Having trouble with your Festool power tool? Well, we're here to help you. Before posting to the forum, give us a chance to diagnose and resolve your issue. In the U.S. and Canada, call us toll-free at 888-337-8600 on Monday-Friday between 8a-5p EST or contact us via email at service@festoolusa.com. For other countries, please visit http://www.festool.com for contact information for your local Festool service department.

Author Topic: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.  (Read 92615 times)

0 Members and 2 Guests are viewing this topic.

Online vkumar

  • Posts: 381
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #240 on: January 16, 2019, 12:26 PM »

Lol, we retrofitted our entire country decades ago. Now pure savings. Double the power over the same copper, half the copper for the same power or half the losses with the same copper.  [tongue]
@Coen you are implying that there is something inherently superior to 220 V power. Just like the Brits think that driving on the left side of the road is superior.  You have to realize that these are just standards. And as @SouthRider said "Because EVERY OTHER TOOL MADE BY EVERYBODY ELSE lasts for endless years on 110V in the US, and we don't need to retrofit the largest consumer market in the world over one bad product." And the last point I will make is that Netherlands is 5 % of US population , and 0.4 % of US land area. You can convert from one system to another quite easily, not so in the US. And this is the main reason why the conversion to metric is difficult.
Vijay Kumar

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 duburban

  • Posts: 1037
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #241 on: January 16, 2019, 06:13 PM »
This is a great post that gets to the current heart of this issue. Well put.

I must admit that the repeated threads on Kapex motor failure have affected me.

I've had my Kapex going on ten years and originally used it to trim out a house I built for my Mom.  It was Craftsman style with custom molding and block paneling so lots of work.

Now my Kapex lives a life of luxury in a shop environment for a few cuts here and there.  Definitely not every day and often not even weekly.

Yesterday, I had to make a couple hundred cuts for a large project.

With each start of the motor, I found myself worrying if this would be the cut where it died.

I know it's irrational but the perception is there.

Managing perception is as important as managing reality.

In my opinion, Festool's silence on the matter has hurt its reputation.
helper: i used a festool "circular saw" to do something simple and it made it really hard

me: exactly, it makes simple cuts complicated and complicated cuts simple

Offline Coen

  • Posts: 440
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #242 on: January 16, 2019, 06:28 PM »

Lol, we retrofitted our entire country decades ago. Now pure savings. Double the power over the same copper, half the copper for the same power or half the losses with the same copper.  [tongue]
@Coen you are implying that there is something inherently superior to 220 V power. Just like the Brits think that driving on the left side of the road is superior.  You have to realize that these are just standards. And as @SouthRider said "Because EVERY OTHER TOOL MADE BY EVERYBODY ELSE lasts for endless years on 110V in the US, and we don't need to retrofit the largest consumer market in the world over one bad product." And the last point I will make is that Netherlands is 5 % of US population , and 0.4 % of US land area. You can convert from one system to another quite easily, not so in the US. And this is the main reason why the conversion to metric is difficult.

Without devolving into a discussion about how the Americans kept the useless Imperial system from their former oppressors while we kept the metric system from a short French occupation...

20x more homes and population is the same relative work for conversion. Size at that point does not matter. Over the long run not adjusting is just gonna cost more. And yes, I don't only imply 230V superiority, it simply is superior. The cable losses are only 1/4th if using the same cables for the same amount of power.

Or look at what Japan has; both 50 and 60 Hz because in the 19th century two cities bought different generators...

We started out with Broad-gauge railway. Then when we reached the border we concluded that it was ultimately cheaper if you could just roll across it... and we converted everything to standard gauge. The Russians of course did not... and that's why it's still a pain to have freight trains from China to Europa.

But yes, conversion is often delayed. I definitely want to roll out your 1st amendment here. Something that can be done for free... but alas.  [crying]

Having said that all; it's not an excuse for a bad motor.

Offline SRSemenza

  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 8822
  • Finger Lakes Region, NY State , USA
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #243 on: January 16, 2019, 06:34 PM »
Lets not get too far into the OT marshland here.

Seth

Offline Cheese

  • Posts: 5995
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #244 on: January 16, 2019, 10:07 PM »
Lol, we retrofitted our entire country decades ago. Now pure savings. Double the power over the same copper, half the copper for the same power or half the losses with the same copper.  [tongue]


Having said that all; it's not an excuse for a bad motor.
[/quote]

I have to agree with that, the 120 vs 240 thing never really made any sense to me. So if you have leaky boots and are standing in water, and if you contact a 120v wire, it’ll take you twice as long to die as opposed to touching 240v wires? The 240 volt option is just so much cleaner. Anyone that deals with low voltage circuitry fully understands the wire gauge vs wire length vs  curent capacity conundrum.

And bottom line is, a bad motor is still a bad motor, and your feet should be held to the fire 🔥 because of that.

Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 494
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #245 on: January 16, 2019, 10:57 PM »
"I like to wonder why the US doesn't adopt 230 Vac and the metric system. After biting the bitter bullet once it's only savings. Or lead the way with 350 Vdc or something."

Because EVERY OTHER TOOL MADE BY EVERYBODY ELSE lasts for endless years on 110V in the US, and we don't need to retrofit the largest consumer market in the world over one bad product.

Lol, we retrofitted our entire country decades ago. Now pure savings. Double the power over the same copper, half the copper for the same power or half the losses with the same copper.  [tongue]

The US and our Canadian buddies don't need to retrofit anything.  99.9% of structures with electricity are 220-240VAC.   All houses in the US get both 120 and 240.  We just center tap it and get 120.  It's part of the evolution of the system (it was just 120V at one time). There hasn't been a push for the change because on the consumer level 120 work fine and is in theory safer due the the lower voltage. If you have been zapped by both, you prefer to be sapped by 120.   I'm not against fully going 240 (I'd like to see the change), but what gets lost in a lot of these threads is we have 240 now.  We just use it for large items like dryers, ovens, stoves, heating, air conditioning, welders, electric car chargers, etc.  We also have 240 plugs for low amp circuits,  just no one installs them. There is also confusion in code as to if you can have branch circuits with 240.    Since the number of items where 220 would be better than 120 is so few, there just isn't demand.

We also have 20amp 120 outlets.  They are even code for parts of the house.  You can plug both 15 and 20amp devices into these plugs.  So there is an infrastructure for 20amp, which would be great for these tools.  Yet I have never seen in my life a device with a 20amp plug on it.  An infrastructure install base of hundreds of millions of these plugs and they never get used.  I've tried to find devices that use a 20a plug and never found one.  So while going full 240 would be nice, we don't even use the 20a plugs as is, you aren't going to get support for it.

I think Festool could look at offering 20A models here. But that would mean beefing wiring up more in the tools.

The US is a 220-240V country just like Europe, we just ignore it most the time.  We have 3 phase power too, but it's only available to commercial users and/or the rare lucky person who has an existing 3P run going by their house they can connect into.

Festool could even offer some tools in 220-240 in the US. Most folks would have little issue wiring their shop up for them. People do it all ready with table saws and such.  But a contractor going into a house would be a challenge.  Not many are going to ask if they can un-plug their dryer to work.

Some folks have imported 220 tools from Europe and just put a US plug on them.

Also the difference for most products doesn't matter as they have universal power supplies in them.  Items like computers.  They take  50/60hz, 100-250VAC power.  So we use the same product as the rest of the world, it's just a different cord tossed in the box.  Festool could do the same if they wanted too.

If the new KS120 arrives and it works fine in 120V version, no one will care anymore.  Even if the US was 220-240V all around, there are tools that Festool probably won't bring over for various reason (different safety regs, etc).

Offline Alex

  • Posts: 5980
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #246 on: January 17, 2019, 02:16 AM »
Some folks have imported 220 tools from Europe and just put a US plug on them.

Also the difference for most products doesn't matter as they have universal power supplies in them.  Items like computers.  They take  50/60hz, 100-250VAC power.  So we use the same product as the rest of the world, it's just a different cord tossed in the box.  Festool could do the same if they wanted too.

