Dremel MM45 vs MM40 Oscillating Tool Kit

Oscillating tools are an important part of a serious carpenter’s tool kit. But they’re not commonly seen on most job sites. Unlike circular saws, impact drivers, and sawzalls, oscillating tools aren’t a very versatile power tool.

Also shortened to oscillators (or sometimes called multi-tools), oscillating tools have much more specialized applications. If you’re looking to add this power tool to your tool kit, then you can’t go wrong with a model from Dremel, one of the most reputable names in the business. Today, we’re going to compare the Dremel MM45 and Dremel MM40 oscillating tool kits.

Quick Look: Oscillating Tool

Although oscillating tools are more specialized than many power tools, they’re quickly becoming a tool box staple.

Of course, professionals have used them on job sites for decades on end. But an ever-growing number of hobbyists and casual DIYers are adding them to their tool collections. Here’s what you need to know to buy the best oscillating tool.

What Is an Oscillating Tool?

According to Life Hacker, an oscillating tool is basically a “do-it-all power tool.” The versatile, hand-held tool is compatible with multiple attachments to match the exact application in question.

For example, an oscillating tool can be used with saw, grinding, and sanding attachments to cut, grind, sand, and more. Some of the top uses of an oscillating tool include removing grout and undercutting baseboards – but the options are almost limitless with a little creativity.

Best of all, oscillating tools are quite small and lightweight. They’re relatively easy to use in tight spaces and other situations where bulkier power tools just won’t cut it.

Other Dremel Reviews:

How Do You Use an Oscillating Tool?

Oscillating tools work in one of two ways. The end attachment either rotates back and forth at a rapid pace or rotates in a circular at a rapid pace.

This rapid vibrating motion is what gives the tool its cutting/sanding/grinding ability. The fact that the range of motion of the vibration is so small is what makes the tool so easy to use. The exact way to use an oscillating tool depends on the project or task at hand.

The first step is installing the correct attachment. With the Dremel oscillating tool kits reviewed below (the MM45 and MM40), you receive more than a dozen attachments with various uses.

After the proper attachment is installed, using an oscillating tool simply requires a steady hand and a keen eye to cut, sand, or grind the object or material in question. This video from Handyman Magazine shows you the top five uses of oscillating tools at home.

Oscillating Tool Buying Guide

Fein Power Tools was the long-time ruler of the oscillating tool market. According to Fine Homebuilding, their patent on this versatile power tool ended in 2008, several other manufacturers, including Dremel started to produce their own versions.

Although the variety of options available is nice, it also makes narrowing down your final decision that much more difficult. A brief understanding of the features to look for in an oscillating tool will make you more confident in the model you do purchase.

Here are the most important factors to consider:

  • Motor – A more powerful motor will help you work the tool through difficult materials with ease.
  • Ease of Use – The best oscillators make changing accessories a cinch and don’t overly vibrate your hands during use.
  • Attachments – Make sure the combo kit you purchase comes with all the accessories and other attachments that you need.
  • Handle/Grip – A comfortable, ergonomic handle makes using the tool easier.
  • Durability – The best oscillating tools are created with durability in mind so that they’ll last for years on end even with heavy use.

Keep these factors/features in the back of your mind as you review our head-to-head matchup between the Dremel MM45 and Dremel MM40 below.

Dremel Oscillating Tool Kit Showdown

Now that you know what oscillating tools are all about, let’s take a look at how the Dremel MM45 and Dremel MM40 stack up against each other.

Dremel MM45 Oscillating Tool Kit

The Dremel MM45 is the company’s latest and greatest oscillating tool. Part of their Multi-Max lineup (hence the MM abbreviation), the MM45 is a step up from the MM40, although the few have few differences.

Perhaps the most important difference is the more robust motor, capable of working its way through even tougher materials on the job. The MM45 is also notable for its Quick-Lock accessory change system, Quick-Boost technology for maintain a constant speed, powerful 4-amp motor, ergonomic handle, and magnetic accessory interface.

The Dremel MM45 Oscillating Tool Kit comes with a carrying case plus 28 accessories.

What We Like:

  • 28 accessories
  • Quick-Lock accessory change system
  • Powerful 4-amp motor (w/ Quick Boost technology)

What We Don’t Like:

  • Not as easy to use as MM40

Dremel MM40 Oscillating Tool Kit

The Dremel MM40 is perhaps the company’s best value oscillating tool. Although it’s the older sibling to the MM45, it’s a step below it in terms of performance and features.

But this doesn’t mean it doesn’t perform well. Not only is the MM40 extremely easy to use and efficient, but it boasts a powerful 3.8-amp motor that’s more than capable of the majority of tasks at hand.

Like the MM45, it also has the Quick-Lock accessory change system and Quick-Boost speed maintaining technology. Multiple versions of the tool kit are available, although the most popular comes with a carrying case plus 36 accessories.

What We Like:

  • 36 accessories
  • Quick-Lock accessory change system
  • Easy-to-use design

What We Don’t Like:

  • Not as powerful as MM45

Wrap Up

The Dremel MM45 Oscillating Tool is the obvious winner.

As the latest version of the tool, it’s simply more versatile, durable, and higher-performing than the MM40. Most notable are the high-performance motor, comfortable hand grip, Quick-Lock accessory change system, and Quick-Boost technology to help you push through the toughest materials.

Buy the MM45 as part of a Dremel tool kit and you’ll also receive a convenient carrying case and 28 accessories. But despite the MM45’s superiority, the Dremel MM40 is nothing to laugh at. It’s a simple, straightforward version of the oscillating tool that still gets the job done every time.

While the MM45 is the best oscillating tool for professionals, the MM40 is likely the better bet for most DIYers thanks to its lower price and overall ease of use.

Which tool is your top pick? Let us know in the comments.

About Brandon Potters

Hi, I’m Brandon and I can’t express how excited I am that you chose The Saw Guy as your resource for project ideas, tool reviews, and all-around guide to the world of DIY. I spent years in the construction industry refining my knowledge of various trades and even spent a few years working at a major hardware store. ​If there is anyone who can help you make a well-informed, unbiased, budget-conscious decision, it’s me and my team.

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