Author Topic: HKC 55 EB review  (Read 124337 times)

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Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 3969
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #120 on: September 19, 2016, 02:08 PM »
Lbob, read reply #96.

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Offline rst

  • Posts: 2181
Re: HKC 55 EB revto fit the slotiew
« Reply #121 on: September 19, 2016, 03:05 PM »
I used my HKC over the weekend to extend my daughters deck.  Unfortunatedly I had not drank enough bourbon when I placed the order.  I ordered the HKC plus with out the short rail, figuring that the 420 and 670 rails would be the most usedful for me.  I also ordered the bags for each rail and a couple extra blades.  I got the saw Wednesday but no rails turns out the 670 rails were not shipping yet and I had forgot to add the 420 to my order [huh].  The saw worked perfectly for me dispite having to use my 12" speed square for cutoffs.  I wear a large glove size and had no issues with knuckle busting, maybe I just hold the saw differently.  I recieved my 420 rail this morning and love the combo.  I probably won't be using the 45 % much as I don't frame roofs, that being said the fact that the rail lets you make angled cuts with the rail leads me to think that having a sharp chisel in my toolbelt to knock off the tiny lip will still be quicker than having to line any other saw (excepting the pricey Mafells of course) in order to make the horizontal angle.  Also, my 55 side rail fits perfecty on the HKC, I did have to modify the rear clamp plate by grinding a little off each side to fit the slot in the saw base.
« Last Edit: September 19, 2016, 03:08 PM by rst »

Offline Arvid

  • Posts: 82
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #122 on: September 19, 2016, 04:17 PM »
mafell handle sits higher up too. sits a touch more above the blade housing.  yes cutting depth looks to be the same.

I have fairly larger hands and I don't have any trouble with the KSS 400.  I'm not sure if the handle sits up any higher, but there is a step in the blade housing to give more room for your hand.
(Attachment Link)

The KSS 400 has slightly more cutting depth on a 45 degree bevel.  It can cut all the way through a 2x4 on a 45, the Festool HK saws can't.

good info right here. not only does the festool not have the step in the blade housing for more room, but it is the lever that unlocks the plunge feature that steps out from the blade housing that rubs on your knuckles. maybe thats why the russians in the video on the first page are wearing gloves.
I'm not sure but i believe the hk55 can cut a 2x4 beveled at 45 but could be wrong. if it can't then it is even more useless then i thought for me.

Ah OK. So that  distance is  less than 50mm?
If the mafell   doesn't do what you want  then surely its useless also?

Yes if the mafell cannot cut through a 2x at 45 degrees it is useless to me. I do not need another panel saw. The hk55 was marketed to cross cutting framing materials. Not as another panel saw.
They just made sure they didn't demonstrate that it couldn't.

Offline Lbob131

  • Posts: 464
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #123 on: September 19, 2016, 04:35 PM »
Lbob, read reply #96.

Thank you.
Brice says...  It can cut all the way through a 2x4 on a 45.

Surely he's mistaken  as  the specs say  only 40mm  @45 degrees  for  the  KSS400  with the track?
But I take on board  the point he makes  about  hand space.
« Last Edit: September 19, 2016, 04:45 PM by Lbob131 »

Offline Lbob131

  • Posts: 464
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #124 on: September 19, 2016, 04:50 PM »
mafell handle sits higher up too. sits a touch more above the blade housing.  yes cutting depth looks to be the same.

I have fairly larger hands and I don't have any trouble with the KSS 400.  I'm not sure if the handle sits up any higher, but there is a step in the blade housing to give more room for your hand.
(Attachment Link)

The KSS 400 has slightly more cutting depth on a 45 degree bevel.  It can cut all the way through a 2x4 on a 45, the Festool HK saws can't.

good info right here. not only does the festool not have the step in the blade housing for more room, but it is the lever that unlocks the plunge feature that steps out from the blade housing that rubs on your knuckles. maybe thats why the russians in the video on the first page are wearing gloves.
I'm not sure but i believe the hk55 can cut a 2x4 beveled at 45 but could be wrong. if it can't then it is even more useless then i thought for me.

