Author Topic: DF 500 grip?  (Read 2035 times)

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Offline mcooley

  • Posts: 237
DF 500 grip?
« on: March 27, 2019, 07:57 AM »
This is for a future design I have to improve on the DF 500 handle during plunging. I am not talking about the handle on the fence but rather gripping the barrel. 

Curious then where most of you naturally grip the DF 500 barrel for both ease of use and accuracy? For example, there are a few places where your hand might naturally grab it and so I am curious under every day use where you find you have the most amount of control?

Thanks

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Offline Sparktrician

  • Posts: 3747
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2019, 08:27 AM »
You'll get better control and better plunging accuracy if you grasp the DF 500 by the power cord connector and hose connector at the end of the barrel and plunge slowly. 
- Willy -

 "Remember, a chip on the shoulder is a sure sign of wood higher up." - Brigham Young

Offline Birdhunter

  • Posts: 2481
  • Woodworker, Sportsman, Retired
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2019, 08:31 AM »
I usually hod the barrel just behind the switch with my right hand. My right thumb rests on the switch. I make the plunge more with my body than with the arm. This gives me better control than just shoving the tool into the wood.

I apply a little downward pressure on the top of the barrel and the left hand all at the same time. I can feel the tool settle in to the correct position.

Hope this helps.
Birdhunter

Offline mcooley

  • Posts: 237
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2019, 08:37 AM »
Yes info helps thanks and I suspect if I get enough responses there will be a couple different camps as to where people like holding and plunging from.

Offline DynaGlide

  • Posts: 369
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2019, 09:09 AM »
Position yourself so your hand is on the rear by the cord but you're pushing with your body around your hip. No need to go fast, even if it took 30s it's faster than any other method of making a mortise. When you're done plunging let it out fast.
@matts.garage

Offline deepcreek

  • Posts: 797
    • TimberFire Studio
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #5 on: March 27, 2019, 09:36 AM »
Years ago, I called Festool USA after having alignment issues when first using the DF 500.

The product specialist called me back and said don't grip the barrel even though it seems natural.

He told me to keep a very firm grip on the handle by the fence and use a light grip to grasp the tool around the power cord connector at the end of the barrel.  Then be careful to push straight as you plunge.

This works!
Joe Adams
TimberFire Studio
Houston, Texas

http://www.facebook.com/timberfire

Online Dick Mahany

  • Posts: 432
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #6 on: March 27, 2019, 09:41 AM »
Years ago, I called Festool USA after having alignment issues when first using the DF 500.

The product specialist called me back and said don't grip the barrel even though it seems natural.

He told me to keep a very firm grip on the handle by the fence and use a light grip to grasp the tool around the power cord connector at the end of the barrel.  Then be careful to push straight as you plunge.

This works!

Yes.  This is also what I have been doing although intuitively it really didn't seem right to be gripping a power cord connector.  I have had the best results with this method.  I also let it dwell for a few seconds at full plunge depth to assure complete dust extraction.

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 5782
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #7 on: March 27, 2019, 10:08 AM »

He told me to keep a very firm grip on the handle by the fence and use a light grip to grasp the tool around the power cord connector at the end of the barrel.  Then be careful to push straight as you plunge.


+1   Position the tool, turn on the tool and place your hand at the rear of the tool. Plunge

Check this video out starting at the 2:20 mark.


Offline DynaGlide

  • Posts: 369
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #8 on: March 27, 2019, 10:28 AM »
Since we're sharing Domino tricks. .something I learned in class: instead of pushing the power switch, pinch it with your thumb and index fingers. It keeps the domino from accidentally pushing forward and plunging when you don't want it to. This is especially useful for vertical plunges.
@matts.garage

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 923
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #9 on: March 27, 2019, 10:29 AM »
Position yourself so your hand is on the rear by the cord but you're pushing with your body around your hip. No need to go fast, even if it took 30s it's faster than any other method of making a mortise. When you're done plunging let it out fast.

