Dremel tools


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Vegaslaith
August 10, 2008, 02:28 AM
From what I gather, its good to have a Dremel tool handy for any gun related work. After visiting their website, I got thoroughly confused by the variety available. So, does anyone have any recommendations for an all around Dremel? I'm looking for one that accepts the most attachments.

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jhansman
August 10, 2008, 02:45 AM
I'd be interested in an answer to this as well. Their website is a mess, and after 10 min. there I left as uninformed as when I arrived. All I do know is a) I want a mutlispeed tool and b) a decent variety of attachments that let me work on wood, metal, or plastic. What else should one take into consideration?

bogie
August 10, 2008, 02:46 AM
Gunsmiths LOVE dremel tools. It's how they pay for their kids to go to college.

RaspberrySurprise
August 10, 2008, 02:57 AM
I have a black&decker RTX which is a 3 speed knock off of a Dremel. It has 12k, 24k, and 30k rpm settings. So far the only thing I've used it for is to open up the mag well on my WASR-10 which it was a great help with.

If you'll have other uses for it then go for it, but it's uses with regards to firearms can be limited unless you enjoy accidentally grinding off more metal than you intended thus turning your firearms into either a nice paperweight or a gunsmiths next boat payment.

To be honest good old hand tools are usually your best bet. I was easily able to de-burr my Mosin's chamber with just a dowel and some sandpaper.

Dookie
August 10, 2008, 03:14 AM
go to home depot or lowes and buy the big fat kit. it will cost you about 80 bucks but you will get just about everything you need. Spendy, yes, but worth it in the short and long run.

Sunray
August 10, 2008, 03:19 AM
"...good to have a Dremel tool handy for any gun related work..." Nope. Like bogie says, smithies love guys with Dremels. They're ok for polishing using a cloth wheel and jeweller's rouge, but not for any kind of metal removal. Too easy to remove too much. Controlling that comes entirely with experience. Mind you, so does using a file. Smithies love guys with files too.
'Dremel' is just a brand name for a rotary tool and they're expensive. You pay more for the name. (My Chinese made rotary tool, that works just fine, cost me $30Cdn. Came with a bunch of tools in a plastic box.) Especially for the assorted tools. Add at least 50% for the Dremel name on a tool or wheel. Any 1/8" shanked tool will fit.
"...cost you about 80 bucks..." $40 or less without the Dremel name on it.

CRITGIT
August 10, 2008, 03:24 AM
Gunsmiths LOVE dremel tools. It's how they pay for their kids to go to college.


Yeah that!
CRITGIT

JohnnyOrygun
August 10, 2008, 03:39 AM
I second what Dookie said, I have two dremels... an Ace Hardware brand and an actual dremel. The big kit at Home Depot or Lowes is a good kit, it has several attachments that make using a dremel a lot easier. I especially like the "cable" attachment that allows you to hang up or lay down your dremel and work, sort of like a dentist tool.

As others have pointed out, dremels and guns don't go together very well. It's really easy to damage your gun and cost yourself a lot of money. That said a dremel is one of the most useful tools you can have, but you have to be extremely careful. I recommend lots of practice on non guns before you try any gun related work, other then maybe using a polishing wheel and some jewelers rouge. But I have polished several knife blades and fixed the broken blade tip on my leatherman with my dremels.

Practice, Practice and them when you feel that you are really good with a dremel, practice a lot more.

But as others have said, this advice is worth exactly what you paid for it.

Good Luck
Little John

Sunray
August 10, 2008, 04:07 AM
"...fixed the broken blade tip..." A blade of any kind will still work with a busted tip. An excessively ground sear or hammer won't. Used mine to shorten some knife handle brass rivets that were used as decoration on a sword belt. Brass gets really hot when cut with an abrasive cut off wheel. Melted the carpet until I hung a bucket of water on the vise.
"...The big kit..." That a store brand thing? Home Depot, up here, sells Dremel attachments and nothing else. Princess Auto, a small chain(and a place guys can get lost in), sells Chinese made attachments at half the cost of the Dremel branded attachments Home Depot sells. And they work well.