Ah OK. So that  distance is  less than 50mm?
If the mafell   doesn't do what you want  then surely its useless also?

Yes if the mafell cannot cut through a 2x at 45 degrees it is useless to me. I do not need another panel saw. The hk55 was marketed to cross cutting framing materials. Not as another panel saw.
They just made sure they didn't demonstrate that it couldn't.

Festool UK market the saw as a carpentry saw. No mention of "framing".
I guess its just down to location.


Offline Lbob131

  • Posts: 464
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #125 on: September 19, 2016, 05:00 PM »
Festool  HKC55 (corded version)  with  420mm  FSK  rail  from axminster = £355 inc VAT.
Mafell  KSS400   (corded version) with 450mm  rail   from   screwfix = £700 inc VAT.

So I could have two  HKC 55  machines  for  the price of the Mafell.

Offline Arvid

  • Posts: 82
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #126 on: September 19, 2016, 05:14 PM »
mafell handle sits higher up too. sits a touch more above the blade housing.  yes cutting depth looks to be the same.

I have fairly larger hands and I don't have any trouble with the KSS 400.  I'm not sure if the handle sits up any higher, but there is a step in the blade housing to give more room for your hand.
(Attachment Link)

The KSS 400 has slightly more cutting depth on a 45 degree bevel.  It can cut all the way through a 2x4 on a 45, the Festool HK saws can't.

good info right here. not only does the festool not have the step in the blade housing for more room, but it is the lever that unlocks the plunge feature that steps out from the blade housing that rubs on your knuckles. maybe thats why the russians in the video on the first page are wearing gloves.
I'm not sure but i believe the hk55 can cut a 2x4 beveled at 45 but could be wrong. if it can't then it is even more useless then i thought for me.

Ah OK. So that  distance is  less than 50mm?
If the mafell   doesn't do what you want  then surely its useless also?

Yes if the mafell cannot cut through a 2x at 45 degrees it is useless to me. I do not need another panel saw. The hk55 was marketed to cross cutting framing materials. Not as another panel saw.
They just made sure they didn't demonstrate that it couldn't.

Festool UK market the saw as a carpentry saw. No mention of "framing".
I guess its just down to location.

I don't care what the U.K. markets the saw for I am not there.
The video reviews and demonstrations I saw here were in North America and demonstrated on dimensional framing lumber.

Offline Lbob131

  • Posts: 464
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #127 on: September 19, 2016, 05:19 PM »
Two saws for the price   of one. I care about that. [big grin]

Those north American  salesmen  will get a slap from  their German counterparts.

Offline Brice Burrell

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Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #128 on: September 19, 2016, 05:23 PM »
Thank you.
Brice says...  It can cut all the way through a 2x4 on a 45.

Surely he's mistaken  as  the specs say  only 40mm  @45 degrees  for  the  KSS400  with the track?
But I take on board  the point he makes  about  hand space.

Here's a quick video of the KSS 400 making a compound angled cut, 45 degree bevel.  It cuts all the way through this piece of 2x 6 pressure treated lumber that is a hair over 1 1/2" (about 39mm).  Sorry there is no sound, but at the end of the video I inserted a still showing the cut.

Check out my new blog, The Green and Dark Blue Blog.

Offline Lbob131

  • Posts: 464
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #129 on: September 19, 2016, 05:28 PM »
Brice.
Why do you  say  2" x 6"  then say  its a hair over  1 1/2"  (about 39mm)
Its so confusing.

Surely its  1 1/2" x 6"?
« Last Edit: September 19, 2016, 05:51 PM by Lbob131 »

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 3969
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #130 on: September 19, 2016, 05:41 PM »
Brice.
Why do you  say  2" x 4"  then say  its a hair over  1 1/2"  (about 39mm)

Surely its  1 1/2" x 4"?


