Saturday, October 7, 2017

Air polishing

The affordable air polisher we use costs around $16 shipped on eBay.

Search for air polishers on ebay here.  (affiliate link) There are a LOT of models that meet my keywords; be sure to pick the model pictured above.  I haven't tested every single model, but of the three I tried, this was the easiest to aim.  We don't air polish much due to the powder mess, but when you need it, you need it.  At $16, you can afford to keep one or two in the drawer.  At time of writing, there was a listing for $14.29 from a US seller.  Least expensive 4 hole model I could find. 

Friday, October 6, 2017

The Best eBay Slow Speeds for your Money

After testing out many of the various options online, the best economical slow speed combo online is this "slow low" dental handpiece Denshine kit for as low as $36, shipped.

Buy the "slow low" handpiece kit here on eBay (affiliate link)

Why this kit over all the others?

This kit combines all the pieces I like using into one combo: a slow speed motor, a push button contra angle, and a straight nose cone.

Updated Denshine Slow Speed Motor :  The direction ring has slightly less play than the version before it.  That means it's less likely to get stuck between fully forward and reverse.  Like the previous version, it has plenty of torque--if you floor it.  My two criticisms of it follow, too: the irrigation port that sticks awkwardly out to the side to squirt your patients, and the lack of low RPM torque.  It simply stalls until you have half throttle.  This makes low and slow prophies difficult for me.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

The Twenty Dollar Typodont

This clear typodont costs under $20 from US sellers.  Our readers and facebook friends have given lots of positive feedback on this model.  It's not perfect, and little pieces have been known to fall off.  But for $20, my low expectations were more than exceeded.   I highly recommend this for patient consults.

Shop for this patient education typodont on eBay.  (affiliate link)

Sunday, May 7, 2017

The Best eBay Dental High Speed Handpiece

After trying at least six different eBay imports, my favorite imported high speed handpiece is the Skysea SKED-A6.  It's a large head handpiece with lots of torque for prepping crowns.

The Skysea SKED-A6 comes with a great coupler 

Shop for the Skysea SKED-A6 here on eBay.  Make sure you get the version pictured above with the black band coupler.  Do not get the B6 version unless you already have that specific coupler connection in your office already. It should run you about $90-100 shipped with coupler included.  You will need one coupler per dental unit, and I would have one spare coupler at all times.  Save those extra o-ring baggies in a safe place.  It takes a really long time for these couplers to leak, but when they do, you'll want extra o-rings on hand.

EDIT 7/13/2018: These SKED handpieces seems to run a tiny bit larger at the connection than the others I use. They are now leaking water at the coupler.  I've changed the o-rings on the coupler without success.  So I'm less bullish on these handpieces as I was when I wrote this originally.

If you want to make it last three times longer, get the Skysea SKED A6 packaged with 3 replacement turbines.  All my favorite handpieces from ebay have had this gold turbine in common. When the turbine fails, just swap it with the included tool. (it's a flat piece of metal with a notch cut out of the side.  don't throw it away)  It's a very easy handpiece to repair.

What I like:
  • Big head for lots of torque - it's my favorite crown prepper on the market right now
  • Triple spray - keeps the burs and the prep clean
  • Kavo multi-flex connection - fast on and off, and you can relieve hose tension by swiveling
  • LED headlight - even with loupes, it's nice having a little more light
  • margins - in my hands, it cuts very smoothly.  
  • fat grip - easy on the fingers
  • easy repair - just twist the wrench on the back of the head.  Also includes a little tool to unclog the spray ports.
What I don't like
  • access - it can be hard to see around that head, and hard to get in tight spaces, too.
  • noise could be better.  But handpieces that are noiser tend to cut smoother margins.  
What you will need to use it:

  • six hole handpiece tubing
  • an LED power supply inside your dental unit
  • a decent kavo multiflex coupler
The best generic LED multiflex couplers have a black band

In case you didn't know, the Kavo multi-flex quick connect is well established, reliable, and out of patent.  So lots of companies are using that swivel standard.  It's a big reason I decided to invest in this particular coupler system.  The Skysea SKED A6 comes with the multfiflex couplers above.  They have been very reliable for me. There are more expensive $200 versions from Vector and mkdent, or the even more expensive original Kavo couplers.   But the most cost effective way to get them is to buy a handpiece with the coupler thrown in.   

