Author Topic: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track  (Read 17900 times)

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Offline Pancha

  • Posts: 20
Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« on: November 01, 2015, 10:01 PM »
Hey Foggers!  Just made a Boom Arm Mft mount for my quick and dirty boom arm I've been using for about a year now.  My goal was to have a boom arm that was portable and would break down and fit inside a systainer.  Ultimately I was frustrated by how long it took to set up/take down and how many pieces there were.  This is my solution using as many scraps and pieces I had already laying around the house.  At this point, I don't use my mft for anything except cutting and scribing Ipe bison pavers.  So it's possible this solution wouldn't work for everybody.  I've just never understood why festool hasn't made a more portable version of their boom arm.  I would love to here peoples thoughts and criticisms.232096-0232098-1232100-2232102-3232104-4

This is my previous set up and what I use it for232106-5232108-6 [ Specified attachment is not available ]
« Last Edit: November 09, 2015, 07:45 PM by Pancha »

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Offline Corwin

  • Posts: 2430
Re: Boom Arm and MFT/ T-Track Mount
« Reply #1 on: November 01, 2015, 10:20 PM »
I love your Boom Arm!  [big grin]

How nice, and portable too! Is that a Sys-5?
Looks like your rabbit joint is a hare off! ;)

Offline Pancha

  • Posts: 20
Re: Boom Arm and MFT/ T-Track Mount
« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2015, 10:25 PM »
Thanks, Yes it is a sys-5

Offline PreferrablyWood

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Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #3 on: November 02, 2015, 02:02 AM »
This looks very nicely made and well thought out. I'll keep this in mind for when I need to make my own version.

Thanks for showing the images are especially useful!
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Offline Wuffles

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Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #4 on: November 02, 2015, 03:17 AM »
I wonder if it could refined to the point where you use the actual tubing as a section of the hose? With rubber O rings or some removable seal when you put them together. It'd reduce the weight  [smile]

I know it's not required, what you've done there is amazing.
Tool list updated to reflect knowledge :: hammer, screwdriver, one pozi bit, and another bigger hammer.

Offline Tinker

  • Posts: 3565
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2015, 03:28 AM »
I like your idea. When i had my boom mounted to my CT 33, it was just way too cumbersome and with so low ceiling impossible to move around .  I am close to final sorting out of my shop space and your pics will be filed for my own considerations. I don't need to transport to other sites, so don't need to cut into short pieces to put into a Systainer, but i like the idea for attaching to an MFT. 
Tinker
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Offline ear3

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Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2015, 07:23 AM »
Great idea!
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Offline thedude306

  • Posts: 192
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #7 on: November 02, 2015, 10:25 AM »
I really like this!  It appears you have more tube then arm in the pictures.  I can't tell but it looks like something under the table when it is set up??

Do you get much deflection of the rail with that much leverage?  That's always been a concern, I would like to have it attach further down as well somehow.

Brad T.

Offline Slartibartfass

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Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #8 on: November 02, 2015, 10:46 AM »
I just took down my boom arm as I have very little space in my workshop and it prevented me from moving around the CT36 it was attached to. Just bungee corded it in 2 points to the ceiling. Works like a charme....

Offline Svar

  • Posts: 1189
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #9 on: November 02, 2015, 11:52 AM »
I think you should also make the top wood block engage/rest on the V-channel of the MFT in addition to T-track nobs. There is quite a bit of leverage if you tilt the boom from vertical and I'm afraid you could bend the T-track the way it is now.

Offline bkharman

  • Posts: 1958
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #10 on: November 02, 2015, 12:51 PM »
I had thought of making a boom arm similar to yours but never got around to it. I might give it a go again based on your idea. Kind of Frankenstein yours and mine together.

I had an idea to put mine on the corner of my MFT. Use a dog hole to hold it to the MFT top and then some Velcro to wrap around one leg.

Does yours flex back and forth at all?

Great job!