That is not how it works with power tools. Key word here is universal power supply, and a power supply is a transformer, a big lumpy piece of neatly arranged copper wires. The transformer takes care of converting the input voltage to the lower voltage the connected device requires.

But power tools don't have a transformer built in. They use the full power of the grid directly connected to the motor. Any difference in voltage between a US and a European tool needs to be converted before it enters the tool, and that is why you need a separate step-up transformer if you want to use a 220v tool on a 110v circuit.

I am not so familiar with the US 220v split-phase system, but what I read says it always has to use 3 wires, two hot and a neutral that's connected to ground, and double insulated power tools only have 2 wires, so connecting one to 220v split-phase would totally be not up to code.

Offline glass1

  • Posts: 510
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #247 on: January 17, 2019, 06:10 AM »
Blah....blah.....blah....  Let’s take a new poll how many of2200’s have burned out. It’s a power hog. How many that have burned out where run through a ct.  I bet the answer is virtually zero. How many of ct’s Have burned out when these kapex’s burned when plugged into them, albeit virtually zero. Festool is not admitting they care, if they admit to a problem it will cost them. Maybe they quietly addressed the issue in version 2. Y’all get my point, if it’s the bad USA power grid how can they design the rest of their tools not to burn out. I just find it odd that their ct’s, routers, and rotexes are robust ant the ts saws and kapex have just enough power. Again albeit these three saws burn out the most.

Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 494
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #248 on: January 17, 2019, 10:38 AM »

I am not so familiar with the US 220v split-phase system, but what I read says it always has to use 3 wires, two hot and a neutral that's connected to ground, and double insulated power tools only have 2 wires, so connecting one to 220v split-phase would totally be not up to code.

There is combinations of what you do.  Your basic description is correct.    Transformer on the pole take transmission line voltage 8k-30kVAC steps it down to 220.  Within that transformer is the center tap, that becomes neutral.   Those 3 wires enter the house.  At the house there is a grounding system, rods in ground.  There is a single point ground that connects to the Neutral at a single point in the house circuit, typically in the main panel, or an external disconnect.  So neutral has a reference to ground, and thus the Neutral side doesn't have a breaker/fuse (you can't get zapped if you connect yourself across neutral and ground).  Where folks get confused is Neutral is also a hot.  It is no different than the other 2 hots, But since it's referenced to earth, it serves as the center point (neutral).   Devices in the home connect to for 110 the neutral and a hot.  All receptacles since 1963 National Electric Code have a ground pin.  This pin may or may not be used by the tool/device. Generally not a lot of things still use the ground as most devices have moved to be double insulated.  So most the time devices have 2 prong plugs that have no neutral.   If you go 220, the wiring just grabs the 2 hots, no neutral at all.  Again use of the ground is optional for the device.  We also have plugs that are both 220/110 in the same plug. Ovens, Dryers tend to use these.   Terminology causes some of the confusion, as other places will just use L1, L2,  verses hot, neutral, etc.   In the end, the fundamentals are the same as you see in Europe.  If someone wanted, they could just never connect the neutral line up and have a completely 220V house.  Some folks do this to a degree, there are retailers who import in 220V appliances from Europe that are normaly offered here.  It's just a pain if you want a new toaster to import one because you wired your house fully 220.   Safety wise it's completely fine.  Again we have double insulated (groundless) devices and tools all over here.  The biggest challenge is Festool doesn't sell a plug-it cord with a US NEMA plug for 220V.  So most folks cut the end of and wire on a US plug.  This can get someone in an OSHA (Federal safety org) violated if your are a business.  The get around would find some sort of adapter, but most those work in different combos than required. A device to plug in Europe Outlets tends to output US 110 outlet, not 220.

Again if Festool wanted, they could offer some tools in their European version. Of course they would have to get them certified and develop another plug-it cord.  For shop based folks, these tools may be welcome, offer the high power tools in this.  But the take rate on these would probably be low. Mobile workers would not be likely to find much use for them.   Other than finding a 220 plug in a house a creative person could make a adapter box with 2 cords coming out of it,  then go through the place they are working and find 2 different 110V outlets that are on opposite hots, plug the cords in and now you can get 220.  This is functionally fine, but sketchy as all heck. But they would not be the first person to do this. No different than what happens directly in the panel.  In the US there is also the option that since most receptical have 2 outlets to them, you can break off the connecting tabs and power each outlet in the receptical by different circuits.  Current code requires if this is done that the 2 circuits have a common disconnect. Basically you have to use a 220 breaker (which is just 2 110V breakers with the handles connect the 2 together). This way when you kill power to one outlet it's killed to both. This is for safety.  What it means is any outlet wired this way is 2 110V outlets, but also spanning the 2 is 220.  Someone could make a cord plug that takes advantage of this.  This is basically what our larger  220/110 outlets do, just at the lower amps and using what is all ready there.    But still, the US looked at changing post WWII and decided not to and overall it's not a huge issue.  If anything just mandate more 220 plugs installed in new home construction. Some places are doing this, but it's the 50A dryer/welder plugs and they are in garages for EV car chargers.

Offline Gregor

  • Posts: 1269
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #249 on: January 17, 2019, 03:03 PM »
Festool will likely never make a plug-it cable with a 220V US plug, as they AFAIK made the mistake to fit the 110V ones with the identical plug-it receptacle than the ones on 230V machines use. Offering a 220V plug-it cord would lead to people mixing different voltage devices, frying/burning both the 110V and the 220V ones by giving them the respective wrong voltage.
« Last Edit: January 17, 2019, 03:06 PM by Gregor »

Offline Coen

  • Posts: 440
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #250 on: January 17, 2019, 08:02 PM »
The US and our Canadian buddies don't need to retrofit anything.  99.9% of structures with electricity are 220-240VAC.   All houses in the US get both 120 and 240.  We just center tap it and get 120. It's part of the evolution of the system (it was just 120V at one time). There hasn't been a push for the change because on the consumer level 120 work fine and is in theory safer due the the lower voltage. If you have been zapped by both, you prefer to be sapped by 120.   I'm not against fully going 240 (I'd like to see the change), but what gets lost in a lot of these threads is we have 240 now.  We just use it for large items like dryers, ovens, stoves, heating, air conditioning, welders, electric car chargers, etc.  We also have 240 plugs for low amp circuits,  just no one installs them. There is also confusion in code as to if you can have branch circuits with 240.    Since the number of items where 220 would be better than 120 is so few, there just isn't demand.

We also have 20amp 120 outlets.  They are even code for parts of the house.  You can plug both 15 and 20amp devices into these plugs.  So there is an infrastructure for 20amp, which would be great for these tools.  Yet I have never seen in my life a device with a 20amp plug on it.  An infrastructure install base of hundreds of millions of these plugs and they never get used.  I've tried to find devices that use a 20a plug and never found one.  So while going full 240 would be nice, we don't even use the 20a plugs as is, you aren't going to get support for it.

I think Festool could look at offering 20A models here. But that would mean beefing wiring up more in the tools.

The US is a 220-240V country just like Europe, we just ignore it most the time.  We have 3 phase power too, but it's only available to commercial users and/or the rare lucky person who has an existing 3P run going by their house they can connect into.

That's completely different. 120 and -120V still require less insulation. And what you describe is a complete mess with different circuits and plugs. We don't have split phase whatsoever. We have 3 phase by default, with a phase voltage of 230V. Most houses that don't have a 3-phase connection still have a 3-phase fuse holder and for €200 the grid company will add the two other fuses. An oven, dryer, washer, heater; all can be connected to a normal 230V 16A outlet with the Schuko plug. A phone charger can plug into the same socket with it's Euro plug.

Only for things like electric cooktops or heatpumps for heating your entire house we use different sockets.

We upgraded gradually from 127V to 220V. In same cases by just connecting between two different phases of 127V and for newer stuff straight 230V. Then when the older areas were converted to real 230V they got the earlier change in their circuit box reversed.

Festool will likely never make a plug-it cable with a 220V US plug, as they AFAIK made the mistake to fit the 110V ones with the identical plug-it receptacle than the ones on 230V machines use. Offering a 220V plug-it cord would lead to people mixing different voltage devices, frying/burning both the 110V and the 220V ones by giving them the respective wrong voltage.

