Author Topic: Festool or Bosch hand planer  (Read 7752 times)

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Offline paulhtremblay

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Festool or Bosch hand planer
« on: October 02, 2014, 10:38 PM »
I know this forum is the best place for objective advice.

Kidding aside, in the not too far future I may purchase a hand planer. I will use it for small things, like fitting the back into a cabinet, planing flat Miller (through) dowels, flattening edge trip around plywood panels, installing doors in my house. Eventually I will make a plywood table, made my gluing a bazillion pieces of plywood on face so that the edges form the top of the table. I will definitely have to plane this flat.

Normally I do not mind paying extra for a Festool, but the Festool 850 planer is literally 4 times as much as the non Festool top of the line planer, a Bosch. $600 is so much for a tool I will use only occasionally. The Bosch gets mostly 5 star reviews on Amazon, except for the 1 star reviews, which all have the same complaint: the sole plates of the Bosh do not sit flat and produce an uneven cut.

If the price between the two tools were even close (say that the Festool were only twice the price of the Bosch), I would certainly pick the Festool.

Anyone have experience using one or both of these tools?

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 Untidy Shop

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2014, 11:03 PM »
I know this forum is the best place for objective advice.

Kidding aside, in the not too far future I may purchase a hand planer. I will use it for small things, like fitting the back into a cabinet, planing flat Miller (through) dowels, flattening edge trip around plywood panels, installing doors in my house. Eventually I will make a plywood table, made my gluing a bazillion pieces of plywood on face so that the edges form the top of the table. I will definitely have to plane this flat.

Normally I do not mind paying extra for a Festool, but the Festool 850 planer is literally 4 times as much as the non Festool top of the line planer, a Bosch. $600 is so much for a tool I will use only occasionally. The Bosch gets mostly 5 star reviews on Amazon, except for the 1 star reviews, which all have the same complaint: the sole plates of the Bosh do not sit flat and produce an uneven cut.

If the price between the two tools were even close (say that the Festool were only twice the price of the Bosch), I would certainly pick the Festool.

Anyone have experience using one or both of these tools?

Pitty the Festool EHL65 is NAINA, because from what you describe it would better suit your needs than the 850.
« Last Edit: October 03, 2014, 12:42 AM by Untidy Shop »
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Offline Linbro

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #2 on: October 03, 2014, 12:42 AM »
Hello paulhtremblay - The 850 is a fantastic planer, but of the jobs you want it for, it would only really be suitable for one of them - fitting doors. Certainly wouldn't use it for flushing off timber edge/lipping, or flushing off through dowels. Wouldn't use a standard power planer for either of those jobs.
Lincoln.

Offline Untidy Shop

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #3 on: October 03, 2014, 01:09 AM »


Hi again.

Linbro's reply reminded me that for flush cutting dowels you may wish to consider -

http://www.leevalley.com/en/Wood/page.aspx?p=32928&cat=1,42884

which is excellent.
If you don't like Signatures, just go to Look and Layout and tick No Signatures.

“The test of the machine is the satisfaction it gives you. There isn't any other test. If the machine produces tranquility it's right. If it disturbs you it's wrong until either the machine or your mind is changed.”
― Robert M. Pirsig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry Into Values

Online SRSemenza

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #4 on: October 03, 2014, 01:09 AM »
If you are interested in the EHL65 you might want to have a look at the recon sale http://blog.festoolusa.com/post/2014/07/14/Great-Savings-on-Reconditioned-Tools.aspx

Seth

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #5 on: October 03, 2014, 01:13 AM »


Hi again.

Linbro's reply reminded me that for flush cutting dowels you may wish to consider -

http://www.leevalley.com/en/Wood/page.aspx?p=32928&cat=1,42884

which is excellent.

    Yes, those Veritas flush cut saws are very good. I have the double edged one. And was thinking just yesterday that  I should order a second one for the portable tool set.

