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Thread: Considering first festool

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
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    Considering first festool

    Played with a kapex setup today that had their dust collector on it. Would love the kapex but Am considering my first festool in the form of a 5Ē sander with the dust collector but am not sure. The price of all the festool stuff is just so high. Itís hard to commit as a pure hobbiest.

    Can the festool 5Ē ROS use generic paper or does it require festool paper? Iíve got a ton of Freud diablo paper on hand to use up.

    also, if I take the leap, which dust system would be the best choice for the first purchase? Would be in shop only. Hobby use. And I have Oneida central system for my major tools so this would be sander and maybe other similar items only.

    Thanks for any i put out as Iím struggling with the price versus reward equation right now.

  2. #2
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    Greg, I have a good stable of Festool products and while the initial outlay isn't low, over time they have proven their worth as I have not had to replace them. None of them have disappointed me and if they disappeared for some reason, I'd "cheerfully" find a way to rebuy.

    For the sanders, I have the 6"/150mm versions. (150/3 and a Rotex 150) The former gets the nod 98% of the time as I can one-hand it and most of my sanding is for finishing purposes. While you can use non-Festool abrasives, it's important to have the correct hole count and positioning for dust collection, including the center hole. While I use Festool abrasives...it lasts a long time...several other names have Festool compatible abrasive discs available. If the abrasive you have has the correct number of holes but not the center hole, you can make a "punch" to rectify that manually. BTW, one of the current 5" sanders can also take the 6" pad which is a nice feature if you prefer smaller for most of your work but could benefit from larger from time to time.

    I also use the Festool extractor for dust extraction from all my Festool tools as well as some other brand hand-held electrics. But you can use any "shop vac" type setup you want for the purpose, although you'll want to consider the Festool anti-static hose with the rubber end that adapts to all the tools. You can get a discount by buying a sander and extractor at the same time from any Festool dealer. I personally recommend Bob Marino as a source.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  3. #3
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    Mar 2016
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    Thanks Jim. That’s what they were saying at Woodcraft about the10% discount on extractor if bought at same time. For the kapex though that’s a bunch of money at one time. I’m thinking a good sander setup might be a nice way to start. I’ll check out the link. Thx.

  4. #4
    DO NOT DO IT! I made this mistake not long ago. After one seemingly innocent purchase (Festool track saw) I now have the 150 Rotex, a Midi dust collector, a Domino XL, MFT, and a few minor things. After using that track saw and sander I now curse Bosch every time I use their router, jigsaw, and drill/driver.

    It really is that big of a difference. Every Festool product I have used is a pleasure to pick up.

  5. #5
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    Sep 2016
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    Central Missouri, U.S.
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    Greg, maybe I shouldn't comment on the Kapex because I don't own one, but you should do do some research on problems people have reported. I'd pass on that tool.

    Festool sanders, yes. I've had three and all were/are excellent. Had a Rotex 90, but sold it for the reason Jim mentioned. The Rotexes pretty much require two hands. My favorite is the 5"/125mm. Perfect size for me, great dust collection, low vibration, the list goes on. It's simply a solid tool. I use a Fein vacuum with mine.

    I use Abranet abrasives with mine. It's a mesh material, so the holes in the pad aren't an issue, and it lasts a long time.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Lebanon, TN
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    208
    I have several Festool power tools,TS55 saw + track, DF500 Domino, MFK700 Router, RQ125 Sander, CT26 dust collector and the Multi Function MFT.

    I love all of these and have no regrets paying the premium for these tools.

    I use the Festool sand paper. If you don't beat up the edges of the sand paper, it seems it lasts forever and there is hardly any sawdust visible when using it with theCT26.

    The kapex saw is the one Festool product that I've just not been able to justify buying. I'm happy with my DeWalt 780.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2013
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    Auckland, New Zealand
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    If you are considering Festool, you probably have some power tool in your shed already.

    and if you have power tools already, then I think the best tool from Festool is their Domino. the only other power tool that can offer similar function is Lamello Zeta P2. I think Domino is more Versatile. Lamello Zeta P2 is for making flatpack furniture.