How will 110V fry a 230V tool?  [blink] In some rare cases it could if you power a motor but then not being able to spin it.. But other than that?

Some folks have imported 220 tools from Europe and just put a US plug on them.

Also the difference for most products doesn't matter as they have universal power supplies in them.  Items like computers.  They take  50/60hz, 100-250VAC power.  So we use the same product as the rest of the world, it's just a different cord tossed in the box.  Festool could do the same if they wanted too.

That is not how it works with power tools. Key word here is universal power supply, and a power supply is a transformer, a big lumpy piece of neatly arranged copper wires. The transformer takes care of converting the input voltage to the lower voltage the connected device requires.


That's the old style of power supply. These days it's rectified, then DC switched over a much smaller transformer (if needed). Depending on design and load it can work with even way wider ranges than 100-250V. For example; some laptop chargers will work just fine when fed 50V.

Offline Job and Knock

  • Posts: 155
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #251 on: January 17, 2019, 08:50 PM »
That's the old style of power supply. These days it's rectified, then DC switched over a much smaller transformer (if needed). Depending on design and load it can work with even way wider ranges than 100-250V. For example; some laptop chargers will work just fine when fed 50V.
As someone who lives and works in the only country in the EU where 110 volt power supply is mandated on construction sites I'm pretty sure if the rectified approach was smaller/lighter/more reliable at the same price as big, heavy copper and iron transformers we'd have switched over to them years ago. We haven't. We still have big, lumpy, heavy copper and iron transformers. I wish t'were otherwise
« Last Edit: January 18, 2019, 04:29 PM by Job and Knock »
Simplicity is the embodiment of purity and unity
- Shaker maxim

TS 55 - TS75 - Kapex KS120 - OF1010 - OF2200 - Rotex RO150e - Domino DF500Q -  Domino DF700XL

Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 494
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #252 on: January 17, 2019, 10:46 PM »

That's completely different. 120 and -120V still require less insulation. And what you describe is a complete mess with different circuits and plugs. We don't have split phase whatsoever. We have 3 phase by default, with a phase voltage of 230V. Most houses that don't have a 3-phase connection still have a 3-phase fuse holder and for €200 the grid company will add the two other fuses. An oven, dryer, washer, heater; all can be connected to a normal 230V 16A outlet with the Schuko plug. A phone charger can plug into the same socket with it's Euro plug.

Only for things like electric cooktops or heatpumps for heating your entire house we use different sockets.

We upgraded gradually from 127V to 220V. In same cases by just connecting between two different phases of 127V and for newer stuff straight 230V. Then when the older areas were converted to real 230V they got the earlier change in their circuit box reversed.


There is no difference in insulation requirements.  All our wiring is 600V rated,   120V, 220V, 3P we use the same wire for all of it.   Also split phase isn't 120 and -120,   It's positive 120 both sides.

It's a mess in a sense,  yes pure 220V would be nice, but it's really not that bad.  We effectively use 1 plug, a NEMA 5-15.  The others are specialty and plugs many folks will go their entire life and never touch.   This chart from Wiki shows all the possible plugs, but this is largely stuff no one uses or are for specific things.  Cell phone charger to Kapex 120 plugs into same outlet.

NEMA plugs

Even if we were just 220V, we would still have many plugs as they have different usages and amps.   Something I think is different is Europe hasn't had the history with very large electrical load devices like the US has.  As you can see, even our 220 stuff pulls serious amps.  30+ amps on dryers.  Cooktops and ovens 60A.  If you have electric heat you could consume that easy.  Standard service to a US house is 240VAC 200A, 48kW of power. And starting in the late 90s houses with 400A services (96kW, aka 0.1MW) became more common.  The average power draw of a US house is over 2kW.

You have a massive install base to change, and since we are split phase (2 voltages), we can't just turn it up very easy.  If you boost the 120v stuff up to 240, everything 240V just became 480V. This is house the split phase came to be. Someone realized we could go from 120V to 240V but swapping out transformers for split taps and thus able to keep the hold 120V setups as is.  Outbuildings, sheds, old farms and some very old houses are still 120V only.  Changing the USA+Canada is the same as trying to re-wire all of Europe at once.  Also I assume Europe is broken up into a lot of small grids. The USA has 3 electric grids (East, West, Texas).  To crank up the voltage you would have to do the entirety of one at once, the east grid is half the population of the US, that's a lot of change. In theory you could do it street by street and just simply disconnect the neutral from the transformer, but now you have to go house by house and re-wire the internals of the panels, and best case replace a small number of appliances, but try to explain to most the population what they are benefiting by this change. Having to buy a mountain of step down transformers to plug old stuff in and have them around for a decade or 2 is a pain. A small country unifying to it's adjoining countries makes sense an is straightforward. Getting 2 countries that don't interconnect to anyone else to change is basically an impossible sell.

The plugs, switches, wiring, etc is general ok with it, most are rated to go to 277V and beyond.  But all the appliances and so forth would be a nightmare.  Not to go in a tangent but people here tend to have a lot of stuff, simple or minimal living isn't very popular. While most could live with a simple little electric hot plate, folks tend to buy a cooktop they can fry a Moose on and an oven to can bake an Ostrich in while their 9 tons worth of AC cools their 6000 sq ft starter home to 68F on a 100F day. So it's not just a couple items per household, it's a lot.  Also building code change cycles are a thing.  NEC has a 3 year revision cycle.  Then only after that happens IBC picks up that and they are on a 3 year cycle, but most states skip a cycle, so 6 years and then they don't do it right away. So you have over 10 years from the time the ball gets moving till the change becomes the law of the land.

While it would be nice to have 3phase ~220 a leg into every house and everyone gets a 300A service min would be great, it's just not going to happen.

Festool beefing up the design on their stuff for low voltage is much easier/cheaper.

Offline Coen

  • Posts: 440
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #253 on: January 18, 2019, 01:00 AM »

That's completely different. 120 and -120V still require less insulation. And what you describe is a complete mess with different circuits and plugs. We don't have split phase whatsoever. We have 3 phase by default, with a phase voltage of 230V. Most houses that don't have a 3-phase connection still have a 3-phase fuse holder and for €200 the grid company will add the two other fuses. An oven, dryer, washer, heater; all can be connected to a normal 230V 16A outlet with the Schuko plug. A phone charger can plug into the same socket with it's Euro plug.

Only for things like electric cooktops or heatpumps for heating your entire house we use different sockets.

We upgraded gradually from 127V to 220V. In same cases by just connecting between two different phases of 127V and for newer stuff straight 230V. Then when the older areas were converted to real 230V they got the earlier change in their circuit box reversed.


There is no difference in insulation requirements.  All our wiring is 600V rated,   120V, 220V, 3P we use the same wire for all of it.   Also split phase isn't 120 and -120,   It's positive 120 both sides.

Yeah, 120 Volts 180 degrees rotated.

It's a mess in a sense,  yes pure 220V would be nice, but it's really not that bad.  We effectively use 1 plug, a NEMA 5-15.  The others are specialty and plugs many folks will go their entire life and never touch.   This chart from Wiki shows all the possible plugs, but this is largely stuff no one uses or are for specific things.  Cell phone charger to Kapex 120 plugs into same outlet.

Yes, but it's the same bulky plug. Did you ever compare the US plug on a phone charger to the europlug we have here? That US thing will cut your clothes, bags and skin while bending, then electrocute you when you stick it in the wrong way because the exposed contacts are way too long and allow touching them with your fingers while they are already live.

NEMA plugs

Even if we were just 220V, we would still have many plugs as they have different usages and amps.   Something I think is different is Europe hasn't had the history with very large electrical load devices like the US has.  As you can see, even our 220 stuff pulls serious amps.  30+ amps on dryers.  Cooktops and ovens 60A.  If you have electric heat you could consume that easy.  Standard service to a US house is 240VAC 200A, 48kW of power. And starting in the late 90s houses with 400A services (96kW, aka 0.1MW) became more common.  The average power draw of a US house is over 2kW.