Seth

Offline jobsworth

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #6 on: October 03, 2014, 03:34 AM »
First Id like to say, I dont know much about the Bosch planer. With that being said heres my take

IMO,

It depends what are going to use the planer for. General planing etc, yea go with the bosch,

However,

The festool 850 has a full length fence you can use to plane doors, it has a bench attachment for jointing boards, it can rabbit/ dado, it has various heads that can be used to get different effects, such as the undulating head that gives a rustic look.
Not to mention awesome dust collection.

Loving the Calif sun....

Offline jonny round boy

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #7 on: October 03, 2014, 04:18 AM »
I have an old Bosch (green) planer. It gets very little use, and as such I have no intention of replacing it with a Festool one; I simply couldn't justify the expense. I honestly can not remember when I last used it, it's probably over a year ago...

It does the job perfectly well, and I've fitted it with a plug-it. It also accepts the festool hose without any modifications, too!
Festoolian since February 2006

TS55R EBQ saw - CTL26 - CTL Mini - OF1400EBQ router - KS120 Kapex SCMS - ETS150/3 sander - RO90 sander - DF500 Domino - PDC18/4 drill - PSC420 jigsaw - OFK500 trimmer

Wish list (in no particular order!): Anything not listed above....

Offline wow

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #8 on: October 03, 2014, 04:33 AM »
With all of the power tools I own or have owned, I've never been motivated to purchase a power planer. I've just never seen the use for one for the things I do. If I *did* purchase one, I'd likely be like jonny round boy and use it maybe once a year. And as Linbro said, it's not a good match to 2 out of the 3 things you posted that you'd use it for.

The Festool one is obviously nice (the nicest), but if you really feel that you need one I'd strongly consider the Bosch. I suspect it will do more GATHERING dust than CREATING dust in your shop, so why spend ANY more than you need to on a tool that won't see much use?

Personally, I'd be searching Craigslist for one. Since it's a very specialized tool, there's a good chance that someone else had the 'hots' for one but subsequently realized that they don't use it and now want to sell it. And, unlike a Festool product, the Bosch can likely be purchased for about HALF of new.
« Last Edit: October 09, 2014, 08:32 AM by wow »
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Offline jobsworth

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #9 on: October 03, 2014, 06:46 AM »
WOW,

Yea  bought mine used. It was hardly used by the original owner.

 i dont use mine a heck of a lot. But when I need it,its there.
Loving the Calif sun....

Offline w802h

  • Posts: 201
Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #10 on: October 03, 2014, 07:30 AM »
I have the Bosch planer.  I find the dust collection works well, but usually use it without in coarser situations.  I have moved to sizing doors with a track saw - very accurate - and for scribe work a belt sander or block plane.  The chance of snipe on a power planer is too great for me to chance as a finished pass.  So mostly I use the power plane to correct framing, level plates, or in the case last week joint my cut along the top of some ICF forms.  In seven years I have yet to flip the blade.  It's a useful tool, but not used often. 

Offline Michael Kellough

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #11 on: October 03, 2014, 10:38 AM »
The Festool plane is quieter and makes a nicer surface with it's skewed blade.
It's also better balanced and much easier to handle than it's large size suggests.
The ability to depth adjustment on the fly is unique and very useful.
The infeed table on the Festool is very good.

Bosch has a few models. One of the Bosch has an infeed table that sits on an inclined plane.
That is the only one I'd consider. The others are adjusted by compressing sponge rubber around a round post, not as stable. The Festool infeed table also compresses rubber but it has much wider and more stable guide rails to keep it co-planar to the outfeed table.

The Festool plane chassis is the outfeed table. That is, the motor and all the rest of the tool are attached to the large casting that is the outfeed table. This is what makes the Festool feel so robust. The problem with this is that since the blade keys into the spindle and is not adjustable, the motor mount would have to be adjustable to compensate for wear of the cast aluminum outfeed table. I don't think the motor mount is adjustable. If that is the case, eventually the outfeed table will be below the cutter and all your cuts will be convex (unless you figure out a way to compensate).