Bold mine.

This (which gives me great control over the machine, keeping the fence registration steady) except that I hold the end of the barrel, not the cord plug itself, and let it out slowly, to prevent the machine from "springing" back violently. I do not hold the machine by the cord as seen in the Festool video above (2:34 or 2:49). I can't imagine how my thumb would feel after cutting 100 mortises with that kind of push! [eek]

By the way, I don't think the aux. (fence) handle is well designed for making vertical cuts. See my other post about using the anti-slip spray to increase registration grip when doing vertical mortising.

« Last Edit: March 27, 2019, 10:53 AM by ChuckM »

Offline jobsworth

  • Posts: 5551
  • Festool Baby.....
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #10 on: March 27, 2019, 11:14 AM »
make sure the domino is setting correctly on the piece. I have found if im not careful it doesnt sit all the way on the piece and get a badly placed mortise, hold the knob down while plunging and rear hand pushing by plug it cable at a very sloooowwwwww plunge rate. it seems to give a tighter fit when the plunge rate is slowwww.  While plunging keep a eye on the fence making sure its flush with the piece.

Dont ask me how I know these things

Offline mcooley

  • Posts: 237
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #11 on: March 27, 2019, 11:34 AM »
I think a lot of people find balancing the machine from as far away from the fence as possible helps, hence, the idea of keeping the hand back near the cord. Problem is the machine does not intuitively tell you where to grip it. In fact, if anything one would assume gripping close to the dust shroud might be ideal but only to find that the balance is off and one's knuckles often interfere with the shroud when plunged etc. A smart ergo grip would serve a couple functions like better balance, more accurate forward motion when plunging and an easy way to keep the tool from spinning out when placed hastily on a smooth work surface (with the hose attached it often feels like the tool can end up on the ground in a split second). 


Offline Jiggy Joiner

  • Posts: 228
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #12 on: March 27, 2019, 03:12 PM »
I’ve also found the most comfortable and best technique, is to grip at the back of the power cord. It’s also probably habit, as that’s how I operated the plunge on a biscuit joiner too.

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 5782
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #13 on: March 27, 2019, 03:18 PM »

Interestingly enough, I found an early Festool video with the pin fence, and the demonstrator was gripping the DF 500 in the middle of the barrel, fairly close to the switch. [tongue]

Offline Jiggy Joiner

  • Posts: 228
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2019, 03:23 PM »

Interestingly enough, I found an early Festool video with the pin fence, and the demonstrator was gripping the DF 500 in the middle of the barrel, fairly close to the switch. [tongue]

In that case Cheese, he was obviously a newby!  [big grin]

Offline Doug S

  • Posts: 417
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #15 on: March 27, 2019, 03:31 PM »

Interestingly enough, I found an early Festool video with the pin fence, and the demonstrator was gripping the DF 500 in the middle of the barrel, fairly close to the switch. [tongue]

I grip mine round the barrel, if I hold it at the back I feel I have less control and more chance of slightly lifting or lowering it when plunging.

Mine is an early model with the pin fence though, maybe it changes the balance  [wink]

Online Mario Turcot

  • Posts: 832
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #16 on: March 28, 2019, 09:18 AM »
Horizontal application: From 0 to 45 deg I hold it like @4:20 in Cheese video. Two fingers on the connector. Apply 90% force on the fence and 10% on the plunge.

Vertical application: It's really situational and bit tricky to not say awkward. The most important is to get the board at the right height so you have full control of your body weight on the workbench/table. In vertical application I would rather hold the barrel, unless I am positioned in front of the tool instead of from the back.
Mario

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 923
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #17 on: March 28, 2019, 10:10 AM »
Horizontal application: From 0 to 45 deg I hold it like @4:20 in Cheese video.
Snip.
Exactly, causing no potential damage to the plug itself or fatigue on the thumb.

