November 26, 2010

Win a Dremel MultiMax from Tool Snob

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Thanks to our homies over at Dremel, we're giving away one of their shiny new cordless MultiMax Oscillating Tools (a value of $140).

To enter, leave a comment at this post telling us what your first job will be with the new tool. We'll accept entries through December 10th and at that point our cat will pick a random winner, or if there is a post that is smothered in hilarious genius, we might choose that one, or if you make us weep, we might choose that one. It all really depends on how we're feeling that day. Strange, isn't it?

Dremel also supplied us with an Oscillating Tool Primer which is after the jump. It's a nice intro to the tool as well as what to consider when buying one. It's very even-handed and not all Dremel-centric like you might assume. So if you don't really know what these tools are capable of, make sure to click through and learn a thing or two.

Also, if you're impatient with the giveaway and have instant gratification issues, the cordless Dremel MultiMax is at Amazon.com.

Decoding the Oscillating Aisle

Everyone - from your favorite tool blog to your local home improvement store - seems to be buzzing about oscillating tools these days. But what exactly are oscillating tools, and how can shoppers figure out if they need one and which one is best for their needs?

Ask yourself the following questions, and be sure you know each of the answers, before making a purchase to ensure you find the best solution for your needs:

- What are oscillating tools?
Oscillating tools are compact, yet full-featured multi-tasking tools designed for a wide range of home projects, especially repair, restoration, installation, remodeling and renovation work. A variety of blades attach to the tip of the tool and oscillate from side to side at high speeds in a small arc so that the blades appear to be vibrating.

- What can oscillating tools do?
By switching out the blade, oscillating tools can be used to tackle a wide variety of applications and materials, including wood, laminates, metal, grout, adhesives and drywall. Many people know that oscillating tools cut and sand. What they might not know is that they can be used for so much more, including grinding, scraping, flush cutting, plunge cutting, caulk removal, grout removal and more.

- Why would I need an oscillating tool?
Users find that oscillating tools often accomplish what other tools in their toolboxes can't, and many times turn typically time-consuming projects into ones that are much more manageable. For example, oscillating tools allow users to make cuts in tight spaces. They turn the process of installing new flooring into an easy job: Using a scraping blade, power scrape tacky flooring adhesive to remove existing flooring. Then, cut rolls of carpet in manageable pieces with a cutting blade. Flush-cut baseboards to install new tile flooring with a wood cutting blade.

Additional common applications include removing tile grout and tub adhesive, sanding down old wooden furniture, removing rust, grinding out thin set beneath a tile, cutting drywall to install an electrical outlet or cutting an old pipe flush to a wall.

-How much do I need to spend on an oscillating tool?
Oscillating tools have a wide range of price tags, from $70 all the way up to $400. You should consider several factors in determining how much you should spend on an oscillating tool:
- How will you be using the tool?
If you are planning to use an oscillating tool frequently in a professional setting, you will need to opt for a tool that offers the highest level of performance. Typically, these tools have the highest price tags. The homeowner planning to use an oscillating tool for work around the house can find all the features he or she needs in a tool priced around $100 - $150, such as the Dremel Multi-Max, which comes in a corded or cordless variety. While less expensive tools can also be used for home improvement tasks, they offer far less versatility and range of use.
- What tool features are important to you?
Users who want to get the most versatility out of their oscillating tool should opt for one with variable speed. Most tools on the low end of the price scale only offer a single speed. Other nice features to have include: electronic feedback, so the tool maintains a constant speed under pressure, and an electronic brake, which stops the tool immediately when it is turned off.

-Are accessories compatible between systems?
Typically, oscillating tools are not compatible with all brands of oscillating accessories. There is some crossover between brands, so check packaging before you buy to confirm which accessories will work with the tool you select. However, oscillating tool manufacturers are continually working to increase the versatility of their oscillating tool systems. The Dremel brand recently introduced a new Dremel Multi-Max Universal Adapter, which allows users of all brands of oscillating tools to utilize the brand's patented Quick Fit oscillating accessories. Quick Fit accessories cut the time it takes to change oscillating accessories in half, compared to the time competitive systems require.

For more information on oscillating tool systems, visit Dremel.com.

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Posted by Doug Mahoney at November 26, 2010 5:00 AM

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Recent Comments

This tool looks very useful for my son to use building his pinewood derby car this year. Is it enough to put him over the top after his 6th place finish last year? Give the kid the free tool and we will let you know!


Posted by: Shane S at December 13, 2010 11:36 AM

I would love to have this tool for sanding corners when I make Antique toys.


Posted by: Barry Gardner at December 13, 2010 5:05 AM

I would cut up all the e-mails from magazine companies trying to sell me advertising space for my Kerry-All Pouches. When I can afford it, I'm gonna advertise them on ToolSnob (how's that for sucking up?) ;-)


Posted by: Lloyd Kerry at December 9, 2010 7:46 AM

Well, since I'm an architecture student, I think I would use this tool to sand and cut all of the wood pieces instead of having to rub away all night with a piece of sandpaper. That way, I might actually get some sleep!

And as for the first project, I've been thinking about making myself a shoe rack. Yeah, that'd be nice...

Thanks for holding this giveaway!


Posted by: Kelly at December 8, 2010 6:49 AM

Are you kidding?! What would I use it for first? I need a drawing just to pick one. I could have used it on 19 of the last 23 jobs I've had. I counted.

You are a wise and dexterous cat and clearly possess greater than the normal feline intelligence. Please pick my entry. I appeal to your sense of flattery and now I appeal to your sense of "feed me." With money earned on the first job I use this tool on, I will send tasty cat treats.

Thank you for your kind consideration.

