Meet the Dremel

Written by Chris Newman

December 23, 2003 // 12 a.m.

Tags: #black-and-decker #casemod #modders #rotary #rotary-tool #tool #window

Meet the Dremel The tool and the plan
A quick tour of the tool and then we\'ll put this thing to metal. The bit chuck tightens down and secures your bit to the tool. The accessories collar can be removed to fit various accessories to the tool (we\'ll get to that later). The bit chuck lock button stops the spindle from spinning so you can loosen the bit chuck. The speed control, well, sets the rpm\'s your tool is running at.

Meet the Dremel The tool and the plan
Now our victim. This is a plate of 2mm thick aluminum I had laying around the shop. I am going to use a common wire fan grill as a template since I have about a million of these laying around... not sure where they all came from, I think they are multiplying in the shop when the lights are out.

Meet the Dremel The tool and the plan
Take my trusty sharpie marker and trace around the outer ring. Here is where I am purposely going to NOT take certain precautions to show the consequences later. I highly recommend you lay down some masking tape on and outside the line you plan to cut to give yourself some oops insurance. Also, if you have the option, plan on working on the opposite side that will be viewed by the public. Most mistakes/slips that are made show up on the side you are working on leaving the other side relatively clean and error free.

Meet the Dremel The tool and the plan
When you\'re suited up like this, you\'ll have to beat the ladies off with a big stick! This is also an opprotunity to poke a little fun at another modder, you know who you are.

Now that we are getting ready to put Dremel to metal, we need to discuss safety (boring). The picture below is an excellent example of why you need eye protection. This is a #426 cutting disk that had broken off during use. Between the bit\'s possibly breaking and debris coming off of of a blade turning at 35,000 rpm. If you don\'t protect yourself, your professional modding career will be cut down in it\'s prime. Lets look at what you need.
<ol><li>Eye Protection - A must, do not operate this monster without it, or you\'ll be wearing an eyepatch (if you\'re lucky)</li><li>Respirator Mask - A definite need. Unless you want you\'re chest x-rays lighting up like a Christmas tree from all the metal particles you\'ve sucked down. And other materials are down right dangerous to inhale. Not to mention, if you EVER plan on painting anything you\'re going to need it anyway. Besides, I don\'t like bits of aluminum hitting me in the face and spoiling my good looks.</li><li>Ear Protection - What does a cutting disk sound like cutting aluminum at 35,000 rpm? If you don\'t routinely wear ear protection, your response is probably huh?. </li></ol>
Meet the Dremel The tool and the plan
The cutting disk bit is mounted on a little spindle with a flat-head screw holding it in. Removal of the screw allows us to change out the disk.

Meet the Dremel The tool and the plan
Installing the new disk. Side note - do NOT loose track of this little screw. Tiny and irreplaceable - deadly combo.

Meet the Dremel The tool and the plan
Bit goes into the chuck and is tightened down, note the thumb holding down the chuck lock button. (no comments on the hairy arms or the state of my hands).
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