August 20, 2007

Dremel 75th Anniversary Rotary Tool Kit - Review

kit.jpgJust about everyone agrees that Dremel is the king of the rotary tool, but did you know that they've been at it since 1932? Way back then, they released an electric razor blade sharpener and soon after introduced the Moto-Tool, their first rotary tool. Since then, it's been one success after another and now they have decided to mark their 75th anniversary with a limited-edition commemorative tool kit. Needless to say, we were pretty thrilled when they kindly let us test one out.

The tool comes in a metal case with the commemorative Dremel logo imprinted on the lid. Although it's a bit impractical for throwing in the back of the truck and heading off to the jobsite, the case is very cool and fits the limited-edition nature of the kit. The tool itself also has a retro look and feel with a number of chrome accents, including the collet, brush caps, on/off/speed switch as well as a chrome version of Dremel's old-school logo printed on the side. The set comes with, you guessed it, 75 accessories. The accessories cover the basics of the rotary tool world; there are sanding bands, polishing wheels, cut-off wheels, steel brushes, grinding stones, and even a small container of polishing compound. It's a solid starter set, with just enough of everything to get you interested and wanting more.

high_bits.jpglow_bits.jpg

But what about the actual tool? Is it a throw-away item, peddled to the public as some limited-edition 'must have?' Thankfully, the answer is a resounding no. And to be honest, we never really thought that was the case anyway. Although we really liked Ryobi's rotary tool kit for its sheer size and economy, Dremel plays in a different league and you can feel the quality of the tool just by holding it; the weight is right, the size is right, and the balance is right. Because of the general retro vibe of the tool, it's a little boxy compared to their newer tools, and so it doesn't have all the ergonomic details that you might be used to. Think of it as driving a nice car with stiff action on the stick shift. There's still the great handling, it's just a little different, that's all.

Once in use, the tool behaves just like any other Dremel rotary tool. The controls are nice and easy to use and the little wrench makes accessory changing quick and painless. For making something with such a retro look and feel, Dremel didn't sacrifice any quality at all.

The kit also comes with the Dremel Quick Start Book, a very thorough manual on what you can do with a rotary tool. The book has about 30 projects and a complete run down on rotary tool basics.

multitool.jpgTo sweeten the pot, Dremel has added a free multi-tool in the kit as well. It is almost identical in features to the Leatherman Blast, except that the Dremel's pliers are spring-loaded. The tool is made of stainless steel and after we used it for a bit we came to the conclusion that it too is up to Dremel's high standards.

dremel_logo.jpgWe assume that this kit will be sold at least until the end of the year, or maybe until supplies last. Either way, we recommend picking one up or as we said earlier, get two so you can use one and sell the other one on ebay in five years. The kit costs around $75.

At Amazon.com


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Posted by Doug Mahoney at August 20, 2007 5:31 AM

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