Dremel vs Rotary Tool

Dremel’s rotary tool is a market leader. Is this the same as other rotary tools? How do they compare?
Dremel and Rotary Tool

Is Rotary Tool Same as Dremel?

A rotary tool is a handheld power tool with a highspeed spindle on which a cutting or polishing bit is attached, and Dremel is one of the brands that makes rotary tools. Dremel, as a brand, became synonymous with rotary tools. That makes sense since they’re the ones who invented the high-speed rotary tool back in 1934.

There are many other brands of rotary tools available on the market. Some prominent brands include DeWalt, WEN, Hardell, and Milwaukee.

These tools function on the basis that their cutting bits or discs rotate at high speed around a central axis, thus carrying out the cutting action. Some are versatile, with many attachments and variations, while others offer less variety.

Dremel vs Rotary Tool: Comparison

The Dremel multitool is the most popular rotary tool in the market. Their rotary tool is marketed as the ultimate handheld, powered multi-tool, and it really is versatile and high-quality. While there are other rotary tools available on the market, none compares to Dremel’s versatility.

Why is it so?

Other brands have made rotary tools that are more powerful than the average Dremel, but they’re nowhere near as versatile because of the vast array of Dremel accessories and attachments.
The more powerful rotary tools are typically corded, whereas Dremel offers both corded and cordless models, making it more mobile and easy to use in tricky, constricted spaces.

Some brands, like WEN, Hardell and Hi-Spec are slowly catching up in versatility, but their tool quality is still behind Dremel’s. Battery life on some cordless versions also can’t compete with Dremel.

Advantages of Dremel over Other Rotary Tools

Dremel’s rotary tool compares favorably to most other rotary tools on the market. Here’s an overview of various aspects to consider when choosing a rotary tool.

Brand Quality

Dremel as a brand, is known for quality, and they don’t disappoint. Other well-known brands also offer high-quality tools, and, if you look after your rotary tool, it will probably last a lifetime. If you abuse your tools, they won’t last.

Large Selection of Accessories

Dremel has by far the largest selection of accessories for their rotary tools. Other brands can’t compete with this wide selection. When opting for a different brand of rotary tool, you’ll have to pick the brand based on the job at hand.

The Dremel, with its expansive range of accessories and attachments, can serve just about any purpose.

Note that some brands, like WEN, are slowly catching up with the Dremel, offering a reasonable variety of bits. At the time of writing, WEN offers a kit containing 190 accessories, including a flex shaft.


Dremel offers an impressive range of attachments aimed at making your job easier and saving you time. Examples include the flex-shaft and its holder, the multi-vise, a range of mandrels, a keyless chuck, and spark shield, among others. For more information, see this guide on Dremel’s range of attachments.

Other brands of rotary tools can’t compare to this range. Some of them offer flex shafts and other similar attachments, but they can’t hold their own against Dremel.

EZ Lock System

Dremel has turned time-saving and accessibility into a science. This means that their rotary tools are suitable for beginners and experts alike.

One example is the EZ Lock system.
This quick-change mechanism makes changing cutting discs six times faster than before, eliminating the need for screws, locks, and any other accessory. Changing a cutting disc is done in three quick and easy steps: pull down the mandrel, insert and twist the cutting disc, and release. There you have it! Your new disc is ready for use. For more information, see this article.

Other brands of rotary tools don’t have this functionality. For most brands, changing the cutting disc is a time-consuming task, involving a chuck key and sometimes careful maneuvering.


Dremel’s rotary tool can operate at a whopping 35 000 rpm, much faster than most of its competitors. There are some that keep up with this speed, but they’re typically a bit bulkier and not that user-friendly.

That said, while theoretically, you can achieve 35k rpm, in practice, I found that it rarely reaches such a high rpm. In my experience, it is better to dial down the speed a bit to reduce overheating problems.


So far, I have explained all the good things about Dremel like a raving fan. But there are a couple of things I am not a fan of.

  • Power: Dremel rotary tool comes with a 1.8 Amps motor which isn’t that powerful. Compare that with a 5 Amps motor of a Rotozip, and it is obvious to me that Dremel is not designed for heavy-duty tasks.
    If you need a powerful tool for heavy-duty use, I would recommend getting a die grinder instead of Dremel rotary tool.
  • Cost: Dremel tool and attachments are expensive compared to its rivals which is understandable considering the quality of the product. However, in my opinion, some of the fancy attachments, such as the router attachment, might not be worth it. You are better off getting a dedicated router with a powerful motor.

Final Thoughts

The Dremel multitool is currently one of the best rotary tools in its class on the market. Some would say that it’s a bit expensive, and I can’t deny that it’s more expensive than most of its competitors. But, it offers more variety, with a far greater range of bits and accessories. It also offers an excellent user experience since they’ve turned time-saving and usability into a science.

After all, Dremel invented the rotary tool. They’re like the Tesla of rotary tools.