View Full Version : Festool ES125 vs. 150/3 - Which for final sanding?

Glen Blanchard
12-04-2006, 10:58 AM
I am looking at both of these sanders. I am used to a 5" and do mostly small items (boxes) so the ES125 appeals to me - it is also significantly lighter than the 6" 150/3. However, I seem to only hear about how great the 150/3 is.

Here is what really has me confused however. The ES125 has a 3/32" stroke while the 150/3 has 1/8". In spite of this the 150/3 is supposed to be more for fine sanding, while the 125 is considered an "intermediate" sander. What gives? Seems like it should be the other way around.

Here is what I am looking for in a sander to replace my P/C 333.

less vibration
less noise
hook up to dust extractor/collector
low weight would be nice

So which sander should I get, keeping in mind that I do mostly small stuff?

Scott Brihn
12-04-2006, 2:37 PM
I have had good results using the ES125 for final sanding. Like you I was using a PC333.

If possible see if you can check out the 5" and 6" versions locally before ordering. For me the 5" size was familiar and fit best.

Either size will meet your criteria of lower noise, reduced vibration and dust extraction. If your work products are typically smaller in scale the ES125 likely fits the bill.

Typically there is a finanical incentive to "package" a sander with a vac. I use a CT22 which works well with the sanders because of the VS. Overall I have found it to be a decent vac, however, I wish it came standard with a longer, more flexible hose.

Halsey MCCombs
12-04-2006, 2:55 PM
I have the 125 and it does a nice job on finishing. You might check with Bob Marino on the site. Halsey

Bob Marino
12-04-2006, 4:36 PM

Stroke size alone is not the final criteria for leaving the best finish. The ES 125 is a small, lightweight sander, best suited for smaller jobs, vertical work, etc. And it does leave an excellent finish.
But, the ETS 150/3 has larger bearings and a smoother motor, and the difference in weight and pad size lends itself to a smooooooooooother running sander. All Festool sanders and other tools, for that matter, will hook up to dust extraction.


"Gary Brewer"
12-04-2006, 5:50 PM
I looked at both but decided the 150/3 with a festool dust extractor was the best combination for me. It is a little more versatile than the 125 and for me felt more comfortable in use. Both excellent sanders. I love my 150/3 and I am very glad I bought it. I also had the porter-cable 333 before I bought this sander ( 150/3) and wondered about the larger format but not any more. It gets the most use of any of my sanders and is the easiest to use and most comfortable. Also I am not coughing any more. No dust problems that I had with the 333. If you need a good dust extractor either of the ct33 or ct22 festools are an unbeatable combination with their sanders.

John Miliunas
12-04-2006, 6:20 PM
I've got the 125, as well as the 150/5. The 125, IMHO, excels at smaller work. Now, you may be wondering about the 150/5, with the larger stroke. I initially bought it with hopes of heavier duty prep work. In the end, I find that if I let the sander do the work for me and work through the grits properly, I have a surface easily ready for oil or (eeeeeek) stain. You need to remember that, when prepping for finish, you really have no need to go over 220 or so grit. You need some "grip" for the oil or stain. :) So, my personal take on it is, if you're primarily doing small work, I'd go with the 125. (Which, BTW, was my very first Festool purchase from Uncle Bob! :D ) Having said that, there is one word of "warning": Don't get stuck on getting the "end to all ends" sander, especially when talking Festool. Why? Once you have that in-hand, you'll be ordering more, anyway! :D Each one of them has different strengths and, in the long run, when you have a choice of a couple or more, your work will go faster and be more pleasant! (I currently have 4 Festool sanders!) :) :cool: