Can You Use Dremel Bits in a Drill? (Things to Consider)

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If you’re a do-it-yourselfer, you’ve probably used Dremels and drills at some point.  Physically both of these tools look similar. That’s why a few lads become confused in the early stages. So, there is nothing wrong with you searching on the web “Can you use Dremel bits in a drill?”

Here is our answer to your question.

We won’t recommend using a dremel bit in a drill especially when the job at hand demands high speed. The drill is a power based tool, whereas dremel works with speed. Drills can’t deliver the necessary speed for dremel bits to perform well on tougher materials. They may be shattered due to a high motor power aka the higher torque of a drill.

That being said, there are instances when you can use a dremel bit in a drill without issues. Below we have elaborated the topic in detail. If you’re interested, first we will look at the differences between a dremel and a drill, and then we will learn the things you should consider when using a dremel bit in a drill. Stay tuned!

Can You Use Dremel Bits in A Drill

Dremels and Drills: How Do These Tools Differ?

Before we go into the actual debate, it’s better to get a complete insight into the situation first. So, what is a Dremel? Dremel is just a company name for the rotary tool.

That’s right. It is a compact rotary machine that resembles the drill very much in its way of work. But there are some basic differences between the two power tools. Check it out.

Points of ComparisonDremelDrill
Battery Power100 to 130-watt.Cordless ones come with a 25 to 100-watt battery power. However, the corded drills need 800 to 1200-watt to operate smoothly.
Highest RPM &Torque5000 to 32,000 RPM2000 to 5000 RPM. Electric models can operate from 300 to 2500 rpm.
UsageMostly to curve stones, polishing coins, sanding woods, engraving glasses, grinding, etc.To bore a hole into wood, metal, and plastics.
Bit StructureThe bits are smaller in size and designed to cut at multiple angles.The bits are bulkier and not designed to cut through peripheral loads.
SizeDremel tools are very easy to handle, lightweight and compact in size.Drills are heavier and comes with an extra handle.

Can You Use Dremel Bits in a Regular Drill?

If you have gone through the comparison table above, the differences are clear to you. Dremel bits are designed to accomplish multiple purposes. You can use it to sand wood or polish an old rusty coin. The range is huge when it comes to what the Dremel bits can do.

Let’s assume, you have Dremel bits and the purpose is to carve a wooden block. Is it possible to use the Drill machine with a Dremel bit in it?

Unfortunately, the answer is not as straightforward as you want it to be. The machine would work just fine. But, that doesn’t mean you can accomplish the task at hand. Both the drill and Dremel tool have a totally different specialty in terms of power and speed.

While the Dremel lacks a powerful battery, it makes up for this with higher RPM. The RPM is almost 15 to 20 times higher than a regular drill. With higher rpm comes higher torque. That’s why you can carry out work on confined spaces and small pieces without breaking or damaging them because of excess power.

On the other hand, a drill allows you to dig a hole into any material. Such a task requires higher power. The drill bits are heavy enough to tolerate the powerful motor. But, the speed is quite low. All the work is done based on power instead.

So, what will happen if you use Dremel bits in a drill?

Well, the fragile bits won’t be able to handle the 1200-watt of power from the motor. Chances are the bit will break down before doing the job. Dremel bits are meant to work with speed. But, it is lacking in a drill. So, slower rpm along with extreme power, won’t give you the precision in a work.

However, you might be in an emergency. If all you have is a drill and a dremel bit to get the job done, we have a few suggestions for you.

Things to Consider Before Using Dremel Bits in a Drill


First of all, check the material carefully. Is it wood or plastic? If the block is made of steel or iron, you have no chance of cutting it with a drill. Even if you have the special Dremel bits made for metal curving, it will fail due to lower rpm.

However, if the material is something softer, you can get away with the Dremel bits in a drill. You have to be a little careful while flexing the machine throughout the surface. Because drills can be bulky and hard to handle.


This is another very important aspect to consider. If you want precision in your work, the drill will fail to provide that for sure. However, if the purpose is to only bore a hole and you have no other bit but a Dremel one, there won’t be a serious issue.

The higher power from the drill will be sufficient to bore any hole you want. Plus, you can change the Dremel bits depending on the material.

That being said, carving a design into a softer material, would also be possible. Softer materials don’t require much speed or rpm from the machine to get cut or shaped. However, if you continue the process for a long time, the bits will start overheating. Make sure to keep the process short.

Can You Use Dremel Bits in A Cordless Drill?

Cordless electric drills are the tools many hobbyists use around the house. They use a chargeable battery instead of cord. The rpm is much lower than a traditional drill. While the average drill starts from 2000 rpm, the cordless models can be as low as 300 rpm. Some models offer 2500 rpm maximum. But this is nowhere near what a dremel tool is designed for, 15,000 to 30,000 rpm.

So, the job would be even tougher with an electric drill. The speed would be too low for the Dremel bits to start cutting. Because the bits are so fragile, it can’t cut any load unless the rpm is really high. Yes, you can chuck up a 1/8″ dia dremel tool bit shank in an electric drill. But to expect precision from this setting is merely a dream.

Final Words

Dremels are a great tool for jewelers to shape and polish stones and make them appealing. It can also be used to drill holes just like a drill would do. But that shouldn’t make you believe this rotary tool and a drill are interchangeable. Although they appear to be the same externally, both have different tasks to fulfill.

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