You may not have noticed but you're replying to guys who live in the US.

Here, "2x4" is the somewhat archaic reference to a standard stick of lumber that (in the olden days) was milled green to 2" x 4". 

Today, what you get from the lumber yard is actually 1.5x3.5". If it is especially high in moisture content it may be a little bigger all around. (The mills do allow for drying and shrinkage)

So, when Brice says the KSS 400 will cut through a 2x4 at 45*, and Mafell says the capacity is 40mm@45*, they're both right.
40mm = 1-9/16", just enough to get the job done.

Buy as many HKCs as you want and be happy.

Offline Lbob131

  • Posts: 464
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #131 on: September 19, 2016, 05:51 PM »
So if you walk into a lumber yard  in  Pittsburgh  and ask for a  2" x  6"  plank, they hand   you out  a  1 1/2" x 6"  plank?

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 3969
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #132 on: September 19, 2016, 05:52 PM »
Brice, do you know if the TSC 55 is also a little shy of cutting 2x stuff at 45*.
Is suppose all the Festool 55 saws have the same capacity but I haven't tried that cut in so long (if ever, I'm not a framer) I just don't know...

I don't generally need that extra millimeter cut. For the occasions that I might, maybe someone will come up with an outboard (off the left side of the shoe) guide rail that will allow the saw to run directly on the stock. Hans?

Offline Cheese

  • Posts: 6030
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #133 on: September 19, 2016, 05:55 PM »
Its so confusing.

Surely its  1 1/2" x 6"?

Yes it can be... [eek]

Just to add to this confusion, a 2x6 is actually 1 1/2" x 5 1/2". While a 2x8 is actually 1 1/2" x 7 1/4".

And you thought it was just our imperial measurements that were goofy.  [smile]

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 3969
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #134 on: September 19, 2016, 05:57 PM »
So if you walk into a lumber yard  in  Pittsburgh  and ask for a  2" x  6"  plank, they hand   you out  a  1 1/2" x 6"  plank?

Not on your life.          It'll be 1 1/2' x 5 1/2"

Here is a chart.

Offline Lbob131

  • Posts: 464
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #135 on: September 19, 2016, 05:58 PM »
I use imperial and metric. Tapes are marked in both here.


Offline Lbob131

  • Posts: 464
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #136 on: September 19, 2016, 06:00 PM »
So if you walk into a lumber yard  in  Pittsburgh  and ask for a  2" x  6"  plank, they hand   you out  a  1 1/2" x 6"  plank?

Not on your life.          It'll be 1 1/2' x 5 1/2"

Here is a chart.

So  2"x lumber   is  1 1/2" actual  from that chart.

Now I'm wondering  what Arvid  is complaining about  when both  the HKC  and the mafell  will chop  that  @45 degrees.

But I'm guessing now you're gonna tell me that  "framing"  2"x  lumber  is 2"  actual.
Right?



« Last Edit: September 19, 2016, 06:09 PM by Lbob131 »

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 3969
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #137 on: September 19, 2016, 06:21 PM »
Lbob, you've got to focus on the details.

The Mafell gives specs for both on the rail and off the rail.

Festool only gives specs for off the rail but it doesn't tell you that's what they're for.

You have to try to find out on your own.
(or ask a Festool employee and even then you can't be sure of the answer...)

Offline jimbo51

  • Posts: 460
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #138 on: September 19, 2016, 06:31 PM »
" both  the HKC  and the mafell  will chop  that  @45 degrees."

Depends on how you define chop. The HKC will leave a lip on one side of the cut. The Mafell will not.

As noted, some work with a chisel (or a handsaw) will clean up the cut. If you do not do a lot of 45 degree bevels, then a bit of chisel or handsaw work may be tolerable.

A test with a 162 or 165 mm blade on the HKC would be most informative, though it would void the warranty if something went wrong.