Yeah, these days tend to insulate more; that automatically reduces the energy needs. Standard connection in the Netherlands is 3x25A total 17.25 kW. Some other countries in Europe do have higher amperage connections, but since we near 100% of houses connected to piped natural gas, nobody heats their home with electric resistive heating.

You have a massive install base to change, and since we are split phase (2 voltages), we can't just turn it up very easy.  If you boost the 120v stuff up to 240, everything 240V just became 480V.

No, you can do it one block at a time. You rewire the circuit boxes to connect the 240V outlets between phase and neutral as opposed to between +120 and -120.

This is house the split phase came to be. Someone realized we could go from 120V to 240V but swapping out transformers for split taps and thus able to keep the hold 120V setups as is. 

Yeah, that's comparable to what happened here, but you never took the next step.

Outbuildings, sheds, old farms and some very old houses are still 120V only.  Changing the USA+Canada is the same as trying to re-wire all of Europe at once. Also I assume Europe is broken up into a lot of small grids.

False assumption. All of mainland Europe is interconnected. In 2006 a stack of maintenance, temporary disconnection and parallel overloading in Germany resulted in blackouts in in Italy and Greece...

Last year we had all the clocks move back and forth a few minutes all over Europe because some energy companies in the Balkans had some financial conflict....

During the night when we have surplus wind or coal power we export to Norway over a 450 kVdc cable. They use that to pump up water into high altitude lakes. Then during peak demand they let it drop down a generator and export it. (As green energy  [blink])

The USA has 3 electric grids (East, West, Texas).  To crank up the voltage you would have to do the entirety of one at once, the east grid is half the population of the US, that's a lot of change. In theory you could do it street by street and just simply disconnect the neutral from the transformer, but now you have to go house by house and re-wire the internals of the panels, and best case replace a small number of appliances, but try to explain to most the population what they are benefiting by this change. Having to buy a mountain of step down transformers to plug old stuff in and have them around for a decade or 2 is a pain. A small country unifying to it's adjoining countries makes sense an is straightforward. Getting 2 countries that don't interconnect to anyone else to change is basically an impossible sell.

You have to do it street by street since you cannot simply double the voltage across the whole grid as substations build for 10 kV will not hold 20 kV very long. You can think ahead though, like our grid companies are doing; they are slowly upgrading all the 10 kV ringnets to 20 kV. They buy medium voltage switchgear that is certified for 24 kV use and for the time being use them at 10 or 12 kV. Then when the entire ring has upgraded stations they will up the voltage.

The plugs, switches, wiring, etc is general ok with it, most are rated to go to 277V and beyond.  But all the appliances and so forth would be a nightmare.  Not to go in a tangent but people here tend to have a lot of stuff, simple or minimal living isn't very popular. While most could live with a simple little electric hot plate, folks tend to buy a cooktop they can fry a Moose on and an oven to can bake an Ostrich in while their 9 tons worth of AC cools their 6000 sq ft starter home to 68F on a 100F day. So it's not just a couple items per household, it's a lot.  Also building code change cycles are a thing.  NEC has a 3 year revision cycle.  Then only after that happens IBC picks up that and they are on a 3 year cycle, but most states skip a cycle, so 6 years and then they don't do it right away. So you have over 10 years from the time the ball gets moving till the change becomes the law of the land.

While it would be nice to have 3phase ~220 a leg into every house and everyone gets a 300A service min would be great, it's just not going to happen.

Festool beefing up the design on their stuff for low voltage is much easier/cheaper.

Yes, it would have been relatively easier to do in the 50's and 60s.

Offline Alex

  • Posts: 5980
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #254 on: January 18, 2019, 01:59 AM »
That's the old style of power supply. These days it's rectified, then DC switched over a much smaller transformer (if needed). Depending on design and load it can work with even way wider ranges than 100-250V. For example; some laptop chargers will work just fine when fed 50V.

The charger is still a big lumpy device, though quite a bit lighter than a transformer, and it is still something a power tool doesn't have or need. My point was not to post an all inclusive list of current altering devices, merely to point why you can't put a power tool in the same catagory as other devices that run on electricity.

The universal power supply only works when it is used for appliances that need a (much) lower current than the grid supplies, because it needs conversion anyway, and not when it needs its full power, where the current is used directly without conversion.

@DeformedTree Your post above is one nice big clusterflap of confusion and code violations. That's not what you do with deadly voltages. The European 220v system uses one single socket and a single phase circuit for everything. The only exception is a 3-phase circuit for electric cookers, which is a separate system that's so different you can't confuse or mix stuff up. 

Offline Gregor

  • Posts: 1269
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #255 on: January 18, 2019, 03:54 AM »
Festool will likely never make a plug-it cable with a 220V US plug, as they AFAIK made the mistake to fit the 110V ones with the identical plug-it receptacle than the ones on 230V machines use. Offering a 220V plug-it cord would lead to people mixing different voltage devices, frying/burning both the 110V and the 220V ones by giving them the respective wrong voltage.

How will 110V fry a 230V tool?  [blink] In some rare cases it could if you power a motor but then not being able to spin it.. But other than that?
(emphasis mine). Reduced voltage can lead to it not spinning, effectively turning the one coil that is currently active into an electric heater (till it burns up).
Should it be enough to keep it spinning it'll likely draw way more current than designed, with a good chance of it being more than the wires (as they're ment to deal with a lower amperage as of higher design voltage) can take.

Offline kevinculle

  • Posts: 287
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #256 on: January 18, 2019, 08:40 AM »
Festool decides to sell a very expensive, inadequately engineered and validated tool into a market of 350 million people and the fanboys here decide the problem is in the now 120 year old AC supply system that seems to work perfectly for most other manufacturers of power tools and all other electrical equipment.  Yes of course...let's invest hundreds of billions instead of expecting Festool to be competent at engineering the products they sell.  Case closed!

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 1086
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #257 on: January 18, 2019, 02:04 PM »
Yes of course...let's invest hundreds of billions instead of expecting Festool to be competent at engineering the products they sell.  Case closed!

I find the call for changing the 110v or 120v supply in N.A. to 220v unbelievable. It is a dead end if anyone hopes or thinks that is the solution to any real or perceived motor problem with the Kapex. No one seriously thinks the world revolves around Festool, eh?

Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 494
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #258 on: January 18, 2019, 11:00 PM »
We effectively use 1 plug, a NEMA 5-15. 

Yes, but it's the same bulky plug. Did you ever compare the US plug on a phone charger to the europlug we have here? That US thing will cut your clothes, bags and skin while bending, then electrocute you when you stick it in the wrong way because the exposed contacts are way too long and allow touching them with your fingers while they are already live.

Yeah, these days tend to insulate more; that automatically reduces the energy needs. Standard connection in the Netherlands is 3x25A total 17.25 kW. Some other countries in Europe do have higher amperage connections, but since we near 100% of houses connected to piped natural gas, nobody heats their home with electric resistive heating.


I'm not sure if you are confusing the US plug with something else like the UKs BS plug.  An ungrounded 5-15 plug is more or less the same size as a Europlug, main difference is Europlug has fancy round pins.  Canada, USA and Japan seem to do just fine with it. We trust our kids to plug stuff in without issue.  Remember the voltage is also half, so even if something does go wrong it's not nearly as bad.  Also you are limited to 2.5A, thus that's like us being limited to 5A at 120V,  so your going to need a different plug for other things.  The plug North America and Japan use are probably the least issue.    Plug design is clearly something no one agrees on, as all around the world everyone has different ideas.  If the world is going to try to get North America to change, first the world needs to settle on a plug.  Just in Europe i'm coming up with over 14 plugs and that's not counting obsolete ones.  If there was a true global plug it would reduce one of the sticking points.  One of the first things that would come up during a conversion is do we unify the plug, and to what.  While we have applicable plugs it's not as good as getting to the same plug.