The Bosch outfeed table might not be properly adjusted but as Microsoft used to say, "that's a feature". The outfeed table on all the Bosch models is just a plate screwed to the plastic housing. Sounds wanky but you can remove the plate and shim it to perfection.

Offline wrightwoodwork

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #12 on: October 03, 2014, 10:59 AM »
I have no experience with either planer. I have the Dewalt. Not sure what model as others have said it's not something I use often it is handy for a lot of stock removal on the stiles of door. Then I still need to use the hand plane to get a good even fit. Would never use a sander. The likes of flushing the dowels best and easiest way is either a flush saw or simply a block plane or a nice sharp chisel and pare it off. Also for your ply table top I wouldn't use a planer I would if available use a thickness sander or just use a half sheet sander. What you tend to find is electric planers are ok as long as what you are planning is not wider than the blades any wider it is very difficult to avoid train tracks. You can avoid with hand planes as when the blade is sharpened you put a slight camber on the blade

Offline waho6o9

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #13 on: October 03, 2014, 11:17 AM »
574553   20%   Planer HL 850 E in T-LOC Systainer   $615.00   $492.00

There's one 850 on the recon sale now!

Nab it

Offline leakyroof

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #14 on: October 03, 2014, 11:18 AM »
I own the 850, and I love it, and own all the accessories for it as well. However, it does seem like overkill based on your current needs as you posted them.
 For Miller Dowels, I use a Japanese non-set saw to cut them down ,and sand or touch with a hand plane as needed.
 I bought my 850 used, as I didn't want to pay the 'new' price either, so like Seth posted, used or Recon sale could be where you would pick up any remaining 65 planers that are left, or just get a used Bosch or Festool off Craigslist or eBay like WOW talked about.
 
Not as many Sanders as PA Floor guy.....

Offline MaineShop

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #15 on: October 03, 2014, 11:27 AM »
If you can wait a few days I may be able to offer a comparison test, I own and have used the bosch planer for several years now and have used it quite a bit, at least once or twice a month. However I have a job starting that found a need for the rustic heads of the Festool planer so I just ordered one on monday from amazon and it should be arriving today. I will probably be taking it into the shop this weekend and putting it through some scrap and getting a feel for it before it goes to the job site, I could do a side by side and give you some feedback on sunday if you want. For what it is worth the bosch has been a very good planer for my business although I really only use it on site since I have a large stationary jointer in the shop. I did order the base to use the Festool as a mini jointer on site. I am hoping to use it to resize cabinet doors on site. I do a lot of inset cabinetry and with the fluctuation of humidity with the seasons up here in Maine, I often have to adjust and refit the doors after they aclimate to the house.

Adam

Offline Pixel

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #16 on: October 03, 2014, 12:13 PM »
You cannot compare a bosch planer with the 850 as the 850 is a multi tool and an engineering masterpiece, try comparing your bosch to a 65 as this is more in line with the tasks you are wanting to do with a planer, you could say the Festool PL 245 is hideously expensive, 3 times the price of the 850 but again it is designed to do tasks a 850 is not

Offline sgt_rjp

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #17 on: October 03, 2014, 12:24 PM »
Since the 850 has been brought up, I've got a question about the 850 I picked up in last years recon sale.  The blade shouldn't be below the rear plate should it?  Is it possible to adjust that?  I've seen discussions on adjusting the front plate, but not the rear.

Offline MaineShop

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #18 on: October 03, 2014, 01:00 PM »
Pixel, for starters both of the other two planers you mentioned are not available in the U.S. at this time as the 65 has been discontinued. In regards to the added functionality of the 850 I would say that just acts as points in its favor in the comparison. It was that functionality that has caused me to order one. But I still expect it to perform well as a planer against the Bosch. My tools pay my bills and I give them a hard life. If the 850 is half as good as it appears to be then I am sure it will have a home in my trailer. But I see no reason not to compare it to the Bosch in simple planing tasks as I fully expect it to perform those as well. I ordered it not because I need a hand planer but because I need "that" hand planer with the added heads. The original poster may not need that, they may just need to shave the odd door or so once a year.