Bill Bodrero


Posted by: Bill Bodrero at December 7, 2010 3:12 PM

I've been wanting to install some light fixtures in an existing ceiling and this would be perfect for plunge cutting the drywall cleanly!


Posted by: Jim G. at December 6, 2010 6:34 PM

First, I would add this tool to the inventory of our local "Homeowners' tool-share list." I would use it to remove the (#$*%& glue and OSB subfloor particles from our second story that was left behind as we ran hot water heat lines, and to cut the nails out same so I can remove the subfloor to properly run the rodents out before I seal it up and finally move the triplets upstairs!


Posted by: Kathy at December 4, 2010 6:56 PM

I would fix our shower, by taking off all of the tile that is sagging on the built in seat. I'll have to replace the green board, rebuilding the seat and retile. I'm sure the Dremel will come in handy multiple times.


Posted by: Steve Cecil at December 1, 2010 4:20 PM

My current project is finishing the basement. This would come in handy for cutting wood trim, and holes in drywall for outlet boxes.


Posted by: Tom at December 1, 2010 8:07 AM

I would cut my door jambs and door casings


Posted by: Dennis Ramsey at November 30, 2010 11:55 AM

Well, the previous owner of my house put tile directly on top of a wood floor. I'd use the Dremel Multimax to help rip that floor up and install new tile the right way.


Posted by: Jordan at November 29, 2010 12:54 PM

I would use this to brag to my fiance that I can get tools without spending lots of $$.


Posted by: Dave at November 29, 2010 12:13 PM

The first thing I would wo with a Dremel Multimax is to cut larger pieces of wood for making antique toy cars.


Posted by: Barry Gardner at November 29, 2010 5:40 AM

What wouldn't I use this tool for? Stripping caulk, grinding out old grout, detail cutting for our wainscoting, drywall cuts for the new room additions, and more. It will get USED!


Posted by: Cortino G at November 29, 2010 12:08 AM

The first thing I would do with my new MultiMax is even up the door trim on my last floorng job in our exercise room. All I had to work with at the time was a Craftsman zip saw. The cutting is uneven and my wife is reminded of the uneven cuts on a daily basis. Please sprinkle a little catnip on my submission and help me get back in the wife's good graces by choosing my entry!!!


Posted by: Lyndon at November 29, 2010 12:07 AM

I would use it for detail sanding corners on the bookshelves I'm building. Right now it is difficult to get into tight spaces with the ROS. I've had my eye on a Multi Max for quite some time.


Posted by: Tony H at November 28, 2010 7:26 PM

Well, I'm trying to remodel the kitchen and in the mist of using my Craftsman Multi-tool, it dies. It's only a year old!!! I can't believe it. The Bosch laser level is working fine, but now I have to go out and buy another multi tool.....or do I Tool Snob???


Posted by: Rob Toth at November 28, 2010 5:01 PM

I just moved into a new house and have a multitude of projects to tackle. There's the tile backsplash, some new electrical outlets, moving some cable boxes, finishing the garage, and many more. I can see myself using this just about every day.


Posted by: Jason S at November 27, 2010 8:03 PM

I will be replacing some grout in my ceramic tile and need to remove the old grout between the tiles first. This tool would be perfect for the task!


Posted by: JCS at November 27, 2010 1:40 PM

I have a couple of projects in mind. I have to lay down hardwood flooring in my first floor. I also need to re-tile in my master bath.


Posted by: Matt K at November 27, 2010 1:14 PM

I would use my new cordless dremel multitool for 2 main DIY projects! First, to sand off the excess paint from an old restaurant cart i picked up for a few bucks to use in the kitchen. The grime and paint is a bit thick and in some very hard to reach places (like underneath the cart behind the casters) it would be very handy to use since i will do this outside and wont have the best access to an outlet. Second, to cut part of a new door jamb so that i can properly install and insulate an exterior door at my house. Thanks!


Posted by: David clarke at November 27, 2010 12:17 AM

My wife insists that my never reaches where she wants it to go. So I think we'll try having her go cordless as long as I can stand it.


Posted by: Dave Atwatercord never at November 26, 2010 10:29 PM

First task would be cutting down the door jambs in the bathroom i'm midway thru remodelling so the new tile floor can fit under


Posted by: DP at November 26, 2010 2:02 PM

My first job with the multimax? I have armoire doors to sand - but then I'd paint it orange and say "you did a fein job, multimax, a fein job indeed."


Posted by: Paul at November 26, 2010 12:39 PM

This would be a gift for my husband and his honey do list would be shortened because of it! We will be redoing our bedroom this winter and I'm sure it will come in handy!


Posted by: Marianna at November 26, 2010 11:28 AM

First job for the MultiMax is scraping the five hundred coats of paint off the doors in our new house. Previous owners must have changed color schemes every other week and didn't sand or remove the old paint between coats. Think there's more paint than door hanging from the hinges.


Posted by: JD at November 26, 2010 8:45 AM

I can see it being useful for all kind of trim work and some light sanding.


Posted by: Wesley W at November 26, 2010 6:12 AM

Let the cat pick; cats like me.
Who would cut-off an old pipe flush to the wall? Hope they shut the water off first!
First project for the MultiMax will be grout removal to cleanly separate tile being demo'd from tile work I'm keeping. Then I'll use it to help remove the old tile separation membrane from the concrete slab and test out some plunge cuts on HardeeBacker board.
I may even cut some old pipe, but I doubt it'll be flush with any wall in the vicinity.


Posted by: Jeff SCHWANDT at November 26, 2010 5:40 AM

The first thing I do with the Multimax, is to make a square hole


Posted by: Francisco at November 26, 2010 5:39 AM
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