N.A. has strong energy codes that keep getting stronger.  We also have very large houses and build in very extremes.  Some live in the arctic, hot desert, rain forest, grassland, forest, etc.  A lot of Europe falls in a generaly mild band of temps. Not a lot of need for air-conditioning (most the US needs it to some degree either for cooling or dealing with humidity) and the atlantic currents mean your northern countries don't get that cold in the winter.  2 weeks ago is was 50F at my house, this weekend it will be below 0F.  I can be 105F in summer and -20F in winter.  Such extremes are typical of the northern half of the country.  If you need the AC, then you need power for it.  Only a sub-set of the country has Natural Gas service. It's not growing because it's to expensive to put in outside of dense neighborhoods. Older neighborhoods don't tend to see upgrades both do to cost and folks not wanting to change.  Gas companies just try to keep up with not having to many houses explode from natural gas. The systems are old and since it's very expensive to maintain right, it doesn't get maintained and thus gas explosions are very common. Boston had three towns evacuated and 100+ homes destroyed recently from gas when the over pressure systems failed.  Natural gas growth is in Power generation, it's killing coal at an extreme rate, so it's usage is centralized and makes electrons for our homes.  Areas without NG use Oil (not that much any more), Propane, Wood, sometimes Coal.  Electric heat took off in the 60s as electricity was cheap and we were building nuclear plants everywhere.  Now the big push is on Heat pumps. NG is ok, but even it's usage is going to have to end before long as it's better than say coal, but still a problem.  Nice thing with electricity is it's easy to make now that solar is cheap.  A lot of the country does use resistive heating.  It's simple to install, works great in small locations or where someone doesn't want to deal with propane/oil/wood delivery. Cost to run isn't that bad, especially as places with it tend to be small.  Still probably the bulk of homes built in the 60-70s were electric heat.  Mini-split Heat Pumps are about the only real upgrade option for those homes since they have no duct work system.

Again, I have nothing against the US going 220 all around.  But I think you are massively underestimating the challenge for it to happen.  North America has no basic reason to change, and there is basically no case you can make to people for the change.  Things like going full metric will happen much sooner and easier than getting rid of 120V.  Anything can be done.  This country doesn't do change well, even when the benefits are obvious and huge. Telling Joe and Jane homeowner that the neutral is getting disconnected and they will need to replace their electric panel, have every outlet, switch, fixture checked inspected and replaced depending on it's rating, and then deal with appliance replacements is going to get your run out of the country. From a North American standpoint we are extremely standardized.  Everything is the same plug and voltage.  We don't run into plugs from different countries, we don't have issues feeding across country borders, all the switches, lights, gear, etc get made here and or due to the shear size of the country justify the production for the US and Canada.  If one US state was different than the rest, that would be an issue. But they aren't.  The Netherlands is close to the combining  the US states of  New Jersey and Massachusetts in both population and size.  Those are small states.  If they were different than the rest of the country they would certainly figure out how to change to match the rest and it would be understandable. The conversion would also be way over schedule, budget, massive corruption and probably involve 7 or 8 governors going to jail over their dealings in the conversion.

There are a lot of things I'd like to see changed in the US, I'm very pro global standards.  Like I mentioned, I'd love to see 3phase and 220 to all homes. But I'm realistic on how this country functions that it's not going to happen and other things are way ahead in priority.  When it comes to power, I think most folks would be happy to just have reliable utility. Or get the power to their homes underground so they don't have power outages all the time. When is snows, is windy or a branch falls.  The transformer supplying my house is from the 50s and half rust. It can't support the power draw of the houses it feeds. The power company knows it needs to be replaced but they will not replace transformers until they explode.  Since it still functions they can't be forced to replace it. People want to see issues like this fixed. And yes, it would be easy to say that this is how you phase in 220 only.  But the reality is folks will take the old sketchy transformer over having to deal with re-wiring their house and changing appliances.  Even for those who say "hey this sounds good, lets do it"  the next problem is, "ok I converted my house, where can I buy a 220V toaster"  to which the reply will be "Europe".  Retail is not going to want to support a 20-30 year period of carrying 2 of everything.  Lawsuits will be everywhere with folks arguing "the government can't tell me my voltage"  "they want to take away your hair dryer"  "it's so they can force you to have to buy new appliances which they control".  There will be endless people talking about the harm to children 220V will cause.   If you want to get a sense of things, look up "Smart Meters" in this country, and check THIS out.   Utilities putting in smart meters has brought these people out, I don't even want to think about the reaction to eliminating 120V.   Zoo's would have to provide Elephants with extra protection.

Offline glass1

  • Posts: 510
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #259 on: January 19, 2019, 06:41 AM »
All this talk because a couple kapex’s went poof ? What are all you people talking about ? Whatever y’all are smoking you sure aren’t sharing.

Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 494
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #260 on: January 19, 2019, 09:06 AM »
All this talk because a couple kapex’s went poof ? What are all you people talking about ? Whatever y’all are smoking you sure aren’t sharing.

The Kapex died, no talk will heel it.  Blaming 120V or trying to re-wire countries or eliminate what is probably the most used single type of electrical plug in the world won't heel it.

Thus things end up in discussions with people learning about different parts of the world which as long as constructive/good spirited is useful so people don't make the same assumptions in the future. If the Kapex has an under-lying design flaw, it very well is due to those designing it not fully understanding users/usage of the tool in the 120V countries, or not understanding the nature of the electrical system in those countries.

Offline Coen

  • Posts: 440
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #261 on: January 19, 2019, 08:22 PM »
We effectively use 1 plug, a NEMA 5-15. 

Yes, but it's the same bulky plug. Did you ever compare the US plug on a phone charger to the europlug we have here? That US thing will cut your clothes, bags and skin while bending, then electrocute you when you stick it in the wrong way because the exposed contacts are way too long and allow touching them with your fingers while they are already live.

Yeah, these days tend to insulate more; that automatically reduces the energy needs. Standard connection in the Netherlands is 3x25A total 17.25 kW. Some other countries in Europe do have higher amperage connections, but since we near 100% of houses connected to piped natural gas, nobody heats their home with electric resistive heating.


I'm not sure if you are confusing the US plug with something else like the UKs BS plug.  An ungrounded 5-15 plug is more or less the same size as a Europlug, main difference is Europlug has fancy round pins.

No, i'm not confusing them with the monstrously large UK plugs. I have a bag full with leads with US and UK plugs here, supplied with stuff I either imported or stuff that's not localized and ships with two or three....

The US plugs are almost without exception way too sharp on the edges of the pins. And because the pins are so thing, they are very easy to bend. They are also not insulated halfway, like the Europlug is.

Canada, USA and Japan seem to do just fine with it. We trust our kids to plug stuff in without issue.  Remember the voltage is also half, so even if something does go wrong it's not nearly as bad.

Not having it go wrong with half insulated plugs is even better.

Also you are limited to 2.5A, thus that's like us being limited to 5A at 120V,  so your going to need a different plug for other things.

Yes, that means the leads can be very thin without any problem. You can run a ton of things on 600W. The plug is also thinner because it has round pins. So thinner lead, thinner plug, pins that don't cut you(r stuff), don't bend as easy and are halfway insulated. What's not to like? Did I say the 'fullsize' plug fits in the same outlet?

  The plug North America and Japan use are probably the least issue.    Plug design is clearly something no one agrees on, as all around the world everyone has different ideas.  If the world is going to try to get North America to change, first the world needs to settle on a plug.  Just in Europe i'm coming up with over 14 plugs and that's not counting obsolete ones.  If there was a true global plug it would reduce one of the sticking points.  One of the first things that would come up during a conversion is do we unify the plug, and to what.  While we have applicable plugs it's not as good as getting to the same plug.

Agreed. Like USB; that's the same all over the world. Although with USB-C now you never know what it can and cannot do...