Offline Arvid

  • Posts: 82
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #139 on: September 19, 2016, 07:09 PM »
Quote from: jimbo51

A test with a 162 or 165 mm blade on the HKC would be most informative, though it would void the warranty if something went wrong.
[/quote


162 might work but 165 will bring it very close to the splitter

Offline erock

  • Posts: 1254
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #140 on: September 19, 2016, 09:30 PM »
@Brice Burrell    Thanks for the video dude.

A buddy emailed me about this thread and told me about the short comings of the HKC.     I told him about Toolnut carrying the Mafell line.   Seems like the way to go if you need to cut 2x lumber at a 45*.

I asked this question on the Festool Facebook page....but like this thread, they have not replied or acknowledged the 45* cut on the track.     I was thinking this saw could or would speed up the deck I am planning on building.   But I guess I'll stick with the old circular saw and miter saw.


Eric

Offline tjbnwi

  • Posts: 5963
  • Cedar Tucky Indiana
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #141 on: September 19, 2016, 09:40 PM »
Brice, do you know if the TSC 55 is also a little shy of cutting 2x stuff at 45*.
Is suppose all the Festool 55 saws have the same capacity but I haven't tried that cut in so long (if ever, I'm not a framer) I just don't know...

I don't generally need that extra millimeter cut. For the occasions that I might, maybe someone will come up with an outboard (off the left side of the shoe) guide rail that will allow the saw to run directly on the stock. Hans?

The TS 55 will not cut cleanly threw 2x dimensional lumber. I tried it the other day when the HK issue was brought up.

It leaves the same nib as the HK.

Tom

Offline tjbnwi

  • Posts: 5963
  • Cedar Tucky Indiana
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #142 on: September 19, 2016, 09:43 PM »
So if you walk into a lumber yard  in  Pittsburgh  and ask for a  2" x  6"  plank, they hand   you out  a  1 1/2" x 6"  plank?

Not on your life.          It'll be 1 1/2' x 5 1/2"

Here is a chart.

So  2"x lumber   is  1 1/2" actual  from that chart.

Now I'm wondering  what Arvid  is complaining about  when both  the HKC  and the mafell  will chop  that  @45 degrees.

But I'm guessing now you're gonna tell me that  "framing"  2"x  lumber  is 2"  actual.
Right?

Framing lumber in the US is nominal 2", in other words the actual finished dimension is 1-1/2" (assumes no swelling from moisture).

Tom

Offline Tom Gensmer

  • Posts: 679
  • Residential Remodeler in Minnesota
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #143 on: September 19, 2016, 10:01 PM »
Like Brice, I've been using a KSS-400 the last few years for framing as well as trim work on my job sites. Awesome saw, in addition to framing I've trimmed out whole basements (base board, shoe, door and window casing), I've even used it to fit some crown moulding in a pinch.

Yes, the KSS-400 will cleanly cut through 2x lumber on a 45 bevel, whereas the HK(C)-55 will not cleanly cut 2x lumber on a 45. I've performed this cut in my shop as a test, but in the last two or three years that I've been using this saw I can't remember a single time that I've needed to perform this cut on a job site.

What I HAVE wished for was the ability to bevel past 45 degrees, something the Mafell saw will not do without modification, whereas the HK(C)-55 bevels to 50 degrees. This is REALLY handy when cutting tall 1x8 and 1x10 baseboards at outside corners, where the bevel setting is frequently near 46 degrees or more. With the KSS-400 I'd pop a shim under the track and hope for the best, I like that I can dial in the HK saws.

If you want/need to cut 2x lumber at a 45 degree bevel with no additional work then you should be looking at the KSS-400, KSS-60, or even the KSS-80 which will cut 2x lumber at a 60 degree bevel. Expect to pay at least $1k+ for any of these saws.

If you'll mostly be crosscutting 2x lumber at anything less than 45 degrees and have already invested in the FS track ecosystem, I think the HK saws are a no-brainer.

