This guide will be extremely valuable if you want help in knowing which is the best Dremel to buy for your situation.
Dremel’s rotary tool range has a number of both corded and cordless tools. You can read about them in this guide on the full range of Dremel models available.
Each of these tools has different features, and different designs which makes some better than others for different users and tasks.
Let’s jump into the list …
15 Tips To Consider When Deciding Which Dremel To Buy
1. Decide if a ‘Dremel type’ rotary tool is for you
There are different types of rotary tools.
A ‘Dremel type’ of rotary tool is a finishing task type rotary tool for the smaller and lighter tasks.
A bigger, more powerful, and more heavy duty type of rotary tool would be a die grinder.
As a comparison, the Dremel 4000 has a 1.6 Amp motor, whilst the average electric Die Grinder has around 4 to 7 Amps of power.
This extra power is particularly helpful in cutting through thicker and more heavy duty materials.
2. Decide if you want a Dremel brand rotary tool, or an alternate brand
Dremel are not the only brand that makes ‘Dremel type’ rotary tools.
Although the Dremel brand is the most established, other popular non-Dremel brands include WEN, Black & Decker & Proxxon.
The WEN & Black & Decker are both very affordable, with the Proxxon being a variable speed electric rotary tool with fantastic precision & quality engineering.
You can read more in these guides:
3. Decide if you want a corded Dremel, or cordless Dremel
Dremel has both an electric/corded, and cordless/battery operated Dremel rotary tool range.
Here are 15 practical tips for choosing between a corded or cordless Dremel.
4. Decide how much power you want in your Dremel tool
Dremel doesn’t give horsepower specs for all it’s rotary tools, but it does release information about Amps – which gives a decent indication (the higher the Amps, generally, the higher the power).
For the cordless Dremel tools, you’ll want to look at battery voltage.
For comparison, the electric Dremel 4300 has 1.8 Amps, where the Dremel 100 (smaller one speed tool) has 1.15 Amps.
For the cordless tools, the Dremel 8220 is a 12 volt tool, whereas the Dremel 7300 is a 4.8 volt tool.
5. Decide on the speed of the tool
When we talk about speed, we mean:
Is it variable speed, or one or two speeds?
What is the maximum speed?
What is the minimum speed?
Variable speed tools include tools like the Dremel 4300, 4200, 4000, 3000, 8220 & 8100.
There are then various one speed, and two speed tools.
The Dremel 9100 is an interesting tool – it has more power than the Dremel 4300 at 2.5 Amps, but it only has a max speed of 23,000 RPM. It is a high torque, low speed flexible shaft and handpiece tool (good for precision tasks like carving).
6. Consider the tool size (weight and length)
Larger Dremel tools include tool like the Dremel 4300, 4200, 4000, 3000, 8220 and 8100.
Small electric Dremels include the 200 & 100, whilst most of the cordless range is small or mini (the alkaline battery Dremels are tiny).
Decide on what size and weight of Dremel best suits you.
7. Consider what the tool was designed for
Different Dremels were designed for different uses.
First, make a list of all the activities you want to perform with your Dremel rotary tool.
Second, make sure you understand what the model Dremel you buy was designed for. A few examples include –
Dremel 4300 – Designed to be a high performance Dremel capable of the widest range of tasks of any Dremel tool
Dremel 200 – Two speed Dremel designed for precision and control
Dremel 9100 Fortiflex – High torque/power, lower speed tool with a flex shaft and handpiece for detail tasks like engraving and carving
Dremel 7300 – Designed for light tasks, such as sanding, grinding and grooming pet nails
It should be noted though – a tool like the Dremel 4300 or 4000 can accept a flex shaft attachment to make it much better for the smaller precision tasks, as you can use the hand piece on the attachments for more control.
8. Check what bits and accessories the Dremel tool accepts
Most of the Dremel tools accept most Dremel accessories and attachments.
However, check this when listing what tasks you want to carry out.
9. Check if the tool has a chuck system or collet system
Some Dremels function with a collet system, while others have a chuck system.
We wrote a guide on the different Dremel chuck and collets systems here.
But, the difference between the two is that a chuck system, like the the Dremel 4300 (which has a 3 jaw chuck), can fit all shank sizes.
There is also a Dremel chuck attachment that you can fit onto collet system Dremels.
A collet system has 4 different sized available collets, with each collet fitting a different sized bit shank.
To fit different bit shanks in the tool, you have to change the collet size over.
10. Check the bit changing system
Different models have different systems for changing bits in and out.
Some require you to change a collet and a small wrench, some are collet from but require a wrench, and some are collet and tool free bit changing.
For example –
Dremel 4300: has a 3 jaw chuck system which is tool-free and collet free – but you can change over to the collet system on this tool.
Dremel 4200: Dremel EZ Change system which some users have reported disappointment with
Dremel 4000: Has the Dremel EZ Twist Nose Cap collet system, which is tool free
Dremel 9100 Forti Flex: Wrench change system with 3 jaw chuck
11. Check the accessories the tool kit comes with
Each Dremel tool comes with a different sized set/kit.
You need to look at the accessories/bits the kit you are considering come with. Dremel bits have the ability to help a Dremel tasks including but not limited to:
Shaping, hollowing, inletting
Because of the different materials of the bits (carbide, tungsten carbide, diamond etc.), they will work on a range of materials like hard and soft wood, hard and soft metal, plastic, glass, stone and more.
To read more about Dremel bits, you may want to check out:
12. Check the attachments the kit comes with
In addition to accessories, most kits will come with attachments like cutting guides, tool sharpeners or maybe even a flex shaft attachment.
If you need an attachment to perform a task, like the flex shaft attachment for carving and engraving, or precision tasks, make sure it’s included.
You can read this guide on popular Dremel attachments for more information:
13. Check any extras the kit comes with
Extras include items like:
An accessories case to hold the bits in one place
A hard carry case to carry the Dremel tool
Mandrels for different types of bits
A bit changing wrench
For cordless Dremels – battery and charger
14. Will you need to buy any extra accessories or attachments
If the kit you are considering doesn’t quite have all the accessories, attachments or extras you want or need, consider if you’ll have to buy them extra.
You may want to buy other extras like a collet set, a battery, a charger etc. if not included.
15. Any other notable features of the Dremel
Some tools like the Dremel 4300 have unique features like the pivot light attachment, and the 3 jaw chuck.
Other features on variable speed electric tools to look for might include:
Electronic Feedback Circuitry
360 degree Grip
Separate On/Off Switch & Speed Dial
Cool Running Ball Bearing Construction
Replaceable Motor Brushes
Different bit change systems like the EZ Change or EZ Twist