Author Topic: Festool quality?  (Read 31042 times)

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Offline Holmz

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #30 on: April 16, 2017, 10:25 PM »
This is a "slap the arse and watch the ripples" thread with polarised positions, plenty of opinion and a dash of fact.
..


Best prose today. Brilliant use of the English language.

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Offline Naildrivingman

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #31 on: April 23, 2017, 06:36 AM »
I think that like many companies which are more or less unknown to the general public, festool will be fine unless they try to grab that apple of popularity.

I think the Pro 5 Ltd was an example. Festool took advance orders and then when it came to fulfilling contracts, they were unable to meet the demand. Of the ones that were delivered to my local distributor (100 were promised, but 10 were delivered), three were returned for service within a few weeks (hours in my case) of use. My sander failed out of the box because of a bearing issue. My assumption is they were unable to meet demand and they did "something" to meet at least part of the pledged quota. That "something" could have been speeding up production, use of different vendors for parts, outsourcing...

IMHO, if Festool doesn't try to generally appeal to the masses, I think they will be just fine. If they want to develop a line of tools that appeal to lower budgets while keeping the original line for those like us who frequent this board; Festool will be just fine.

As to the sentiments of the OPs question, I cannot render an opinion because I've only owned the green and black for about 8 years. In that period of time I can't say that I've experienced quality issues except for the Pro 5 Ltd.
Dance with who brung ya...

Offline jdw101

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #32 on: May 06, 2017, 04:18 PM »
I think Festool's quality is generally pretty good, but some of their obvious outside supplier bits and pieces are not so good.

KAPEX-gate has tarnished the quality image a fair bit, along with CARVEX issues and the TS55REQ recalls.

Festool are certainly premium tools and you pay accordingly, but if you set your expectations too high you're likely to be dissapointed.

Can anyone elaborate on Kapex-Gate?  I currently do not own a Kapex because I already have the large Milwaukee but I have been wanting one after using it in my brothers shop.  I'd hate to get a lemon though and wonder what it's all about.

Thanks

Offline DrD

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #33 on: May 06, 2017, 04:50 PM »
There are any number of other tool suppliers which provide equal or better quality and support than Festool, and at way lower prices, whether your color of choice be dark blue, red, light blue, orange, yellow, or gray. 

Much like with Kapex-gate, we recently had a thread wherein it was demonstrated that a key dimensional characteristic - a measure of quality - on the guide rail had changed from what it had been, altering a system-useful norm; data was presented, and Festool has refused to comment, other than - like with Kapex-gate - we'll look into it.  It is as if Festool feels we, their customers, are like unto mushrooms - keep 'em in the dark and feed them dung.

Please note, fellow FOGgers are generally great, offering MUCH useful advice, but try to get a Festool employee to chime in on the forum with anything useful - "fo-get (sic) about it".
Dr.D

Offline Peter Halle

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #34 on: May 06, 2017, 06:50 PM »
I think Festool's quality is generally pretty good, but some of their obvious outside supplier bits and pieces are not so good.

KAPEX-gate has tarnished the quality image a fair bit, along with CARVEX issues and the TS55REQ recalls.

Festool are certainly premium tools and you pay accordingly, but if you set your expectations too high you're likely to be dissapointed.

Can anyone elaborate on Kapex-Gate?  I currently do not own a Kapex because I already have the large Milwaukee but I have been wanting one after using it in my brothers shop.  I'd hate to get a lemon though and wonder what it's all about.

Thanks

When I read the phrase "Kapex-gate" I assume that it is referring to posts here where owners of the Kapex - usually 110 volt models have had motor issues.  Some have had their saws in for repairs on numerous occasions.  Some Kapex users of the same saws have not had issues.  Festool has repaired some under warranty and others have had to pay for theirs (outside of the warranty period.)  Festool's comments and actions to date have been:

1.  A request that if users have an issue with their saws is to send detailed information about their usage,
2.  A statement that they are looking into what might be causing the issues,
3.  A statement that the failure rate of the saws is not that statistically different than other Festool products,
4.  A recommendation that short duration highly repetitive cuts be avoided.

Take that anyway that you wish, I am just trying to unemotionally and non-dramatically answer your question.