Offline grbmds

  • Posts: 1867
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #18 on: March 28, 2019, 02:43 PM »
Everyone has their own way, but I have found that, when I hold it back where the connector is, I occasionally put downward pressure on the back end of the tool, thereby raising the cut a tiny amount sometimes. Therefore, with horizontal cuts, I the hand on the back is farther toward the cutting side of the tool. The other hand, of course, is holding the front down. Works for me best.
Randy

Offline Jiggy Joiner

  • Posts: 228
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #19 on: March 28, 2019, 03:18 PM »
Maybe an extra handle option might have been a good design, like the grip handle on an angle grinder. The rear of the barrel could have a threaded insert, and a handle could be screwed on?

I know biscuit joiners don’t have these, but the the nature of a biscuit joiner requires slightly less pressure and prescision.

I get on fine with the 500, but I know some wrestle a bit and thought another handle might help, similar to how the 700 rear handle helps?

Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #20 on: March 28, 2019, 03:38 PM »
Topic has been up before but I never really got much of a response to my solution for an added grip.
FOG:ers probably don't think it is fancy enough. ;)

http://festoolownersgroup.com/festool-jigs-tool-enhancements/domino-df500-frankengrip/msg395480/#msg395480

I have used it a few years now with zero issues and this very day I was joining acoustic trim/panels and really enjoyed my add on grip. It really saves the underarm from fatigue and for drop down plunges it adds stability. It is rock solid and after a few years use and abuse it hasn't shifted a bit even though I swing it around by the handle all the time.

Horizontal plunging works the same and I actually think it works even better since the forward momentum really pushes the Domino against the fence at the correct angle whereas you might tilt it up slightly grabbing it down by the cord if you are not used to the machine or simply not careful enough.

After comparing my unit to my colleagues unmodified unit I can say that I think the Domino DF500 is ergonomically flawed.

I also have the Domino XL 700 and it is heavy to handle but for actual plunging / mortising I prefer it over the DF500 - that is before I modified it to make it more like the bigger sibling. I was going to try to make a fancier handle but I never got around to it and after a few thousand mortises after adding the grip I am reluctant to change anything since it simply works so well.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2019, 03:46 PM by Henrik R / Pingvinlakrits »
Festool:  CS 50EB precisio set, Domino DF500, DF XL 700, OFK500 edge router, OF1010 router EHL65 planer, CTL Mini/Midi Vac, CTL 26 vac MFT800+1080 tables
DSC-AG Grinder,  RAS 115
Rotex 150, ETS EC 150/5 RTS400
Drills: T18, BHC18, CXS.
SysLite KAL II, SYS Rock.
Sys- and Sortainers galore.

Line up has been reduced with the introduction of Mafell/Metabo tools. Red Green and Blue do mix well in the shop.

Offline Doug S

  • Posts: 417
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #21 on: March 28, 2019, 03:43 PM »

I get on fine with the 500, but I know some wrestle a bit and thought another handle might help, similar to how the 700 rear handle helps?

I use the 700 by pushing from the back, the handle feels wrong because it is higher than the cutter. I only use the handle for carrying it.

Offline Jiggy Joiner

  • Posts: 228
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #22 on: March 28, 2019, 03:49 PM »
Topic has been up before but I never really got much of a response to my solution for an added grip.
FOG:ers probably don't think it is fancy enough. ;)

http://festoolownersgroup.com/festool-jigs-tool-enhancements/domino-df500-frankengrip/msg395480/#msg395480

I have used it a few years now with zero issues and this very day I was joining acoustic trim/panels and really enjoyed my add on grip. It really saves the underarm from fatigue and for drop down plunges it adds stability.

After comparing my unit to my colleagues unmodified unit I can say the Domino DF500 is ergonomically flawed.

I guess all said and done, we all have our own unique ways with some things, even down to holding a knife and fork?

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 923
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #23 on: March 28, 2019, 03:50 PM »
Topic has been up before but I never really got much of a response to my solution for an added grip.
FOG:ers probably don't think it is fancy enough. ;)

I have used it a few years now with zero issues and this very day I was joining acoustic trim/panels and really enjoyed my add on grip. It really saves the underarm from fatigue and for drop down plunges it adds stability.