N.A. has strong energy codes that keep getting stronger.  We also have very large houses and build in very extremes.  Some live in the arctic, hot desert, rain forest, grassland, forest, etc.  A lot of Europe falls in a generaly mild band of temps. Not a lot of need for air-conditioning (most the US needs it to some degree either for cooling or dealing with humidity) and the atlantic currents mean your northern countries don't get that cold in the winter.  2 weeks ago is was 50F at my house, this weekend it will be below 0F.  I can be 105F in summer and -20F in winter.  Such extremes are typical of the northern half of the country.  If you need the AC, then you need power for it.  Only a sub-set of the country has Natural Gas service. It's not growing because it's to expensive to put in outside of dense neighborhoods. Older neighborhoods don't tend to see upgrades both do to cost and folks not wanting to change.  Gas companies just try to keep up with not having to many houses explode from natural gas. The systems are old and since it's very expensive to maintain right, it doesn't get maintained and thus gas explosions are very common. Boston had three towns evacuated and 100+ homes destroyed recently from gas when the over pressure systems failed.  Natural gas growth is in Power generation, it's killing coal at an extreme rate, so it's usage is centralized and makes electrons for our homes.  Areas without NG use Oil (not that much any more), Propane, Wood, sometimes Coal.  Electric heat took off in the 60s as electricity was cheap and we were building nuclear plants everywhere.  Now the big push is on Heat pumps. NG is ok, but even it's usage is going to have to end before long as it's better than say coal, but still a problem.  Nice thing with electricity is it's easy to make now that solar is cheap.  A lot of the country does use resistive heating.  It's simple to install, works great in small locations or where someone doesn't want to deal with propane/oil/wood delivery. Cost to run isn't that bad, especially as places with it tend to be small.  Still probably the bulk of homes built in the 60-70s were electric heat.  Mini-split Heat Pumps are about the only real upgrade option for those homes since they have no duct work system.

Untill recently connection to NG grid was mandatory for new housing with few exceptions. With like 1 year notice all new applications were banned from connection to the NG grid. Lot's of people bitched and whined before the first houses under the new rule were even build. It turned out just fine. We rarely ever have a problem with NG explosions.

Resistive heating here is about 2.5 times more expensive than heating with gas, so nobody does it. There was a short rage in the '80s, but that died off quickly.

Again, I have nothing against the US going 220 all around.  But I think you are massively underestimating the challenge for it to happen.  North America has no basic reason to change, and there is basically no case you can make to people for the change. 

Grid losses will be reduced, less mess with different plugs, etc. etc.

Things like going full metric will happen much sooner and easier than getting rid of 120V.  Anything can be done.  This country doesn't do change well, even when the benefits are obvious and huge. Telling Joe and Jane homeowner that the neutral is getting disconnected and they will need to replace their electric panel, have every outlet, switch, fixture checked inspected and replaced depending on it's rating, and then deal with appliance replacements is going to get your run out of the country.

When the water companies here switched to plastic tubing they just send a letter saying everybody had to stop using their stuff as earth connection and get their own earth electrode. Progress happens. People with asbestos on the outside of their roof also have to change it out on their own dime.

From a North American standpoint we are extremely standardized.  Everything is the same plug and voltage.  We don't run into plugs from different countries, we don't have issues feeding across country borders, all the switches, lights, gear, etc get made here and or due to the shear size of the country justify the production for the US and Canada.  If one US state was different than the rest, that would be an issue. But they aren't.  The Netherlands is close to the combining  the US states of  New Jersey and Massachusetts in both population and size.  Those are small states.  If they were different than the rest of the country they would certainly figure out how to change to match the rest and it would be understandable. The conversion would also be way over schedule, budget, massive corruption and probably involve 7 or 8 governors going to jail over their dealings in the conversion.

Not everything is the same voltage and plug if you make an 'exception' for heaters, washers, dryers, AC.... Ha, we can plug the washer and dryer on the same 16A circuit.

There are a lot of things I'd like to see changed in the US, I'm very pro global standards.  Like I mentioned, I'd love to see 3phase and 220 to all homes. But I'm realistic on how this country functions that it's not going to happen and other things are way ahead in priority.  When it comes to power, I think most folks would be happy to just have reliable utility. Or get the power to their homes underground so they don't have power outages all the time. When is snows, is windy or a branch falls.  The transformer supplying my house is from the 50s and half rust. It can't support the power draw of the houses it feeds. The power company knows it needs to be replaced but they will not replace transformers until they explode.

What about the children when that thing explodes? Yeah, the overhead lines puzzle me too. It used to be the same here when going into Germany; the cyclepath ends, the wiring becomes above ground, the windows are smaller and no PVC rainwater piping on houses. The above wiring is less and less though.
But in NL digging them into the ground might be a lot easier since the soft soil everywhere.

Since it still functions they can't be forced to replace it. People want to see issues like this fixed. And yes, it would be easy to say that this is how you phase in 220 only.  But the reality is folks will take the old sketchy transformer over having to deal with re-wiring their house and changing appliances.  Even for those who say "hey this sounds good, lets do it"  the next problem is, "ok I converted my house, where can I buy a 220V toaster"  to which the reply will be "Europe".  Retail is not going to want to support a 20-30 year period of carrying 2 of everything.

Retail is already carrying 50 of everything... with or without case, with or without official calibration report, with or without [...]. They also carry all the films in both DVD and BD, the phone chargers in micro USB, Apple, USB-C, etc.

  Lawsuits will be everywhere with folks arguing "the government can't tell me my voltage"  "they want to take away your hair dryer"  "it's so they can force you to have to buy new appliances which they control".  There will be endless people talking about the harm to children 220V will cause.   If you want to get a sense of things, look up "Smart Meters" in this country, and check THIS out.   Utilities putting in smart meters has brought these people out, I don't even want to think about the reaction to eliminating 120V.   Zoo's would have to provide Elephants with extra protection.

Good point. They tried to mandate smartmeters here too, but that didn't succeed . But they did it in the most dumb way. Lots of the "smart meters" have already been replaced at least once because they broke or were unsafe. Then of course it turned out the earlier smartmeters billed the user for the energy the meter used. And on top of that it billed poor power factor differently. It was supposed to not bill blind current... but they did. That was of course besides the whole discussion about privacy, wireless connection giving you cancer and what not. I'd say all the smart meter achieved was raise cost for everyone and provide eternal jobs for dozens of people doing nothing but replacing broken smart meters. I'd rather have they upgrade their ancient cable in the street...

We already have the standing rule that with substantial changes to the electrical installations you have to conform to the newer rules. But policing on that is nonexistent. They still sell used houses for half a million euros without rcd's.

Offline harry_

  • Posts: 1269
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #262 on: January 19, 2019, 09:22 PM »
I see the US residential market going to 12VDC before we go 220VAC. With the exception of a handful of items, almost everything in the american home has a step-down to 'low voltage' someplace.

Led lighting...stepped down
televisions....stepped down
laptops/computers.... stepped down

Basically if it is not a 'major appliance' or does not have a motor, it is stepped down either on the cord or internally.

I am starting to see, finally, USB wall outlets installed into new homes on a regular basis (not enough though). Personally, I think it should be added to the NEC.

While I fully realize that a USB cable/outlet can only handle a small amount of current/power, the old school automotive cigarette lighter socket was good for 20 amps/275 watts. So there is room for something in between.
Disclaimer: This post is for educational and entertainment purposes only. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead is purely coincidental. Void where prohibited. Some assembly required. Batteries not included. Contents may settle during shipment. Use only as directed. No other warranty expressed or implied. This is not an offer to sell securities. May be too intense for some viewers. No user-serviceable parts inside. Subject to change without notice. One size fits all (very poorly).

Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 494
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #263 on: January 20, 2019, 10:53 AM »

plug stuff..


I think you would just have to live here.  We use one plug for everything*.  The other plugs are things you barely ever use or specialty purposes and they have a good reason for it. No one ever gets frustrated with plugs here as we have just 1.  While those other plugs exist, few ever un-hook a dryer and such. And for things like their RV or generator you don't want them the same.  We can't run say a dryer off the regular plug because 240V/16A isn't enough, dryers take 240V, 30-40A.  Keep in mind a lot of items don't use a plug and are just connected directly to junction box.  A slide in range will generally use a plug, but a built in cooktop or wall oven uses a direct connection to the junction box. Some of those plug options that were shown are due to the transistion to 4 wire from 3.  Before the 90s neutral and ground didn't have seperate pins.  Code now requires 4 wire, but you are allowed to connect via 3 wire if you have an old house, or an old appliance.