Peter - a professional Kapex owner and user since 2010.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2017, 04:30 PM by Peter Halle »
Disclaimer:  I have been involved with the development of some TSO Products.  I have offered thoughts and ideas freely.  I am not paid but I may receive products during the development process or afterwards.

Offline jdw101

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #35 on: May 07, 2017, 12:21 AM »
I think Festool's quality is generally pretty good, but some of their obvious outside supplier bits and pieces are not so good.

KAPEX-gate has tarnished the quality image a fair bit, along with CARVEX issues and the TS55REQ recalls.

Festool are certainly premium tools and you pay accordingly, but if you set your expectations too high you're likely to be dissapointed.

Can anyone elaborate on Kapex-Gate?  I currently do not own a Kapex because I already have the large Milwaukee but I have been wanting one after using it in my brothers shop.  I'd hate to get a lemon though and wonder what it's all about.

Thanks

When I read the phrase "Kapex-gate" I assume that it is referring to posts here where owners of the Kapex - usually 110 volt models have had motor issues.  Some have had their saws in for repairs on numerous occasions.  Some Kapex users of the same saws have not had issues.  Festool has repaired some under warranty and others have had to pay for theirs (outside of the warranty period.)  Festool's comments and actions to date have been:

1.  A request that if users have an issue with their saws is to send detailed information about their usage,
2.  A statement that they are looking into what might be causing the issues,
3.  A statement that the failure rate of the saws is not statistically different than other Festool products,
4.  A recommendation that short duration highly repetitive cuts be avoided.

Take that anyway that you wish, I am just trying to unemotionally and non-dramatically answer your question.

Peter - a professional Kapex owner and user since 2010.

Thanks for the info.  I had not heard about it but that made me a little worried before a purchase :O

Offline rizzoa13

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #36 on: May 07, 2017, 04:44 AM »
Keep in mind they were looking into it a year and a half ago and we've not been able to get any information since.

If the kapex had a more reliable, in my eyes, and more powerful motor I'd be 100% happy with it. The features are what sell the saw but in all honesty if I weren't pulling it out of my trailer and setting it up on a job site I'd never spend the money because it isn't worth it. It's the convenience of the kapex and the ug cart and wings that make it worthwhile.

Offline Peter Parfitt

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #37 on: May 07, 2017, 05:58 AM »
Did I read this wrong? I thought that the problem was related to poor power supplies and in particular lower than nominal voltage supply.

Peter

Offline chris s

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #38 on: May 07, 2017, 08:19 AM »
I would not say the quality has declined. However it has not kept up with the increases in price.  Which means that I now shop around and to be honest Milwaukee is giving Festool a good run.

 i

Offline antss

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #39 on: May 07, 2017, 09:47 AM »
Peter - Kapex failures in the UK are certainly due to poor power suplies since you guys have to use transformers to they 110v tools avaialble to you whether on site or in your shop.  In my limited experiece most guys , trying to economize , end up with under rated or poor quality xformers and then run them with smaller then advised extension cords . Further exacerbating the voltage drop.   

In the U.S. , i's a bit more complicated.  We don't use xformers but our powergrid is a hodge podge.  On work sites we see the same voltage drops because there is most often only one supply and it's 50 to 100 feet from the work areas at best.  COntractors or workmen then use extensions to bring power to their area - with cheap and undersized cords.  Causing the same issue seen on UK sites.

All that said - I think most of the U.S. Kapex failures have occured in shops; where the power should be much better.  What frosts guys' backsides is that none of the other big players' saw motors get reported going tits up in such numbers as Kapex.  In either country.    Festool's recommendation that short duration highly repetitive cuts be avoided on a mitersaw is absurd and tantamount to poking a bull. 

I also think that if Festol's enigineers didnt design their motor to account for being used in locations where they be subject to questionable or crappy power supplies , then they failed to do their job.   Do we think Skil designed their worm drive saw's motor with the expectation that it would be used in a shop environmet with clean power with spot on contiuous voltage ? No , that's a jobsite saw and they know what kind of power is going to be seen there.

Doc - never though of myself as mushroom.    [scared]   or am I ripple ?

jdw - google or search here for kapex motor problems and you'll have days of reading material. 