4 hole tubing trick: if you like this handpiece, but have a four hole tubing, you can sacrifice the LED lighting and simply cut off the two tiny electrical pins on the coupler.  The quick connect will then fit any standard four hole tubing.

Alternatively you can buy a 4 hole coupler with an e-generator built in.  This lets you keep your standard 4 hole tubing and have light for your high speeds.  One downside with e-generators is that they are RPM dependent.  So the faster you spin, the brighter the light gets.  If you are pedal to the metal all the time, this would be less of an issue for you.  If you vary your speed a lot, then the lights will brighten and dim a lot.  I was told by my first employer that varying your rpm speed was a bad habit I needed to break. :)

Edit 8/24/2018: Here's a less expensive 4 hole coupler with e generator built in.


If you already have the couplers, a solid $60 pick

ADDED 5/10/2017 - This is the updated version of my favorite ebay handpiece, the YBB-T-M4-SU. Look for the "wavy handle grip" high speed.  It also uses the golden turbine and triple water spray.  Just got three of them for $180 shipped, kavo multiflex couplers not included.  That's $60 for a pretty good crown prepping handpiece with fiber optic headlight, swivel, and 3 port spray.  As is typical for eBay Chinese handpiece listings, the photographs don't always match what you actually get.  The photographs say "Sandent" but I got the same handpiece with the "Yabangbang" brand.  The clincher for me was clicking onto the fifth or sixth photo and seeing that golden turbine I love so much.

Shop for the YBB-T-M4-SU triple spray kavo compatible high speed with golden turbine.

Edit 8/24/2018 - the link above still works, but you have to scroll down a page to find this 3 pack.  Here's a single handpiece for $65Here's 3 of the "wavy handle" for $183.  These are specific listing links, so they may expire.

LONG TERM UPDATE 7/12/2018: Those "wavy handle" Sandent handpieces are are still my overall favorites.  Couplerisn't included, but you can ONE different model handpiece that comes with a coupler and get some use out of that.

Bargain pick: e-generator non-swivel handpieces for 4 hole tubing

this $20-30 high speed has most of the features and performance of our top pick -- except swivel

If you don't need swivel coupling, then you can get the exact same gold ceramic bearing turbine (and therefore basically identical performance) from this Dentshine handpiece.  In my brief time with it, the water performance, noise and water spray have all been great--as good as the Skysea above for one third the price.  You do give up swivel and quick connect.  It might be a touch quieter, too. As previously mentioned, e-generators give LED light to non-electric 4 hole tubing, but they dim and brighten with your RPM's.  The traditional power source in 6 pin tubing maintains its brightness regardless of rotation speed.  But at $20-30 shipped per handpiece, from US sellers no less, it's a great buy, especially for low-duty use as an adjustment or ortho high speed.  Buy the Dentshine e-generator 4 hole  handpiece on ebay here.

Also for around $20, you can also get the YBB TM4-SU from US sellers.  Shop for the YBB TM4-SU here.  This uses a smaller turbine, but it seems to work just as well.  However, handpieces with this same turbine have not lasted ]as long for me as the gold turbine.  I also don't like the skinnier neck, but those with smaller hands might.  My hands get tired faster holding these things.

I personally dislike non-swivel handpieces.  You can't twist the handpiece tubing to relieve tension on your wrist. But if that doesn't matter to you, or you want to eliminate the potential leakage of a coupler, the non-swivel version is a fantastic bargain.   I've been told if you've never had swivel to begin with, you won't miss it.  Electric handpiece owners also like these cheap handpieces for quick adjustment visits, in order to spare the wear and tear on their expensive 1:5 attachments.

