Oscillating Multi-Tools - the Ultimate Toolstop Guide

We've been big fans of oscillating multi-cutters (aka multi-tools) here at Toolstop for years.

From their corded origins to their cordless counterparts, they truly are the ultimate "get out of jail free" card for any tradesperson, the tool that'll enable to you perform fiddly and awkward jobs, to being the go-to tool for finishing applications off.

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In our Ultimate Guide, we'll cover off some of the features and spec that are "must haves" on any multi-cutter, the accessories that should be in your kit, and the BEST of the BEST cordless and corded multi-cutters available on the market today.

Keep reading.

Here's an example of a couple of trade professionals testing the Makita BTM50RFX3 LXT cordless multi-cutter (note this has now been updated by the DTM50).

What to Look for When Choosing a Multi-Cutter

DeWALT DWE315
reevoo quote from Elliot:

Fantastic tool, and as the name suggests is suitable for a multitude of uses.
Detail sanding is excellent although the dewalt pads are very expensive, cheaper versions are equally as good at a third of the cost.
Used for chopping architrave and door frames for boarding and tiling under, cutting pipes and any other things and it's never failed to impress me.
Glad I got the kit with all the accessories, there's nearly everything needed for most jobs.


DeWALT blasted onto the scene in 2013 with the much lauded DWE315KT, sporting a powerful 300W motor, front mounted LED, dual position rocker switch for fantastic ergonomics, solid dust extraction capabilities and a unique quick-release blade change system, compatible with all makes of accessories.

Click to see the range of Smart accessories we stock - guaranteed cash-savers.

We put together a review of it, which you can read here.


bosch gop

reevoo quote from Mark:

Great versatile tool for doing all those things more conventional tools struggle with.


Of course, DeWALT was a little later to the multi-cutter game than the likes of Bosch. The German firm has been making oscillating multi-cutters forever, seeming to corner the market in lighter-duty 10.8v cordless versions, known as the GOP108VLi, which was the diminutive cousin of their best-selling corded GOP 250 CE.

fein fmm350q

reevoo quote from Keith:

A vast improvement on the old original model. The blade change or adjustment is as good as it gets. A top quality proffesional tool that most tradesmen ought to have with them. The most versatile power tool in my kit.


However, what could be considered the grand-daddy of multi-tools are those from Fein. This German company is probably best known for the quality, dependability and versatility of their orange and black tools, and also the raft of accessories they manufacture for oscillating multi-cutters. More of which below.

The last couple of years saw a fantastic reboot of the hugely popular and highly regarded Fein Multimaster in the shape of the FMM350Q. We got an exclusive demo of it before it was launched, which you can watch here. Plus we wrote up our thoughts on the tool in this Toolstop Report.


See our pick of Fein multi-cutters below.

What Multi-Cutter Accessories Should I Use?


We've said before that oscillating multi-cutters are like the Apple iPad; they're fantastic tools, but it's the applications that matter. And in order to perform the types of applications you'll want to do, such as sanding, grinding, polishing, cutting etc, you're going to need to use the correct accessory.

There's no shortage of quality accessories for your multi-tool, including rasps, sanding pads, scrapers and cutters. Use the links below to get some idea of what's available to you:


We've got tons of info on getting the most from your oscillating multi-tool on our blog, here's some examples:
Multi-Cutter Saw Blades from Fein - Which Should I Use
guide to makita multi-tool accessories

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How to Get the Most from Your Oscillating Multi-Tool

The key to these tools is versatility. Paired with the correct accessory you're going to be able to perform loads of tasks, but that doesn't mean that we don't all need a bit of expert guidance now and again.

We're here to help once more. For example, what's the best way to use your multi-cutter to sand (not cut!). Fein helped us out with a comprehensive guide to choosing the correct accessory for sanding and then using it to get amazing results. Watch it here.

And what about that go-to job for any corded or cordless multi-tool; trimming skirting boards? We've got an in-depth guide to doing it properly, which you can read here.

What's the Best Oscillating Multi-Tool?

Think DeWALT.

Dewalt DCS355D1 Oscillating Multi-Tool 18V li-ion Cordless Brushless (1 x 2Ah Battery) with 35 Accessories

Dewalt DCS355D1 Oscillating Multi-Tool 18V li-ion Cordless Brushless (1 x 2Ah Battery) with 35 Accessories - SHOP HERE

Key Specification:

  • 300 watts
  • 22,000 oscillations per minute
  • 1.5kg
  • Supplied with 35 piece accessory kit, 2Ah XR battery, chargers and TStak box

Key Benefits:

  • Part of DeWALT's extensive 18v XR battery platform
  • Supplied with 2Ah batteries
  • Quick-fit dust extraction kit compatible with Airlock system
  • Bright LED light
  • Quick-release change accessory system: tool-free

Dewalt DWE315KT Oscillating Multi-Tool with Quick Change Tool Release in TStak Case with 37 Accessories

Dewalt DWE315KT Oscillating Multi-Tool with Quick Change Tool Release in TStak Case with 37 Accessories - SHOP HERE

Key Specification:

  • 300 watts
  • 22,000 oscillations per minute
  • Supplied with 37 piece accessory kit, depth stop/straight cut guide, universal accessory adaptor, TStak box

Key Benefits:

  • Quick-fit dust extraction kit compatible with Airlock system
  • Bright LED light
  • Quick-release change accessory system: tool-free
  • Dual position rocker switch with lock-on
  • Excellent ergonomics



Think Makita.


