Dremel MM45-05 Multi-Max Review – Dremel Ramps Up The Amps

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What's This?This post is sponsored by The Home Depot. Four years ago, we took a look at Dremel’s version of one of the most useful tools in the power tool universe: the oscillating multi-tool, or OMT. The 3.5-Amp Dremel Multi-Max MM45-03 had good power and an assortment of features that made it appealing to both pros and serious DIYers. So how to make a good thing better? (Cue demonic laugh) – MORE POWER, of course! Join us as we take a look at the new amped-up Multi-Max, the Dremel MM45-05.

Dremel MM45-05
The latest incarnation of the Multi-Max: The Dremel MM45-05

OMTs are like the Swiss Army knife of power tools. With the right attachment you can cut hardwood trim, make plunge cuts in wood or drywall, remove grout from tiles, remove those tiles from the floor or wall, even cut copper pipe or embedded nails. Not enough? Slap on the triangular head and stick on a piece of sandpaper, and make everything nice and smooth – even into the corners.

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The Dremel MM45-05 kit comes prepared to tear it up – or smooth it over.

The Dremel MM45-05 Multi-Max comes with lots of those attachments to get you started. There are wood-cutting blades, wood and metal-cutting blades, a grout removal blade, a drywall jab saw blade, a hook and loop pad, and 21 sanding sheets. The whole shebang comes with a storage bag big enough to hold the tool and a bunch of accessories.

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The kit has a bag to make it easy to keep it all together and schlep it around…

Cut To The Quick With The Dremel MM45-05

Swapping all those attachments in and out on the Dremel MM45-05 is very fast and easy, with no born-to-lose tool to mess with. Just swing the Quick Lock clamping lever out and pop out the old blade. Slip the new one in to the Quick Fit clamping mechanism, making sure the pins engage the holes on the accessory. Fumble-fingered folk such as myself will appreciate the Quick Hold magnet that holds the accessory in place once it’s inserted.

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Accessory changes are simple. Swing the lever open…
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And fit the blade or accessory over the pins. A magnet holds it in place.

Now just rotate the locking lever back into place atop the tool, and your new accessory is locked and loaded.

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Swing the lever back in, and get to work!

If you’re quick on the uptake, you may have noticed the Dremel MM45-05 seems to have a penchant for “quick.” And they still have one more quick up their sleeve: Quick Boost. Dremel’s Quick Boost technology, combined with the powerful 5-Amp motor, helps the tool maintain a constant tool speed when cutting tough materials. Maintaining the “speed” theme, Dremel claims the 3.2 degree angle of oscillation makes the Dremel MM45-05 the fastest DIY cutting tool available. Hmmmm…maybe Quick & Slick?

Here’s a list of the features and specs for the Dremel MM45-05, quick and otherwise, followed by a “quick” video from Dremel highlighting the Dremel MM45. (Note: The video shows the previous version, with a 4-Amp motor, but it looks and functions the same).

• Quick-Lock feature for tool-less and secure accessory changes
• High Performance 5.0 Amp motor – for the most demanding applications
• Quick Fit accessory interface – for fast and easy accessory change
• Quick-Boost – maintains constant speed throughout toughest applications and materials
• Up-front on/off switch – for one-handed use, and maintains speed setting
• 10,000 – 21,000 OPM speed range – for optimal performance in a variety of materials
• Ergonomically optimized soft grip for comfort and control
• 7 Ft. rubber cord for a wide working range
• Quick Hold – magnetic flange holds the accessory in place for easier accessory tightening
• Great for doing detailed work or accessing tight spaces
• Ideal for sanding, cutting wood and drywall, and grout removal
• Includes 5 blades, hook and loop pad, 21 sanding sheets and more: MM480 wood flush cut blade, MM482 flush cutting blade (2), MM450 wood and drywall blade, MM435 drywall jab saw, MM502 grout blade, MM14 hook and loop Pad, MM70W sanding sheets (11), MM70P sanding sheets (10), and a storage bag

The Dremel MM45-05 Goes To Work

When the Dremel MM45-05 comes out of the box, the first thing you notice is its solid feel. The tool body is made of sturdy plastic, with strips of rubber overmold on the top and bottom of the grip area, along with a band across the nose. These add a bit of comfort, while helping reduce vibration and improve grip.