Offline Rob-GB

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #40 on: May 07, 2017, 10:32 AM »
The problem with 110v Kapex motors in the UK is that most transformers are underpowered in amperage. Try running a CTL-Mini + Kapex on one and it will slow down and refuse to cut efficiently, put them both on a better quality/larger one (also heavier) and it works just fine unless you are running off a long extension lead or plugged into a low amperage circuit.
On a wider field of the issue is that the UK still refuses to let site contractors use 240v tools on site despite the advances in circuit breakers and technology. An issue which causes huge conflicts, most of my kit is 110v but I can't get a 110v DF700 so I have to be further inconvenienced by not being able to use my vac with it the way I prefer or the way the Festool system is supposed to work,  and have to buy and lug around transformers for domestic work and hope they have a socket on the electric cooker ring main.
Lost count of the times my plugging in a transformer has tripped the mains messing with peoples computers or cooker or washing machine.
I have a lot of faith in the quality of Festools which is why I have invested so much money in them. All tools have limitations and not all limitations are the fault of the manufacturer.

Rob.
Problem? No such thing! Only a solution waiting to be found:- RJ

"A $2 guppy swims......" Deke

Offline rizzoa13

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #41 on: May 07, 2017, 03:34 PM »
Antss explained it correctly in that I'm a site carpenter bouncing around from expensive home to expensive home (you should see the electrical room in some of these places) and I shoot the sh*t with plenty of different tradesmen. I've never heard a guy say they killed a dewalt, Milwaukee or Bosch miter saw. These saws just don't see the kind of continuous motor strain that a jobsite tablesaw or a circular saw see so they shouldn't be burning up. If heat is building up through repeated fast cuts in small mouldings then some engineer really screwed up. It's makes crosscuts for gods sake come on.

Offline Dovetail65

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #42 on: May 07, 2017, 03:57 PM »
Where does this come from?

"Festool's recommendation that short duration highly repetitive cuts be avoided on a mitersaw"

Where is this stated.  I can't believe Festool would ever say something like that as a Miter saw is designed for the task of short repetitive cuts. That's what the saw does best.

Has Festool written this in a manual or stated it anywhere else? This sounds like second hand word of mouth from someone that had an issue. Or one peron that worked at Festool that just said it trying to shut a customer up.

 I can't believe it's a Festool position. That's like saying dont use a Rotex to sand or a router to route.

I could see the ads

"The kapex is the most advanced saw on the market if you dont want to cut a lot of parts with it".  It just makes no sense.

The one who says it can't be done should avoid interrupting the person doing it.

Offline six-point socket II

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #43 on: May 07, 2017, 04:22 PM »
Hi,

@Dovetail65

I think it all goes back to this post from @TylerC

http://festoolownersgroup.com/festool-tool-problems/the-life-span/msg449726/#msg449726

We have heard back from the Festool HQ in Germany about this topic. They have taken a deeper look into the number of repairs and the repair causes. All Kapex-related comments on the FOG were also reviewed.

The findings:
While the number of repairs on the Kapex is slightly higher than expected, it is not a systematic problem. Roughly a third of the repairs are related to the motor, and we are currently looking into the root causes. Despite the fact that this is not an unusual concentration, we take this topic very serious because we understand the trouble every non-functioning tool causes for our customers.

Right now it seems the failures are related to a specific usage pattern (rapid cuts in relatively thin pieces of wood opposed to slower cuts in big beams). To verify this, we would like to ask you for your help.

Here is how you can help: If you have experienced a motor burnout or feel the Kapex has served you less than a fair amount of time, please send an email to kapex@festool.com with the following information:
  • Your contact information (name, e-mail, phone number)
  • What type of work do you mostly use your Kapex for? The more information you can provide, the better. We are especially interested to find out what type of material you are cutting, understand what type of cuts you are mainly doing (rapid cuts in thin material oo more big beams etc.), and how often you are using your saw.
  • Information on the type of failure and what has been done to fix the failure (repairs after what time etc.)
  • Do you use a Kapex 110/120 volt model or a 220/240 volt model?
  • Purchase date or machine numbers if available

We appreciate you are taking the time to send us this information. It will help to better understand what leads to these issues.

I highlighted the specific part.

