Cordless Rotary Tool Review- Ryobi 18v Rotary Tool

 In Tool Reviews

Dremel has been doing cordless rotary tools every way from Sunday for a long time now. You can look back through my reviews and see many of them, but they are not the only company in the cordless rotary tool game.  Ryobi came into the fray this year with a VERY interesting offering in the space. I had to admit that at the THD Prospective in Atlanta this year I was a little perplexed by it but I think I was wrong.  

Ryobi cordless rotary tool kit.
Sharpening my Pappy’s old knife with the Ryobi 18 volt cordless rotary tool.
This post is part of a paid partnership with The Home Depot

After seeing the fully cordless 12-volt Max from Dremel, I thought the cordless multi-tool thing was figured out, but I didn’t really think about crafters and carvers. 


The #craftarmy (somebody needs to make this a thing?) toiling at their crafting tables and workbenches all over the world may be more used to the form factor of a die grinder or rotary tool on an extension, but…maybe they want to do their work in the field.  I am thinking of spoon carvers, widdlers, woods-craft kind of stuff.

The Ryobi 18 volt cordless rotary tool station with all of your tools at the ready and an integral battery is PERFECT for this type of crafting. In fact, it inspired me to get my knife and head into the woods…ok, my front yard. Well, not my front yard so much as my scrap bin.

Ryobi cordless rotary tool in action.
Carving away with the Ryobi cordless rotary tool

I searched around for a bit for the best little chunk of hard maple. Then, I found a comfy seat to get to work making something of it.  I am no expert at this, nor do I think many folks under the age of 60 are, but who am I to judge? In any case…I made a thing. Don’ t blame the tool. Have to get that practice whenever you can. Who knows, maybe there is a Bobby Duke hiding somewhere under this 230 pounds of certified American dad-bod? 

Small WoodWorkLIFE logo made iwth Ryobi cordless rotary tool.
It’s a…trash, better luck next time

Ryobi Cordless Rotary Tool Review

Back to the Ryobi rotary tool, it is a great little tool.  It does pretty much what you expect it to with plenty of power for shaping and detail work.  Not really built for doing inlays or connecting to a mini router base, but I am sure someone will jig it so. 

The Ryobi rotary tool comes with a starter pack of rotary goodness. Similar to most rotary tools, the bits are universally compatible. I always pick up a kajillion pack of random rotary nonsense around Black Friday to stock up for the year. 

The ergonomics are fine, this isn’t something I would really put heavy hours into for what I am currently working on but it seems comfortable enough for regular carving.  The cord is as long as most people would probably need it to be, but the looks like it can be changed out with other popular extensions. Just in case someone wanted to hang the cord overhead to have more mobility.

The 6ah battery from Ryobi doesn’t leave you wanting.  The published numbers of any sort of test are going to be inconsistent. If you use this like I do, as sort of a stationary soldering station…but mobile, and for a rotary tool…you’ll get a couple of months of battery life out of a 6ah battery.  I couldn’t really tell you what the battery life would be if you use it all the time, that just isn’t how I use a rotary tool. I could see this as a valuable tool for crafts or light carving. It is yet another way you could incorporate a rotary tool into your workflow.

You can buy Ryobi 18-volt cordless rotary tool at the Home Depot for $69 if you have an existing Ryobi battery and charger. Or, for $99 it also comes with a battery and a charger if you aren’t into the Ryobi ecosystem yet. 

I acknowledge that The Home Depot is partnering with me to participate in the promotional program described above (the “Program”). As a part of the Program, I am receiving compensation in the form of products and services, for the purpose of promoting The Home Depot. All expressed opinions and experiences are my own words. My post complies with the Word Of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA) Ethics Code and applicable Federal Trade Commission guidelines.  

Thanks for reading


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