Untill recently connection to NG grid was mandatory for new housing with few exceptions. With like 1 year notice all new applications were banned from connection to the NG grid. Lot's of people bitched and whined before the first houses under the new rule were even build. It turned out just fine. We rarely ever have a problem with NG explosions.

Resistive heating here is about 2.5 times more expensive than heating with gas, so nobody does it. There was a short rage in the '80s, but that died off quickly.

Mandating connection to something would end badly. Plus there is no way to implement that.  Forcing homes to be connected to a private company? Plus folks are trying to go off grid.  Same with electricity, plenty of place are not connected simply because their is no electric runs in the area. Even when the road has service, people find out that running power from the road to their building could cost them 20-30,000 dollars, they decide to stay off grid, use generator, install solar.


When the water companies here switched to plastic tubing they just send a letter saying everybody had to stop using their stuff as earth connection and get their own earth electrode. Progress happens. People with asbestos on the outside of their roof also have to change it out on their own dime.

Water lines were generally supplemental grounds here.  Houses have ground rod(s), that tie to the panel.  Other stuff is bonded (water pipes, gas pipes, etc) back to the ground system.  Changes to more plastic has causes changes there, generally confusion because people are un-sure what to do when something is a mix of metal and plastic.   Stuff like PEX in homes is still fairly new, lots of people still insist on copper, some cities/states only fairly recently began to allow PEX. 


What about the children when that thing explodes? Yeah, the overhead lines puzzle me too. It used to be the same here when going into Germany; the cyclepath ends, the wiring becomes above ground, the windows are smaller and no PVC rainwater piping on houses. The above wiring is less and less though.
But in NL digging them into the ground might be a lot easier since the soft soil everywhere.

I don't know how your gov/utility interaction works.  Here they are classified as a public utility, which basically imposes some rules far as billing. But for the most part the government has no say over anything the utility does. They have a monopoly, so it's not like you can speak with your wallet. So they have zero motivation to improve things. They wait for parts to fail, then just fix it enough to be back running again.  This is why they don't go back thru and bury stuff. They will claim some sky high price to do it.  The reality is they just don't want to spend any money.  Since the government doesn't come after them for bad service and such, again, no motivation.  The main utility for California just declare bankruptcy after causing so many fires. They will just carry on as normal.  Of course you go to rural areas you have Electric Co-ops. This was the only way rural areas were able to get electricity starting in the 1940s. There you will find a large chunk of the system under ground, and well maintained. Amazing what non-profit utility does.

New developments and such generally have underground, but soon as you leave the sub, it goes back on a pole.  Like everything else, going back and replacing an above ground line with underground doesn't have a value add generally, so it's not going to change.  Running poles thru a wetland is easier than underground, and easier thru solid rock, over mountains, etc.  Poles have a place, but in towns, they really need to go away since folks want trees on their property but that always means trees falling on lines.


We already have the standing rule that with substantial changes to the electrical installations you have to conform to the newer rules. But policing on that is nonexistent. They still sell used houses for half a million euros without rcd's.

Everything is grandfathered here. Unless you are doing massive reno to something, old can stay. If you got knob and tube in your house, as long as you don't alter that part of the house it can stay.  In general until you open up a wall, it can stay, and even then it's just where your modifying.  This is for all aspects of building. No one gets forced to upgrade anything. Also probably safe to say most homehowners don't pull permits, thus no building inspection on their work. Plus once you leave cities/large towns there is no code-enforcement/permits anyway. States all have building code that apply to all, but without any code enforcement/permits people just wing it.  Generally people doing stuff understand what they are doing well enough or just do it the way it always has been done. So recent changes or minor things get lost to them.  This is changing more now that insurance companies are pressuring code enforcement to exist. But still, if someone doesn't pull a permit, it's not like anyone will ever know about what they did.

Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 494
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #264 on: January 20, 2019, 11:02 AM »
I think DC will be what causes global standards.  If the world can get standardized on specs/plugs folks will just start adding DC to houses.  It's been tried before, but now due to solar and such has a better chance.

USB is a good example but it's also an example of the problem.  Folks started putting in USB plugs in walls a while back, now there is USB-C, so they now need to change. How long will USB-C be the plug?  And of course it is only good for small devices.

If DC can get it's act together it could replace AC for most consumer goods.  AC will be left for large loads, motors, induction cooking.

Something like powertools would probably stay AC, since I doubt any DC system would go beyond 100V.  What could happen is all tools become cordless, and makers sell AC-DC adapters that plug into the battery connection.  That is probably the idea situation.  If a Kapex death was fixed by just buying a new adapter, just like buying a new power brick for a laptop, it wouldn't be so bad.

Offline kevinculle

  • Posts: 287
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #265 on: January 20, 2019, 11:20 AM »
...aaaand as Kapexes continue to go up in smoke the focus here on the FOG is reengineering global electrical supply standards.  Interesting that Chinese small appliance manufacturers sell millions of cheap and functioning mixers, blenders and other motorized gizmos across the world while Festool cannot yet root-cause or remediate smoking motor failures in its overpriced and apparently dainty SCMS.

Offline six-point socket II

  • Posts: 911
  • aka @the_black_tie_diyer
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #266 on: January 20, 2019, 11:24 AM »
Honestly, I think it was one of the best decisions I've ever made to put outlets with additional USB-A sockets in. And if needed I gladly replace them with USB-C in due time.

I'm not running after every new gadget/phone, so it will be quite a while before USB-A is vanishing/ has totally vanished in this place. ;)

Kind regards,
Oliver
Kind regards,
Oliver

Offline Coen

  • Posts: 440
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #267 on: January 20, 2019, 12:11 PM »

plug stuff..


I think you would just have to live here.  We use one plug for everything*.  The other plugs are things you barely ever use or specialty purposes and they have a good reason for it. No one ever gets frustrated with plugs here as we have just 1.  While those other plugs exist, few ever un-hook a dryer and such. And for things like their RV or generator you don't want them the same.  We can't run say a dryer off the regular plug because 240V/16A isn't enough, dryers take 240V, 30-40A.  Keep in mind a lot of items don't use a plug and are just connected directly to junction box.  A slide in range will generally use a plug, but a built in cooktop or wall oven uses a direct connection to the junction box. Some of those plug options that were shown are due to the transistion to 4 wire from 3.  Before the 90s neutral and ground didn't have seperate pins.  Code now requires 4 wire, but you are allowed to connect via 3 wire if you have an old house, or an old appliance.

7-9 kW for a dryer? That's insane. Most sold model here is 1 kW. Only the cheap ones are inefficient and use 2,8 kW. Either can be connected on a normal outlet. Cooktops are usually connected over Perilex here (residential) or CEE plug (commercial). Direct wiring is fine too.

Untill recently connection to NG grid was mandatory for new housing with few exceptions. With like 1 year notice all new applications were banned from connection to the NG grid. Lot's of people bitched and whined before the first houses under the new rule were even build. It turned out just fine. We rarely ever have a problem with NG explosions.

Resistive heating here is about 2.5 times more expensive than heating with gas, so nobody does it. There was a short rage in the '80s, but that died off quickly.

Mandating connection to something would end badly. Plus there is no way to implement that.  Forcing homes to be connected to a private company? Plus folks are trying to go off grid.  Same with electricity, plenty of place are not connected simply because their is no electric runs in the area. Even when the road has service, people find out that running power from the road to their building could cost them 20-30,000 dollars, they decide to stay off grid, use generator, install solar.

The connection mandate was for new housing. The grids are owned by companies whose stock is fully owned by different parts of the government.

They even connected rural areas here. But given population density here, it makes sense. Even our "rural" areas are not near as uninhabited as in the USA.


When the water companies here switched to plastic tubing they just send a letter saying everybody had to stop using their stuff as earth connection and get their own earth electrode. Progress happens. People with asbestos on the outside of their roof also have to change it out on their own dime.

