Author Topic: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!  (Read 11053 times)

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Offline Rockne

  • Posts: 36
Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« on: March 10, 2015, 11:58 AM »
Same Review I posted on Lumberjocks: 

This will be a quick review and really somewhat of a comparison between the Festool Kapex and the Bosch Glide 12”. I replaced my Bosch Glide Saw with a Kapex. It made absolutely zero economical sense, especially given that I’m just a very occasional hobbyist, but when Festool had their “sale”, I jumped on one. My primary motivating factors were 1) the dust collection (not so much for my health, but my hatred for cleaning), 2) the promise that the Kapex would cut 45’s perfectly, and 3) the fact that my Bosch Glide was a little “unruly” for cutting perfect angles. I think for 95-99% of all people, the Glide would be a killer saw. When I bought it, I thought, “I have to get the 12”, because I’ll need all of that capacity and power.” I’m not sure I ever did, but there were a couple of boards that I did need to flip around to cut all the way through (but that’s not really blade capacity, that’s reach).

So last night I needed to cut down some 8/4 10” Cherry. I had cut this board with the Bosch, and it wasn’t exactly like butter for the Bosch, so I 1/2 expected to get some “sag” from the Kapex. Boy was I wrong! The Kapex cut through the cherry so smoothly that I immediately disregarded the $600.00 difference. Plus, there was barely a shred of any dust (I had the CT26 hooked up to the Kapex).

Now, it could just be that the Festool blade is so much better than the Bosch blade that it made the cutting easier, but the Kapex had other nice features, too. 1) It appears to be 100% square right out of the box. I didn’t test the 45 degree cuts or bevels, but I did check the board post cutting with a Starrett square and it was right on. The bevel adjustment is nice, too, though I probably won’t use it a ton. I will use this for cutting picture frame stock, so the 45 degree precision is very important.

There are bazillions of articles/videos/info on the kapex, so I’ll incorporate all of those reviews in by reference. I didn’t even turn on the Lasers!

My nitpicky things are as follows:

1) the width of the table is a little narrow. The Bosch Glide has an extendable table incorporated, and that would be nice on the Kapex.

2) I like the perpendicular handle on the Bosch Glide as opposed to the verticle handle of the Kapex. this adds “size” to the bosch glide, though, so it’s a trade off.

3) I wish there were hold-downs on both sides. I actually got a minor kick-back last night. It was purely user error, because I was used to having the hold-down on the left instead of the right and I pushed the board into the blade. I’ll be spending the money on a second hold-down, but Festool should consider supplying two with each saw. We know that doesn’t cost them $80.00 to make them!!!

4) The angle adjusting mechanism (not the bevel adjusting, the cut angle adjustment mechanism) feels comparatively flimsy next to the Bosch Glide.

It works fine, though, but in terms of overall quality, this is one area where the Bosch wins. The above “nipicky” things are just that: Nitpicky. To me, 5 stars is absolute perfection (like the TS55 Track Saw), and this is REEEEAAAAAALLLLLY close, but not quite there. These nitpicks certainly wouldn’t prevent me from buying the Kapex over the Bosch, just notess on how Festool might make the Kapex Perfect. For point of rerference, I probably would give the Bosch Glide about 3.5 stars (mostly because it was unruly, didn’t cut perfect angles and the dust collection was pretty poor, especially next to the Kapex.
« Last Edit: March 10, 2015, 12:38 PM by Rockne »

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Offline sae

  • Posts: 841
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2015, 12:07 PM »
Paragraphs are your friends.

Offline Rockne

  • Posts: 36
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2015, 12:36 PM »
Paragraphs are your friends.

Ah, you're right. 

I used them when I first typed it (see my lumberjock's posting as evidence).  Apparently, when I cut and pasted the coding was lost in translation. 


Offline Paul G

  • Posts: 1914
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2015, 12:41 PM »
Too bad you're not near Sacramento, I'm considering getting one of those Bosch 12" in the near future.
+1

Offline Motown

  • Posts: 191
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #4 on: March 10, 2015, 01:50 PM »
Paul,

I just purchased the Kapex and my Bosch (with gravity stand and Forrest Chopmaster blade) are for sale. I live in San Leandro.....east bay so if you are interested please feel free to private message me. The saw is perfect condition, lightly used, but I just felt the Kapex is a better match for my needs.

