In this guide we’ll take a look at the best rotary tools for the money.
We’ve compared performance, features, build quality and cost
to give you our top recommendations.
What Is The Best Rotary Tool?
More Detailed Rotary Tool Reviews
This Tacklife Cordless Rotary Tool is one of the best dremel alternatives on the market. It’s compact, cordless and convenient to use. It’s also lightweight and much like using a large marker pen in size and weight. It has 3 speeds, 5000rpm, 10000rpm, 15000rpm, making it ideal for polishing, cleaning, carving and engraving.
The kit comes with 32 accessories making it suitable for a wide range of crafting and woodworking projects. The kit also includes a micro USB charger which charges in 2 hours and provides power for up to 90 minutes of continuous work. Plus, the whole kit comes in a sturdy hard storage case.
The collet sizes are 0.2381 cm and 0.3175 cm, and this allows you to use accessories from other brands.
This compact rotary tool is suitable for a range of jobs such as polishing, knife sharpening carving engraving and lightweight cutting. The accessories include: 1 multipurpose cutting bit, 1 sanding shank, 2 felt wheels with shank, 2 drilling bits, 5 grinding wheels, 6 diamond bits and 12 x sanding bands.
This lightweight rotary tool is easy to control and versatile to use. It charges quickly and a charge lasts for a good amount of time. The three speeds make it easy to work on detailed and delicate projects. Overall this is the ideal tool for craft work and light woodwork.
For more heavy duty work you might want to consider this professional rotary tool from NoCry.
The NoCry Professional Cordless Rotary Tool’s 170W variable motor produces speeds of between 8,000 to 35,000 rpm. This makes for a powerful yet versatile tool that is the best rotary tool for both heavy and delicate work. This rotary tool can be used on a variety of materials including wood, plastic, drywall, tiles, glass, stone, steel, aluminium, brass or copper. The set provides all you need for a range of household jobs including woodworking, metalworking, cutting, grinding, polishing, engraving, grout removal, carving and sanding. It has a max shank size of 3.2mm and is compatible with other brand’s accessories.
The rotary tool is light and easy to use yet extremely powerful. It completes a variety of tasks with no sign of strain. The build quality is good and the whole thing comes in a sturdy case and the set even includes a spare set of brushes. The tool is powerful and sturdy enough that it will last the test of time even with frequent use.
This powerful tool comes with 125 accessories of good quality making it great value for money and the best rotary tool for a range of light to medium household, DIY and crafting jobs.
This Hi-Spec Rotary Tool also has a powerful 170-watt motor and is a variable speed model that produces 8,000 to 35,000 rpm. The tool works well, has plenty of power and it feels comfortable and well balanced to use. The accessories in the set aren’t the best quality, however, this tool is compatible with other big brand accessories. The accessories come in a plastic case and the tool itself has a soft storage bag.
I would recommend this as the best rotary tool for craft applications and lightweight household DIY tasks. If you want to use it for heavier duty work such as cutting and grinding, then invest in some good quality accessories.
This is a good rotary tool for the price and the tool is easy to use and powerful enough for most household and crafting needs.
This VonHaus Rotary Tool is another powerful tool with a 170-watt variable speed motor capable of producing 8,000 to 30,000 rpm. The tool is comfortable and easy to use and comes with a arrange of accessories. Again, some of the attachments are a little on the flimsy side, but the machine is compatible with other brands so you can invest in the good quality attachments you need. The set comes with a case for the accessories but not for the tool itself. It does, however, come with a spare set of brushes.
All in all, this rotary tool offers good value for money. This model is one of the best rotary tools to buy on a budget.
The Terratek Rotary Multi-Tool has a 135-watt motor with variable speed that provides both power and precision. The unit is quite heavy to use but it does pack a powerful punch.
The set comes with a hug 234-piece accessory set that provides all the attachments you could need for a range of jobs. However, once more, some of the accessories are a little flimsy. However, the chuck capacity of 1.6, 2.3 and 3.2 mm means this tool can be used with other big brand accessories.
