***This Reader Reward is now closed. Congratulations to Shelley, who will be using this awesome tool to restore her double hung windows and expose some shiplap. What a perfect few projects for this tool.***
As many of you may know, I'm a bit of a tool junkie. Whether I'm researching, using, or wishing I had a particular tool, I've become tool obsessed over the last few years.
I'm not exactly sure when it happened, but at some point my Christmas list experienced a metamorphosis of magnificent proportions.
While I once wished and hoped Santa would bring the latest and greatest in GI Joe play sets, the coolest new video game tech gadget (Nintendo power glove), or the Star Wars action figure set I was certain would likely complete my life...
...at some point, roughly coinciding with the purchase of our home, my holiday wish list quickly began looking like the inventory list of a tool store in search of that item that might just let me complete a project.
Tape measures and hammers turned into saws and routers, and a hungry tool monster was born, always looking for that perfect tool to make life just a little easier, and project results just a little bit (or a lot in many circumstances) better. Besides, there's just something about a new tool bag or crate straight from the box that get's me all giddy. Unlike toys, a brand new, clean, and unblemished tool holds so much potential!
So when we were recently asked by Rockwell Tools to review an item in their arsenal of "Tools for People that Rock" campaign, we were naturally intrigued. We don't do a lot of sponsored posts on our blog, and that's primarily because I really only want to share things we really and truly believe in. However, I was very impressed with the tools Rockwell has in their product line, and when I looked over the list Rockwell offers, one in particular caught my eye. Their Sonicrafter 20V MaxLithium cordless oscillating multi-tool looked to be a portable cordless wonder.
I've been a tremendous fan of oscillating tools since I picked up my first one about eight years ago. Its tremendous versatility can be seen in the hundreds of different cutting, sanding, grinding, and polishing attachments. Whether I'm working on detailed cutouts or need to cut a quick hole, an oscillating tool is sure to do the trick.
However, the fact it's a corded tool means I always need an outlet nearby, the blade change process requires an Alan wrench and several minutes of trying to secure the screw while holding the blade still, and I have to make sure the attachment I'm buying works for the brand of tool I have. These are all inconveniences that I'd rather not be bothered by.
As a result, I've actually been looking for a good cordless oscillating tool for some time, and with the purchase of our second home, my need for duplicates of essential tools like this really jumped up on the priority list.
So in steps the Rockwell Sonicrafter 20v Litium-ion oscillating multi-tool and 27 piece attachment kit Rockwell sent us to review. This great handheld tool set includes five cutting attachments.
The 20v MaxLithium battery offers a substantial charge that will keep the tool operating at the desired adjustable speed until the batter is drained, rather than slowing as the charge is lost. It also obviously means I can work freely and untethered, no longer bound by the reach of the tool's cord.
Overall the tool feels solid and well made. It's just over three pounds with the battery installed, and the battery weight really offers an excellent balance while using the tool. When switched on, two LEDs on the sides of the tool's body light your work area rather well.
But the absolute best part of this tool is its quick change and locking clamp "Hyperlock" that allows you to change from a blade to a sander to a paint scraper to any number of other attachments with only a flip of a lever and a twist of your wrist.
I was initially skeptical the lever system would be able to hold the blades securely in place. I've often had issues with the blade moving on my other oscillating tool, no matter how much I tighten the lock nut. But it seems Rockwell has the formula for keeping the blade in place with only minimal effort. Their materials state it has a holding force of one ton.
If you're not sure whether or not you need an oscillating cutting tool in your tool box, trust me when I say that you absolutely do. It's so versatile that there's a use for it in almost any project. And if you've already got another tool and a whole truckload of attachments, the Sonicrafter has a "universal fit system" that allows you to use the blades of other manufacturers with this tool. The only caveat, you must use a set screw to fix it in place. No twist and lock action when you're not using Rockwell attachments.
Being a true tool nerd, I couldn't wait to break it out of its packaging and give it a spin, but I needed a quick place to give it a try. Then I had an idea.
We're doing a little exploration behind drywall at the new house and I suspect that the original plaster is lurking just behind the layer of sheetrock that a previous owner hung. Being a naturally curious chap, I wanted to see what kind of shape the walls were in, but there was no good place to start the drywall demo on the ceiling. Before we had the tool, we made a small hole and then just started ripping away at it. Granted, I could have done a much cleaner job, cut with a utility knife, then sawed away, but I was impatient.
Now I'm not one to typically tear away, but that's just what we did on that poor ceiling. The end result of ripping down drywall, as can see above, is often a torn paper covering that is both unsightly and difficult to repair.
But using the oscillating tool to cut a more even and straight line in the drywall was just what the tool doctor ordered. In under a minute I had adequately cut back the drywall covering enough to see that the ceiling plaster is actually in pretty great shape. Perhaps this is something we can bring back out and repair throughout the room? At the very least, I have a decently square opening that will allow me to either open up more of the ceiling, or prepare a patch piece to repair eventually. But between you and me, I plan on using my new tool to cut out a lot more of this drywall and expose the rest of the plaster. And since the tool is precise and small, I'll be able to do all of the work without further damaging any of the fragile plaster.
This was just one of many projects this tool has been mentally slated for. And while this goes nowhere near showing the ridiculous number of uses this tool has in projects, I was able to get a good feel for the tools power, comfort, and ability to work its way though material. Overall it felt really good, and I'm looking forward to using it more. However, It did require me to pull it out of the packaging and use it, but as much as it looks great clean, every tool tends to look just a little bit better once it's covered in a little demo dust and project progress. Don't you think?
We liked the cordless Sonicrafter so much that we asked Rockwell if they wouldn't mind offering one as a giveaway to one of our readers. Being fans of all DIYers that rock, they were more than happy to do a giveaway. So whether you're looking to round out your own tool collection, or to score a pretty spectacular gift for the tool lover in your family, this great tool will surely do the trick.
Beyond this giveaway, if you're interested in possibly winning other tools from Rockwell's line, Rockwell has a promotion going on right now that's a "Give one, Get one Sweepstakes." You can win the whole suite of Rockwell's tool lineup for yourself, as well as a whole set for someone else. You can enter on their sweepstakes page.
Also, as part of our review, Rockwell is offering readers of Old Town Home 15% off any purchase you make on their website through December 31, 2014 using coupon code HOMESWEETHOME15. The code is valid on any purchase from RockwellTools.com
- PRIZE: One Rockwell 20V MaxLithium Sonicrafter Oscillating Multi-Tool w/ Hyperlock - (a $159 value)
- GIVEAWAY CLOSES: Sunday, December 14th at 11:59pm EST.
- AND THE WINNER IS: One lucky winner will be chosen by random.org and announced on Monday, December 15th, so be sure to come back then to see if you're the winner.
- PRIZE REDEEMABLE: The winner will be asked to provide their home address and the tool will be shipped directly to them.
- TO ENTER: Comment on this post with the words “TOOLS THAT ROCK”, and tell us a little bit about projects you'd like to use this tool on, or who you'd like to give it to as a gift. (One comment entry per person please.)
- WHO'S ELIGIBLE: This Reader Reward is open to participants in the United States only.
Please see our complete terms & conditions page for more details. This post was made in partnership with Rockwell Tools. While they donated a tool for our review, our projects, thoughts, and opinions are solely our own.