Offline sae

  • Posts: 841
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #5 on: March 10, 2015, 02:07 PM »
I picked up a Kapex dust apron from Tom Bellemare to retrofit on the Bosch saw, it fits pretty well and puts it on par w/ the Kapex in terms of dust collection, in my experience. The OEM dust apron on the Bosch collapses under high suction, which is why it doesn't work so great with active dust extraction.

Offline WarnerConstCo.

  • Posts: 4076
    • Warner Mill Works
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #6 on: March 10, 2015, 04:01 PM »
You can put the clamp on either side.

No need for two clamps, clamping both sides of the cut is not a good idea.

Offline aloysius

  • Posts: 216
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #7 on: April 09, 2015, 07:44 AM »
Interesting.  I went the other way (Kapex to Bosch).  I ended up loathing & detesting my Kapex so much that it ended up at my shack, from whence it was eventually stolen.

The Kapex is a fairly well designed saw.... rather poorly executed in my opinion.  That vertical handle is just WRONG, and there have been recurring problems with those zero clearance bed inserts, and an extremely dangerous intermittent guard retraction failure also.  Plus the lasers were unreliable & there are issues with fouling on the back fences when bevelling.  Some years ago I part time staffed at a local TAFE college, where all SEVEN of their Kapexes suffered gearbox failures!

Its generally excellent dust extraction (though no better than a 315mm Metabo SCMS) doesn't make up for the attendant design and performance issues in my opinion.  By contrast I'm pretty happy with the overall performance of my Glide Saw, although there has been an issue with the right hand tilt mechanism not locking off which requires attention.

To me the Kapex just isn't worth its asking price... in fact I'd suggest it's really worth about half the price.  I'm much happier with my Glide & Radial Arm Saws.
FOG-wit since '95:  Some say since birth...

Online SRSemenza

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Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #8 on: April 09, 2015, 09:20 AM »
Interesting.  I went the other way (Kapex to Bosch).  I ended up loathing & detesting my Kapex so much that it ended up at my shack, from whence it was eventually stolen.

The Kapex is a fairly well designed saw.... rather poorly executed in my opinion.  That vertical handle is just WRONG, and there have been recurring problems with those zero clearance bed inserts, and an extremely dangerous intermittent guard retraction failure also.  Plus the lasers were unreliable & there are issues with fouling on the back fences when bevelling.  Some years ago I part time staffed at a local TAFE college, where all SEVEN of their Kapexes suffered gearbox failures!

Its generally excellent dust extraction (though no better than a 315mm Metabo SCMS) doesn't make up for the attendant design and performance issues in my opinion.  By contrast I'm pretty happy with the overall performance of my Glide Saw, although there has been an issue with the right hand tilt mechanism not locking off which requires attention.

To me the Kapex just isn't worth its asking price... in fact I'd suggest it's really worth about half the price.  I'm much happier with my Glide & Radial Arm Saws.

    The vertical handle is designed to help prevent biasing the cut by keeping the users hand close to the center and prevent pushing the blade one way or the other. Whether or not it is a comfortable or user friendly feature will depend on the user.

    The Kapex is not supplied with a zero clearance insert.

     The blade guard not retracting would indeed be a problem. Possibly caused by build up on the roller or other parts but also possibly something else and should be looked at by Festool service.

    Personally I haven't had any problem with the lasers, but can't speak beyond my own experience on that.

    Fouling on the fence during a bevel cut would only occur if the top portion of the fence was not slid to the side before the cut was made. It is designed to slide for that purpose.

    As can be seen  by posts here on FOG there have been armature/ motor failures (and at least Festool truly backs up the warranty, all the way). Not sure about gear boxes. Those seven saws must get a lot of use.

    I have seen the Glide once in person, never used it, I really can't comment comparison wise.

Seth
« Last Edit: April 09, 2015, 09:28 AM by SRSemenza »

Offline fshanno

  • Posts: 926
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #9 on: April 09, 2015, 11:21 AM »

It made absolutely zero economical sense.....


Ha! That me!  I remember asking myself was I really sure I wanted to spend over twice as much.

But the Kapex was definitely the right saw for me.  It met my criteria for a SCMS better than any other.  I needed a saw that was light and easily luggable but could also cut hardwood for furniture parts.  Those needs seem mutually exclusive but the Kapex meets them pretty well.

My tribute to the Glide is that I refused to buy the Kapex until I could get my hands on a Glide and make sure.  I was there when the Bosch rep showed up with my dealer's demo unit.
The one thing we learn from history is that we never learn from history.

