The SoniCrafter is among the first oscillating tools on the market similar to the venerable Fein MultiMaster. It’s not an everyday tool for deck builders, but with the variety of cutting, scraping, and sanding attachments available for it, I bet all deck builders could use one at some point to get out of a tight scrape.
The deck builders who’ll reach for this tool first are those who build porches, incorporate paint-grade trim details, or convert windows to doors and need to neatly terminate interior trim elements like base-molding mid-span. The SoniCrafter plunges through material, so you don’t have to remove an entire piece of molding or try to make a clean cut with a knife or a chisel. It requires zero clearance to cut, say, against a floor. It’s good for the ever-fun minor paint scraping and caulk removal necessary to weave a new assembly into an old one (re-casing exterior door trim), and it even cuts downspouts.
I get the most mileage out of the SoniCrafter on porch remodels. Glutton for punishment that I am, I paint these projects, which means I fill the nail holes, which means putty needs to be sanded. I used a Bondo-type filler on some PVC trim, and the SoniCrafter sanded it quickly with much less effort. It works perfectly on flat moldings (1-by) and very nicely, albeit not perfectly (because its sanding surface is flat), on crown.
Anywhere there’s paint or glue, this tool is a time and sanity saver. I used it on urethane adhesive that oozed out of an assembly and onto a concrete slab, and the scraper blade took up the dried gob wholesale — quicker, easier, and cleaner than with a 5-in-1 tool.
At 2.3 amps and 20,000 oscillations per minute the tool has plenty of oomph for the tasks I throw at it. If it cost more, I’d have been hard-pressed to buy it — that’s why I spent years with MultiMaster envy. But this tool is so affordable that it paid for itself on a single job. And even though I don’t use it every day, or even every month, when I do use it I’m making money and saving time.
SoniCrafter RK5101K 40-Piece Kit, Rockwell, 866/514-7625, rockwelltools.com, Street price: $140