Dremel Multi-Max Oscillating Tool System
We just got word the other day that Dremel, one of our favorite tool companies, is on the verge of releasing a new oscillating tool. This is some unexpected news for us. We've been carefully watching the potential release of Bosch's PMF 180 E Multi
oscillating tool and here comes Dremel out of nowhere with their own model. If you've never played around with an oscillating tool, you've got something coming. Not only are they precise, but they can be used an a staggering number of situations; everything from sanding to flush cutting to grinding to polishing.
This release (coupled with the impending Bosch release) is a great thing for the marketplace. With few exceptions, like the Proxxon Delta Sander (our review here), Fein has operated in the oscillating tool arena with no competition at all (and the Proxxon is so small, it isn't really a comparable tool anyway). But still, we have to wonder how the Dremel will measure up to the Fein MultiMaster, an amazing tool that has set the bar for so long.
It looks like the Dremel will be plenty powerful. It's got a 1.5 amp motor that moves at a variable 10,000 to 21,000 OPM (oscillations per minute). It also comes equipped with some sort of quick change feature that we suspect is different from the one on the Fein, which can be tedious to operate.
The Multi-Max is going to retail for about $100 (and that's including a case and some accessories). Compared to the Fein, which is at least double that, it's a very, very low price. Also, Fein blades are insanely expensive at something like $60 for a three pack. Dremel says that their accessories will retail between $4 and $40. With this kind of price difference, we're counting on a quality difference as well (the Fein MultiMaster is nearly indestructible), but the question is, if there is indeed a difference, will the Dremel be good enough for your needs? Dremel's early photos of the tool show it taking on grout, thin-set, metal, and glued laminate flooring, so hopefully we're looking at something that can handle a construction site as well as the hobbyist's workshop.
And because it's a Dremel, it just looks fantastic. We're constantly impressed with their level of ergonomics and usability and this tool looks like it's another winner in those categories.
One other thing that we're looking forward to is seeing what Dremel comes up with in the way of accessories. Anyone who has ever looked at one of their rotary tool kits knows that their team is manic about the range and versatility of their accessories and we'd wager that they've got some interesting ones coming down the pipe line for their Multi-Max.
The bad news about the tool is that we'll all have to wail until October to get the answers to all of our questions. But when it finally is released, it'll be available in all the usual spots. We're going to keep an eye on this one and let you know as we hear more details or a specific release date.
Until then, get loaded up on other Dremel tools at Amazon.com.
Fein MultiMaster at Amazon.com.
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Posted by Doug Mahoney at July 21, 2008 4:55 AM