Author Topic: DIY MFT/3 - questions w.r.t. aluminum profile and height underneath  (Read 474 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline whgmkeller

  • Posts: 1
Hi there. Willem here, from Netherlands, Europe. I'm a new forum member, did only just discover this forum a week or so ago. Have been reading useful stuff already, now I'd like to pose some questions.

I like to build wooden stuff, just as a hobby. Am now working on a new workbench and have plans for a BBQ cabinet later on and lots more ideas :-)

The workbench is 2 meters long x 1 meter wide. I'm thinking the height will be somewhere between 90 and 93 cm's. In inches: 78,74" long x 39,37" wide x 35,43" high.

I'd like to have an mft/3 style top (will probably use the PARF system for that). But I don't think I will use the whole top as an mft/3 as I also have to do some hammering, nailing and other actions that take force, and I don't think an mft/3 MDS top is suitable for that. So I'm thinking I will simply divide the top in two areas: 1 x 1 meters mft/3 style and 1 x 1 meters hardwood.

This leaves me with two questions:

1 - The original mft/3 has aluminum profiles on all sides. I'd like to use these as well as this gives me the possibility to use Festool tools such as a guide rail or so.
In my intended setup, I can only have profiles on three sides as the fourth side would be sitting against the other hardwood part of the top.
Would this pose a problem? On all pictures of the mft/3 I've seen, people only seems to be using three sides.

2 - The original mft/3 is open from underneath. Even when you use it folded (sitting on the floor), the aluminum profiles create a space underneath the top.
In my intended setup my diy mft/3 would be sitting on top of the workbench, with no space underneath.
Would this pose a problem? I would of course not be able to clamp tools down from the underside, but I've read that there are clamps (PARF?) that can be tightened from above?
Or would I need to build a frame with the profiles on the sides and the mft/3 style top, and sit that on top of the workbench?

I'm looking forward to your suggestions :-) Thanks !

Willem





Festool USA does not pre-approve the contents of this website nor endorse the application or use of any Festool product in any way other than in the manner described in the Festool Instruction Manual. To reduce the risk of serious injury and/or damage to your Festool product, always read, understand and follow all warnings and instructions in your Festool product's Instruction Manual. Although Festool strives for accuracy in the website material, the website may contain inaccuracies. Festool makes no representations about the accuracy, reliability, completeness or timeliness of the material on this website or about the results to be obtained from using the website. Festool and its affiliates cannot be responsible for improper postings or your reliance on the website's material. Your use of any material contained on this website is entirely at your own risk. The content contained on this site is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice.


Offline ElectricFeet

  • Posts: 32
Re (2): the Part Super Dog can be tightened from above. Video here:

To make the holes, you may have already seen this video:

More interesting to my mind is this isometric design:

While you can get away with the underneath not being easily accessible, there needs to be a space there, so that you can insert parts and clamps. Otherwise, there's little point in having the holes in the first place. And if there is space, then a question remains: how will you clean underneath, if it's not accessible?

In summary, to my mind, some -- accessible -- space is necessary.

Offline Corwin

  • Posts: 2558
1 - The original mft/3 has aluminum profiles on all sides. I'd like to use these as well as this gives me the possibility to use Festool tools such as a guide rail or so.
In my intended setup, I can only have profiles on three sides as the fourth side would be sitting against the other hardwood part of the top.
Would this pose a problem? On all pictures of the mft/3 I've seen, people only seems to be using three sides.

No, this would not be a problem. However, the only reason to mount the aluminum profiles on your top is to use the stock MFT hardware; the guide rail supports and the protractor head for the fence along with the fence clamp. The costs for the aluminum profiles, guide rail supports, protractor head, fence and fence clamp will be rather expensive. Instead, you could choose to use something like the PARF system that would replace the need for any of these stock MFT parts.

2 - The original mft/3 is open from underneath. Even when you use it folded (sitting on the floor), the aluminum profiles create a space underneath the top.
In my intended setup my diy mft/3 would be sitting on top of the workbench, with no space underneath.
Would this pose a problem? I would of course not be able to clamp tools down from the underside, but I've read that there are clamps (PARF?) that can be tightened from above?
Or would I need to build a frame with the profiles on the sides and the mft/3 style top, and sit that on top of the workbench?

Yes, this would be a problem. The PARF dogs that clamp from above look like they require some space below. And the Festool clamps will also require some space. I totally agree with the prior poster's comment that without space underneath, "there's little point in having the holes in the first place" -- a top without space below might as well have T-track embedded and skip the system holes altogether.

I suggest that you skip ALL the stock MFT parts. If your top is to set on top of a bench, you could make something like the Ron Paulk bench that can set on your bench. Another option is the David Stanton top. Either would give you the needed space underneath. And neither would need the Festool parts.

On Edit: Another option is one that would not require accessible space below. Do as another member did here and bolt the stock MFT guide rail supports to the sides of the surround for your top. You could then embed a couple lengths of T-track parallel to there the guide rail will be to mount you fence and adjust it square to the guide rail.
« Last Edit: July 03, 2018, 08:34 PM by Corwin »
Looks like your rabbit joint is a hare off! ;)

Online GoingMyWay

  • Posts: 317
I thought I could try to create something like a custom MFT/3, but then when I started looking at the prices for the MFT/3 hardware I discovered that it was just going to be cheaper and easier to buy an actual MFT/3 and that's exactly what I did.  I bought an MFT/3 back in May.  The biggest features of an actual MFT/3 that I was looking for were the rail supports, the fence, and the ability to clamp items vertically along the outside profile.  Most everything else could be replicated with just a pair of dogs and a custom drilled top.
Inquiring Minds Want to Know