JohnnyOrygun
August 10, 2008, 04:43 AM
I would never work on a sear, the only thing I would do to a hammer is perhaps take off some sharp corners or perhaps polish it. I use a dremel a lot, but very seldom on any of my guns. But there are things on gun that a dremel is safe to use on, the grips, perhaps you want to do a "melt treatment" on your 1911 (although files work better for this). What I am getting at is there are legitimate uses for a dremel on guns, but you have to be careful. I would never do any kind of work on a sear. I had a 1911 go full auto once on me at the range... wasn't really fun.

You can just as easily ruin a sear or do serious damage to gun with a file, it's easier with a dremel, but still a file can cause just as serious damage or a dangerous situation. You have to be careful anytime you work on a gun. You have to be careful if you reload, people have been hurt very bad with reloads, but people still reload. Just because people have royally screwed up guns with dremels doesn't mean they should never be used on a gun, you just have to be **VERY** careful, like when you are reloading.

As for the broken knife tip, you are right the knife still cut, but I didn't like the looks. So I took a file and my dremel and reshaped the tip and then polished the whole blade. You can't tell that I broke the tip unless you compare it to an unbroken blade from the same type of knife.

The big kit is a gray tool box that holds the dremel and the various different attachment, (the circle cutting jig, the lawnmower blade sharpener, controlled depth cutting attachment and the "cable" I mentioned in my first post) then the box has some divided compartments on the outside for different types of implements (cutting wheels, grinding wheels, wire wheels, rotary cutting bit, and etc.) IF I could remember the name or model number of the kit, I would post it, but since most of the people here have internet access, I figure they can go to the home depot or lowes website and find it if they are interested in buying it.

As I said, I have an Ace hardware brand rotary tool also. If you want a cheaper version, then by all means buy it. I prefer the real dremel, it has replaceable motor brushes (although in the 16 years I have owned the Ace Brand, I have never had to replace the brushes) its runs smoother, and there are a lot more attachments available from dremel, will they fit a cheaper version... probably, but I know they will fit my dremel and the ace hardware one also (its made by dremel).

Everyone has their opinion, this post is my opinion. If you don't like it thats fine, it's just my opinion and my 2 cents. It is worth what you paid for it. :D
When it comes to tools and guns everyone is entitled to their own opinion, if you like Glocks you like Glocks, if you like Charter Arms, you like Charter Arms. If you like Craftsman brand tools, that is your choice... some people only like snap on tools. I own some craftsman tools and I own some generic tools bought at Kmart, Ace hardware, Napa, and who knows where else. I don't own a Glock or a Charter Arms, some people swear by Glock, some people swear at Glock. Everyone makes their own decisions.

When I replied to the OP I was just giving my experience and my opinions. Everyone has different experiences and different opinions, if we all had the same opinions and experiences it would be a down right boring world.

Anyhow, I think this is my longest post since I joined THR, I think I have "shot" off my "mouth" enough.

Good Night All
Little John

DRYHUMOR
August 10, 2008, 07:23 AM
I've used a dremal to relieve barrel channels, and polish stainless. Sometimes I polish knife blades. That's about it.

One tip, once you get the attachment in you want to work with, wrap tape around the whole shaft. That will keep the locking nut from destroying or gouging something it shouldn't.

Huckle2
August 10, 2008, 08:14 AM
Dremel is a great tool. I use mine to make small modifications to my holsters. Buy one in a kit, any attachments sold by dremel should work with it.

mnrivrat
August 10, 2008, 08:43 AM
Just as rifles don't assault people , and guns don't kill people, Dremels do not screw up guns - people do .

I don't know of a smith that doesn't have one . They work great for a lot of things , including some things having to do with guns. Bad gun work can be done with just about anything.

