There’s no doubt that Dremel make high quality tools. They’ve got rotary cutters, oscillating tools, a cutting/sanding/routing machine, a pumpkin carving kit, an engraver kit, a pet nail grooming tool, and maybe a dozen rotary tool kits. Their corded tools are really excellent – the Dremel 4000 series is particularly popular – but sometimes when it comes to their cordless tools, they drop the ball. Their 8000, one of their first cordless tools, is a good example of this. To their credit, they listened to what people said, and when they designed the 8220, they implemented a lot of changes. Unfortunately, it just wasn’t enough.
The main issues with this Dremel 8220-1/28 12-Volt Max Cordless Rotary Tool Kit all seem to be related to the batteries. It seems that hardly any of these problems would happen with corded models. Lithium ion technology has been around for a while, and a lot of companies have already worked the kinks out of their battery-powered tools. The Dremel 8000, their first lithium ion model, did have a few problems with charging time and run time, and while it seems those might have been fixed in this model, some other problems have crept up.
Might be a decent tool but for the batteries
When one unit experiences a problem, you say it’s a lemon. When a handful of units experience a problem, you think they’re just duds. When a whole lot of units experience a problem, it seems like it would be a design flaw, right? The strange thing is that the Dremel 8220-2/28 kit uses a rotary tool with the same design, and that’s a pretty great tool. So what on earth is wrong with the 8220-1/28?
It’s quite possible that these two kits are packaged using different batches. They might even be packaged in different locations, with batches coming from different factories. Manufacturing is such a convoluted mess these days that it’s hard to know where your product actually came from. In any case, there have been so many problems with the battery and charger for the Dremel 8220-1/28 cordless rotary tool kit that I can’t recommend it. If you really want this particular tool, check out the other kit because for whatever reason, people haven’t had as many problems with that one. As for this kit:
- The tool itself is good – it offers a good range of user-controlled rpms.
- The design is good too – it’s comfortable and light.
- The batteries are the problem! Plus this kit only has one.
- The accessories are OK too, but the other kit comes with some different ones that really add another level of performance to this rotary tool.
Nicely-designed variable speed control
The variable speed control in this rotary tool is pretty nice. You can run from 5,000 rpms to 30,000 rpms. As an example, if you’re working with plastic or something that melts, or you’re doing some very fine, delicate work, you need low rpms. If you’re cutting wood or metal or if you’re stripping rust off a big piece of metal, faster rpms will get the job done more quickly. Basically, the more control you have over the rpms in between determines how flexible your tool will be, and this rotary tool has the ultimate flexibility in this category.
The Dremel 8220-1/28 was the follow-up release to the unsatisfactory Dremel 8000, and as far as design improvements go, this one delivers. This model loses the pencil grip of the 8000, but it gains a lot elsewhere. For one, the variable speed control is no longer attached to the on/off switch. You can select an appropriate speed for your work and keep it there for the whole job, not having to find it again every time you turn the tool off and on again. It’s comfortable to hold because soft grip foam absorbs a lot of vibration and lets you hold it from a variety of angles.
Problems with batteries and chargers
Customers have reported chargers that don’t work on arrival, batteries that overheat after five minutes, and batteries that don’t work on arrival or fail after a few weeks or months of use. Now, maybe the 8220s in other kits have these problems, but if they do, why isn’t anyone complaining? If you happen to get a bad battery, it’s no big deal; you can use the other one until you get a replacement… unless you don’t have another one. The Dremel 8220-1/28 kit only comes with one battery, which will give you about 30 minutes of run time and charges in about an hour (assuming it’s working).
The good news is that if your battery and charger do work, they’ll work pretty well! Lithium ions can run circles around nickel cadmiums for their lightness, longevity, quick charging time, and ability to hold a charge without draining for months.
1 attachment and 28 accessories – and only 1 battery
The attachments and accessories are what make your rotary tool versatile. If all you’ve got is a sanding disc, all you’ve got is an expensive small-scale sander. The 28 accessories included with the Dremel 8220-1/28 are a nice assortment:
- Three mandrels
- Reinforced and emery cut-off wheels
- High speed cutter
- Coarse sanding drum
- Emery wheel
- 10 sanding discs and bands, different grits
- Multipurpose cutting bit for drywall, laminate, fiberglass, plastic, and vinyl siding
- Felt polishing wheels and polishing compound
- Aluminum oxide and silicon carbide grinding stones and wheels
However, this kit only comes with one attachment, a depth-control cutting guide. The other kit comes with a right-angle attachment, which makes your rotary tool so much more convenient, and an extra battery as well. It’s a little more, but it’s really worth the extra money.
I strongly suggest that if you want a Dremel 8220, get the Dremel 8220-2/28 kit. The extra battery and right-angle attachment are really worth the extra money, and the battery batches don’t seem to have the problems as the 1/28 kits do.
- Tool only with no battery, frameless motor for extended tool durability and life
- Compact size and weight allows access into tighter areas and reduces user fatigue
- This product is made of high quality material
- Can be used with all Dremel accessories and attachments
- Quick collet lock for fast accessory changes
- One-hour charger for minimal downtime
- High-performance motor designed for demanding applications
- Kit contains 28 accessories, carrying case, 1-hour charger, and one 12V max lithium-ion battery
- Battery amp hour: 1.5
- Battery chemistry: lithium ion
- Battery voltage: 12
- Length: 6″
- Width: 3″
- 8220 Cordless Rotary Tool
- 28 Accessories
- 1 Attachment
- 1 Battery
- One 1-Hour Charger
- Hard Case
- 2 Years