The small head

If you need a small head handpiece that cuts well, check out my review on the Skysea mini head.  It's got a very high pitched whine, and you'll need to use short shank burs.  But it's about 80% as good as my NSK picomax.  Had I known about these beforehand, I wouldn't have bought the NSK.  It's too expensive for something I only need occasionally.

The ones I didn't like

Ruixin handpieces are much more expensive (for Chinese) and loud.  My copy leaked, and the turbine cartridge didn't last very long at all.   The Dentshine $12 handpieces I previously liked have been breaking down just a few months in.  I suppose I can't expect the world out of a $12 handpiece, so I'll chalk that one up to experience.  Coxo handpieces have a loud high pitched whine I can't stand.

The Caveats of eBay buying

If you want risk free buying, eBay may not be for you.  There are many things to be aware of when buying from eBay Chinese sellers:

  • English is not their first language, so messages may not be clearly understood
  • Shipping is very slow - four weeks is not uncommon
  • Returns are practically impossible - yes, they list return policies, but it's hard to make the shipping labels in Chinese, shipping rates are ridiculous, and both attempts I've made have been lost. 
  • Reliability is frankly not as good - you WILL have fewer problems with top tier brands.  You're saving money; decide for yourself if the occasional inconvenience is worth it.
I have bought all my Chinese gear for less than the cost of two Kavo Gentlesilence Lux.  Those are sitting idle because the turbines have worn out.  I can buy several imported handpieces for less than the cost of the Kavo turbines.  High repair costs have also made me reluctant to use electric handpieces.

If you don't want to deal with the risks and frustrations of these Chinese made handpieces, Lares Research makes very good moderate priced handpieces.  And if you want top flight quality, there's always NSK and Kavo--for a price.

The only way to know what works and what doesn't is to buy and try.   Good luck!

EDIT: 8/10/2017

After a few additional months of using pretty much exclusively eBay handpieces, this is what I would suggest.  For coupler you need (usually one per operatory), get the Skysea SKED A6 packaged with 3 replacement turbines.  That will give you 3 spare turbines AND a coupler.  Then get "wavy handle"
YBB-T-M4-SU triple spray kavo compatible high speed with golden turbine to stock the rest of your "big boy" high speed rotation.  Get one or two Skysea mini head for small spaces.  You should be able to stock enough for a three column schedule for the price of a single top tier handpiece.

Edit 8/24/2018 - the "wavy handles" are difficult to find on the keyword search links..  Here's a single handpiece for $65.  Here's 3 of the "wavy handle" for $183.  These are specific listing links, so they may expire.

EDIT: 7/11/2018

All things must come to an end, but most of the time, a new turbine brings it back from the dead in just a minute!  The spare turbines can be found for about $16 a piece.  No drill press or special tools needed, beyond the wrench that comes with the handpiece.  (don't throw them away!)  Unscrew the back, pull out the old turbine, push in the new one, and replace the back cover.  Blow in some oil and you're ready to rock and roll again!

Shop for the golden turbine cartridges here on eBay.  (affiliate link)

Sunday, April 9, 2017

DIY Oxygen Gel

DIY Liquid Strip. When resin cementing, you need to do the final cure with glycerin gel to block air and prevent the oxygen inhibited layer from forming. It's essential for resin bonded porcelain restorations such as veneers and crown-lays. If you're a Cerec or e4D user, you probably go through lots of this gel. My recipe has three ingredients: glycerin gel, a 3cc syringe, and 18 gauge flowable tips.

Walmart brand personal lubricant, water based (aka generic KY jelly) is primarily glycerin.  Easiest way to get it in manageable quantities.  At $2 for 4 oz, it will last you for dozens of restorations.  Thanks to Greg in Long Beach for this tip, though he prefer's Walgreens brand. If you want to get glycerin by the quarts or gallons, it's available on Amazon for even less per ounce.   I suppose you could mix your own Dentatec milling solution with glycerin and some other ingredients, but I don't have a recipe for that on hand.