Get a multi-speed tool with high rpm capability - flex shaft is seldom needed, but comes in handy for some tasks. (at lower rpm usage) As far as what types of end tool attachments, you will use just about anything from sanding disks, to carbide, and diamond shaping cutters. Polishing wheels, cut off wheels, wire wheels, and just about everything made for them comes in handy for one project or another.

tigre
August 10, 2008, 08:48 AM
I just got one of the Black & Decker ones, and I'm already finding new things to use it for. But the only thing I've done (or would do) with it as far as guns are concerned is polish the outside of the chamber so it looks shiny through the ejection port. I'm sure people with lots more experience could do plenty of gun repairs with it, but I don't think I'd risk it myself.

I've got limited experience with them, but I'd get one of the cheaper variable speed ones (I'm really happy with the B&D), since you'll pay extra to have the Dremel name on the side. They pretty well all use the same bits and collets. I got the B&D RTX and a 75-piece accessory kit for $40 at Wally World.

One tip, once you get the attachment in you want to work with, wrap tape around the whole shaft. That will keep the locking nut from destroying or gouging something it shouldn't.
That's a really good idea, thanks! I already put a nick in some garden shears while I was sharpening them, but fortunately that's not a big deal.

zoom6zoom
August 10, 2008, 11:46 AM
I use mine mostly when I'm building AK receivers, trimming rails and such. Mine is actually pretty much a Dremel on steroids - I use my Rotozip with a flexible shaft.

Piraticalbob
August 10, 2008, 12:00 PM
You've already had good advice about not taking a Dremel to gun sears, etc., so I won't echo that.

I will say that if you buy a genuine Dremel, buy the more expensive version with ball bearing bushings instead of the cheaper collet bushings. You can usually tell them apart because the ball-bearing version is also the variable-speed version, while the collet-bushing version is single-speed.

If you ever get into working with a tool like this on a regular basis it might be a good idea to buy a jeweler's version, with the motor separated from the flex-shaft grip and a treadle control.

mongocaver
August 10, 2008, 12:03 PM
I have a flexible shaft on one of my Dremels and it really makes it easier to do detail work. The end of the shaft that you hold is just larger than an ink pen and is much easier to hold and control than the bulky Dremel tool. The shaft is about 4' long and I am able to hang the Dremel off my work bench, way out of harms way. I leave it hanging there all the time with the shaft hanging off the side of the work bench, so that I don't have to dig it out when I need it.

Kentak
August 10, 2008, 12:04 PM
The fact that some overenthusiastic home gunsmiths misuse a dremel is beside the point. They are extremely useful tools for a variety of home and hobby uses.

Unless you plan to use it for very heavy-duty jobs, I would strongly suggest one of the nicer cordless models using lithium-ion batteries. They are quite powerful, lightweight, and have very good battery run time.

Best value is to buy a kit that contains the tool and a good variety of cutting, shaping, and polishing bits.

Yes, I'm a bit of a tool/gadget junkie, but they are quite useful.

K

PS: If you have a Glock, they are good for doing the 25 cent trigger job (after you learn the do's and don'ts) Basically, it involves polishing certain points of metal-to-metal contact in the trigger linkage that smooths out the trigger pull.

Zeke/PA
August 10, 2008, 12:06 PM
Dremel tools have limited use, keep them away frof your guns!
Zeke

Avenger
August 10, 2008, 12:08 PM
I've used a Dremel for a lot of things, but I would NOT use it on a gun or where any degree of precision is required. And I've long since learned that the higher speed settings are pretty much useless, unless you actually WANT to destroy things.

doubleh
August 10, 2008, 12:19 PM
Dremels are great tools and useful for a lot of different jobs. I've managed to accummalate three of them over the years in different sizes. I use them building gunstocks and pistol grips and roughing in metal work. I even have on set up as a small toolpost grinder for my lathe.

A Dremel is a tool just like a right angle grinder, a drill press, a file, etc. Your skill level determines the quality of work you can do with each tool. That said, it is very easy to create a complete mess with a Dremel.

