Author Topic: MFS Substitutes  (Read 22882 times)

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Offline HarveyWildes

  • Posts: 603
MFS Substitutes
« on: January 20, 2017, 11:59 AM »
Has anyone discovered a good way to cobble together a good MFS substitute, now that Festool has discontinued the MFS jigs?

I just had a use for MFS today, and ended up gluing up jig that would do the job, but it's not going to last, and it's only as accurate as it needs to be.

Looks like Trend has a system out there that looks a lot like MFS for about $100 pounds, but with narrower, less supportive extrusions - the router requires an "anti-tilt shoe".  Has anyone used that?  If so, what did you think of it?

Veritas has a new extrusion (quad track??) that looks like it could have promise for putting something together because it has a wide dimension that could be used to support the router (although not as wide and supportive as MFS) and a narrow side with track that could be used for connections.  After looking at that track, I thought you might be able to put it together with the right connectors from 80/20 line and get something that would connect pieces without getting in the way of the router.

Any other solutions out there that people have had success with?  One of the obvious requirements is the ability to keep precise 90 degree angles on the connectors.  What are the other requirements of a good MFS replacement?

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Offline copcarcollector

  • Posts: 1363
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2017, 05:04 PM »

Offline ear3

  • Posts: 3402
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2017, 06:06 PM »
Never used the Trend, but have heard complaints about the narrowness.

Another feature that is a must is clampability -- if you rig something out of 80/20, though, you might be able to cover that.

Has anyone discovered a good way to cobble together a good MFS substitute, now that Festool has discontinued the MFS jigs?

I just had a use for MFS today, and ended up gluing up jig that would do the job, but it's not going to last, and it's only as accurate as it needs to be.

Looks like Trend has a system out there that looks a lot like MFS for about $100 pounds, but with narrower, less supportive extrusions - the router requires an "anti-tilt shoe".  Has anyone used that?  If so, what did you think of it?

Veritas has a new extrusion (quad track??) that looks like it could have promise for putting something together because it has a wide dimension that could be used to support the router (although not as wide and supportive as MFS) and a narrow side with track that could be used for connections.  After looking at that track, I thought you might be able to put it together with the right connectors from 80/20 line and get something that would connect pieces without getting in the way of the router.

Any other solutions out there that people have had success with?  One of the obvious requirements is the ability to keep precise 90 degree angles on the connectors.  What are the other requirements of a good MFS replacement?
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Offline morgan

  • Posts: 39
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #3 on: January 20, 2017, 08:51 PM »
This always seemed to be the more economical alternative to me.  Of course it doesn't have the same graduations,  but some setup blocks or a story stick would suffice.

http://virutex.com/templateforstairs-pfp.aspx

Offline rst

  • Posts: 1569
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #4 on: January 20, 2017, 09:11 PM »
I bought the two Virutex vacuum clamps before the Festools were made available and found them to be great value.  I've since bought
the Festool vac sys' as they are more versatile.  I'd be interested to see if the extrusions were identical to the MFS as they seem incredibly similar.  I see no reason that they could not work the same.  It would not be hard to make the sliding insert for the copy guides.  I plan to make a larger version to accept one of the bigger ODs so I could use larger diameter bits. for my MFS.

Offline Bohdan

  • Posts: 796
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #5 on: January 20, 2017, 09:19 PM »
That is what it was before Festool added the scales, the trammelling accessory, rebadged it and jacked the price.

However I do think that the scales are a significant improvement and worth the price hike.

Offline tjskinny

  • Posts: 69
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #6 on: January 20, 2017, 09:30 PM »
I haven't found these for sale anywhere yet...  but look familiar?

http://www.virutex.es/productes/?accio=producte&id=145&lg=en



Offline Cheese

  • Posts: 3711
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #8 on: January 20, 2017, 11:02 PM »
My first knee-jerk reaction is that they were the original suppliers for Festool. That could be a valuable alternative source, as Festool has discontinued MFS sales in NA.

Offline ELB

  • Posts: 11
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #9 on: January 21, 2017, 12:09 AM »
Woodpeckers supertrack?

Offline Holmz

  • Posts: 4010
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #10 on: January 21, 2017, 12:09 AM »
My first knee-jerk reaction is that they were the original suppliers for Festool. That could be a valuable alternative source, as Festool has discontinued MFS sales in NA.

They very likely could have been the supplier.

Offline ScotF

  • Posts: 2349
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #11 on: January 21, 2017, 12:28 AM »
My first knee-jerk reaction is that they were the original suppliers for Festool. That could be a valuable alternative source, as Festool has discontinued MFS sales in NA.

It seems these are being discontinued elsewhere too - I think that the UK are not available now.

Offline Cheese

  • Posts: 3711
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #12 on: January 21, 2017, 12:39 AM »
It seems these are being discontinued elsewhere too - I think that the UK are not available now.