I do agree that the 850 is hardly an average hand planer with all its options but I think it can be compared. I have high hopes it will blow the Bosch out of the water and this weekend I intend to find out.

Offline Pixel

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #19 on: October 03, 2014, 02:23 PM »
MaineShop; I cannot comment on a bosch planer, never owned or used one but being a bosch then it will be what it says, "a planer".
The 850 on the other hand is as I said an engineering masterpiece and i can assure you that once you get yours and have used it for a couple of years as I have than you will never even look at another planer (unless of course the PL 245 arrives on your shores) the spiral blade is a dream and there are a million uses for the unlimited rebate depth, I recently used mine with one of the profiling heads to form a scroll pattern on plinth and people did not believe that you could create a 170mm deep plinth with detailing from a hand held planer. My one piece of advice to you is buy the full size fence, you really can square timber with this set up

Offline Birdhunter

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #20 on: October 03, 2014, 02:40 PM »
I bought the 850 for a project making 8 outdoor benches out of Ipe, a very hard wood. I was able to plane cross grain leaving a smooth surface with the 850. The 850 is a big powerful tool that requires a goodly degree of technique.
Birdhunter

Offline paulhtremblay

  • Posts: 148
Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #21 on: October 03, 2014, 06:25 PM »
If you can wait a few days I may be able to offer a comparison test, I own and have used the bosch planer for several years now and have used it quite a bit, at least once or twice a month. However I have a job starting that found a need for the rustic heads of the Festool planer so I just ordered one on monday from amazon and it should be arriving today. I will probably be taking it into the shop this weekend and putting it through some scrap and getting a feel for it before it goes to the job site, I could do a side by side and give you some feedback on sunday if you want. For what it is worth the bosch has been a very good planer for my business although I really only use it on site since I have a large stationary jointer in the shop. I did order the base to use the Festool as a mini jointer on site. I am hoping to use it to resize cabinet doors on site. I do a lot of inset cabinetry and with the fluctuation of humidity with the seasons up here in Maine, I often have to adjust and refit the doors after they aclimate to the house.

Adam

A comparison sounds great. I am not going to buy a planer any immediately. Others would really benefit from the comparison.

Offline paulhtremblay

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #22 on: October 03, 2014, 06:39 PM »
I have discovered in the mean time that there is a third and fourth option. The Makita plane (around $200) gets even higher ratings than the Bosch, with users of the Makita lauding the flat sole plates. There is also the discontinued Festool 65, a tool I knew about but hesitate buying just because it is discontinued.

Perhaps a power plane won't do what I want, according to many posts here. But I wonder. For example, the plywood table I want to build was inspired by a seasoned wood worker, who in fact smoothed his table with a power planer. I would think that as long as the planer gets you close, you could sand the rest of the way, whereas sanding by itself might take eons.

I have a flush cut saw for my Miller dowels, but not as good as the Japanese ones. My saw does not bend. I certainly have to use a planer after I trim the dowels, and that means using my cheap Stanely planer, which works just okay, mainly because it doesn't have the quality of a true wood working plane, and I don't like to tune it, since I need all sorts of sharpening equipment, such as a grinding stone. For similar reasons, I have had no luck using a chisel. I don't like hand tools.

Maybe a router works much better to trim plywood edging than a power planer.

I have to build a screen for my basement window so I can open it to exhaust over spray from my booth, and as I looked at the project, I thought how I would like to make the frame just a bit larger and trim it--the perfect job for a planer.

Offline MaineShop

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #23 on: October 03, 2014, 07:21 PM »
Just got home and unboxed the new 850, long friday and was eager to hit the shower and wash the sawdust out of my hair but couldn't resist firing it up and attacking some wood. Excellent first impressions on the smoothness of operation. Hit some scrap pieces of pine and some 5/4 red oak I had kicking around. I also put the rustic head on and tried it out. Worked amazing and I feel if I take some time this weekend I will really get the feel for the rustic head, seems like it will do just what we need it to do for the upcoming job.

Hopefully by Sunday I will have gotten a chance to get some time with it in and can give a quick review of its benefits over the bosch.