    I never owned a Festool track saw, mitre saw or a SCMS, I have gave them a try in a Festool display shop, at the time I had Omga already and I think Omga is of higher quality than Festool Kapex anyway. the dust extraction on my Omga mitre saw was 80mm. the entire saw is made of cast iron/heavy aluminium.

    Surely Kapex has its market groups and has its advantage over Omga, such as weight and price. you cant carry Omga wherever you go, the beast weighs more than 40lbs for a simple mitre chop.

  8. #8
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    To clarify I’m not considering a kapex, it’s just the tool they had hooked up for display with their extractor.

    Im considering a sander.


    My shop,as some know, already has hammer A3-31, Powermatic 66, laguna 18/36, grizzly 513x2f, nova drill press, Oneida v3000, Jesse router table, etc. from hand tool standpoint I have a makita track saw, and full stable of other items. It I’ve never even happy with my ridgid sander/shop vac setup.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
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    Texas Hill Country
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    Don't have any Festools so I can't comment from experience but to take advantage of the dust collection you need a vacuum. Is the size of Festool's dust collection ports non-standard? If so are there 3rd party adapters that will allow use of non-Festool vacuums and hoses with Festool equipment? You may have already considered this but just wanted to put it out there.

    Edit: Ah, Jim may have addressed this already but the use of the term "extractor" is one I'm not that familiar with. Another word for vacuum?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    First of all which 5" Festool ROS are you considering? To take advantage of the high level of dust extraction you need to use the Festool paper OR a paper with a compatible pattern (Klingspor makes it for example) OR use a net abrasive like Festool sells now or Abranet by Mirka. I use Abranet on all my sanders and prefer it to any other. It also makes it easy since I have Mirka, Festool and Airvantage 6" ROS so one paper instead of 3. If you use a net abrasive you NEED to use the interface pads!
    Of all the laws Brandolini's may be the most universally true.

    Deep thought for the day:

    Your bandsaw weighs more when you leave the spring compressed instead of relieving the tension.

  11. #11
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    I've missed the downdraft table from the old commercial cabinet shop where I started out every time I've done any sanding for the past 20 years.

    If I had the space, I'd build myself one in a heartbeat and use any old sander without regard for fancy dust extractors, special hole patterns, etc.
    Dojo Kun, 1: Be humble and polite.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kory Cassel View Post
    I've missed the downdraft table from the old commercial cabinet shop where I started out every time I've done any sanding for the past 20 years.

    If I had the space, I'd build myself one in a heartbeat and use any old sander without regard for fancy dust extractors, special hole patterns, etc.
    I would agree IF dust extraction was the only advantage to the high-end ROS, but it isn't, in fact, it may be the smallest of all the major advantages between upper-mid-range sanders and the high end. The low end is somewhere is one of Dante's circles of hell to use once you have used a high-end ROS.
    Of all the laws Brandolini's may be the most universally true.

    Deep thought for the day:

    Your bandsaw weighs more when you leave the spring compressed instead of relieving the tension.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Van Huskey View Post
    I would agree IF dust extraction was the only advantage to the high-end ROS, but it isn't, in fact, it may be the smallest of all the major advantages between upper-mid-range sanders and the high end. The low end is somewhere is one of Dante's circles of hell to use once you have used a high-end ROS.

    Can you expand on that? Right now I’m using a ridgid orbital sander with a 16gal ridgid shopvac over a rockler down draft table connected to my Oneida v3000 cyclone. My issue is that the ridgid has been very difficult to manipulate given the stiff shopvac hose. Not sure if the festool would add any benefit or if I should focus on more flexible hose instead.

  14. #14
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    Can't comment on high end. I'm using a PC speedblock purchased at the local pawn shop for $20. It's good for flat surfaces, but real heavy for vertical use. I like it though, it's an improvement on my pneumatic palm sanders IMO. Most other electric ROS I've used are kind of grabby, they want to get away from you unless you have a death grip. Maybe the Festool doesn't do that?
    Dojo Kun, 1: Be humble and polite.

  15. #15
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    It's a combination of ergonomics and how much vibration gets transferred to your hand. I didn't fully understand it until I'd spent some time using a Festool.

    Also, pick up one of the Rockler small port dust kit things. Fits the Festools fine, as well as a couple of my routers.

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