Regarding the "knuckle buster" issue, I consider most sidewinder saws "knuckle busters", including such classics as the Makita 5007s and all of the DeWalts. I learned on worm drive saws, so anything else seems a little weird, but I've learned to adapt. Having used the KSS saws for several years now, I've learned how to handle them in a way that is both comfortable and safe, and I'm sure a couple days on the HK saws would yield a similar result.
CT-MIDI, C-18, RO-150, RO-90, OF-1010, OF-1400, MFK-700, MFK-700EQ/B, EHL-65, DTS-400, LS-130, MFT/3 (x4), MFT/Kapex (x3), KA 65 Conturo, endless Systainers

Offline Brice Burrell

  • Posts: 7363
  • Remodeling Contractor
    • The Green and Dark Blue blog
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #144 on: September 19, 2016, 10:05 PM »
@Brice Burrell    Thanks for the video dude.

A buddy emailed me about this thread and told me about the short comings of the HKC.     I told him about Toolnut carrying the Mafell line.   Seems like the way to go if you need to cut 2x lumber at a 45*.

I asked this question on the Festool Facebook page....but like this thread, they have not replied or acknowledged the 45* cut on the track.     I was thinking this saw could or would speed up the deck I am planning on building.   But I guess I'll stick with the old circular saw and miter saw.


Eric

Eric, As Tom already touched on, I wouldn't be so quick to write off the HK saws.  Most people rarely need to make 45 degree bevel cuts in 2x material.  The few times you'd need to you can use the HK saw off the rail or a miter saw.  The exception would be guys that frame hip/valley roofs on a regular basis. 

While I have no complaint with my Mafell saw I'm not super thrilled with the brand (here in N. America).  The pricing is exorbitant, we only get a one year warranty (3 years in Europe), no UL or CSA listing, limited availability of accessories and so on.  All of us here are already invested in Festool, rails, clamps and all that stuff.  You can throw an HK saw on the rails you use for your TS55.  If you want to do that with the KSS400, well you'll need to invest more money, a whole lot more.  For example.

KSS400 (without any kind of case) $948
Systainer 4 $85
a couple of F160 guide rails $309.20
guide rail connector $78.80
guide rail clamps $62

Total $1483

Of course you don't need all of this stuff, but you'll probably want it, and you can see how fast it gets out of hand...
       
Check out my new blog, The Green and Dark Blue Blog.

Offline Mort

  • Posts: 355
  • World's Tallest Midget
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #145 on: September 19, 2016, 10:25 PM »
For that price, I'll file off the nub.
I hate signatures.

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 3969
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #146 on: September 20, 2016, 12:35 AM »
Brice and Tom, thanks for your remarkably concise, brass tacks review/comparisons of the two similar saws. Very helpful!

Offline Arvid

  • Posts: 82
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #147 on: September 20, 2016, 01:24 AM »
The clearance  between   the handle  and the guard on my  ts55  is 50mm.

Is the HKC 55 less that that?

The hk55 has 37-38mm between the handle and plundge release lever that sticks off the side of the blade housing. A pitiful amount of clearance

Offline rst

  • Posts: 2181
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #148 on: September 20, 2016, 07:17 AM »
Despite my not probably not really ever needing to cut a vertical 45% 2X4, I tried it last night...didn't need a chisel, just ran my razor knife over the nub...much ado about not much!  [smile]

Offline Arvid

  • Posts: 82
Re: HKC 55 EB review
« Reply #149 on: September 20, 2016, 08:55 AM »
Despite my not probably not really ever needing to cut a vertical 45% 2X4, I tried it last night...didn't need a chisel, just ran my razor knife over the nub...much ado about not much!  [smile]

Finishing a cut with a razor knife or knocking off the lip with a chisel will get old fast.
I guess everybody here builds square porches and decks and hardly ever need to cut multiple beams at 45.
Basically it comes down to festool being a trim tool for guys with small hands and mafell geared more toward framers and timber framers.