As a side note if the rustic head didn't work like we were hoping it would the back up plan was to give our cut guy an adze for the day and have him go to town on the beams we are working with to get the hand hewn look the customer wants. I think he will be even happier this works then I am.

Offline Birdhunter

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #24 on: October 03, 2014, 08:17 PM »
Bridge City has great flush cut hand saws. I recommend buying several extra blades as the teeth are fragile.
Birdhunter

Offline ScotF

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #25 on: October 04, 2014, 10:56 AM »
The 850 is one of my favorite tools. I bought it to level a bunch of studs in a remodel and it worked really well. Very, very smooth. But this tool is amazing in the bench unit. I set it up and use it all the time -- perfect for lots of quick smoothing and leveling tasks on smaller pieces. I am going to be using it with the angle fence to put bevels on several pieces for a coopered seat. I think 24 - 30 inch lengths is about its limit, but it works so well for these smaller pieces and I do not need to fire up the large jointer for quick passes. I did a couple of video reviews of this tool a year or so ago that shows the bench unit and some of the cuts it can make.

I have not tried the other heads yet, but will like buy the rustic head for an upcoming project where I want to add a little texture.






Offline pjblues

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #26 on: October 09, 2014, 08:27 AM »
I am glad some one brought this subject up. I have an opportunity to purchase the 850 from an individual for $400, brand new. It has never been used. Even though I normally do not use a planner, I am thinking I may purchase it anyway to have on hand. Is the 850 worth it for planning tapers, etc.?



Offline jobsworth

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #27 on: October 09, 2014, 02:36 PM »
Thats about what I paid form mine. It was in a old systainer and it was very slightly used
Loving the Calif sun....

Offline jacko9

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #28 on: October 09, 2014, 05:01 PM »
I cannot comment on either power planer since I have never seen the need to buy one.  The jobs you describe can be easily accomplished with a hand plane a good sharp jack plane would do the trick.

Jack

Offline rst

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #29 on: October 09, 2014, 05:32 PM »
The 850 is great!  I just used it to bevel an oak threshold in place.  I cut right up to the new threshold.  The dust collection is astounding even with the bag.  I have an old Porter Cable Porta-Plane with the spiral cutter that is great for door work and a Hitachi (no longer available in US) 3 5/8" planer that I have modified for dust collection.  * Why are utility planers less than the 3 1/2" width of a 2x4 anyway???

Offline Loren Woirhaye

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #30 on: October 09, 2014, 08:40 PM »
The 850 is a fine planer and it's a little longer than some so it may help make slightly straighter cuts.

Other than that, unless you want the whiz-bang features it offers, I don't see it as all that special.   The texture cutters are the reason I have one.  It's a decent door planer, sure, but you can buy a decent door planer for under $100.  I've cambered blades in a Makita planer for texturing too.

I have a big 20" long Ryobi 155mm planer (nearly identical to a Makita 1805).  It's quite heavy. Inverted as a jointer it would outperform the Festool planer due to a longer sole and of course it's 6" wide.   I've used it for working slabs but the big sole means there's a lot of pushing and not much cutting until the slab gets quite flat.  It's tiring.  The Festool works well for slabs with the cambered or straight cutterheads, but so does a little old 4" Makita, which can even be maneuvered one handed.  The 850 is a bit big for that.

For  a jobsite jointer (which is admittedly something that lacking will drive some of us nuts, hence the elaborate jig to use the Festool 850 as one) I use a KITY 6" jointer/planer on a folding miter saw cart. It's kind of heavy but it works well and thickness planes too.  Quite hard to find of course.  It was pulled off a Kity K5 combo machine setup.  The Kity combos can occasionally be found second hand.