Offline orm8426

  • Posts: 109
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #10 on: April 09, 2015, 03:28 PM »
I bought the Bosch over the Kapex. For my needs it's a better saw.

One thing though. The supplied blade is not very good. Bit of a jack of all trades and master of none. I replaced it and it transformed the cutting performance of the saw!

Offline #Tee

  • Posts: 786
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #11 on: April 12, 2015, 11:16 PM »
my favorite part was when you disregarded the 600 difference lol
When youre feeling depressed just treat yourself to a systainer even if its a mini systainer its ok.

IG: tee212

Offline Nigel M

  • Posts: 99
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #12 on: April 13, 2015, 12:36 AM »
The kapex is a bit of an "acquired taste" imo.
I don't own one but I use one regulary at a friends shop.
I find it to be extremely true in the cut. With the fine blade on it the crosscutting is very precise.
I'm not a huge fan of the angle adjustment mechanism. It reminds me if my old makita. I prefer the angle adjustment on my dewalt 12" scms.
The depth stop adjustment on the kapex is also very nice, as is bevel adjustment.
not sure that I'll ever get one of these. too muvh$ for a chop saw.
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Offline ianrose

  • Posts: 10
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #13 on: April 13, 2015, 08:50 PM »
I got rid of the of the dewalt 12 slide for the Kapex, the best move I made. The Kapex is worth every dollar I paid and those are Canadian $s . To each there own though. 

Offline SoonerFan

  • Posts: 362
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #14 on: April 13, 2015, 09:36 PM »
I switched to a Kapex late last year.  For me the accuracy of the lasers and the cut quality make it worth the money.  I had a good Dewalt saw before but the Kapex is simply terrific for my needs.  I do however wish it had hold downs on both slides.  I would never use both at the same time but find myself moving the hold down often.  Might spend the $$$ on another hold down one of these days.

Offline #Tee

  • Posts: 786
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #15 on: April 13, 2015, 11:45 PM »
I switched to a Kapex late last year.  For me the accuracy of the lasers and the cut quality make it worth the money.  I had a good Dewalt saw before but the Kapex is simply terrific for my needs.  I do however wish it had hold downs on both slides.  I would never use both at the same time but find myself moving the hold down often.  Might spend the $$$ on another hold down one of these days.

i know there was a recent thread about dual hold downs but when theres a need for both sides to be pinned down ive done this many times with no issues( i dont play by the rules). i too got sick of switching clamps side to side when time calls for it. plus it looks cool lol
When youre feeling depressed just treat yourself to a systainer even if its a mini systainer its ok.

IG: tee212

Offline blaszcsj

  • Posts: 298
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #16 on: June 05, 2015, 12:13 PM »
I bought the Bosch over the Kapex. For my needs it's a better saw.

One thing though. The supplied blade is not very good. Bit of a jack of all trades and master of none. I replaced it and it transformed the cutting performance of the saw!

What blade did you change to?
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Offline JimH2

  • Posts: 505
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #17 on: June 05, 2015, 01:05 PM »
The kapex is a bit of an "acquired taste" imo.
I don't own one but I use one regulary at a friends shop.
I find it to be extremely true in the cut. With the fine blade on it the crosscutting is very precise.
I'm not a huge fan of the angle adjustment mechanism. It reminds me if my old makita. I prefer the angle adjustment on my dewalt 12" scms.
The depth stop adjustment on the kapex is also very nice, as is bevel adjustment.
not sure that I'll ever get one of these. too muvh$ for a chop saw.
Famous last words....


If the cutting angle adjustment arm had the precision controls of the bevel adjuster they would have the best saw on the market.

Offline Billy stray

  • Posts: 292
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #18 on: June 30, 2015, 07:17 PM »
I don't own a kapex but I've been cutting with a mitre saw for decades and one rule I live by is 12" saws are generally less accurate (or unruly) than 10 " and for that reason I've never owned one.....
Billy

Offline oneeyesquare

  • Posts: 41
Re: Kapex Review and Comparison to Bosch Glide 4.5 Stars!
« Reply #19 on: July 14, 2015, 10:46 PM »
I have both. Right now the Bosch is on the saw stand as I'm installing stair newels I just fabricated. They are 6"x 6" and the Bosch has the capacity to plunge up and over the outside corners. Kapex, not so much. Outside mitered skirts are next, so back to the Kapex. Can't beat it for mitered bevels, imo. Bosch has too much flex in the head for that.
 I wish Festool would do a larger blade saw. They don't have to replace the Kapex, just add it in to the line up!