Anyone who would use a file or any power tool like a Dremel on any part of a trigger assembly needs help as it is just dumb.

rantingredneck
August 10, 2008, 12:23 PM
I've only found one gun related chore that a dremel works well for. Removing dimples from newer Remington shotgun magazine tubes.

They are good for many things, but not many of them gun related.

Multispeed, flex shaft hangs near my workbench now. Only gets used on a gun when a newer Rem shotgun joins the family.

Smokey Joe
August 10, 2008, 01:01 PM
That said a dremel is one of the most useful tools you can have, but you have to be extremely careful.You wouldn't use a D8 Caterpillar to dig a single post hole. But you might use a power post-hole auger, even though you could go slower and more elagantly with a hand-powered post-hole digger. There is a tool for every job, and a job for every tool.

That said, there are tools that some people prefer, and tools that some people prefer not to use.

(My writing here is beginning to sound to me like a lecture by a Zen master.)

Anyhow, I find a Dremel or its generic equivalent to be a fine tool for enlarging the recesses in a stock preparatory to glass-bedding an action in that stock. The secret is to not hog out the whole stock at once--do the bedding in 2 steps--leave some spots in the stock to hold the action correctly in place while the first application of glass is setting, then go back in with the Dremel and remove those spots, and re-apply the glass bedding there--the first glass application will hold the action in its place while the second application sets. Which comes back to using the tool to advantage to remove stock from the stock, while avoiding over-using it.

ETA--Just remembered another old carpenters' saying: "If the tool's not right, the guy's not bright."

bobbarker
August 10, 2008, 01:15 PM
+1 MNRivrat

Kind of ridiculous to tell people not to use Dremel's because they "Screw up guns." Unless you leave the dremel sitting near the gun, and it plugs itself in, and turns itself on, and goes to town on your gun, the Dremel didn't do it. The operator did. The Dremel is just as good as any other tool, in the hands of someone skilled enough to use it. And just as bad as any other tool in the hands of someone not skilled enough. That said, I love my dremel, I use it for a variety of things, but would stick it in my own eye before I'd take it to my gun. I'm not skilled enough to risk that. And I know it.

proud2deviate
August 10, 2008, 01:24 PM
Remember, there is no problem that can't be made worse with a Dremel tool.

streakr
August 10, 2008, 01:47 PM
In a SHTF/TEOTWAWKI situation a good set of files will have more and better applications. They need no power and can everything a Dremel will do, just slowly!

I keep several sets of new files/wood rasps.

Just my opinion..
s

koja48
August 10, 2008, 02:12 PM
Dremel Tool: High-speed rotary cutter/grinder that allows you to ruin a part much quicker than can be done with a file or stone.

Vegaslaith
August 10, 2008, 05:21 PM
So the consesus is buy some metal filers instead of a Dremel because there's less potential for error.

rluening
August 10, 2008, 05:53 PM
So the consesus is buy some metal filers instead of a Dremel because there's less potential for error.

Err... my personal advice (as one who has done both useful work and created lots of damage with Dremels, Foredoms, and files): Figure out what you want to do. Then figure out what tools you need. Referring to files as "metal filers" suggests you should probably do more research.

/rl

Lookn4Brass
August 10, 2008, 05:56 PM
If you want to use a real Dremel, get the kit with the variable speed unit. The one that has a flex-shaft attachment is nice, but most people don't get alot of use for the flex tool - seriously. I've worn out two Dremel or Dremel-type units over the years, and they work pretty well.

For intricate work or action jobs, don't do it! Use hand honing techniques with some hand stones instead and buy a stoning fixture whenever possible, and the Kuhnhausen series of books from Amazon.com or Brownell's is an awesome help too. I can't say enough about Kuhnhausen. God bless him.

