Dremel cordless tool as well.
The 8100 comes in two kit options. One kit has 1 attachment and 28 accessories while another kit has 2 attachments and 28 accessories. In the 2 attachment kit, the extra attachment is an extra battery.
The 8050 is a super sleek cordless rotary drill from Dremel. Besides its thin and super-light profile, the 8050 also stands out for its LED features. There is a LED light to light up your work and there is even a battery life indicator feature, something that is very useful for a cordless rotary tool.
This rotary tool ships with a neat looking charging docking station that will continuously charge the 8050, meaning that you can set it aside on the dock for just a few minutes in-between work and it can pick up some pretty decent charge.
The slim design on the 8050 however means that there is no EZ Twist nose cap accessory change system. You will have to use the wrench that is provided in the kit to swap out accessories. Not a huge deal breaker, but it will certainly take you a good half minute to swap out an accessory.
It is highly recommended that you get this tool with the 160 piece accessory kit that comes at an incredible price. The 160 piece accessory kit comes with 5 EZ accessories, a storage case, 1 carving accessory, 3 cutting accessories, 12 cleaning and polishing accessories, 3 grinding accessories, 137 sanding accessories and 4 miscellaneous accessories. The tool plus the 160 piece accessory kit comes in at about less than the $120 range, giving this tool incredible value for money.
The Dremel 7700 features a Ni-Cd battery that isn’t as efficient as the Lithium Ion battery powered models. But, at just over $40, there is plenty of bang for the buck here. The 7700 is very popular with motor heads as it is sold in a special automotive variant kit. The automotive kit is shipped with 10 accessories specialized for automotive repair and detailing work. The charger is able to fully charge batteries in 3 hours.
It is highly recommended that you buy at least 1 if not 2 spare batteries as Ni-Cd batteries don’t last as long as Lithium Ion batteries.
Though it doesn’t have a variable speed setting, the low and high speed settings can be toggled for appropriate use. The tool is incredibly light and can be used comfortably even in compromised positions.
The Dremel 7000 retails for just over $20. At that incredible price, this is a fantastic rotary tool with some serious power and with unbeatable portability. It comes with 5 accessories and a wrench that you will use to swap out the accessories. With a two speed setting, you can operate the rotary tool at either 7,000 RPM or 14,000 RPM.
It weighs just 6 ounces. It required 4 AA batteries and we recommend that you buy rechargeable AA batteries so you don’t run up the cost of batteries with a lot of use. Batteries are not included with the tool and you can pick up batteries after shopping around for the many brilliant battery deals that you see on Amazon.
So, what is the best Dremel tool? We hope you have got at least an idea by now! Like mentioned before, you must first make up your mind on whether you want a cordless or corded Dremel tool. Once done deciding on that, you can read through our various product descriptions and summaries above and decide which one will be best Dremel rotary tool for your particular needs.
Like we always mention in our Dremel rotary tool reviews, the most expensive tool is not necessarily the best for your use and application. Sometimes, buying an overpowered tool that you just won’t use to its full capacity means that you are throwing money down the drain, money that you can use to buy accessories. Pick a tool that is just right for you and instead max out on accessory spending as chances are that you will go through a lot of accessories to do quality work. Of course, if budget isn’t really a buying factor, you can simply go ahead and buy the Dremel 4300 for a corded tool or the Dremel 8220 for a cordless tool, as it will easily satisfy your every rotary tool need.