Makita DTM50Z LXT 18V Li-Ion Cordless Oscillating Multicutter (Body Only)Makita DTM50Z LXT 18V Li-Ion Cordless Oscillating Multicutter (Body Only) SHOP HERE

Key Specification:

  • 6,000-20,000 oscillations per minute
  • 3.2 oscillation angle
  • 2.0kg

Key Benefits:

  • Body-only: just add an 18v LXT battery
  • Variable speed control dial
  • OIS accessory interface (compatible with Smart accessories)
  • Accessories can be installed at 30 increments, across 360
  • Anti-restart function prevents accidental start-ups

Makita TM3000CX4 Multi-Cutter 320W Oscillating with 56 Accessories

Makita TM3000CX4 Multi-Cutter 320W Oscillating with 56 Accessories - SHOP HERE

Key Specification:

  • 320 watts
  • 6,000-20,000 oscillations per minute
  • 3.2 oscillation angle
  • 1.5kg
  • Supplied with 56 accessories in a tough carry case

Key Benefits:

  • Variable speed control dial
  • OIS accessory interface (compatible with Smart accessories)
  • Accessories can be installed at 30 increments, across 360


Think Hitachi.

Hitachi CV18DBL Multi-Tool 18V Cordless Brushless with Accessories (Body Only)

Hitachi CV18DBL Multi-Tool 18V Cordless Brushless with Accessories (Body Only)  SHOP HERE

Key Specification:

  • 6,000-22,000 oscillations per minute across 2 speed settings
  • 3.2 oscillation angle
  • Supplied with 8 accessories

Key Benefits:

  • Body-only: fit any Hitachi 18v battery
  • Brushless motor provides 50% longer runtime per charge
  • Superior dust and water resistance
  • Multi-angle blade setting adjustable in 30 steps
  • Tool-less accessory change


Think Bosch.

Bosch GOP 55-36 Multicutter in L-Boxx with 25 Accessories

Bosch GOP 55-36 Multicutter in L-Boxx with 25 Accessories - SHOP HERE

Key Specification:

  • 550 watts
  • 8,000 - 22,000 oscillations per minute
  • 1.8 oscillation angle
  • Supplied with 25 accessories and L-boxx case

Key Benefits:

  • Top of the range corded multi-tool
  • Ideal for high draw and heavy duty applications such as window restoration
  • Starlock MAX compatibility for maximum power transmission
  • Snap in tool-less blade changes
  • Metal cap for especially robust use
  • Constant electronics keeps the power consistent under load

Bosch GOP10.8V-LI 10.8V Li-ion Cordless Multicutter + 8 Accessories and L-Boxx (2 x 2.5Ah Batteries)

Bosch GOP10.8V-LI 10.8V Li-ion Cordless Multicutter + 8 Accessories and L-Boxx (2 x 2.5Ah Batteries) SHOP HERE

Key Specification:

  • 5,000 - 20,000 oscillations per minute
  • Supplied with 8 accessories, two 2.5Ah batteries in an L-Boxx

Key Benefits:

  • Precise working due to oscillating mechanism - Fine, delicate cuts, no tear out. Precise sanding
  • Only 1.0 Kg weight / well balanced. Small grip perimeter of only 175 mm
  • Soft grip on front gear system for comfort grip even if tool gets warm


Think Fein.

Fein FMT250 MultiTalent Start Universal Tool System

Fein FMT250 MultiTalent Start Universal Tool System - SHOP HERE

Key Specification:

  • 250W
  • 11,000 - 20,000 oscillations per minute
  • 1.6 oscillation angle
  • 1.3kg
  • Supplied with 10 accessories in a tough carry case

Key Benefits:

  • Fatigue-free working - thanks to ideal distribution of weight and ergonomic shape featuring soft grip zone
  • Resistant to dirt and vibrations thanks to completely sealed electronics
  • Metal gearbox
  • 8-star tool mounting guarantees optimum torque transfer


Think Triton.

Triton T12OT Oscillating Multi-Tool 12V (103691) (2 x 1.5Ah Batteries)

Triton T12OT Oscillating Multi-Tool 12V (103691) (2 x 1.5Ah Batteries) SHOP HERE

Key Specification:

  • 6,000-16,000 oscillations per minute
  • 6-speed settings
  • 0.8kg
  • Supplied with 26 accessories, two 1.5Ah batteries, charger and carry case

Key Benefits:

  • Precision metal gearing for long life even when used at high speed and torque
  • Universal accessory mounting
  • Rubber over-moulded grips for secure handling and reduced vibration
  • Fast 30-minute 80% charge


And Finally...

Hopefully this ultimate guide to oscillating multi-tools has whetted your appetite to do more with yours. We love hearing what you get up to with your power tools, so tell us in the comments section below the type of applications that you depend on your multi-cutter for.

And here's a few links for the sort of accessory pack that can help you go further.


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Comments

FEIN Power Tools UK on Mon, 08 Jun 2015 17:31:04 +0100 (Likes: 0 / Dislikes: 0

Feel free to ask us any FEIN related questions and we'll try our best to answer them


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