DO NOT buy the cordless Dremel stuff. Not enough power, and the battery runs down too fast. If you are willing to spend the money and need heavy duty power, the Foredom tool (which is a flex-tool only kind of setup, with hanging device -available from Brownell's) is the way to go. These are very hard to wear out. They will accept the 1/8" shaft accessories just like the Dremel or similar tools will. There is a learning curve to the accessories - stones, sanding wheels, carbide tips, etc. These type tools are very handy for initial fitting of some 1911 parts (beavertail grip safety, mag well openings, polishing feed ramps, etc. but I would stay away from the trigger, hammer, and sear parts for sure, and also the inside of a S&W revolver with them for sure!
Experiment alot on scrap material before you quickly go after a gun part with them. Good luck, and be careful...

Valkman
August 10, 2008, 06:06 PM
I have a corded Sears brand Dremel hanging above my bench. It has the flexible shaft and I never have to move the unit itself, just grab the shaft and change to the needed bit or wheel.

Lots of guys are good with these and do some amazing things I wouldn't try. I wouldn't have reprofiled a knife with it but I have grinders for that - if you got it hot enough to change the color of the steel then the temper is ruined.

As for the high speed being dangerous, it's all I use. I cut 1/8" rod for pin material with the diamond wheel and use Cratex bits for polishing. I'm polishing hardened steel so low speed isn't going to do much. The ability of the user is going to determine how much damage or great work is done.

Lookn4Brass
August 10, 2008, 07:06 PM
Ditto on the Cratex bits. Easy to polish with, and don't remove too much metal at one time. They're really good!

jhansman
August 10, 2008, 08:48 PM
In a former life I was a crown and bridge dental technician. This craft calls for precision ability with a rotary handpiece, knowing which abrasive to use, how much, where, and a sharp eye. As a result, I am not afraid to use a high-quality rotary tool on my guns, but only in areas I know such a tool is useful for. A blanket statement like 'keep 'em away from your guns' is just BS, unless you are just a stone idiot, in which case you shouldn't be handling firearms in the first place.

koja48
August 10, 2008, 09:19 PM
I acknowledge your level of expertise . . . I, too am well-versed with powered rotary grinders (but, I still refuse to use them in gun-related applications, short of wood-work). Howsomever, most folks ARE NOT SO EXPERIENCED! Consider the advice to be appropriate & prudent to those who: a) Have a "project," b) Have ZERO or MINIMAL experience with gunsmithing AND/OR powered grinders, and c) Have a debit card and a Home Depot within driving distance. Qualify your rather rude retort with "if you hose-up your gun, I'll go good for the repairs," and I'll admit to my erroneous advice and buy you a beer.

rodregier
August 10, 2008, 09:43 PM
A man has got to know his limitations :-)

With a Dremel and it's ilk, less is more.

jhansman
August 10, 2008, 09:46 PM
Sorry, but just I blanch at such conventional wisdom and blanket statements that do not take into account that some of us can handle such mechanical challenges. Your point about most folks lacking the proper experience can be extended to firearms themselves. This doesn't stop the unwise or uninitiated, but it sure does educate them. Personally, I've learned more screwing things up than I have getting it right the first time out. And, limitations recede as experience grows. But yes, with such tools, a little does go a long way.

gpr
August 10, 2008, 09:54 PM
the #520 wheel comes in handy for buffing, most kits don't come with one...lowe's and H D don't keep them in stock...i find them on the internet, and buy them a dozen at a time...gpr

Ragnar Danneskjold
August 10, 2008, 09:57 PM
I use a Dremel with a steel brush on my bolt carrier assembly on my AR. It does wonders and is far easier than a wire toothbrush.

Bailey Guns
August 10, 2008, 10:00 PM
I use a Dremel on guns all the time. However, I most frequently use the rubber & felt polishing wheels and the wire brush attachments. I use them almost exclusively for cleaning, removing rust from hidden areas and minor polishing.

I occasionally use a cut-off wheel to dress up screw slots or to cut screwdriver slots in broken screws when nothing else works. Gotta be careful doing that, though.

Even less frequently I'll find a use for one of the round sand-paper drums...usually the inside of stocks.