Well that's interesting...a post several months ago from Festool, stated that they were not discontinuing this item in Europe.  [eek]

Offline Peter_C

  • Posts: 462
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #13 on: January 21, 2017, 01:35 AM »
I have a Trend jig setup I just bought, but haven't had a chance to use it yet. I was surprised by the fact the rails are so narrow on the top. The measurement strip is also loose and slides around.

Woodpeckers supertrack?
That was my first thought too. I wonder if a few emails and/or phone calls to Woodpecker wouldn't have them engraving their SuperTrack with measurements. I know it is possible because I have their PGS guides that are laser engraved.
http://www.woodpeck.com/supertrack.html



I don't understand why the MFS was discontinued as there should be enough profit, but obviously not.

Offline Alex

  • Posts: 5496
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #14 on: January 21, 2017, 02:18 AM »
It seems these are being discontinued elsewhere too - I think that the UK are not available now.

Well that's interesting...a post several months ago from Festool, stated that they were not discontinuing this item in Europe.  [eek]

All Festool websites in Europe still show it as part of the catalogue.

Offline PatR

  • Posts: 184
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #15 on: January 21, 2017, 03:15 AM »
I bought the MFS 700 from FFX just before Christmas and will order a 400 once they come back in stock. The MFS system is listed in the 2017 Festool catalogue but it is difficult to find dealers who have them on the shelf. They are either unavailable or to order only. There are a few dealers with the odd rail or tray but supply is patchy.

I suspect that it is a combination of low demand/high price that makes it an order only item. The MFS looks very much like a re-badged Spanish Vitrulex PF template so I will get in touch with the UK distributor to check their compatibility, availability and price.

Cracking system, had the Trend and sold it as it was not accurate and too narrow but the MFS is outrageously expensive or should that be reassuringly expensive. A Stella question!

Offline Corwin

  • Posts: 2418
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #16 on: January 21, 2017, 03:55 AM »
My first knee-jerk reaction is that they were the original suppliers for Festool. That could be a valuable alternative source, as Festool has discontinued MFS sales in NA.

They very likely could have been the supplier.

Virutex's website links their 2015 catalog which contains the PF400 & PF700 router templates and indicates that they were [then] NEW items. So, while these do look almost identical to the Festool MFS pieces, the timing doesn't coincide with them been the original supplier to Festool.

If they are still in business, and still offer this product, looks like a candidate for a group purchase...  [blink]
Looks like your rabbit joint is a hare off! ;)

Offline GarryMartin

  • Posts: 1637
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #17 on: January 21, 2017, 05:49 AM »
My first knee-jerk reaction is that they were the original suppliers for Festool. That could be a valuable alternative source, as Festool has discontinued MFS sales in NA.

They very likely could have been the supplier.

GEAT were the originators of the design. They signed a deal with Festool in 2004 at the same time ceasing sale under their own name.

"Since April 1, 2004, Festool has taken over the sales of our GEAT SDG 3 milling template.  This is offered with a modified profile of the rails under the designation MFS."

http://festoolownersgroup.com/festool-tools-accessories/mfs-notes-on-the-mfs/

Offline Bohdan

  • Posts: 796
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #18 on: January 21, 2017, 06:53 AM »
Could be that the Geat deal has expired and Virutex has picked it up.

Offline gunnyr

  • Posts: 78
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #19 on: January 21, 2017, 08:19 AM »
Virutex seems to offer a version of the MFS template in the US as a stair template for $399:

Virutex Stair Template

I'm curious if they sell the individual profiles.  I have messaged them to ask.
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Offline greg mann

  • Posts: 1797
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #20 on: January 21, 2017, 10:13 AM »
Great were the originators, for sure, but their extrusions were different. In the first year of Festool's introduction their catalogue actually illustrated Geat profiles in lieu of the revised Festool design. I am speculating here but it may be that the Festool extrusions were made by Festo. Extrusions are used extensively in their pneumatic product line so it would seem to make sense for them to be a source. Just guessing again but it seems possible to me that a decision was made by Festool to phase out of the product, at least in NA because of low sales. It also may be that Festo is now selling the extrusions to Virutex with Festool's blessing. If Festool decided the product did not warrant continued marketing but negotiated a new home for it then that is a good thing. Even if I am wrong about Festo being the extrusion supplier someone is making them and they would be happy to have a customer, Virutex, to buy them. It can also be argued that the product fits more neatly within their product line; witness their offering it configured in a tread and riser template configuration.