The rotary tool comes in a plastic case but its rather hard to fit the tool back into this once you take it out.
Overall a good value tool but you may want to invest in better quality attachments for more heavy-duty work
Rotary Tool Buying Guide
Rotary tools are extremely useful for projects both large and small. From major home renovations to craft projects these versatile tools will save you not only time and energy but will also achieve highly professional finishes in your work.
A rotary tool comes with a variety of attachments that are suitable for cutting, sanding, polishing, grinding, engraving and more. It can be used on metal, wood, glass, ceramic, and even plastic. Combine this versatility with the powerful motor, fast speed and compact size and you can see this a useful tool for just about every home.
With its handy size and the availability of a huge range of accessories, this tool can be a great alternative to having a range of bulky tools in your workshop. The lightweight and compact design also make this tool easy to use.
Choosing the best rotary tool will depend on what you will use it for and, of, course the price you are willing to pay. You want to make sure you get a tool that does everything you want it to and is reliable and good value for money.
Rotary tools work by spinning an attachment at a high speed. They usually offer a variable speed motor that can spin at between 5,000 and 35,000 rotations per minute (rpm).
The effectiveness of your rotary tool will depend both on the power of the motor and the speed of rotation so bear these figures in mind when choosing the right tool for your needs.
There are two main types of rotary tool and these are core and cut out models. Cut out rotary tools are large and often used in professional applications and so are beyond the scope of this article. Unless you want to cut large amounts of metal or plasterboard then a core model will be all you need. These rotary tools are compact, yet powerful and are the best rotary tools for most DIY and craft requirements. The smaller size and lower power are also more suitable for detail work such as engraving and carving.
Rotary tools are available in corded and cordless versions. Corded versions give you as much power as you need but do have the disadvantage of trailing wires and being unusable in areas without a power source – such as the bottom of the garden. Cordless models offer convenience and mobility but of course, they do need charging which can interrupt your workflow. However, lithium-ion technology means these tools have powerful batteries that can last for long periods. Corded models are also a little heavier than cordless models due to the weight of the battery.
Cordless rotary tools can have a range of powers and tend to have a speed of between 5,000 to 16,000 rpm. This is considerably lower than high-end corded models that can reach speeds of 35,000 rpm. Despite this, battery operated rotary tools still provide a convenient and powerful option suitable for a wide range of tasks.
Rotary tools also come in fixed and variable speed models. Variable speed is extremely useful in combination with the tool’s generally versatility. A single speed motor may not give you the flexibility you need for delicate tasks.
Most rotary tools accommodate a range of shank sizes – 3.2 mm, 2.4 mm, 1.6 mm and 0.8 mm are the most common. This means that they are compatible with a range of attachments from different brands.
What functions do all the attachments that came with my rotary tool perform?
The attachments that come with your rotary tool can usually be split into 5 main categories
- Carving & Engraving
- Grinding and sharpening
- Cleaning and polishing
Carving and engraving
For carving and engraving, you should use either a diamond bit or a high-speed cutter.
Diamond bits are suitable for use with aluminium, glass, ceramic tiles, mirrors and steel. High-speed cutters can be used with wood, clay and lino.
Your accessories kit probably comes with a sanding drum and a variety of sanding bands. The sanding bands are fitted over the drum and come in a range of grits from coarse to fine. Sanding bits can be used on wood, aluminium, plastics and clay.
Your kit may also contain various cutting wheels, including an abrasive cutting wheel that can be used with wood and plexiglass. Also included you may find a fibreglass cutting wheel that can be used with ceramic tiles, wood and aluminium.
Grinding and sharpening
Your kit may include a variety of grinding and sharpening stones of different colours. The orange stone can be used for polishing steel. The blue/green and pink stones can be used on aluminium, ceramic tiles, and glass.
Cleaning and polishing
For polishing use the felt polishing wheels and the polishing compound that usually comes with your kit.