After comparing my unit to my colleagues unmodified unit I can say the Domino DF500 is ergonomically flawed.
That additional handle of yours is an interesting take, though I can't form an opinion on it unless I try one. I have no issues with the current handle as is. I don't like the DF700 handle at all as it is is not in line with the cutting action.

To me, the design flaw lies not in the barrel but in the aux (fence) handle which does not allow you to get the machine a good grip on the workpiece when making vertical cuts. I am thinking about replacing it with a shop-made loop handle (like the DF700's) for vertical mortising. That way, you can hold the machine down on the work.

Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #24 on: March 28, 2019, 03:52 PM »

I get on fine with the 500, but I know some wrestle a bit and thought another handle might help, similar to how the 700 rear handle helps?

I use the 700 by pushing from the back, the handle feels wrong because it is higher than the cutter. I only use the handle for carrying it.

I push the 700 from the back of the handle, works fine for me but I get what you are saying.

On the Frankengrip DF500 the balance is actually better and it really helps keeping it steadier than without. I've done 7-800 freehand mortises last couple of weeks with the DF500 and I've only missed _two_ of them (one of them today, error due to awkward positioning of body/machine and workpiece...) though they have all been fairly critical in placement. None of my misses ruined the work piece but I had to glue one up and redo.
Festool:  CS 50EB precisio set, Domino DF500, DF XL 700, OFK500 edge router, OF1010 router EHL65 planer, CTL Mini/Midi Vac, CTL 26 vac MFT800+1080 tables
DSC-AG Grinder,  RAS 115
Rotex 150, ETS EC 150/5 RTS400
Drills: T18, BHC18, CXS.
SysLite KAL II, SYS Rock.
Sys- and Sortainers galore.

Line up has been reduced with the introduction of Mafell/Metabo tools. Red Green and Blue do mix well in the shop.

Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #25 on: March 28, 2019, 03:53 PM »
Topic has been up before but I never really got much of a response to my solution for an added grip.
FOG:ers probably don't think it is fancy enough. ;)

http://festoolownersgroup.com/festool-jigs-tool-enhancements/domino-df500-frankengrip/msg395480/#msg395480

I have used it a few years now with zero issues and this very day I was joining acoustic trim/panels and really enjoyed my add on grip. It really saves the underarm from fatigue and for drop down plunges it adds stability.

After comparing my unit to my colleagues unmodified unit I can say the Domino DF500 is ergonomically flawed.

I guess all said and done, we all have our own unique ways with some things, even down to holding a knife and fork?

Yes, of course. :) But I can't see how anyone can think the Domino DF500 is an ergonomical masterpiece.
Festool:  CS 50EB precisio set, Domino DF500, DF XL 700, OFK500 edge router, OF1010 router EHL65 planer, CTL Mini/Midi Vac, CTL 26 vac MFT800+1080 tables
DSC-AG Grinder,  RAS 115
Rotex 150, ETS EC 150/5 RTS400
Drills: T18, BHC18, CXS.
SysLite KAL II, SYS Rock.
Sys- and Sortainers galore.

Line up has been reduced with the introduction of Mafell/Metabo tools. Red Green and Blue do mix well in the shop.

Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #26 on: March 28, 2019, 03:57 PM »
Topic has been up before but I never really got much of a response to my solution for an added grip.
FOG:ers probably don't think it is fancy enough. ;)

I have used it a few years now with zero issues and this very day I was joining acoustic trim/panels and really enjoyed my add on grip. It really saves the underarm from fatigue and for drop down plunges it adds stability.

After comparing my unit to my colleagues unmodified unit I can say the Domino DF500 is ergonomically flawed.
That additional handle of yours is an interesting take, though I can't form an opinion on it unless I try one. I have no issues with the current handle as is. I don't like the DF700 handle at all as it is is not in line with the cutting action.

