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Memorial Day signals the unofficial start to summer. To help you prepare, we’re sharing tips in this issue for making your windows shine and mastering Dremel® rotary accessory changes so you’ll be ready for any summertime project that comes your way.
Saving the Coral Population, One Dremel Tool at a TimeJim Adelberg assures his readers it doesn’t hurt.
“It” is fragging coral – the process of manually cutting a piece of coral into pieces to facilitate asexual reproduction. Adelberg has been involved in the hobby for years, and regularly shares how-to tips for fragging coral with a Dremel rotary tool in Reef Hobbyist Magazine. Adelberg, of Alameda, Calif., started the magazine two years ago and serves as executive editor.
Coral, he explains, is a disappearing species that has suffered damage as a result of human pollution. The National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration estimates that by the year 2050, 60 percent of the world’s coral reefs will be dead. Already, 10 percent are degraded beyond recovery and another 30 percent are in critical condition.
Coral reefs are an integral part of the tropical ecosystem and provide food, building materials and a first line of defense against tropical storms for people living in nearby areas. They also provide an area rich of biological niches, supporting the biodiversity of the entire region. Through evolution, living coral has developed a set of unique biochemical mechanisms that hold great promise for use in human medical research.
“Asexual reproduction has proven to be one of the most successful tactics for coral growth in the wild, and fragging coral in captivity is one of the best ways to ensure the coral’s reproductive success, which may help to displace some wild coral,” Adelberg says.
Soft corals are generally fragged with a razor or scissors, but stony corals in captivity have much harder skeletons and require a high-speed tool to cut through their surface in a clean line so as not to shred their flesh. Adelberg uses a Dremel Variable Speed MultiPro equipped with the 545 Diamond Cut-Off Wheel for this task. Once a piece of the original “parent colony” has been removed, the base can be shaped with grinding bits to achieve the desired configuration. Then, the fresh cut coral can be mounted on a separate “frag plug” and replaced in the aquarium to begin its new life as a separate colony. Later, the coral can be repopulated back into the ocean. An expanded supply of coral in captivity also means fewer coral reefs need to be harvested from the wild.
“I believe that any serious coral farmer will have a Dremel tool in his or her toolbox,” says Adelberg. “Dremel rotary tools have always been the preferred tools for fragging stony corals. The combination of the wide array of quality tools and bits and Dremel’s concern for customer service has earned them the ‘top shelf’ position in our hobby.”
To learn more, download a free PDF of Reef Hobbyist Magazine at www.reefhobbyistmagazine.com or pick up a free copy at one of the thousands of marine aquarium retail stores that carry it across the country.
Featured Project – Restoring Old Windows
Thanks to the Dremel Multi-Max™ Oscillating Tool System, restoring old windows to look like new again has never been easier.
In addition to the tool, you’ll need the MM450 Wood & Drywall Saw Blade, MM11 Hook and Loop Pad and MM70P 80, 120 and 240 Grit Sandpaper. Some accessories may need to be purchased separately where tools are sold to complete the project.
Expert Advice – Collets, Chucks and Shanks, Oh My!|
For the seasoned pro, attaching and changing rotary tool accessories is second nature – like riding a bike. But for the beginner, understanding the parts lingo and process takes some practice and a good set of instructions in order to get the hang of it.
The portion of the accessory that is actually inserted and held into the rotary tool is called the shank.
The collet (boxed off in the image to the right) is a slim aluminum tube with small slits in the sides and an outer end. It is slightly larger than the shank and is the most precise way to hold an accessory in a rotary tool. When the collet nut (shown above the collet in the image to the right) is threaded onto the end of the tool, over the collet, the fingers of the collet (slots) close around the shank of the accessory and hold it in place.
There are four different sized collets available for the rotary tools: 1/8-, 3/32-, 1/16- and 1/32-inch. The collets are marked with corresponding shank size: no rings – 1/8-inch (480), 1 ring – 1/32-inch (483), 2 rings – 1/16-inch (482) and 3 rings – 3/32-inch (481).
In most instances, the 1/8-inch collet will meet your needs. With the exception of the smaller shank (3/32-inch shank) engraving cutters, diamond wheel points and drill bits, Dremel accessories are all on a 1/8-inch shank.
A Dremel Chuck can also be used in place of the collet and collet nut system. It accepts all accessory bits with 1/8- to 1/32-inch shank size.
If you have additional questions, please contact the Dremel Experts via e-mail or 800.437.3635. We can be reached Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. CST.
Win a Dremel Flex Shaft Attachment
The Dremel brand is giving away five 225-01 Flex Shaft Attachments to help readers get into hard-to-reach spots with their Dremel rotary tools. To qualify, tell us where you need to reach. Send us a one-sentence answer along with your name, shipping address (no P.O. boxes) and phone number in the body of the e-mail and “Flex Shaft” in the subject line. We’ll pick five entries at random and announce the winners next month.
Congratulations to the five winners of the April eNewsletter giveaway. The winners, picked at random from all complete entries, each received a new Dremel Stylus™ cordless rotary tool. The winners were Ken Odgers, Johnstown, PA; Pamela Thompson, Marion, IN; Janet Kluever, East Falmouth, MA; Alvin L. Arrowood, Powder Springs, GA; and Norman Franzino, Boynton Beach, FL.
Stay tuned for more Dremel news this year!
Safety reminder: When working with Dremel brand or any other power tool, always wear eye protection and a dust mask, and read and understand the owner’s manual prior to using.