Fill a 3 or 5 cc luer lock syringe with the gel.   Shop for 3 cc syringes on Amazon or eBay.  Aim for 10 cents per syringe or less. You can also get them at your dental supply dealer.  I like the Vista brand 3 cc syringe.  As of this writing, it was $10.69 for 100, very competitive with Amazon and ebay, with a freegoods promo on top of that.  You can go with larger syringes if you like; that's just what we had on hand.  3 to 6cc seem to be small enough to maneuver easily.  1cc gets refilled too often, 12cc starts getting clunky.

Use large 18 gauge pre-bent tips.  We use these ones from smartpractice, but any fat flowable tip will do.  You can also find 18 gauge pre bent syringe tips on eBay or Amazon.   eBay seems to be best of small ticket disposables; Amazon's prime and fast shipping comes at a cost that's hard to absorb for low priced items.  As a side note, I prefer 18 gauge for glycerin gel and Parkell Dryz, 20 gauge for thicker flowables like Clearfil Majesty flowable (the biomemetic favorite, I'm told), and 25 gauge for thicker etches like Kerr, Ultradent, or my recent favorite, Etch royale from Pulpdent.

Resin Cement Curing tips:

Prime your tooth and your restoration as directed.  Every system is different, so read the instructions.  Generally, you'll want to acid etch the restoration and prime it.  We like Ivoclar Etch and Prime because it's relatively safe compared to hydrofluoric acid, and it adds a primer in the same step.  Etch and prime the tooth, following the directions for your cement system.  Do your tack cure, usually 5 seconds, then clean off the excess cement thoroughly.  Err on the side of undercuring the cement...and beware of curing light overlap.  I tack 5 seconds at each corner, so the overlaps are at the mid buccal and the mid lingual, which are easy to clear if the cement over hardens.  Floss with a knot in it is very useful for cleaning out the interproximals.  After the tack cured cement is cleared, apply the glycerin gel liberally.  You want to be generous with this stuff, so that you'll block all the oxygen out for the final cure.  Any spot you miss won't cure at the surface.  Today's omission will be tomorrow's stained margin or even open margin.  The cement will just wash away within a week.  Ask me how I know.  Once the tooth is thoroughly covered in gel, cure every margin thoroughly.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Review: SeaSky Mini Handpiece

I've just tried these mini head handpieces for a few weeks. My early impressions are very good.

  • Very small head.  Not quite as small as a Pico Max, but less than half the size any of the bargain high speeds on ebay.  Easily small enough for pedo. Visibility is accordingly superb.
  • Very bright fiber optic.  My LED couplers shine quite brightly through it.  Pretty slick considering how small it is.
  • Decent Torque.  I've done a few crown preps with it.  There's no replacement for displacement, so it won't be your favorite.  But for limited access and/or pedo, you'll like this.
  • Very light weight.
  • Very good textured grip.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE the powder coat finish.   Why can't all handpieces have this?
  • Loud - it has a very loud, high pitched whine. Very pure tone, and that's a bad want the frequencies spread out. A lot of Chinese handpieces do not have very soft o-rings to reduce noise.  The unintentional benefit is less bur wobble and smoother margins.
  • Short shank burs - this is common to small head handpieces.  Start a collection of short shank burs (I often just cut a few down with a 556), because regular shank burs stick out awkwardly from this handpiece. 
  • Coupler not included - you'll need a kavo multiflex coupler, or one of the many compatible ones.  

Shop on eBay for the SeaSky Mini LED on Kavo Multiflex connection here.

Disclosure: affiliate link. I make a small commission at no additional cost to you.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Reflections on mirrors for dental photography

Quality mirrors are a must for dental photography. Here's what to look for:
  1. Front surface plating - The best image quality you will get is when the reflective plating is ON TOP of the glass, not under it.  Rhodium is affordable and effective, though there are better choices I'll discuss later. We all know this on some level, that's why we all buy front surface mouth mirrors for our day to day dentistry.

