I’ve got two: a #30 and one of the swiss quick-change handpieces.
(the red ones.)
If I were just starting out, I’d go for the #30, hands down. That
was my only handpiece for…10-15? years. I just bought the swiss QC
a couple of years ago because I wanted a good QC for fast bit
changeouts for setting.
The #30 will grab anything from essentially zero diameter all the
way up to 3/16", so it’ll grab anything you might want to spin,
including jump-ring mandrels, screw-eyes for twisting wire, or
anything else your fevered mind can dream up. They also fit into a
whole slew of accessory tools. Definitely it should be your first
handpiece. I don’t know if the new ones are coming with the
chuck-key with the handle or not, but if not, you can modify your
chuck-key by adding a handle to it so that you can spin it easily,
and then it’ll be almost as fast to tighten as a QC handpiece.
The reasons I went for the new QC handpiece were two: (A) fast bit
changes, and (B) a very narrow nose, so I can get my fingers right
down to where the bit is, and I can get the tool into tight spots.
The drawback is that it only takes 3/32" shanked tools.
In use, I’ve actually got a couple of motors rigged to the same
foot- pedal, so I leave the QC on one, and the #30 on another one,
and just flip a switch to select the one I want to spin. They
complement each other well, but if only had one, it’d be the #30.
For whatever that’s worth. Brian.
PS–If you can get one, you want a Lucas low-boy foot pedal. Don’t
be afraid, it’s not that Lucas. These actually work, and well too.
They don’t even smoke.
(I don’t know if they come in 220V though. I seem to remember that
you’re in the UK.)