Reviews of specific carving products by those who've used them.
User avatar
By hkzombie
One of my goals for this year is to work on more intricate patterns (Dias de los Muertos, and If i'm that brave enough some of Sylvia Ji's paintings) since it's a big tradition for San Diego, and it's an excuse for me to celebrate two days of Halloween. :) I read different reviews on this product. Maybe it's because some people don't realize it's not for carving, it's purpose is to shade and skim the surface so it gives you that soft, luminescent glow. I want to know if anyone out there has had experience working with the Dremel and any advice? I know it can drain batteries (but have rechargeables), and it can be a bit messy (do this outside?)...
HK, i think the majority of dremel users opt for the corded version & flexi shaft plus foot pedal, mains voltage gives considerably moregunt to your revs & thus performance,
go fora 300 / 400 dremel as they are so handy around the home!
User avatar
By monstermash
I use a Dremel 300 with a flexi shaft. Ive not used it on pumpkins, only for gravestones etc. They are dead handy. I wouldn't bother with one that needs batteries, mains is the way to go. I'm sure somebody on the site has dremeled a kin or two and will be of more help. :)
User avatar
By sloaner
Crap I just got one the other day that is cordless(Dremel 8200 cordless 12V). Oh well live and learn. Anyone know if that will still be ok for shading?
User avatar
By monstermash
You should be fine with the cordless but I just think, if I can manage to work in the vicinity of a mains power supply then it will save charging time and give more power.
Let us know how the cordless one goes though out of interest. How much time you get before it goes flat, that sort of thing.
User avatar
By Zombie Pumpkins!
HK, you're talking about something like this one?

Dremel 7000-PK 6-Volt Pumpkin Carving Kit

I haven't used it, but I've always assumed it was sort of an introductory level Dremel tool. Not a large, fancy tool kit. A simple battery operated model, marketed with pumpkin carving in mind.

If you give it a go, let us know what you're able to accomplish with it.
I was typing in bed one handed on the netbook with it propped up on my knees...
ok, so 2 hands at a pc keyboard...

The dremel, once you've got a mains powered dremel you really do use them a lot, for instance i've been taking the rust off a couple of long lost tools & reconditioning them after a soak in vinegar, an oil coat (wd40) & a polish ip to get them functional (snips & a favourite hatchet).

The other week I used a plasterboard drill bit to cut tidily a hole in some plasterboard, then cut a larger piece of cement board to fill the hole from behind, & seal it, after using the dremel to cut through copper pipes no longer required, that a larger tool simply couldn't gain entry to the area..

Made precise pilot holes through tiles to mount a shelf the other day.. something that if you've ever ttried to do with a decent battery drill you know is impossible without breaking out a full size corded either!

Superb for sharpening axes, lawnmower blades, chainsaws...

Really the list is endless.
I'd have a really hard time doing all that with a battery version.

..Oh & it also shades pumpkins.
To me it's no good having a tool that only comes out once per year it's got to be useful & believe me the dremel makes you approach all sorts of jobs with renewed vigour.

(i've even sorted out via precision grinding cement in the chimney whilst renovating a terracotta chimney flue, utterly perfect).

It's all about the torque & the ability to vary your revs!

the cord really doesn't get in the way, a hanging hook is available for over the table work...

take it back & go up a level!

Stoney, Doh & others will then be able to really extoll the virtues of this kit!
Since owning one It's the sort of tool that if I were a dictator I'd make mandatory in every household, they're ideal & above any corny infomercial gizmo's dremels are a tiny work-horse, just remember to run in your carbon brushes (high revs for 5 mins) & let them cool after use.

If you drop & damage a dremel you can take it apart & re-seat it easily (or with stoney's help) ..I popped a thread up about re-seating a while ago.
I'll be practising shading this season for sure as I think i've got most of the bits in accessory boxes, the tools are so tiny they are easy to store.

you guy's are lucky as you have access to cheap foot pedal control too!

Spend on a proper dremel! ..judging by the reviews this will chew through batteries, & to be honest you need consistent revs & incremental adjustment on any job, not something that fades away powerwise if & when you apply a touch of pressure.

I've linked my "how to fix" thread in which there is a useful dremel forum, you'll get the idea if you check it over. ... ght=dremel
User avatar
By staticfurball
I have a dremel in the basement collecting dust......never evn thought to use it for carving! does it work on reasl pumpkins or just the foamies????
(is that a dumb question ??? :oops: lol)
User avatar
By Doh
As Gus has said...I would steer clear of a battery operated rotary tool.

Static, you can use a dremel on real kins but most do not. I only use it for shading real kins as I can use it to set the depth of my shading and define the perimeter of the shaded area.

For cut outs....nothing beats a good old saw.

Now for foam I'm a dremel exclusive guy.
User avatar
By hkzombie
sloaner wrote:Crap I just got one the other day that is cordless(Dremel 8200 cordless 12V). Oh well live and learn. Anyone know if that will still be ok for shading?
That's what I wanted to know as well! Unfortunately there aren't many great videos on youtube or on the Dremel website (its more tutorial based) so its hard to figure out if it will be an excellent tool for shading. Like you said, "Live and Learn". I recommend getting rechargeable batteries and a charger so you can switch out when your Drill is slowing down.
User avatar
By hkzombie
Doh wrote: I only use it for shading real kins as I can use it to set the depth of my shading and define the perimeter of the shaded area.
Doh: Steer me in the right direction with selecting a dremel kit that I can use for 1) Around the house like most of you have suggested 2) My primary reason- PUMPKINS

Also, which bit do you use for shading and would I have to buy that piece seperately?
User avatar
By Doh
I like the Dremel 300 or 400 series...I hear the 4000 series has issues. ... 696&sr=8-2

I love the flex shaft. ... 890&sr=8-5

Keyless chuck is real handy as well. ... 890&sr=8-4

This kit from harbor freight has everything you need. ... 93243.html

I use 1/32" drill bits to do cut through work, high speed cutter bits to do the initial shading, and stone grinders to smooth the shading. That kit should have all of those items.
By Joey
I've been using the battery dremel, like the one Ryan linked, for shading pumpkins for years now. It does the job and it does it well, even if it does drain batteries pretty fast. I don't need it for anything else, so the low wattage isn't a problem. Definitely recommended for pumpkin shading.
User avatar
By hkzombie
I did get my Dremel in last week and tried it out. I dont know why some other stores like Home Depot will charge a whopping $40 when I got in on Amazon for $17! That I must say is a mighty deal! It's very small but has a good grip as if your holding a pen to write. I have what you call 'kindergarden hands' so the size and weight (which also had the 4 AA batteries in) won't overbear my hands. Switching it to the low speed setting seems to go fast for me so it won't be a problem. The booklet that came with the Dremel lists the other tools that can be used aside from the included 1/16 Highspeed bit. That was a plus for me! Like mentioned before, I am planning on doing a couple of sugar skulls and Dia De los Muertos themed pumpkins this year. Because they are extremely intricate in detail, I think the Dremel drill will make it a cake walk! But maybe that's just my confidence boasting about :D

p.s. I wanted to also remind people if you are considering of adding this to your addition of tools to your pumpkin works this year, it is for shading NOT carving! People gave it such a bad rep. with their reviews on Amazon stating that it doesn't do its job. Remember people, do your research first before you actually buy the product! What fits your needs for your pumpkins and your budget should also be taken into consideration.