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Finally got a Dremel

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  • Member since
    May 2021
Finally got a Dremel
Posted by mightypudge on Friday, June 25, 2021 12:00 PM

Only took me 51 years. 

I picked up a 4000 model 6/50 kit. I know there are probably a million uses for this thing, but I'd like some thoughts on uses specific to modeling. I was thinking I may use it for cleaning up parts or shaping for better fitment.

But what about polishing clearcoat for better shine? Anyone using their Dremel to get that showcar shine finish? Tips?

  • Member since
    January 2020
Posted by Space Ranger on Friday, June 25, 2021 12:28 PM

My experience with Dremel and other similar power tools is that most are really useless for plastic modeling. Even at the slowest speed of most variable-speed models, they turn too fast to be of any use and generate too much friction and sufficient heat to melt the plastic.

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: New Braunfels, Texas
Posted by Tanker-Builder on Friday, June 25, 2021 12:34 PM

Hmmm;

     6-50 ? Way to fast  for anything in Styrene.  Now, does it have the variable speed control? If so You are stuck. If you return it get the single speed variety and go to a Sewing machine store and get a foot pedal control. Then You can get into Styrene Type R.P.Ms.

    Even the Battery Rechargeable one is to fast for most applications.

 I found a Black and Decker Small rechargeable "Non Clutch" drill( Actually smallerThan the Dremel.) So my speed is variable based on trigger pull with the top R.P.M at 4,000 down to 20 R.P.M. or less.

  • Member since
    April 2020
Posted by Eaglecash867 on Friday, June 25, 2021 7:14 PM

I concur with what has already been said about Dremels.  They're not good for much of anything in plastic modeling, and you definitely don't want to use it to polish anything on your models.  For stone axe type work where you need to remove a large section of plastic, a Dremel can't be beat, but its definitely not going to help you with finishing tasks.

For polishing, I have 3 different MicroMesh kits, along with a Novus kit and cotton gloves.  I wouldn't recommend polishing paint or clearcoat on your model with anything other than the above and some good, old fashioned elbow grease.

For tasks where I need a little more power, while still being gentle to the plastic, I use a variation of what TB uses.  I have a little Dewalt cordless drill that is actually surprisingly easy to use with precision, and the speed goes all the way down to just above 0 RPM depending on trigger squeeze.

"You can have my illegal fireworks when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers...which are...over there somewhere."

  • Member since
    November 2008
  • From: Central Florida
Posted by plasticjunkie on Saturday, June 26, 2021 8:06 AM

Eagle is right. Use Novus to polish paint and not the Dremel that will burn right thru. If it's a single speed go to Harbor  Freight and get a cheap speed control that works great. Either that or return it for one with speed control.
Demels are good set at low speed for grinding and removing plastic as for example thinning the inside of a submarine hull around the flood holes to make them look scale in thickness or grinding off plastic inside a fuselage for fitting resin am parts that require lots of fitting and sanding. 

I actually use my Dremel more on household projects and as a metal cutter or grinder in the garage.

 GIFMaker.org_jy_Ayj_O

 

 

Too many models to build, not enough time in a lifetime!!

  • Member since
    January 2020
Posted by Space Ranger on Saturday, June 26, 2021 5:15 PM

Eaglecash867

For tasks where I need a little more power, while still being gentle to the plastic, I use a variation of what TB uses.  I have a little Dewalt cordless drill that is actually surprisingly easy to use with precision, and the speed goes all the way down to just above 0 RPM depending on trigger squeeze.

What is the model number of that Dewalt cordless drill?

  • Member since
    April 2020
Posted by Eaglecash867 on Saturday, June 26, 2021 6:29 PM

Space Ranger
What is the model number of that Dewalt cordless drill?

Its a DCD710.  I mostly use it at work for buzzing screws back into access panels and radomes, but it makes a great little rotary filer/sander for models.  You can chuck up a round jewelers file in it and work inside tight spaces.  I use that method, along with several 1/4" wooden dowels wrapped helically with sanding bands of progressive grits to remove seams from the insides of jet intakes on models.  Works amazingly well.

"You can have my illegal fireworks when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers...which are...over there somewhere."