I would say their usefullness lies somewhere between the extremes posted here of "keep them away from your guns" and "I can build an entire precision gun with one".

Dookie
August 10, 2008, 10:03 PM
For people who actually LIKE to work on their own guns, and feel the need to learn how to fix parts themselves, a dremel is a must have. If you are removing metal to smooth the trigger and then polish the internals, YOU can do it by hand, I will spend the 30 hours you waste doing it the hard way by shooting and testing said firearm.

And yes I do have a good set of metal files, and I have no idea how I can use a set of even the best wood rasps to stone my hammer. Power or no power.

If you don't feel the need to use tools to work on your own firearm and can afford to send your gun to the smith every time it needs a tune up, more power to you. And when, yes I said when, I screw up a part doing it myself I can just buy a new part or learn how to fix the bad part.

My gun, my tools, my problem.

koja48
August 10, 2008, 10:30 PM
Last comment . . . I recognize the difference between "fast" and "precise." Not fond of "screwing-up" something like an expensive firearm OR buying parts. To each his own . . . I'll continue to err on the conservative side of metal-removal.

win71
August 11, 2008, 12:20 AM
I guess I can only comment on my own lack of skill and not the capabilities of the tool itself. I tried one once on metal. Became an instant psychedelic engraver, without even knowing it.

230RN
August 11, 2008, 12:52 AM
Just remember that if you're freehand grinding and you're right-handed, the darned wheels throw crap right into your eyes.

Wear safety glasses with temple shields.

At least.

Valkman
August 11, 2008, 02:53 AM
Just remember that if you're freehand grinding and you're right-handed, the darned wheels throw crap right into your eyes.


It sure does! :D

Sylvan-Forge
August 11, 2008, 03:12 AM
Dremel is from the debil ..
run it backwards on a primary engagement surface and you'll hear one of his names in latin.

Seriously, they have their place, like any tool.
I've the Dremel Stylus, right handy it is!

.

230RN
August 12, 2008, 09:34 AM
I usually use one of those knurled chucks you can mount in the regular collet to hold the bits (wheels, whatever).

However, the greater length of the tool with this chuck device increases the chances of the tool slipping around on the work.

The trick in not making huge mistakes with it is to "buck" everything you do with your other fingers and resting your hands on your knees or something, again, so you are "bucking" the tendency of the tool to zip around when the wheel touches the surface of the workpiece.

That's kind of hard to describe, but the idea is to hold the thing (as you would when carving with a knife) in a way that sudden changes in thrust, torque, whatever, will be automatically limited by your hands against other surfaces.

Does that make sense? It's just a knack that you have to acquire, I guess.

.cheese.
August 12, 2008, 10:18 AM
So, does anyone have any recommendations for an all around Dremel? I'm looking for one that accepts the most attachments.

They're pretty much all the same. I have a 3000 I believe.

OOOXOOO
August 12, 2008, 07:31 PM
I don't use a Dremel tool on my guns. If I wanted them to look ugly and not work I'd use my hammer.

pioneer461
August 12, 2008, 08:26 PM
Dremel Tools. A very fast way to do a lot of damage. Gunsmiths love 'em.:cool:

Gator
August 13, 2008, 12:28 AM
A Dremel has unlimited uses, they are very handy to have around. Mine is 25 years old and still works fine, although I have been thinking of getting a new one with a flex shaft. When I was poor I used my Dremel to build several book shelves...but a real drill works much better. :)

I did use it to undercut the triggerguards, polish the feedramps and reshape the safeties on two of my 1911s and was very pleased with the results...be careful though, I did the majority of metal removal with the Dremel and finished with files, its very easy to take off too much.

Dookie
August 13, 2008, 02:05 AM
There's no work on any gun that can be done with a Dremel. Period. This is an asinine comment.

ESPECIALLY since I just got done hogging out my stock for a bedding job, polished a few hammers, welded and recut a trigger that someone else screwed up, probably with a dremel, smoothed and polished a bolt.

