Today, no doubt, the market is flooded with a variety of rotary tools. Some are expensive, some are cheap, some come in eye-catching designs while some are robust. But the most important thing to consider is which one will solve your problems and help you in cutting, carving, sanding and many other applications.
So, we’ve put together a list of some of the most commonly asked questions that will clear your confusions about the rotary tool that you’re going to buy.
10 Frequently Asked Questions About Rotary Tools
What is a rotary tool and why do you need one?
A rotary tool is a handheld device that accepts a variety of bits. It is an indispensable addition to your toolkit. Its high speed, power, compact size and versatility make it an appealing alternative to your old, large, and heavy tools.
What’s more, these portable rotary tools can cut anything from wood to glass to metal. Not only this, they are also used for buffing, engraving, sanding and cleaning. Just insert the appropriate bit and you are good to go.
However, Rotary tools can be divided into 2 categories:
Basic Rotary tools
If you’re an amateur or an avid DIYer, then basic rotary tools will be best for you. Such tools have small motor which offers great flexibility and control. With the help of these you can do cutting, detail sanding, carving and many small renovations.
Cut-Out Rotary Tools
You’d love cut-out rotary tools if you like working on heavy duty tasks. These beasts are ideal for professional and commercial uses. However, they’re large and heavy due to their 3 to 5 Amp powerful motor.
What can you do with a rotary tool?
You’d be glad to know that there’s a bunch of accessories and attachments available that can go with your rotary tool from which you can achieve a variety of tasks.
So, let’s take a quick look on them:
One of the most common uses of rotary tools is cutting. You can use a straight bit or a wheel to cut wood, plastic, metal, drywall, and tile with ease.
If you’re planning to do some details on wood or metal, then rotary tools can do that too. Moreover, people also use this feature to trim down their dog’s nails. You just need to insert the appropriate sanding drum.
Rotary tools don’t always create mess like wood shavings. They are also known for their polishing and cleaning actions. Use the tiny brush bit and you are good to go.
You surely don’t like dirt on walls and floor, it’s gross. Now you can get rid of it with the grouting action offered by rotary tools. All you need to do is to get is a powerful top-quality rotary drill.
Let your creative mind carve or engrave subtle designs on wooden table, glass door or on your house plate. These rotary tools will not betray you. You just need to insert the carbide bits for etching and carving.
Electric drill vs. Cordless drill – which one’s better?
How the rotary tool is powered is one of the major concerns. Electric drills came long before the cordless ones. No doubt, corded rotary tools provide you with more power. As long as you have access to an outlet, you are good to go and can rock your tool.
However, they are useless where you don’t have an outlet available and you can also get yourself tangled due to the long cord.
On the other hand, cordless rotary drills are compact and portable. They are great for amateurs and DIYers.
That said, with the cordless models you’re bound by the battery life. If you’re working for a long time with the tool or forget to charge the tool before you get started, then you’re gonna lose your precious time looking at your tool getting charged.
We’d recommend you get the corded rotary tool for the big projects and also keep a cordless one which is handy for smaller jobs or where power isn’t available.
Are power rotary tools better than hand tools?
The answer to this question totally depends on the task you are using the rotary tool for. For general daily uses such as cutting lumber, boring holes, making small renovations, engraving etc, power tools will be the best option for you.
However, for very small jobs, which can be done with hand tools easily, using a power tool won’t be a good idea. As it’ll be a waste of power and trust us, it won’t save any time or effort.
What kind of batteries you should consider before buying a cordless rotary tool?
If you are going for cordless rotary tools for your home, then you should know that such tools come with many kinds of batteries – lithium ion batteries, NiCad batteries, alkaline batteries etc. But the most popular ones are lithium-ion batteries and NiCad batteries.
We’d recommend you to buy the cordless drill with lithium-ion batteries as they are lighter, charge faster, store more energy and last longer. Moreover, the torque and power do not diminish as the battery begins to die.
Which brand makes the best rotary tools?
When it comes to brand, it’s a good idea to know what is available before spending your money. Today, the market is flooded with a variety of rotary tools as all the manufacturers are throwing their hat into the ring. Thus, making it hard to find the best one.
We’d recommend you to go for Dremel or Dewalt if you’re looking for a powerful, compact, top-quality power tool. These brands are popular for quite some time.
Whereas, other notable brands include Milwaukee, Black and Decker, Makita and Ryobi.
Do corded rotary tools offer more power than cordless ones?
Power is another important feature to consider before buying a rotary tool. Today, even cheap drills are available with powerful motors.
However, it is true that corded rotary tools have more power than cordless ones. They are well-known for providing consistent power and reliability. If you are planning to work on some heavy jobs, or if you are going to work for long then corded rotary drills are the best option.
While cordless tools are great for quick finish work, or detail work or where there is a power failure.
What is the difference between torque and speed of rotary tools?
You must be wondering:
Isn’t torque and speed the same thing and what’s their purpose?
You must have seen RPM (rotations per minute) figure in the features of rotary tools. This indicates the maximum speed a power drill can achieve.
Most rotary tools come with only two speeds – high speed and low speed. Such tools are best for light duty tasks and for pet grooming. Whereas, the rotary tools with variable speed feature allow you to perform a variety of tasks from medium duty to heavy duty jobs.
On the other hand, torque is the rotary turning force of any rotary tool. The more torque the drill has, the better it drills into hard surfaces.
However, we’d recommend you to go for high torque and low speed rotary tool for drilling into hard surfaces and screwing nails. While high speed and low torque rotary tool will be great for boring holes.
Which kind of motor is best for rotary tools?
Rotary tools come in two kinds of motor: brushless motor and brushed motor. In both motors magnets are used to produce the rotary motion of the shaft.
If you ask us which one’s better? Then we’d definitely say rotary tools with brushless motor. As they are more powerful, efficient and last longer. While on the other hand, brushed motors tend to produce friction which will heat your power tool, making its life short.
However, brushed motors are cheaper than brushless ones, which is something you can consider while working on light duty tasks.
Which drill voltage should you use?
Voltage is an important feature to consider before buying a rotary tool. There are many rotary drills in the market with voltages ranging from 3 volts to 48 volts, while this range shrinks to 12 volts to 36 volts in case of cordless rotary tools.
Basically, the more the voltage rotary tool has, the more torque it produces and more you’ll have to pay for it.
So, which voltage will be best for you?
This totally depends on the kind of project you are using it for. If you’re working on light tasks then we’d recommend you to buy a low voltage rotary tool, which can be of 12 volts. Go for 18 volts or 20 volts or even 36 volts if you’re tackling heavy duty jobs.
This concludes some frequently asked questions that might guide you buy a perfect rotary drill for your home and help you in be a domestic hero.
Now, you probably know which rotary tool will be best for you. Just read our detailed guide on best rotary tools (tested and reviewed thoroughly)!
Hope you have found this article useful.