    The downside of front surface mirrors is scratch resistance, or the lack thereof.  So baby your mirrors.  More on that later. All mirrors eat 50-80% of the flash lighting they receive. Better mirrors are more reflective, but also more expensive.
  2. The occlusal arch and buccal mirrors.  If I had to have only two shapes, it would be the occlusal arch mirror (which looks like a large rounded rectangle) and the buccal mirror (which happens to look like a lower case "b").
Occlusal mirror - pick a long one - easier to keep your hands out of the picture

Buccal mirror - looks like a letter "b", "d" or "p"
I can shoot more different shots with this mirror than any other.

Where to buy cheap mirrors

The eBay option.  We have several of the mirrors linked above.  The image quality is decent. They are not exceptionally bright, but usable. The one noticeably concession is the edging.  It's not rough enough to cut anyone, but it's just not as smooth, either. 

Where to get better mirrors.  

If you want higher quality mirrors, go to photomed.  Their titanium surface mirrors are noticeably brighter.  You will pay more, but they should last longer, too.

Why would you want a brighter mirror? (added 7/11/2019)
If you're ever used Zirc's Crystal mouth mirrors, you already know the answer to this.  If not, get them...they are a life changer.

A brighter mirror reflects more light.  More light makes your autofocus significantly faster.  It makes aiming easier, also.  Your typical intraoral flash has more than enough power to compensate for a dull mirror, BUT the recycle time will suffer if you have a dim mirror.  If you press the shutter while the flash is recycling, you'll get a dark picture.

For thsoe using continuous LED lighting, a brighter mirror is even more important.  The light of a flash is very brief, so your effective shutter speed ALWAYS freezes any movement.  But if you have a mirror that is half as brighter, you'll get twice the motion blur.  Reflecting more light allows your camera to using faster shutter speeds.  Exposing the sensor to light for a briefer period prevents shutter shake and motion blur.

In my informal testing, the brightest titanium mirror in my collection was almost a full stop (as in twice as) brighter than my dullest rhodium mirrors.  It would be another half stop brighter than polished steel.

A more efficient mirror becomes more and more relevant as more and more people shoot with mirrorless cameras and smartphones, both of which need more light than SLR's to focus.

Mirrors to avoid:

Practicon sells "DoctorEyes" mirrors.  Worst purchase ever.  They are rear plated, so you frequently get a double image.  Avoid them at all costs.

Stainless steel mirrors - not only are not as reflective, polished stainless steel rapid degrades as the mirror accumulates scratches.  Stick with rhodium plated mirrors, or better yet, titanium surface.

Proper care 

Wrap the mirror in a small micro-fiber towel, then into the sterilization pouch.  When you unwrap it, spray a little eyeglass cleaner and wipe it with the towel before use.  (sometimes we steam clean the mirrors, which also makes the warmer and more fog resistant.)  After use, spray and wipe again, then wrap the towel around the mirror again.  Put it in the pouch for autoclaving.  DO NOT put your mirror in the ultrasonic cleaning unit with your other instruments.    

Thanks for reading!

Friday, February 10, 2017

Slow speed contra angles on eBay: a review

It's time for our next stop along the e-bay Orient express: contra angle slow speed attachments.  I love the e-type mount, because it's an open standard used on electric handpieces, implant motors, endo motors, and really affordable slow speed air motors, too.

Shop for slow speed motors on eBay

There are three e-type contra angles we use day to day at my practice: the button, the latch, and the reciprocating for prophies.

The latch angle is the older design.  It is easy to use, but has a tendency to start coming loose.  So you have to occasionally tighten them.  You'll want to keep a small flat screwdriver around to tighten the latch, also. Visibility is relatively good because the head is really skinny.  But it never jams, and the burs always come out cleanly.  Sometimes they don't lock, so you have to tug them a bit before you use them.  Market price at time of writing was $10 a piece, so you can't really complain

Shop for latch angle contra angles on eBay

The push button is the more modern design.  The collar occasionally comes loose, as they do on all contra angles.  I use these every day for polishing composites, polishing porcelain and caries excavation.  (love the Ivoclar Optrafine for ceramics) My main grief with these is the chuck; the burs can get stuck and refuse to come out.  There are three ways to unjam them:
1) push down the button really hard on your countertop and hope it pops in
2) hold the bur with your fingers (at your own risk) and lightly push the foot pedal.  It will often spin loose
3) use the included flat tool to open up the head and wiggle the bur out.