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 LDBecker

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #31 on: August 12, 2017, 01:55 PM »
Hi, Scott  -  I was thinking about the 850 planer but was stopped in my tracks because the bench unit is no longer available... I still may go ahead on it because of the spiral design of the cutterhead. I have an old Makita planer, and a cheap Bosch planer I actually won in a drawing - and they both seem to beat the crap out of wood- lots of tearout and poor cutting for the kind of work I want to do. I am currently redoing some cabinets with hard maple that has some funky grain that is prone to tearout. I even upgraded my Dewalt 735 to a spiral head to help with that (works great). I have some cabinet work that the spiral head on this would be great for that my stationary joiner doesn't really do a good job with.
I know you posted this a few years ago - any further thoughts on the 850? Did you ever get the rustic head? Anybody out there have a used one with the bench it, or just the bench unit for sale? And why was the bench unit discontinued. No one seems to have an answer... hmmm...

Thanks!
Larry

The 850 is one of my favorite tools. I bought it to level a bunch of studs in a remodel and it worked really well. Very, very smooth. But this tool is amazing in the bench unit. I set it up and use it all the time -- perfect for lots of quick smoothing and leveling tasks on smaller pieces. I am going to be using it with the angle fence to put bevels on several pieces for a coopered seat. I think 24 - 30 inch lengths is about its limit, but it works so well for these smaller pieces and I do not need to fire up the large jointer for quick passes. I did a couple of video reviews of this tool a year or so ago that shows the bench unit and some of the cuts it can make.

I have not tried the other heads yet, but will like buy the rustic head for an upcoming project where I want to add a little texture.





Offline ear3

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Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #32 on: August 12, 2017, 04:38 PM »
According to Festool HQ it was discontinued due to insufficient interest, similar to what was done with the MFS.  I have the bench unit, but rarely use it now that I work more with hand planes.  I'm going to keep it though for a rainy day.  I remember having trouble getting a truly flat jointed face, though I'm unsure whether this was simply because I was trying to feed stock that was too long.

I have the rustic undulating head.  It works ok, but you have to follow it up with a lot of interface pad sanding to truly get the desired effect.

But the HL850 in general is a dream to use.  The ability to adjust the depth on the fly makes jointing work a lot easier.  Dust collection is amazing, of course.  It is, however, among the Festools with the largest cost multiplier relative to other brands for that tool, so depending on what you need a planer for, not sure if it is worth the cost.  I'm glad I have mine, though.

Hi, Scott  -  I was thinking about the 850 planer but was stopped in my tracks because the bench unit is no longer available... I still may go ahead on it because of the spiral design of the cutterhead. I have an old Makita planer, and a cheap Bosch planer I actually won in a drawing - and they both seem to beat the crap out of wood- lots of tearout and poor cutting for the kind of work I want to do. I am currently redoing some cabinets with hard maple that has some funky grain that is prone to tearout. I even upgraded my Dewalt 735 to a spiral head to help with that (works great). I have some cabinet work that the spiral head on this would be great for that my stationary joiner doesn't really do a good job with.
I know you posted this a few years ago - any further thoughts on the 850? Did you ever get the rustic head? Anybody out there have a used one with the bench it, or just the bench unit for sale? And why was the bench unit discontinued. No one seems to have an answer... hmmm...

Thanks!
Larry

The 850 is one of my favorite tools. I bought it to level a bunch of studs in a remodel and it worked really well. Very, very smooth. But this tool is amazing in the bench unit. I set it up and use it all the time -- perfect for lots of quick smoothing and leveling tasks on smaller pieces. I am going to be using it with the angle fence to put bevels on several pieces for a coopered seat. I think 24 - 30 inch lengths is about its limit, but it works so well for these smaller pieces and I do not need to fire up the large jointer for quick passes. I did a couple of video reviews of this tool a year or so ago that shows the bench unit and some of the cuts it can make.

I have not tried the other heads yet, but will like buy the rustic head for an upcoming project where I want to add a little texture.




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Offline antss

  • Posts: 1076
Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #33 on: August 12, 2017, 05:18 PM »
I've found that all of the planers with disposable blades are very dependent on sharp blades.  Because of the size and thickness of them , they don't stay sharp long. You should be able to get those thick makita blades razor sharp though. 

You can skew the cut of those other planers by holding them at an angle as you guide them along the workpiece.

