Rotary tools, known generically by the brand name Dremel, are common in the craft world, but they are a great addition to your cottage tool box. When tackling a project that requires the finesse of small hand tools but the oomph of a power tool, a rotary tool is the perfect fit. Here are a few jobs that will be a breeze with one:
1. Refinish a peeling railing instead of replacing it. Regular sanders can deal with large, flat areas but are a pain in tight spots. Fit a rotary tool with an abrasive disc or bit to make detail sanding less painful.
2. Replacing a broken tile? Try spinning a carbide bit to make quick work of removing hard-to-reach grout.
3. Snapped the head off a screw? Use a small cut-off wheel to grind a slot in the remaining shaft and remove the screw with a flathead screwdriver.
An entry level Dremel tool will run about $50, and the price goes up for additional features such as variable speed or more power for heavier work. There are also cordless models available for increased convenience and mobility. If you’re only going to use your tool occasionally, there are a ton of inexpensive, lesser-known brands, just make sure the one that you choose has a universal chuck that will accept bits from different manufacturers. That way, you can pick up new attachments from a variety of sources.