Construction Tool Tests: Comparing Full-Size Oscillating Multi-Tools

There’s an old adage that “the tool makes the craftsman.” Now, I know quite a few craftsmen who can use just about anything and still make it work for them, but it’s fair to say that if you’re working serious construction or you take your personal projects seriously, that you want the best tools available to you.

When dealing with oscillating multi-tools, there are a lot of options out there, and it can get difficult to wade through them all. Before you make your choice, take some time to do some side-by-side comparisons, and figure out exactly what you’re getting for your money.

“The field of construction is a constantly changing area with many dangers. However, most construction accidents are avoidable with the proper foresight and education on the part of the developer” (Cagle Law Firm). Here are some tips to help you make the best choice, both in performance and safety, for your next oscillating tool purchase.

What Makes a Good Oscillating Multi-Tool?
Some people have their own preferences. This could be based on brand or comfort or countless other things. But, when tracking down the right oscillating tool, there are a few things you should definitely be on the lookout for. The folks over at Wood Magazine tested a range of multi-tools and put together a list of a few features that every good oscillating multi-tool should have:

Comfortable grip. Because you typically wrap one or both hands around the tool’s barrel, its circumference and shape determine how well the tool fits in your hand, right.

Minimal vibration and noise. Most of the models we tested vibrated about equally, but we felt Bosch’s Multi-X vibrated least. Fein’s MultiMaster ran loudest when cutting, while the Rockwell was significantly quieter.

Variable speed. Slower speeds make delicate sanding jobs more manageable. Cutting and grinding work best at the highest speeds. Every tool except the cordless Craftsman 17438 offers variable-speed control. Further smoothing things out, a couple of models also feature soft-start motors that ease the tool up to speed and prevent it from jerking to the side when switching on the power.

Side-by-Side Comparison
So, you know what you’re looking for, but there are still some questions you need to answer: Is a particular oscillating multi-tool more suited to a particular project? Can I get what I need in my price range? How long is this tool going to last?

To get the best answers to those questions and more, it helps to look at all of your options side-by-side. If you don’t have the time to go out there and give every potential oscillating tool a whirl (and honestly, most of us just don’t have time to do that), you can at least get an expert take on most of the major options out there.

Oscillating Tools breaks down the pros and cons of a range of multi-tools including the Porter Cable Multi-Tool, the Milwaukee M12 Cordless Multi-Tool Kit, the Fein MultiMaster Tool, and a lot more. These reviews show you everything that works well for a specific tool (including cost) and everything that might leave you a little disappointed.

So, maybe the tool doesn’t make the craftsman, but the right tool can make even the best craftsman work faster and more efficiently. If you’re in the market for an effective oscillating multi-tool, take a few minutes to do some research and find the one that will work best for you.

Do you have any additional areas you would add to your pre-purchase check list? Share your comments.

Written by Andrew Miller


Twitter: @amillerblog


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