The bur jams seem to happen more often with the push button.  I have yet to have one on the less sexy latch angles. But mentally, I just don't like the old school look of the push button.  Expect to pay about $15 per head for these push button contra angles.

Shop for push button contra angles on eBay

I'm not going to discuss the internal spray contra-angles that are selling around $35 each.  I haven't tried them because I don't have an electric handpiece.  You're welcome to try them out and report back.

I talked about the reciprocating 4:1 contra angle in my previous post about prophies.  But here's a recap:

These $75-100 contra-angles were designed for endo, but they will work great with prophy polishing.  The 4:1 gear reduction means even a lead foot will spin it at 5,000 rpm tops.  Gear reduction also makes it harder to stall when you bear down on those stains.  (be careful--heavy pressure on the polisher heats up teeth quickly) It doesn't engage as smooth as a $900 hygiene handpiece, but it's also one sixth the cost.  And like the twist prophy angles, it reciprocates, so it's almost impossible to fling paste around.

Shop for 4:1 reciprocating contra angles on eBay

And yes, you can buy latch angle prophy cups, and they are only 8 cents.

That's all I have for now.  I haven't tried any of the 1:5 high speed contra angles or the internal spray models, both of which are intended for owners of electric high speed micromotors like the Bien Air MX2.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Affordable Prophy Polishing

In the past, we just changed the prophy angles and wiped our hygiene handpieces.  Then we started to sterilize the nose cones.  Some states may be requiring we sterilize the motors, too.  With each hygienist seeing 6-10 patients per day, this is going to require a lot of additional motors.  At $600-$1600 for a brand name hygiene handpiece, this is a significant expense. I've been experimenting with a lot of solutions that are much, much less in both start up cost and disposable cost, as well.

TL;DR version: Most hygienists will like the Osseo Scientific Handpiece

Read on:

A good solution should be:
1) autoclaveable or disposable
2) modular - components should be interchangeable, should they break or become separated in sterilization
3) economical - none of my solutions will cost more than $240 per setup.  We also use components that are so inexpensive, replacement will be cheaper than the repair shop
4) ergonomic - they should fit well in the hand and in the mouth.  These all do to varying degrees
5) reliable - they need to "just work" day in, day out with minimal fuss

After two years of trial and error, I have three different setups for your consideration.

Setup #1 - small and svelte

the Osseo Scientific hygiene handpiece
Pros: smallest physicial size, quiet, smooth, compatible with most disposable prophy angles. The nose cone swivels like a dream.

Cons: Most expensive of the three solutions here. nose cones are small, and easily lost.  $70 a piece to replace if you do.

Shop for the Osseo Scientific Handpiece on eBay

This is hands down the favorite of everyone on staff.  The handpiece is small, smooth, strong, and quiet. The nose cone reliably engages the Twist prophy angles my hygienist insists on using.  Twist prophy angles reciprocate 90 degrees (think endo watch winding motion) so the paste almost never spatters--helpful if you have a lead foot on your team.   It uses an e-type connection.  There is plenty of torque at low RPM--enough to use this as a restorative slow speed if you don't need reverse rotation.  My assistants have inadvertently stuck my restorative contra-angle on these and I just motor filling excavation and crown polishing no problem.

You can buy these for $240 a piece, or $2090 for 10 of them.  Lares sells this setup for about twice as much.  Ultradent has a very similar setup for about three times as much.

Electric version: If you use an electric handpiece with e-type connection, or you don't want to sterilize the motor every time, you can order the nose cones a la carte for about $70-100 each.  You have to message the seller directly; he doesn't sell them online.

Bonus tip: SmartPractice sells Splatrfree prophy angles.  They are less expensive, smoother and quieter than the Twist prophy angles.  They spin in one direction like most other prophy angles, but have some strategically placed grooves to stop spit from flinging about.