Cheers. Bryan.
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Offline badtastex

  • Posts: 34
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #11 on: November 02, 2015, 01:57 PM »
I made a similar "boom arm" approach a while back, mine was not as mobile as yours but the same principle applied.

It is made by 2" sewage pipe and I use the pipe for the dust collection and not just to support the hose.


Offline Pancha

  • Posts: 20
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #12 on: November 02, 2015, 09:24 PM »
Hey Folks,  Thank you for the kind words, concerns and keen observations.  I'm considering posting a movie of it in action but that won't be until tomorrow night at the earliest.  In the mean time, I thought I would respond to a few of the comments.  I'll do it in chronological order. 

Wuffles-  I had considered making the boom arm part of the suction apparatus.  At the time, The boom arm had legs which you can kind of see in the photo with my full set up.  It's the second to last photo I believe.  It was fairly top heavy and it didn't swivel so i filled the legs with concrete to lower the center of gravity.  It worked but it really wasn't a very elegant solution.  Also If you look closely, each pvc member has holes drilled in it to receive 7 inch bolts.  I insert the bolts in the holes in order to help in twisting and pulling the pieces apart to put back in my sys-5.  None of those solutions to my problems boded well for running the suction through the arm itself.  Since then I have come to realize that I rather like being able to change the length of hose coming off the top of the arm.  When processing pavers I don't need a lot of hose but if I am processing sheet goods I need a lot more length.  This is less of an issue now that the arm swivels nicely.  Still, I like being able to modulate the length for the task at hand.  Having the hose plug into the top would mean I would need several different lengths of hose for different tasks which doesn't seem feasible for the things I use my track saw for.  I mostly use it for wood pavers but I'm hoping to get more into cabinets, built-ins and furniture.  I hope that makes sense.

thedude306-  Astute observation!  The picture with my full set up was before I made the mount.  As I described to Wuffles, the initial design had legs and was free standing.  It was made before I owned an MFT.  It was cumbersome, didn't swivel, and needed three times as many pieces of pvc which took time to attach and break down as well as making it annoying to fit back into my sys-5.  A few people have asked about deflection in the track from pulling on the hose.  This was a concern for me.  Hopefully I can respond to many of the other related comments and questions regarding this topic here.
            The mount is made of 1/4'' flat steel.  That combined with the Ipe (also not light), and the fact that the majority of the mount hangs below the table means that you would have to yank unnaturally on the hose to get it to deflect enough to where it would become an issue.  I guess time will tell.  That being said, because of my previous set up which was prone to tipping, I have always been cognizant as to how much pull I place on the hose when using a tool.  I always let out the right amount of hose from the top so I'm not pulling on the arm itself.  My larger concern has been that over time, the bolt heads will begin to mar and disfigure the inside of the track.  If I do anything more to ameliorate this issue, it would be to make a plastic or aluminum "washer" that spans the two t-track bolts and makes for a more displaced pressure on the inside of the track.  I would hope this would also help to prevent deflection of the mount and be less harmful to the track.  I hope someone else makes their own version of this and can either disagree or confirm my findings.  Different people treat their tools differently,  I happen to be very delicate with all my tools(especially the green ones [wink]) minus rough framing hand tools.

Svar-  I hope aspects of your concerns were addressed in my response above.  I had initially intended to build a groove for fitting in the v-groove as well as a plate for the underside of the track.  I still may do it but ultimately I wanted to spark imaginations for people who may not have the MFT profile and maybe just have a basic T-track like Timothy Wilmots MFT-C or other people who have used an 80-20 extrusion.  Ultimately I'm not sure if I need anything more.  I'll know more when I get to use it in the field for a few months.  Eventually, I plan to build my own MFT tables with an 80-20 perimeter and didn't want to have to make a new mount to fit a different profile.  I think it's more universal and simpler this way.  It's definitely a legitimate concern.

