Multipurpose Oscillating Tools

These tools have interchangeable heads, which allows you to alter their function from drill/driver to impact driver to jigsaw to oscillating tool to reciprocating saw—to name just a few—all while using the same battery pack and motor. When equipped with an oscillating head, they utilize the same attachments that fit the single-purpose tools in this review. We tested only the oscillating function here.

Ridgid R82236
The JobMax did very well in the cutting tests: It managed to complete our notch test in oak—something only two of the dedicated oscillating tools could accomplish—in part because of its souped-up lithium-ion battery. The variable speed is controlled by a trigger, not a dial, a feature familiar to anyone who has used a drill/driver. This trigger makes cutting a straight line easier than with any other tool, but sanding anything for more than a few minutes induces finger cramps—it's painful. On the plus side, it has an LED to light up the work area and it operates very smoothly, with minimal vibration.
About $100; 2.2 pounds; Ridgid

Fine print:
13 5/16-inches long,
0–20,000 opm,
One 1.5-amp-hour lithium-ion battery,
three attachments
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