Setup #2 - the big green twister

Shop for 4:1 reciprocating contra angles on eBay

These $75-100 contra-angles were designed for endo, but they will work great with prophy polishing.  The 4:1 gear reduction means even a lead foot will spin it at 5,000 rpm tops.  Gear reduction also makes it harder to stall when you bear down on those stains.  (be careful--heavy pressure on the polisher heats up teeth quickly) It doesn't engage as smooth as a $900 hygiene handpiece, but it's also one sixth the cost.  And like the twist prophy angles, it reciprocates, so it's almost impossible to fling paste around.

Shop for slow speed motors on eBay

Slow speed motors can be had on eBay for about $15 a piece.  They have a little water spigot that I plug up with a dot of blue bleaching tray resin. They are inexpensive enough to be essentially disposable when they break.  I have had very few break, even without regular lubrication. The main flaw is that they have terrible low RPM torque...they won't move with much less than 70% throttle on your foot pedal.  So you START spinning around 15,000 rpm.  That's way too fast for prophy polishing, but the 4:1 contra angle above slows it down to comfortable speeds.

One complaint is that the head is too big. You will have trouble reaching the upper molars on the buccal sides.  We just tell the patient to bite down a bit, which moves those pesky coronoid processes out of the way.

The third ingredient is what makes this setup the least expensive over time: the 8 cent prophy cup.

Pros: Almost no spatter because it reciprocates. Very low cost per patient. 4:1 gear reduction slows down lead foot operators.

Cons: Bulky. Moderately loud.

Setup #3 - Straight Up Electric

If you have electric micro motors, and aren't afraid to let the hygienist use it, this is the least expensive setup of them all.  You can run any prophy angle you want on these nose cones.

Shop straight nose cones on eBay

What I like best about these nose cones is that they are simple, reliable, and inexpensive.  They are easy to grip, easy to wipe down, and work fantastic with electric motors.

You will often see these nose cones bundled with the slow speed air motors I linked above.  That combination is fine for routine restorative, adjusting nightguards and dentures, or even chairside porcelain polishing.  But poor low RPM response of these $15 motors (really, were you expecting perfection for $15?) make it a poor choice for coronal polishing.  Push lightly on your foot pedal, and you'll get no spin at all, and then suddenly it takes off like a rocket.

An electric motor, by contrast, is smooth at any RPM.  So you can dial in your RPM at 4000 for smooth, comfortable polishing every time.

If you want to really strip down your cost, get the 8 cent prophy cup. You can use them in your electric handpiece and a $15 standard contra angle at around 4000 rpm.  It's a bit bulkier than a prophy angle, but it's less expensive, too.

The main reservation with using the electric motor is that most people don't have one in the hygiene room.  Others don't want to let the hygienist mess with the expensive electric motor, which is understandable, too. So I don't recommend using this type of setup unless you have electric motors everywhere, and your hygienists are comfortable using them.

There was a day when our dental unit was working so we rolled in the endo motor with these cheap nose cones. It was as smooth as butter cream frosting, and quiet, too.  But neither I nor my RDH are comfortable using the special purpose endo motor for prophy polishing.

One other use case for these cones: lab polishing.  I have used the same nose cone day in, day out for a year and a half of Cerec crown polishing in the lab.  I repurposed an endo motor with 4000, 8000, 12000, 20000 and 30000 rpm presets.

I've tried them all

There are other cones on eBay with bright blue rubber handles.  We tried those, but they tended to jam.  Same with the 4:1 gear reduction nose cones, which were smooth, but jammed up over time.  I think we've tried almost every other combination of slow speed motor, attachment and prophy cup we could over the last couple of years. It started when my Midwest Rhino motor died, and the repair bill several hundred dollars  That's when I started getting into imported eBay handpieces.  They weren't perfect, but I started to figure out how to make them work for all that we do with them.   The osseo scientific is the best solution overall for most offices, but the setup #2 works well for us, also.  You may just want to try them both out before you commit to buying a fleet of them. Dentistry is expensive, but there's no reason to make it more expensive than it needs to be.