And since we are on the internet, it quickly became: Festool said you can't do highly repetitive cuts (in thin material) on the Kapex. .....   [sad]

Kind regards,
Oliver

Offline Peter Halle

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #44 on: May 07, 2017, 04:32 PM »
My apologies for a mis-statement.  Thank you for finding the post.  I have crossed out that statement in my previous post.

Peter
Disclaimer:  I have been involved with the development of some TSO Products.  I have offered thoughts and ideas freely.  I am not paid but I may receive products during the development process or afterwards.

Offline six-point socket II

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #45 on: May 07, 2017, 05:07 PM »
Hi,

You're not to blame @Peter Halle  [smile]

Kind regards,
Oliver


Offline bobfog

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #46 on: May 07, 2017, 06:08 PM »
That post was from 23 March last year.

On a totally unrelated note, here is a photograph from the most recent meeting of Festool executives:


Offline T. Ernsberger

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #47 on: May 07, 2017, 07:50 PM »
That post was from 23 March last year.

On a totally unrelated note, here is a photograph from the most recent meeting of Festool executives:

(Attachment Link)

Very true.  The kapex-gate has totally changed my view of Festool.  I had cash in hand to buy a Kapex and walked away from the purchase.  Seriously the motor issue is related to repeat cuts in thin material.  So saying that its probably not a good saw for interior trim.  Festool response in my option is very arrogant.  Another issue I have with Festool right now is the horrible new and "improved" hose ends that are aweful.

Offline Dovetail65

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #48 on: May 07, 2017, 07:58 PM »
Yikes my work consist of resawing all my lumber to 3/8" thick,  planing it a bit after that and then cutting it. My most used  wood thickness is 1/4" to 5/16".

I guess I should not use a Kapex?

My Milwaukee, De Walt and Rigid Slider saws have been making these thin cuts thousands of times a month for over 10 years and all three saws still work  perfectly. They work so well I sold the DeWalt and Rigid within days of putting them for sale. Both were real workhorses. I kept the Milwaukee. It collects a very nice amount of dust and after 8 years it's proven itself with power and it's digital miter scale still works perfectly.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2017, 08:03 PM by Dovetail65 »
The one who says it can't be done should avoid interrupting the person doing it.

Offline antss

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #49 on: May 07, 2017, 09:26 PM »
@bobfog  - ROTFLMAO   

I think Festool is in a real predicament.    After a years worth of fact finding they have found nothing ???   

Which means they declined to really look into it - or - they couldn't find anything because they didn't have the engineering power - or - they did find that their motors were susceptible to issues.

None of which plays well to the customers.  They only see :
- We can't be bothered to look into it because we really don't care.  You keep buying them.
- We're not smart enough to figure the problem out.
- We did find out why. But even we're not crass enough to officially and publicly tell the customers they can't use their saw to cut small stuff.  No one in the U.S. would ever buy a Kapex again and ebay would be flooded with $200 saws.

Offline kevinculle

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #50 on: May 08, 2017, 08:52 AM »
Put the field problem aside for a moment, it is inconceivable to me that Festool would both understand the root cause(s) of the failures and not at least address them in the new saws they are building and selling.  So until the Kapex undergoes engineering changes as built you can assume Festool has not run this to ground.  What we lack to have perspective on this issue is a simple but telling statistic...what percentage of the Kapex saws now in the field have experienced the failure.  If it's a lot less than 1% (my expectation) and not clustered in a narrow range of serial numbers (indicating a transient glitch in supplier parts or manufacturing) then they may never fully understand the root cause(s).

Offline Festoolfootstool

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #51 on: May 08, 2017, 11:38 AM »
All you can assume is festool don't give a monkey's
What would be good if some people on here would stop talking nonsense about step down transformers etc as they have already demonstrated their lack of electrical knowledge.combined with the fact that they are on the payroll makes them so transparent.
Just buy from other manufacturers stop wasting your energy on the kapex.
If the milk turns out to be sour, I ain't the kind of **** to drink it.......

Why do Festool accessories only have a two month guarantee here in the UK ?