Oh wait, your right, I should just bend over and spend money I don't need to because you said it can't be done, period.

SageMonkey
August 13, 2008, 05:23 AM
There's no work on any gun that can be done with a Dremel. Period.

Strange, I could swear I inletted a stock to fit an ultimak a few years ago with a dremel... that worked out rather well.

But generally a dremel won't be the right tool for the job. Even in my case it was the tool I had (and it worked fine), but a mill with a router bit would have been better... Isuppose I should have driven 100 miles to a gunsmith and let the rifle sit in his shop for a month instead of working on my own pre-bubba-ized plinker?

Also, some ppl at ktog use a dremel for their "fluff and buff". I did that too and my Kel-tec now runs flawlessly. BUT, a little bit goes a long way and you need to already know how to use it- you could easily ruin a feedramp in few moments.

PTK
August 13, 2008, 05:29 AM
Gunsmiths LOVE dremel tools. It's how they pay for their kids to go to college.

Not all of us love them. Generally, they're very limited use - but when you need one, they're absolutely priceless in terms of time saved.

There's no work on any gun that can be done with a Dremel. Period.

In inexperienced hands, they can destroy a firearm very quickly. However, there is a place for a good Dremel tool on my workbench, and I use it as taught in gunsmithing school. That's right, the same school Les Baer and Doug Turnbull went to, they teach the use of a Dremel tool on firearms.

I suppose Mr. Baer and Mr. Turnbull don't know a thing about proper gunsmithing, though. ;)

brigadier
August 13, 2008, 08:58 AM
The type of tool that Dremel makes is called a Rotary Tool.
Rotary tools have allot of uses in gunsmithing, but they are not learned over night and the smith better have an exceptional amount of knowledge in gunsmithing, and experience with the tool. You should also learn some of the deeper and more crafty tricks with rotary tools, like making your own custom bits out of the sanding disc holders, warn out diamond bits and polishing wheel mounts.
I have found the dremmel most useful if you are making something from scratch. For actually modifying or removing material on a firearm, you better really know what you're doing and you shouldn't use the dremmel for anything but minor reshaping and if you have a fine enough grade disc, you MIGHT be able to get away with straightening stuff out or polishing moving surfaces. I for instance tend to use the discs for permanent drag adjustment on the backs of triggers or custom made 1200 grit wheels for carefully sharpening an edge which requires a very stable hand with the tool and even then can be risky.
When manufacturers make a new firearm, they design every aspect of the gun to the last tiny detail and implement a great deal of science. For instance, even after a long period of intensive work to make the gun work and hold up, Beretta discovered well in to the production life of the gun that their 92 pistol had a slightly off-center slide and stress build from the single slanted recoil impact was the cause of an epidemic of slides breaking, so they now make all 92s with a relief cut in the back of the slide which allot of people mistake for a crack.
This is just one example of all kinds of factors that manufacturers consider when coming up with these weapons.
That said, they are not perfect and there is always room for improvement. Almost all solutions to all demands with guns are known. The question is whether anyone took the time to make the option available for your gun of choice. If not, then comes time for smithing, but before you do, you need to look in to what's been done with similar actions by people who know what their doing and make sure you fully understand why. In the ming time, if you are going to use a dremmel for anything at all, then get use to it in other applications. My suggestion is to scratch build several working 1/8 or 5/32 thick, 20 degree angle straight beveled and mirror polished knives with a rotary tool and no other at any stage of making it. Trust me, it's easier said then done. Once you can do that, then you may consider using a dremmel in mechanics. I can't tell you everything a dremmel is or isn't good for, but it is a machine that does have it's place in mechanics and power tools like any other. Like any other, it's not a "one tool does all" machine. I consider myself to be lacking as I have allot of limitations, but my tools include: a dremmel, saw zaw, wood milling machine (basically a drill press with a locking head and a bitmoore vice mounted on it), steel milling machine, mig welder, belt sander, bench grinder, angle grinder, all kinds of accessories for all of them not to mention a large number of hand tools including common stuff, stuff you have never heard of and stuff of my own design for specific purposes.
Admittedly, the rotary tool does most of the work when doing a scratch build of a part, accessory or complete gun, but it's use has to do with removal and reshaping where precision doesn't matter and then ultra fine tuning stuff at the end with custom made bits that remove metal at rates that I doubt most people here will have the patients for (like a 1 inch, 3 disc reinforced 1200g disc with metal enriched jewelers rouge on it which one can use for hand doing precision work well beyond thousandths of an inch.
The overall precision work gets done with the mills, belt sander and some of the custom hand tools that I use.