Water lines were generally supplemental grounds here.  Houses have ground rod(s), that tie to the panel.  Other stuff is bonded (water pipes, gas pipes, etc) back to the ground system.  Changes to more plastic has causes changes there, generally confusion because people are un-sure what to do when something is a mix of metal and plastic.   Stuff like PEX in homes is still fairly new, lots of people still insist on copper, some cities/states only fairly recently began to allow PEX. 

They have ground rods here too, or mats. But for some time they used the water connection for that. In some areas the ground is provided by the net.

What about the children when that thing explodes? Yeah, the overhead lines puzzle me too. It used to be the same here when going into Germany; the cyclepath ends, the wiring becomes above ground, the windows are smaller and no PVC rainwater piping on houses. The above wiring is less and less though.
But in NL digging them into the ground might be a lot easier since the soft soil everywhere.

I don't know how your gov/utility interaction works.  Here they are classified as a public utility, which basically imposes some rules far as billing. But for the most part the government has no say over anything the utility does. They have a monopoly, so it's not like you can speak with your wallet. So they have zero motivation to improve things. They wait for parts to fail, then just fix it enough to be back running again.  This is why they don't go back thru and bury stuff. They will claim some sky high price to do it.  The reality is they just don't want to spend any money.  Since the government doesn't come after them for bad service and such, again, no motivation.  The main utility for California just declare bankruptcy after causing so many fires. They will just carry on as normal.  Of course you go to rural areas you have Electric Co-ops. This was the only way rural areas were able to get electricity starting in the 1940s. There you will find a large chunk of the system under ground, and well maintained. Amazing what non-profit utility does.

The grid company is separate from the companies that own the power stations. The grid company can however force these companies to produce in case of shortages. The grid company might be a private company, but all the stock is owned by the government. The companies that own the power stations all have to 'rent' the same grid. Everyone can pick and choose between a dozen different companies for power. Nobody really cares for that "competition" here as it was just fine before. Now it's also fine but the power companies make adds now... They get new customers by giving them a "free" iPad...
I've long had the idea that in general private companies in the US offer better service than private companies here, but the complete reverse with government-owned stuff.

New developments and such generally have underground, but soon as you leave the sub, it goes back on a pole.  Like everything else, going back and replacing an above ground line with underground doesn't have a value add generally, so it's not going to change.  Running poles thru a wetland is easier than underground, and easier thru solid rock, over mountains, etc.  Poles have a place, but in towns, they really need to go away since folks want trees on their property but that always means trees falling on lines.

For a country were companies mandate that employees hold the rail when going up or down the stairs those poles + above ground lines are a bigger danger I would think.

We already have the standing rule that with substantial changes to the electrical installations you have to conform to the newer rules. But policing on that is nonexistent. They still sell used houses for half a million euros without rcd's.

Everything is grandfathered here. Unless you are doing massive reno to something, old can stay. If you got knob and tube in your house, as long as you don't alter that part of the house it can stay.  In general until you open up a wall, it can stay, and even then it's just where your modifying.  This is for all aspects of building. No one gets forced to upgrade anything. Also probably safe to say most homehowners don't pull permits, thus no building inspection on their work. Plus once you leave cities/large towns there is no code-enforcement/permits anyway. States all have building code that apply to all, but without any code enforcement/permits people just wing it.  Generally people doing stuff understand what they are doing well enough or just do it the way it always has been done. So recent changes or minor things get lost to them.  This is changing more now that insurance companies are pressuring code enforcement to exist. But still, if someone doesn't pull a permit, it's not like anyone will ever know about what they did.

Here it's just the professional electricians saying you will not be insured in case of
  • if you DIY anything electrical, but that's not the case in reality. As long as you don't change anything you can get away with ancient stuff yes. The changes after the 60s didn't have to be applied retroactively.
I think DC will be what causes global standards.  If the world can get standardized on specs/plugs folks will just start adding DC to houses.  It's been tried before, but now due to solar and such has a better chance.

USB is a good example but it's also an example of the problem.  Folks started putting in USB plugs in walls a while back, now there is USB-C, so they now need to change. How long will USB-C be the plug?  And of course it is only good for small devices.

If DC can get it's act together it could replace AC for most consumer goods.  AC will be left for large loads, motors, induction cooking.

Something like powertools would probably stay AC, since I doubt any DC system would go beyond 100V.  What could happen is all tools become cordless, and makers sell AC-DC adapters that plug into the battery connection.  That is probably the idea situation.  If a Kapex death was fixed by just buying a new adapter, just like buying a new power brick for a laptop, it wouldn't be so bad.

https://www.directcurrent.eu/en/ pushes a DC standard with 350Vdc. They converted some greenhouses to fully DC, saving energy.


I see the US residential market going to 12VDC before we go 220VAC. With the exception of a handful of items, almost everything in the american home has a step-down to 'low voltage' someplace.

Led lighting...stepped down
televisions....stepped down
laptops/computers.... stepped down

Basically if it is not a 'major appliance' or does not have a motor, it is stepped down either on the cord or internally.

I am starting to see, finally, USB wall outlets installed into new homes on a regular basis (not enough though). Personally, I think it should be added to the NEC.

While I fully realize that a USB cable/outlet can only handle a small amount of current/power, the old school automotive cigarette lighter socket was good for 20 amps/275 watts. So there is room for something in between.

LED light bulbs often have a lot of LED's in series. There is not much stepping down there. They often sell these buls in two configurations; with one series string for 230V area and two parallel series strings for 110V.

Going 12V everywhere would be a huge PITA since you would tenfold the current. Lots of phone charger already lose 20% in the cable...

If you tenfold the current, you tenfold the voltage loss. But 1 volt lost on 110V is not a problem. 10 volts lost on 12.... is.
« Last Edit: January 22, 2019, 10:18 PM by Coen »

Offline Gregor

  • Posts: 1269
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #268 on: January 20, 2019, 02:36 PM »
I see the US residential market going to 12VDC before we go 220VAC.
To wire a house 12VDC is about the worst thing you could do: Way thicker cables needed to carry the amperage, problems with voltage drops on longer lines, switches and plugs with vastly reduced lifetime caused by arcing, ...

Can we get back on topic now?

Offline Rollin22Petes

  • Posts: 186
Re: Another Kapex Bites the dust. Again.
« Reply #269 on: January 27, 2019, 07:04 PM »
Well our shop Kapex has gone out again this makes 4 times absolutely ridiculous. So I decided to give Festool a call well that was a mistake the young man I talked with said I was probably using a dull or dirty blade. I've been a professional woodworker longer than this young gentleman has been alive and told him that was not the case well then he said the saw has a lot of electronics in it. Ok I get that but have an 8 man shop with tools from the cheapest harbor freight heat gun to $130,000.00 BIESEE cnc and everything in between and no other tool has these problems. Well the next thing he said is I don't know what to tell you it's just a trim saw by this time if I could have reached through then phone I probably would have punched him square in the face well maybe not but I sure felt like it. So what does that even mean its just a trim saw can I only cut small piece  of wood? if you take a look in some of there catalogs it shows people cutting large pieces such as 2x6's or 8/4 material I'm not sure about you guys but I don't consider that trim to me that is  misleading or false advertisement ? I forgot and mention that saw is out of warranty so I debated on getting it fixed or not. The thing is I really like the saw so I sent it in for repair and to my surprise Festool repaired it for free so I have to give them credit for that and I have always had good experiences with the repair department. The saw came back in a timely manner and had a bunch of new parts installed it didn't even need so a huge THANKS to the guys in service. Interesting thing on the card they send back stating what has been repaired there is no longer a box to check for the Armature it just says motor components. I really don't see how people keep buying this saw and I really fell sorry for those folks who just don't any better. I know Festool would never acknowledge it but I hope the model coming this has a addressed these issues I would love to buy a second but not until have reassurance that motor problem has been resolved. I know people get tired of seeing these kinda post but a  saw that has went through 4 motors in 4 years I couldn't keep silent I'm pretty disappointed. I thought the saw was built for the toughest demands obviously not.