Offline rizzoa13

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #52 on: May 08, 2017, 06:12 PM »
Put the field problem aside for a moment, it is inconceivable to me that Festool would both understand the root cause(s) of the failures and not at least address them in the new saws they are building and selling.  So until the Kapex undergoes engineering changes as built you can assume Festool has not run this to ground.  What we lack to have perspective on this issue is a simple but telling statistic...what percentage of the Kapex saws now in the field have experienced the failure.  If it's a lot less than 1% (my expectation) and not clustered in a narrow range of serial numbers (indicating a transient glitch in supplier parts or manufacturing) then they may never fully understand the root cause(s).

Feel that way when your saw is one of the "expected less than 1%" and takes a crap 3 months out of warranty. Then see how you'd feel when the manufacturer blows your inquiries off for months, finally relents to look into it by asking for information from failed saw users (lazy as all), and then comes back with the statement of "it may stem from fast repetitive cuts in small mouldings"..... which is exactly what a mitre saw is for.

You do realize a recall is an admission of guilt and would be EXTREMELY expensive. I know I'd go after them for my $600 repair bill if I could ever prove the onus was on their end.

Offline Peter Halle

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #53 on: May 08, 2017, 07:30 PM »
Recalls happen for safety issues.  A saw, or any tool not lasting as long as one might expect due to the price paid for it and whatever claims the manufacturer made about it is not a safety issue.

I am not saying that this isn't a blemish, embarrassment, sales hurting occurrence, etc for Festool, because it is.  The length of silence will only continue to hurt them.  I've shouted as high as I can shout to them regarding this beyond this forum.

Peter
Disclaimer:  I have been involved with the development of some TSO Products.  I have offered thoughts and ideas freely.  I am not paid but I may receive products during the development process or afterwards.

Offline antss

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #54 on: May 08, 2017, 07:53 PM »
Didn't Festool recall the original carvex because of issues ?

 Or was it just a delay of launch.  I thought they'd reach the marketplace. Were the issues saftey related?  I can't recall now.

About a decade ago I was on the periphery of a dishwasher recall by a manufacturer. There wasn't a saftey issue or a UL problem at all. But a significant number of them developed leaks that the whole program was shelved and units we bought back BEFORE any sort of organized bad publicity or class action was brought up.  On paper there shouldn't have been a problem, but they kept leaking in numbers that was more than a coincidence. The owner/CEO just rolled up the entire project and ate a big loss.

What I'm saying is, typical a recall is a "consumer product saftey recall". But not always. And sometimes big business will take the high road. Not often, but it happens.

Offline Svar

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #55 on: May 08, 2017, 07:56 PM »
Didn't Festool recall the original carvex because of issues ?

There was recall for TS55REQ. Blade did not retract properly.

Offline Bohdan

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #56 on: May 08, 2017, 08:16 PM »
Compulsory recalls happen for safety reasons, voluntary recalls happen due to the company deciding that the bad publicity will cost them an unacceptable amount.

Obviously Festool make enough profit that the Kapex fiasco is not affecting their bottom line and they don't care cause they already have your money.

In my case I like the functionality of the Kapex but due to Festool's lack of action on the perceived issues I won't risk buying one.

If they were to simply say that all motor failures and repairs will be covered by warranty for at least 10 years I would get one and I am sure that Festool's reputation would be enhanced.

Offline antss

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #57 on: May 08, 2017, 08:33 PM »
I remember the 55 recall, but feel that was a saftey issue.

The original carvex was definitely scrapped , and for a pretty good while.  I just can't recall if it actually made the shelves in the USA. Pretty sure it did in Europe/UK.  Which makes me uncertain if it was     "recalled".

It wasn't saftey related though. I pretty sure it was due to the light system crapping out and blade wandering unacceptably. 

So , it would seem Festool has at least some history of fixing their gaffs.


Offline Peter Halle

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #58 on: May 08, 2017, 09:04 PM »
The Original Carvex never was sold here.  Not recalled - just not released.

The Ts55 recall was a voluntary recall in cooperation with the CPSC.

Peter
Disclaimer:  I have been involved with the development of some TSO Products.  I have offered thoughts and ideas freely.  I am not paid but I may receive products during the development process or afterwards.

Offline antss

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Re: Festool quality?
« Reply #59 on: May 08, 2017, 11:20 PM »
Peter - What happened with the ps 400's that were sold in Europe ?