That all said, if you are going to use a rotary tool for gunsmithing, then any decent one should do. Just make sure it holds still and doesn't vibrate much. I wouldn't wory about the speeds. If you need to adjust speed, then you are probably doing something you shouldn't be doing.

Gator
August 13, 2008, 09:24 PM
Quote:
Gunsmiths LOVE dremel tools. It's how they pay for their kids to go to college.

Not all of us love them. Generally, they're very limited use - but when you need one, they're absolutely priceless in terms of time saved.


I think the poster meant gunsmiths love them because they get paid for fixing things other people messed up with Dremels. ;)

koja48
August 13, 2008, 10:56 PM
In inexperienced hands . . . and use it as taught in gunsmithing school

I dare say that the majority of folks aren't so experienced . . . to those of you who are, I envy your ability. Personally, I'm too shaky in my old age to trust myself with one as applied to gun parts.

kwelz
August 13, 2008, 11:50 PM
There are 3 things that everyone should have to work on a firearm. A good set of Screwdrivers, a good set of files, and a Dremel.
Ok I lied. there are 4 things. The 4th is common sense.

I have worked on a number of my own firearms over the years. Trigger jobs, Feed ramps, and a number of actual repairs. You use the right tool for the right job. There are a number of people out there who would use a power tool when they should be using a hand file or even a stone. But at the same time there are people who would sit there for hours with hand tolls when they should be using a dremel(or whatever rotary tool brand you prefer)

jason10mm
August 14, 2008, 02:31 PM
Please, give me a dremel, a block of wood, and a cube of steel and I'll have a 1911 built from scratch in a weekend :P

Seriously though, be careful with the dremel. I think if you plan on delicate trigger jobs, etc, you are better off STARTING with files, progressing to the dremel as experience grows.

But for crude jobs like polishing down the numb of the front sight post a gunsmith installed and left protruding through the slide and binding the barrel collar thingie, it works well :P

Besides, they are AWESOME for so many other things like cutting off nail heads, screw tips, CD rack cross bars, etc that no tool box is really complete without one.

Rugerlvr
August 14, 2008, 03:37 PM
Everybody should have a Dremel. It's super useful for household chores. Believe it or not, I actually use mine for trimming (grinding) my dog's claws. She goes berzerk if you try to trim them with a cutter, but if I put on a sanding wheel, I can grind them down and she doesn't even protest. It also has the advantage that it self-cauterizes the quick if I grind too far.

kd7nqb
August 14, 2008, 06:36 PM
I know this has been said a million times before but becareful what you do with a dremel tool and work SLOW this means get one of them with the infinitely adjustable speeds.

Dremel has been the cause of more "oops" moments on guns than just about any other tool. And whatever you do dont try to checker a grip with a dremel.

Stradawhovious
August 14, 2008, 07:21 PM
GET A DREMEL I can't vouch for gunsmithing use, as I'm sure the people that state in the wrong hands you can ruin a firearm in no time flat are correct, for anything else around the house they are invaluable. I have burned out three myself, (due to use, not quality) and couldn't imagine life without one..... Well I could, but it would suck.

NotSoFast
August 14, 2008, 07:27 PM
You mean I couldn't do that 25 cent trigger job on my Glock?

Every tool has it's use. A wise man knows when to use what tool and the limits of himself and the tool.

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