The layout of the controls on the Dremel MM45-05 is good. The power switch is easy to use with a normal grip on the tool, and the speed dial, at the rear of the Dremel MM45-05, is easy to adjust with your support hand. It’s fairly comfortable to hold, and at just under three pounds, it’s not too heavy. My only quibble with the design is that with a normal grip, your hand will block one of the rear side vents; there are six vents, though, so hopefully that will still allow plenty of ventilation.

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The power switch is big and easy to operate…
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And the speed dial operates smoothly.

For its first mission, I attached a wood-cutting blade to the Dremel MM45-05. I really like the tool-free blade change mechanism: Flip out the lever, fit the blade into position, flip the lever back in. The magnet in the front end that holds the blade where it belongs until you get it locked in is very helpful.

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One of the blades that comes in the kit.

I needed to trim the bottom of an oak door jamb, to allow hardwood flooring to be slipped underneath. I flipped over a scrap piece of flooring to get the right depth, and worked my way across. The Dremel MM45-05 had no trouble powering through the hard wood, maintaining a steady speed even when I really forced it. In about a minute I had a perfect, clean cut.

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We’re jambin’…The Dremel MM45-05 earns its keep trimming jambs to install flooring.
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Perfectly sized for the new flooring.

To try out the sanding attachment, I attached the hook-and-loop sanding pad, stuck on a sheet of 120-grit sandpaper, and headed for the stairs. The risers will be painted white, but the treads will be stained, and need some cleaning and smoothing. The triangular sanding pad on the Dremel MM45-05 is perfect for this kind of work; the nose fits all the way into the corners, and the oscillating motion really did a good, fast job of smoothing the area. It’s not what I’d use for large expanses, but for the corners and inside edges, it’s great.

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Tight corners are no problem for the triangular sanding attachment.

Next stop – the kitchen, and another blade change. I’m installing a mini-subway-tile backsplash, and had two cracked tiles to replace. I didn’t want to pry around the edges, and risk damaging another tile. Even though it was a bit beyond its job description, I used the grout removal blade to score a line up the center of the cracked tiles, giving me enough room to insert a putty knife and pry out the culprits.

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Two cracked tiles had to come out…
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Groovin’ on a sunny afternoon with the grout removal blade…
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Now I can pry without cracking ANOTHER tile.

As part of the same tile job, I needed to add spacers to the electrical device boxes, to account for the thickness of the tile. The spacers fit perfectly around a single-gang box, but I couldn’t find any double-gang spacers, so I did a little right-sizing customization with the Dremel MM45-05 and the circular blade. The blade zipped right through, and soon harmony was restored to the world. Or at least to my backsplash zone.

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A quick right-sizing on some device box spacers…
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And we’re ready for tile.

This is just a small sample of the tasks OMTs are perfect for. Once you have one, you’ll be amazed at how often you’ll grab for it. The small size lets it squeeze in where no recip saw can (or should) go, and the ability to cut wood, metal, plastic and drywall makes it a pretty versatile little bugger. The Dremel web site has a nice list of how-to videos, to help you plunge right in to some common tasks with your new Dremel MM45-05 OMT. Here’s a sample video, showing how to use your sporty new Dremel MM45-05 to install a floor vent:


Variety Is The Spice Of…Oscillation?

Although the Dremel MM45-05 kit comes with a good assortment of blades and sanding pads to get you started, there’s no such thing as “too many blades.” Blades get lost, or trashed by hitting something they shouldn’t, and eventually they just wear out. I always keep a good stash of multi-tool blades handy.

Along with the Dremel MM45-05 OMT, the Home Depot sent along a couple of variety packs of blades to check out. The first is a five-pack of commonly-used blades. Included are two straight wood & metal blades (MM482U)and three circular wood and drywall blades (MM450U). The five-pack is just under $30; buying in quantity saves a good bit of coin, since the circular blades sell for $14 apiece, and the straight for $10.