Again, thank you all for your engagement and comments.  I truly enjoy these discussions.
« Last Edit: November 09, 2015, 07:46 PM by Pancha »

Offline Pancha

  • Posts: 20
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #13 on: November 04, 2015, 11:23 PM »


Here I am yanking on the hose in a situation that would never happen with regular use. I wanted people to see the level of deflection that occurs just on the mount itself with both regular use and abnormal pulling.  The boom arm itself actually deflects more than the mount because of all the couplers in the arm. 
 
I show what happens when I just move the track saw around the table and you see the pvc simply turning in the mount.  Then I pull on the hose from one direction and repeat the process.

Offline Pancha

  • Posts: 20
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #14 on: November 04, 2015, 11:28 PM »
WARNING:  I didn't edit the sound and it was windy. You should probably hit mute before playing.  Also, the goofy face at the end is because the morning sun is glaring in my face as I turn around to turn off the camera.



This is part two of the test where I show you me actually tugging on the hose and moving the saw around the table.  You can see that the majority of the deflection is in the arm itself which you can feel. 

I wouldn't hang a swing from the arm but it feels sturdy enough for how I use it.  My only concern is if a chord got caught on my tool bags and pulled the saw off the table.  Then again,  in most cases, the saw would hit the ground before it pulled hard enough on the arm to permanently mangle the t-track.  Maybe that will be my third test :(

Offline Tinker

  • Posts: 3565
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #15 on: November 05, 2015, 08:09 AM »
@Pancha, Thanks for the vids.  I am going to be trying your idea of clamping the the corner of the table using my boom arm that was formerly clamped to my CT33.  I will be setting up with the arm clamped to the back out feed side of my MFT3 table.  I think that will work better in my shop.  Even tho you show the deflexion in your tube, I will try to make some sort of bracing to take advantage of more that just the T-track.  I am less used to hand tool bracketing than with more heavy staging and form bracing involved with masonry construction; so am more apt to over brace than a bare minimum of bracing. 

Tinker
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Offline Rusty Miller

  • Posts: 237
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #16 on: November 05, 2015, 01:52 PM »
My question is where did you get the green hose holders that are on the pvc pipe?

Rusty
Rusty Miller
I'd rather be woodworking!

Offline thedude306

  • Posts: 192
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #17 on: November 05, 2015, 02:29 PM »

thanks for the video.  Looks great and my concerns about the flex are not warranted at all.

Brad T.

Offline ivanhoe

  • Posts: 165
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #18 on: November 05, 2015, 04:24 PM »
My question is where did you get the green hose holders that are on the pvc pipe?

Rusty

+1

 (I really like this arm!)

Offline rst

  • Posts: 1619
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #19 on: November 05, 2015, 05:33 PM »
I buy hose covering from http://www.cableorganizer.com/braided-sleeving...PET Expandable Braided and best of all it's available in neon green  40' / $44.99 plus shipping -$50. ish

Offline Pancha

  • Posts: 20
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #20 on: November 05, 2015, 07:33 PM »
The hose clamps are actually pvc that I spray painted green to be cheeky.  The parts that clamp around the arm are cutoffs of couplers and the various sizes of pvc are for two power cords and a 36 mm hose and 27 mm hose.  All the pieces were glued and screwed together.  The coupler pieces were cut similar to how some people have used cut pvc as clamps.  It allows me to slide them on the different segments of the arm more easily.  The other benefit of this is that I was able to rotate the hose clamps exactly where I wanted them and then send a screw between the two ends so the clamps don't move around and sag to the underside of the arm.  I'm sure a picture would help but I don't have one at the moment.  I'll post one tomorrow.

Offline Rusty Miller

  • Posts: 237
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #21 on: November 05, 2015, 09:08 PM »
Thanks Pancha.  I have a similar arm on a homemade vac/cyclone holder but I really like your set up.  Looking forward to a close up of the clamps.

Rusty
Rusty Miller
I'd rather be woodworking!