  • Member since
    July 2014
  • From: Franklin Wi
Posted by Bakster on Saturday, June 26, 2021 9:49 PM

I use mine a bunch for modeling, mostly cutting and grinding. There are things that I do in my builds that I wouldn't do if I didnt have one. I wouldn't want to be without one. With that said though, I honed my system in a way that makes it workable, including a footswitch.

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: New Braunfels, Texas
Posted by Tanker-Builder on Sunday, June 27, 2021 7:22 AM

Hey Eaglecash;

   I have recently acquired a Black and Decker - Rechargeable it's their Rota Driver. This little guy is gear driven from 0 to I think 200 RPM. It really works well and I chuck a Dremel Chuck assembly in there and it's "Bob's Yer Uncle".

    I would also like to mention the fact that there are many tools made to fit Dremel type tools. Used with a modicum of common sense they can be an invaluable source of correction for sanding or gouging away mold pin points or other ejecta that needs to go away. A light touch is all that is needed. Fastened down, they, with a foot control can be a power source fo a Home-Made lathe.

  • Member since
    June 2021
Posted by rocketman2000 on Sunday, June 27, 2021 8:58 AM

I find Dremels with a good speed control fine for use on styrene plastic.

However, for even finer work I found a hand grinder in Michaels that is very small and light. It is AC powered with seperate power supply that helps reduce the weight of the grinder portion.  The speed control is not that great, but the control reduces torque as well as rpm, so when you touch it to the plastic it slows way down so you have good control.  I will take a picture of it and post in a couple days.

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

dlh
  • Member since
    March 2017
  • From: Chambersburg, PA
Posted by dlh on Sunday, June 27, 2021 2:49 PM

I've found this Dremel useful on some plastic work, about $50

https://us.dremel.com/en_US/products/-/show-product/tools/2050-stylo-versatile-craft-tool

Second to that is the Proxxon.  However it pulses at lowest speeds:

https://www.proxxon.com/us/micromot/38515.php

 

Dave

  • Member since
    April 2021
Posted by Cafguy on Sunday, June 27, 2021 4:14 PM

See my Thread "What do you do with your Dremel tool?" I was once an avid Buider of balsa wood airplanes and if thats what you are building than in my opinion it is a must have tool. But for plastic modeling I have yet too find A use for it,  They rotate way to fast and melt plastic rather then sand it off often causing more harm than good.  If Plastic models is your only hobby than sadly this tool will collect the most dust of anything in your arsenal. Istill have mine on my workbench, Don't really know why guess so I can say hey look I have A Dremel. lol

Life tip:  Skip marrage: find the women you hate the most and buy her a house and car.

  • Member since
    August 2005
  • From: Mansfield, TX
Posted by EdGrune on Sunday, June 27, 2021 5:03 PM

I got a battery-powered Dremel pumpkin carver. It uses four AA batteries.  Two speeds.  Has the typical Dremel collet size.  Used it to hog off big resin pour stubs on 350 scale ships.  

With fresh batteries it turns too fast for use on styrene kits, even the slower speed.  With stale batteries it almost becomes useable

  • Member since
    April 2005
Posted by ddp59 on Sunday, June 27, 2021 7:43 PM

Cafguy, i'm using my single speed Dremel with external speed control to shape changes to the models in this link. http://www.shipmodels.info/mws_forum/viewtopic.php?f=59&t=165105 the shaping of the bow, torpedo bulges & correction to the stern using only testors tube glue & 1mm plus styrene sheet using the bread & butter method with hardly any putty.

  • Member since
    June 2021
Posted by rocketman2000 on Tuesday, June 29, 2021 12:41 PM

Here is the tool I mentioned above.

 

 

Again, I found this at Michaels, and really like it.  Only real problem is that it only has a chuck for 3/32 accessories.  It does come with a set of grinding stones and I do have some 3/32 tools in my Dremel collection so that has not been a problem so far.  At the time I bought it about three years ago it was $27.  Bead Landing is a pretty popular brand in craft stores.

However, walking through Home Depot this morning I noticed a new tiny Dremel tool.  In too much of a hurry to stop and note the model number, but will do so next time I am there, and ask if anyone has tried it yet.