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The five-blade set saves about 50% over individual prices…

As you would expect, the five-blade set is a perfect fit for the Dremel MM45-05. In a nod to the existence of other brands, Dremel made the blades with a universal dual interface. This allows the blades to get along perfectly with OMTs from Ridgid, Bosch, Rockwell, Milwaukee, Makita, Fein, DeWalt and Porter-Cable. I wonder if Dremel would consider working on some sort of similar interface for Congress…

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The double-barreled interface is compatible with most OMTs.

The second variety pack has an even bigger variety of accessories. The ten-piece MM495U set has two of the circular wood and drywall blades, and two of the straight blades, like the five-piece set. The larger set increases your options with two precision flush-cut blades (MM480U). For your scraping enjoyment, a flexible scraper blade (MM610U) is ready to demolish paint, caulk, and other soft adhesives.

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The larger set gives you even more cutting, scraping and sanding choices.

The ten-piece set is also ready when it’s time to get abrasive. There is a set of three sanding pads (MM70W), including 60, 120 and 240-grit pads to go from rough to super-smooth. Rounding out the set is a piece of 60-grit diamond sandpaper (MM910), good for removing paint or oil stains from driveways, excess mortar from bricks, rust from patio furniture, and roughing up surfaces for tile prep.

Although listed as a 10-piece set, the set we received actually had 13 pieces, including two of the MM435 drywall jab blades and an MM430 multi knife. The blades in this set also use the universal dual interface. At the current price of just under $30, this set is a lot of slicing and dicing for the money.

Quit Vacillating, Get Oscillating!

Despite their relatively small size, oscillating multi-tools are among the most versatile tools out there. Since I got my first one several years ago, it’s one of the tools I bring along to every job, and it’s saved me a lot of time and unnecessary foul language over the years. If you’re thinking of adding one to your collection, the Dremel MM45-05 oscillating multi tool is definitely worth taking a look at. It’s solidly made, and has plenty of power. It’s also easy to use, with some great features like tool-free blade changes.

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The Dremel MM45-05 and a passel of its cronies all fit easily in the bag.

The Dremel MM45-05 kit comes with a good assortment of blades and sanding pads to get you started, and the tote bag is a handy way to keep everything organized. I easily fit the tool and blades that came in the kit, along with all the other blades and pads we reviewed, and there’s still room for more. The Dremel MM45-05 Oscillating Multi-tool is covered by a two-year limited warranty, and the Home Depot’s 90-day return policy gives you a risk-free opportunity to make Quick work of your to-do list.

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Buy the Dremel MM45-05 Oscillating Multi-tool from the Home Depot:

Buy Now - via Home Depot

Buy the Dremel five piece accessory set from the Home Depot:

Buy Now - via Home Depot

Buy the Dremel ten piece accessory set from the Home Depot:

Buy Now - via Home Depot

I acknowledge that The Home Depot is partnering with Home Fixated in sponsored content. As a part of the sponsorship, Home Fixated is receiving compensation for the purpose of promoting The Home Depot. All expressed opinions and experiences are our own words. This post complies with the Word Of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA) Ethics Code and applicable Federal Trade Commission guidelines.

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About Phil

Phil’s path to the pinnacle of success as HomeFixated’s Senior Writer was long and twisted. At various stages of his life, he worked as a framing carpenter, attended motorcycle mechanics school, served as an Army MP, did a hot and itchy stint installing insulation in Phoenix, owned and operated a small contracting firm doing residential renovations, and worked as an employee of a major airline (Motto: We’re not happy ‘til YOU’RE not happy). He is currently semi-retired, but continues to take on little projects, such as the total renovation of an old farmhouse. Yes, he is a slow learner. Future projects include a teardown restoration of his 1965 BMW motorcycle, and designing and building a kick-ass playhouse for his grandsons. Phil loves spending time outdoors, hanging out with family and friends, cool tools, and a cold IPA when beer o'clock rolls around.

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