Of course I could be totally wrong on all counts. [2cents]
Greg Mann
Oakland, Michigan

Offline Cheese

  • Posts: 3711
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #21 on: January 21, 2017, 12:16 PM »

Offline HarveyWildes

  • Posts: 603
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #22 on: January 21, 2017, 05:04 PM »
Virutex is a Spanish company located in Barcelona.  Coincidentally, I'll be touring Spain this summer, with stops in Barcelona, Madrid, and Seville.  Anyone familiar enough with Spain to recommend where I might find a retailer that sells Virutex stuff?

Offline TheSergeant

  • Posts: 74
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #23 on: January 22, 2017, 11:59 PM »
Of all the MFS clones I've seen Justin's is pretty much the simplest to make.  I'm sure it works phenomenally as well. 

http://festoolownersgroup.com/festool-jigs-tool-enhancements/homemade-mfs-600-router-template/

Offline JavierMoreno

  • Posts: 67
  • Journalist and amateur woodworker
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #24 on: January 23, 2017, 12:40 AM »
In Madrid, you could visit Comercial Pazos.

http://www.comercialpazos.com/virutex-pf400-conjunto-prolongacion-plantillas-fresado.html

Address:C/ Embajadores, 129, 28045, Madrid 
Email:comercialpazos@comercialpazos.com 
Phone:+34 915 279 761


Virutex is a Spanish company located in Barcelona.  Coincidentally, I'll be touring Spain this summer, with stops in Barcelona, Madrid, and Seville.  Anyone familiar enough with Spain to recommend where I might find a retailer that sells Virutex stuff?
Apologizes for my very bad English

Offline HarveyWildes

  • Posts: 603
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #25 on: January 23, 2017, 12:54 AM »
In Madrid, you could visit Comercial Pazos.

http://www.comercialpazos.com/virutex-pf400-conjunto-prolongacion-plantillas-fresado.html

Address:C/ Embajadores, 129, 28045, Madrid 
Email:comercialpazos@comercialpazos.com 
Phone:+34 915 279 761

Thanks!  We'll see if tour and my wife will let me get close enough to the woodworking store to pick up a set.

Offline HarveyWildes

  • Posts: 603
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #26 on: January 23, 2017, 12:57 AM »
Of all the MFS clones I've seen Justin's is pretty much the simplest to make.  I'm sure it works phenomenally as well. 

http://festoolownersgroup.com/festool-jigs-tool-enhancements/homemade-mfs-600-router-template/

That's the kind of creativity I was wondering about.  If I can't pick up a Virutex set this summer, or if I need something sooner, this looks like a possibility.

Offline Holmz

  • Posts: 4010
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #27 on: January 23, 2017, 04:44 AM »
In Madrid, you could visit Comercial Pazos.

http://www.comercialpazos.com/virutex-pf400-conjunto-prolongacion-plantillas-fresado.html

Address:C/ Embajadores, 129, 28045, Madrid 
Email:comercialpazos@comercialpazos.com 
Phone:+34 915 279 761

Thanks!  We'll see if tour and my wife will let me get close enough to the woodworking store to pick up a set.

Thanks @JavierMoreno

@HarveyWildes Or contact Virtulux and see how many are required for a direct buy?
Or maybe enquire with ToolNut to see if they would organise it?

Offline ddb

  • Posts: 17
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #28 on: January 23, 2017, 06:51 AM »
My first knee-jerk reaction is that they were the original suppliers for Festool. That could be a valuable alternative source, as Festool has discontinued MFS sales in NA.

It seems these are being discontinued elsewhere too - I think that the UK are not available now.

Do you have any further info on this? I ordered an MFS400 and expansion rods with my dealer late November, and have not yet received them. The dealer says they're in backorder, because Festool still has to produce them (for some reason).
Just spoke to him last week, and he surely didn't mention that the MFS would be discontinued. (This is for Europe, Belgium though)

Cheers.

Offline Milvus

  • Posts: 13
Re: MFS Substitutes
« Reply #29 on: January 23, 2017, 10:37 AM »
In Madrid, you could visit Comercial Pazos.

http://www.comercialpazos.com/virutex-pf400-conjunto-prolongacion-plantillas-fresado.html

Address:C/ Embajadores, 129, 28045, Madrid 
Email:comercialpazos@comercialpazos.com 
Phone:+34 915 279 761

Thanks!  We'll see if tour and my wife will let me get close enough to the woodworking store to pick up a set.

Thanks @JavierMoreno

@HarveyWildes Or contact Virtulux and see how many are required for a direct buy?
Or maybe enquire with ToolNut to see if they would organise it?

Hi HarveyWildes. I live in Madrid and I love Comercial Pazos, but be aware that it is a quite specialiced but small shop. They sell the template for sure, as they are Virutex dealers, but if you are thinking of buying it there, be sure to call them some days before, as they probably don't stock it. Just in case you don't speak spanish, PM me before your hollidays and I will contact them on your behalf.

By the way, it is not in a quite tourist place, but it is not far away from the center of Madrid.

Regards.