Flex Shaft Tool Reviews

When it comes to flex shaft rotary tools, you can either go super cheap, or pay a bit more for some really quality tools.

Flex shaft tools are great for that extra and flexible reach for activities like woodworking and carving, jewellery making and cleaning, and general tasks that require a precision type rotary tool.

Below are some short summaries, and links to reviews for some of the more popular brands like Foredom, Dremel and SE.

This guide should really give you a good overall picture of what flex shaft tool might suit you best.

 

(*Friendly Disclosure – links to retailers or brands on this page may include affiliate links, and we may receive a commission when you purchase through these links)

 

Top Rated Flex Shaft Tools

Foredom SR Motor Series (suitable for most people)

Foredom SR Motor, General Applications Kit (on Amazon)

Foredom SR Motor, Jewellers Kit (on Amazon)

Foredom SR Motor, Woodcarving Kit (on Amazon)

 

Foredom TX Motor Series (suitable for those 10-20% of people who want extra power)

Foredom TX Motor, General Kit Without Handpiece (on Amazon)

Foredom TX Motor, Woodcarving Kit (on Amazon)

 

Dremel Flex Shaft Tool

Dremel 9100 Fortiflex (on Amazon)

 

Flex Shaft Tool Reviews

Foredom Flex Shaft Tools

In our opinion, Foredom have the best quality flex shaft tools on the market for the average user.

They have two main types of flex shaft tools – each of which is a different series of motor.

 

Foredom SR

The Foredom SR series is good for 80% of users that want precision, and fine detail out of their flex shaft tool.

It comes in 3 common starter kits which basically have everything you need to get going:

  • Woodworking kit
  • Jeweller’s kit
  • General Applications kit.

The vital stats in terms of performance and specs to know about the Foredom SR series is:

  • 1/5 HP to 1/4 HP (1/6 HP under continuous load) > lower horsepower than the TX
  • It is variable Speed – up to 18,000 RPM > higher max speed than the TX
  • Comes in either a 115 as standard, OR a 230 Volts model – the 220/230 volt models come with the red label on the motor

View the Foredom SR Motor, General Applications Kit (on Amazon)

View the Foredom SR Motor, Jewellers Kit (on Amazon)

View the Foredom SR Motor, Woodcarving Kit (on Amazon)

 

Foredom TX

The Foredom TX motor series is good for that other 10-20% of users.who want the extra horsepower.

They are particularly good for heavy woodworking, or heavier tasks that you need the extra horsepower for, like porting engines.

There are two basic kits:

  • Woodworking kit
  • General Applications kit WITHOUT a handpiece – you’ll have to buy a handpiece that suits you separately (the #30 Foredom handpiece is very popular)

The vital stats in terms of performance and specs to know about the Foredom TX series is:

  • 1/3 HP (more power than the SR motor series, & Dremel flex shaft)
  • Variable speed – up to 15,000 RPM
  • Comes in 115 volts only

View the Foredom TX Motor, General Kit Without Handpiece (on Amazon)

View the Foredom TX Motor, Woodcarving Kit (on Amazon)

 

You can read reviews for the Foredom SR motor series and TX motor series in these two guides:

 

Dremel Flex Shaft Tools

Dremel has two options if you want a Dremel brand flex shaft tool.

You can either buy one of their regular rotary tools and buy a flex shaft attachment with it, or you can get their Dremel 9100 Fortiflex tool.

 

Dremel Rotary Tool with Flex Shaft Attachment

The capability of the first option depends on the rotary tool you get, but for example, you might choose a Dremel 4000 or Dremel 4300 model, and buy the flex shaft attachment for it.

This option won’t have as much power or torque as the Dremel Fortiflex though.

The benefit is though that you essentially have two tools in 1 – a normal Dremel rotary tool, and a flex shaft tool.

You can read more about the Dremel rotary tools, and flex shaft attachment in the guides below:

Electric/Corded Dremel Rotary Tools

Cordless Dremel Rotary Tools

Dremel Attachments

 

Dremel 9100 Fortiflex Flex Shaft Tool

We provided a review of the Dremel 9100 Fortiflex in our comparison guide with the Foredom tools here.

The Dremel 9100 Fortiflex is most similar to the Foredom SR motor series flex shaft tool range.

The advantage of the Dremel 9100 Fortiflex is that is is compatible with all Dremel accessories and most attachments. The Foredom is also compatible with most Dremel bits, but you have to check which ones before you buy.

The Fortiflex is designed for power-carving, shaping and grinding applications – essentially very comparable to the SR in that it is for precision and fine tasks like carving, woodworking etc.

Like both the Foredom flex shaft tools, the Dremel has a foot pedal to control the speed and an interchangeable hand piece.

The vital stats in terms of performance and specs are:

  • Power comes in at 1/5 HP
  • Variable speed – up to 23,000 RPM > higher that the SR
  • Operates at 120 Volts only

When in hand, the Foredom SR feels slightly better engineered and solid than the 9100 – but the Dremel is still a great tool, particularly for wood carving.

View the Dremel 9100 Fortiflex on Amazon

 

SE Flex Shaft Tools

To be clear – if Foredom and Dremel are too expensive for you, here is your cheap option.

SE offers the SE 979FSG Flexible Shaft Grinder with a basic starter’s kit.

The SE 979FSG is a lower quality flexible shaft tool, but it maxes out at 1/4 horsepower and 22,000 RPM – which is decent performance.

As a bonus, you also get 40 accessories with the SE flex shaft kit, and the variable speed foot pedal.

Don’t expect the performance, quality or longevity of the Foredom and Dremel tools in the SE – just an inexpensive flex shaft tool for infrequent or light use.

View the SE 979FSG Flexible Shaft Grinder on Amazon

 

Flex Shaft Tools: Resources

1. https://www.dremel.com

2. http://www.foredom.net/

 

 

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