To me, the design flaw lies not in the barrel but in the aux (fence) handle which does not allow you to get the machine a good grip on the workpiece when making vertical cuts. I am thinking about replacing it with a shop-made loop handle (like the DF700's) for vertical mortising. That way, you can hold the machine down on the work.

Yes, I agree. The main reason for putting on the extra grip was for vertical mortising enabling me to steady the DF500 way better for horizontal plunging. It also helps steady the machine when using the on/off switch which makes it a bit too easy to accidentally plunge into the workpiece when starting the machine.

With a rafters square I can line up the machine and hold it by the added grip and help balance it out when doing plunges further in along a line of a shelf/cabinet.

The grip I added is simple to remove without damaging the machine and it is dead easy to restore the machine.

EDIT: the grip might not be for everyone but it has really improved the handling for me. I am a high volume Domino user at times and before adding the grip my underarm was straining a bit if I did 20-80 mortises one session - that is all gone now.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2019, 04:00 PM by Henrik R / Pingvinlakrits »
Festool:  CS 50EB precisio set, Domino DF500, DF XL 700, OFK500 edge router, OF1010 router EHL65 planer, CTL Mini/Midi Vac, CTL 26 vac MFT800+1080 tables
DSC-AG Grinder,  RAS 115
Rotex 150, ETS EC 150/5 RTS400
Drills: T18, BHC18, CXS.
SysLite KAL II, SYS Rock.
Sys- and Sortainers galore.

Line up has been reduced with the introduction of Mafell/Metabo tools. Red Green and Blue do mix well in the shop.

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 923
Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #27 on: March 28, 2019, 04:09 PM »

On the Frankengrip DF500 the balance is actually better and it really helps keeping it steadier than without. I've done 7-800 freehand mortises last couple of weeks
Your additional handle would make perfect sense for that high number of cuts.

Re: DF 500 grip?
« Reply #28 on: March 29, 2019, 03:19 AM »
Chuck; yes, at first I was adding the handle since I was doing a lot of shelving and grew tired of the Domino meandering in idle while trying to align everything with the machine running.

I have since improved my technique as well as approach to those applications but the grip is one of the steps in ensuring a better workflow. The extra weight is minimal and is offset by better ergonomics. The XL700 can't really benefit in the same way since it is a front heavy machine even with the handle.

For one-off boxes and carcasses I don't "mind" the regular Domino. But, after using my colleagues DF500 on site for the very same things I do it made it clear for me that my simple add on makes even the regular workflow a bit better for both horizontal and vertical plunging.

 I am contemplating an even more streamlined solution - if I can think of one. There has been a price hike on Festool gear this year but even so a dealer had a "firesale" on a few items, the Domino DF500 included which brought the price down to about what you pay for them second hand (!). The number of units they had on sale gave me the impression that Festool had a hard time selling the DF500 without the biscuit-SYS since the units on sale were the kit without them. I don't mind as I have both the Domino biscuit SYS as well as a storage box with compartments for my surplus Domino biscuits in the workshop so I didn't want to pay for more biscuits anyway.

I have started sourcing stuff for a more svelte grip for the new DF500 but time is scarce at the moment.  Since I use the DF500 on two different sites at the moment (not including the workshop) I figured it actually makes sense to get another for permanent residence in the new workshop we are moving into on the 15th of April.  8)
Festool:  CS 50EB precisio set, Domino DF500, DF XL 700, OFK500 edge router, OF1010 router EHL65 planer, CTL Mini/Midi Vac, CTL 26 vac MFT800+1080 tables
DSC-AG Grinder,  RAS 115
Rotex 150, ETS EC 150/5 RTS400
Drills: T18, BHC18, CXS.
SysLite KAL II, SYS Rock.
Sys- and Sortainers galore.

Line up has been reduced with the introduction of Mafell/Metabo tools. Red Green and Blue do mix well in the shop.