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    June 2021
Posted by rocketman2000 on Tuesday, June 29, 2021 2:38 PM

The tool I saw in HD this morning is the Dremel 2050 Stylo, for fifty bucks.  Anyone have one yet- what do you think of it?

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    September 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Wednesday, June 30, 2021 7:37 AM

mightypudge

Only took me 51 years. 

I picked up a 4000 model 6/50 kit. I know there are probably a million uses for this thing, but I'd like some thoughts on uses specific to modeling. I was thinking I may use it for cleaning up parts or shaping for better fitment.

But what about polishing clearcoat for better shine? Anyone using their Dremel to get that showcar shine finish? Tips? 

I got one, based on Shep Paine's mention of the tool in his diorama tips.  I always remembered how he created the shell holes in the Devastator and B-17 by grinding out the insides of the fuselage to thin them.  Or how he made a shattered street lamp globe out of a small light bulb for his Arnhem diorama.

But I'm with the others who caution about using it with styrene.  It is very true, and it's regardless of whatever additional control you might add to adjust the speed, that it is very easy to slip and damage the piece.  And it does generate enough heat to melt the plastic.  If you choose to use a power tool to drill or grind plastic, you need to be very, very careful.  If you slip with a hand tool, like a pin vise, that slip doesn't have as much power behind it, and is therefore not as damaging, as when you slip with a power tool.

Having said that, you are correct that there are a lot of uses for a Dremel or other rotary tool, and beyond modeling.

I use mine much more working with metal figures, though I still prefer to do most drilling with a pin vise.  I do have a Dremel drill press stand, so if I do use the tool to drill, I can secure the tool and the piece, and keep the bit as steady as possible.  I use cutting wheels to remove pour stubs on metal figures.

I also use it on my larger resin figures, primarily for drilling holes for pinning.  But again, for most operations in modeling, I prefer to use hand tools, which I can control better.

I have used the polishing pads, and wire brush attachments, but when working with metal.

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

 

  • Member since
    November 2018
Posted by oldermodelguy on Thursday, July 1, 2021 8:24 AM

I haven't used my Dremel in about 35 years. It has a separate control box for speed control that burned up. Now it only goes full speed. But I never did much with it on models anyway. Seems to me the drum Sanders were handy if slowed down. Carbide cut of wheels were good in laying track for model railroads. It's a handy tool for polishing and matching ports on a 1/1 race car engine.

 

  • Member since
    June 2021
Posted by rocketman2000 on Thursday, July 1, 2021 9:14 AM

mightypudge

 

But what about polishing clearcoat for better shine? Anyone using their Dremel to get that showcar shine finish? Tips?

 

Yes, I have used a Dremel with their cloth wheel and various grits of polish.  Worked fine.

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

dlh
  • Member since
    March 2017
  • From: Chambersburg, PA
Posted by dlh on Thursday, July 1, 2021 11:14 AM

rocketman2000

The tool I saw in HD this morning is the Dremel 2050 Stylo, for fifty bucks.  Anyone have one yet- what do you think of it?

 

 

I like the 2050 Stylo.  I can use it on some plastic.  It has low torque, so on its lowest setting, it's not too agressive.  I use it more than my "big" Dremel.  I also have a rechargable version:

https://us.dremel.com/en_US/products/-/show-product/tools/8050-micro

It seems to be between the "big" Dremel and the Stylo.

Dave

 

  • Member since
    July 2004
Posted by Virago on Saturday, July 24, 2021 3:11 PM

I have found items like this on Amazon  https://www.amazon.com/AEVO-Electric-Upgraded-Manicure-Changeable/dp/B087JBKDDT/ref=sr_1_15?dchild=1&keywords=nail+polisher&qid=1627156949&sr=8-15 , much better at slow speeds, it has a forward and reverse option. The only draw back, is the shaft size of the bits, they are 3/32 as opposed to 1/8 and I think that you are inserting the bit into a rubber sleeve not a colette as on a dremel. But all in all, it works great on plastic. YOu can also find ceramic bits that will hold up for a very long time and are easy to clean, all you need to do is look a little outside the hobbu box, and look to nail polishing tools for some great options.

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