Offline Pancha

  • Posts: 20
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #22 on: November 06, 2015, 08:28 PM »
232420-0232422-1

The hose just clips in and pulls out.  I don't have to feed the hose through each one.  So I've got that going for me..which is nice.  Eventually I would like to have some wooden ones laser cut with a similar profile so they are more consistent and I can really dial in the dimensions.  As it stands, some of the hose clamps are harder to clip the hose into than others.  It was hard to get them all exactly the same with out spending a lot of time on it.

Offline beefheart

  • Posts: 9
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #23 on: November 07, 2015, 05:57 AM »
Well done! Love the hose clips.

Offline Rusty Miller

  • Posts: 237
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #24 on: November 07, 2015, 11:17 AM »
Thanks Pancha.  Those pics really help see just how you put them together.  Will be making some soon.

Rusty
Rusty Miller
I'd rather be woodworking!

Offline Pancha

  • Posts: 20
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #25 on: November 07, 2015, 11:36 AM »
Thanks Pancha.  Those pics really help see just how you put them together.  Will be making some soon.

Rusty

Can't wait to see what you come up with!  I might add, It may be infinitely faster to buy a couple of different sized hole saws and a drill press and make them out of 1/2" ply or whatever...Plastic?  the process for making them out of pvc was way more laborious than I anticipated.  I would do it differently if I were to do it over again.  And will...

Offline crampedshop

  • Posts: 43
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #26 on: November 07, 2015, 01:58 PM »
Did you make the clips one at a time? I was thinking of cutting 8 to 10 inch lengths of PVC; stand them up on a band saw to cut out the missing segment; glue the different diameters together; and then cross cut the assembly on a bandsaw. That way you would be doing a bunch at a time.

Offline Pancha

  • Posts: 20
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #27 on: November 07, 2015, 07:41 PM »
Did you make the clips one at a time? I was thinking of cutting 8 to 10 inch lengths of PVC; stand them up on a band saw to cut out the missing segment; glue the different diameters together; and then cross cut the assembly on a bandsaw. That way you would be doing a bunch at a time.

That is a particularly good Idea!  I would suggest screwing them together as well.  I don't know if glue alone would hold all of that together.  Might "explode" on you?  I don't know.  I guess that depends on the glue.  I would love to see pictures of the process and how it turns out.  I don't own a bandsaw..yet, i hope to some day soon.  It's one of those tools that is great/necessary to have in your quiver, especially for things like this.  I hope your bandsaw has good dust collection.  The pvc gets pretty "static-y" when it's cut.  It sticks to EVERYTHING.  I know because I just tracked a bunch in the house after making a "washer" for gliding inside the t-track.  The knobs I used were meant for holding the kapex to the kapex mft.  As such, they were threaded the entire length of the shank.  I knew it would mar the track and it is, so I got some m8 bolts with a partial smooth shank as well as some washers.  I dadoed the plastic to receive the bolt head which made a mess of my backyard/shop :'(.  I'm going to round the edges of the plastic when I get to my jobsite in Denver where the appropriate tools sit.  I'm hoping that will make sliding the mount into the t-track more ergonomic.  232473-0232475-1232477-2

Offline crampedshop

  • Posts: 43
Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #28 on: November 08, 2015, 07:50 AM »
@Pancha Thanks for validating my idea. You have motivated me to start working on a prototype. I want to come up with a jig to hold all the pipes in the right orientation while the adhesive cures. From your pictures, I can see that you used 1.5" PVC for the boom arm itself. Can you tell me what the various sizes of the PVC is that goes into the clip.

Thanks

Offline Chris Wong

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Re: Portable Boom Arm mounted to MFT/ T-Track
« Reply #29 on: November 08, 2015, 11:39 AM »
Great idea!  I wonder if a boom arm could be made with Festool tubes, either the stainless or plastic D36 ones.  Two angled pieces make the bend, and a short length of hose at either end allows extraction through the arm and reduces what needs to be carried around, as another poster mentioned.



Chris Wong, http://FlairWoodworks.com

The thoughts and ideas expressed here are my own and do not necessarily represent those of http://UltimateTools.ca.  But Dan does say "hello".