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Rotozip vs Dremel for cutting circles in drywall

Rotozip vs Dremel for cutting circles in drywall

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  #1  
Old 08-13-13, 04:44 PM
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Rotozip vs Dremel for cutting circles in drywall

I have been wanting a rotary tool for a long time. Now, that I have a project I can use it for, I am going to buy one. Mostly, I am going to start off using the tool to cut circles for recessed can lights in the ceiling drywall.

I checked out a few brands, but I keep coming back to either the Rotozip or the Dremel 3000. What do you think? Should I get one of those or something else? Which one is better for drywall? Also, I am an old guy. Is a lighter tool better?
 
  #2  
Old 08-13-13, 05:10 PM
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I have both a Dremel and a Rotozip. I think you will find the Rotozip to be the more powerful of the two and will be great for jobs requiring specialty cuts. I have the under cut saw attachment and the angle grinder with a diamond blade. The Diamond blade seems to be the most used option.

The Dremel allow use of fine wood working and light metal working. There are a lot of little attachments for doing detail work. I carry it on the truck at all times, but it gets fewer calls to duty that the rotozip.
 
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Old 08-13-13, 06:48 PM
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I have both a Dremel and Rotozip as well, and although I still think of the Dremel as more of a hobby tool, so carry it pretty much just as a backup, and save it for finer work in the shop, I swear that thing has put quite a few of the more highly regarded ones to shame at times. Due to the damage that drywall dust can do though, and despite the fact that I seldom scrimp on tools, I have seen some of the lower end ones from Harbor Freight perform surprisingly well. But, everything else aside, and although it is definitely heavier, so more cumbersome than any of the aforementioned, my preference for drywall work is my cordless Dewalt, simply because I don't have to find a live receptacle and then drag a cord around.
 
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Old 08-13-13, 07:12 PM
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No way would I be using that tool for that job.
Far faster and cleaner hole with one of these.
Milwaukee 6-3/8 in. Recessed Light Hole Saw-49-56-0305 at The Home Depot
It's a carbide grit so there's no teeth to hang up and twist your wrist.
They come in 3, different sizes.
A trick is to also pick up one of those cheap plastic clear plastic pans that goes under a planter and drill a hole in it the size of the hex shaft on the hole saw where it goes on the drill.
Now when your cutting all the dust ends up in the plastic pan not in your face.
 
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Old 08-13-13, 07:23 PM
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I also have both and although I use the Dremel a LOT, I would choose the Rotozip for drywall. The Dremel will suck the fine dust in and quickly ruin the bearings while the Rotozip is intended for this task and doesn't suck in at the collet end. Also--Rotozip bits have a pilot tip that allows you to plunge blind into the drywall & pull the tool sideways til the pilot hits the steel can behind the wall. It will then follow the can for a perfect round cut. The larger bit cuts faster and cooler and so stays sharp longer.

OTOH if you're using the type of ceiling light that gets installed after the hole is cut then I would choose neither, Use a drywall circle trammel cutter. They come in either an attachment for a drill or a small cutter wheel opposite a sharp point. The manual kind works just fine. It doesn't cut all the way through but does cut through the surface paper so when you punch the rest of the circle out you have a clean cut on the show side (and a ragged hole on the unseen side).
 
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Old 08-13-13, 07:31 PM
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Rotozip for drywall.
That's what it's mainly made for.
You quickly see trying to use a Dremel with the trammel tool will be a royal pain to keep the point in place, the Dremel will be throwing dust every where and may be snapping off bits because there just not big enough for work like this.
I own all these tools and the hole saw would still be to tool I would use instead.
 
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Old 08-13-13, 08:07 PM
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The hole saw Joe posted is for remodel cans, not new construction. Even then I do not like to use them as hole sizes vary from each can manufacture.

I have one of these and I like it as you can adjust the hole size with the circle attachment.
Amazon.com: DEWALT DW660SK 5-Amp 30,000 RPM Rotary Cut-Out Tool with 1/8-Inch and 1/4-Inch Collets, Side Handle, and Circle Cutter: Home Improvement
They are tough to find as I think they have been discontinued.
 
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Old 08-13-13, 08:20 PM
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Rotozip with circle cutter. I've been using this combo for years. Hole saws are great but I cut all different size holes as I install sound systems too. The point on the circle cutter adjusts to any size hole up to like 12"

The only downfall to this method is a lot of dust. I use a portable/small shop vac to vacuum as I cut.

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Old 08-13-13, 08:38 PM
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Don't you have to pinpoint the exact center of the can with a circle cutter like that? I already have the cans installed between the ceiling studs. And there is no ceiling yet.
 
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Old 08-13-13, 09:22 PM
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Don't you have to pinpoint the exact center of the can with a circle cutter like that?
Yes. How would you cut the right size circle in the right place if you didn't know where the center of the circle is? I use a circle cutter like the one PJ has, only without the tool attachment. I use it to scribe the hole and then cut it with a drywall saw. No cost for a tool I didn't really need.

I already have the cans installed between the ceiling studs. And there is no ceiling yet.
How does that change anything? Am I missing something here? The right size circle still needs to be cut in the right place and that starts by marking the center of the circle on the drywall.

Most ceilings are finished by hanging the drywall over the electrical boxes and fixtures. How else would it be done with concealed wiring and new construction fixtures?
 
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Old 08-13-13, 09:29 PM
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Ahhhh......I see what you want to do. You have the cans installed and need to cut the new sheetrock going in. You need to watch a sheetrock crew at work.

You install the sheetrock loosely over the cans and then you use the rotozip with the rounded end. You put the Rotozip anywhere in the circumference of the can and then just run it around the inside of the can.

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The rounded/blunt end rides inside the can while the cutter trims the sheetrock.
 
  #12  
Old 08-14-13, 08:30 AM
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That's the beauty of the Rotozip (or Dewalt or any tool that uses a pilot-tip bit). NO need to find the precise center of the opening. Hang the uncut sheet of drywall & mark the approximate fixture locations and let the tool guide itself.
With less tha 1/2" of the bit extending into the fixture there's little chance of cutting a wire. You do have to make sure the fixture doesn't have any tabs or projections that could be cut if you set the depth a little generous. The screw tabs on metal receptacle boxes are a challenge. When cutting those you have to be double careful to limit your bit depth so only the pilot emerges from the back of the drywall.
 
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Old 08-17-13, 07:57 AM
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PJmax, don't you want to run the drill bit outside the can, and not inside? Otherwise, how would you get the can to fit in the hole?
 
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Old 08-17-13, 09:52 AM
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You need to follow the inside of the can to keep you from straying from the hole. Once the actual hole is cut you can gently use a fine small bladed saw or sheetrock knife to trim the hole to fit the can.

Usually once you cut the hole... the pressure of the rock will allow the can to fall thru.

You only have a very small bit of margin for error so if you cut around the outside and slipped.....you'd be patching.
 
 

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