I've used the 850 on ocassion, but don't own one. It's too big and heavy for handheld work ,and I don't need a jobsite jointer. Which is kinda moot now anyway - since Festool has decided to not offer the stand anymore.  It is a powerful beast, but makita offers something similar too.

Maple can just be tough sometime, even with surgical sharp hand tools.

Offline LDBecker

  • Posts: 55
Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #34 on: August 12, 2017, 05:58 PM »
Maple can just be tough sometime, even with surgical sharp hand tools.
With my Dewalt 735 - even with new blades, the cut left too much tearout to sand away easily. Changing out the head on it to the carbide tipped cutters in a spiral pattern solved it. I was hoping that the spiral design of the 850 would help in a similar way. I would need to use the fence to make a flat surface referenced off of the side, so skewing the 850 would be problematic.

Larry

Offline LDBecker

  • Posts: 55
Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #35 on: August 12, 2017, 06:05 PM »
According to Festool HQ it was discontinued due to insufficient interest, similar to what was done with the MFS.  I have the bench unit, but rarely use it now that I work more with hand planes.  I'm going to keep it though for a rainy day.  I remember having trouble getting a truly flat jointed face, though I'm unsure whether this was simply because I was trying to feed stock that was too long.

I have the rustic undulating head.  It works ok, but you have to follow it up with a lot of interface pad sanding to truly get the desired effect.

But the HL850 in general is a dream to use.  The ability to adjust the depth on the fly makes jointing work a lot easier.  Dust collection is amazing, of course.  It is, however, among the Festools with the largest cost multiplier relative to other brands for that tool, so depending on what you need a planer for, not sure if it is worth the cost.  I'm glad I have mine, though.

Thanks for the input - I don't know if I'd ever have a need for the rustic head but it's interesting.
The cost is an issue, but it generally is in some way for Festool products - kind of goes with the territory.
I think getting much of a long edge flat would be difficult for that little table - for longer boards I have a 12" jointer/planer. I was interested in it for smaller, more precise cuts in box making and so on.

Larry

Offline aloysius

  • Posts: 137
Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #36 on: August 13, 2017, 03:16 AM »
I know this forum is the best place for objective advice.

Kidding aside, in the not too far future I may purchase a hand planer. I will use it for small things, like fitting the back into a cabinet, planing flat Miller (through) dowels, flattening edge trip around plywood panels, installing doors in my house. Eventually I will make a plywood table, made my gluing a bazillion pieces of plywood on face so that the edges form the top of the table. I will definitely have to plane this flat.

Normally I do not mind paying extra for a Festool, but the Festool 850 planer is literally 4 times as much as the non Festool top of the line planer, a Bosch. $600 is so much for a tool I will use only occasionally. The Bosch gets mostly 5 star reviews on Amazon, except for the 1 star reviews, which all have the same complaint: the sole plates of the Bosh do not sit flat and produce an uneven cut.

If the price between the two tools were even close (say that the Festool were only twice the price of the Bosch), I would certainly pick the Festool.

Anyone have experience using one or both of these tools?

Hand-held planers are in general a pretty rough & crude tool.  They're more the province of carpenters (first & second fix, kitchen fitters etc.) than cabinet makers, which is what you (as per above) appear to wish to do.  For accurately gauged rebates, you'll be much more successful with a guided router, for planing end-grain composite blocks a belt sander is the obvious tool.  Just as with any type of planer (manual or electric), the blade will rip the living daylights out of any end grain.

I've had a few planers over the years.  The HL 850 E is good, but is really big for the size of cut, and the ergonomic layout of the tool demands a two-handed grip, which is often inconvenient.  Better in my opinion are smaller alternatives, such as the baby Makitas or (my personal favourite) Metabo's HoE 0983, which is an electronically controlled one-handed compact & lightweight tool which when coupled with a more powerful motor can accomplish much more, more conveniently & safely.

My best planers of all are the AEG/Atlas Copco family, now unfortunately long discontinued.  Whilst bigger than the Metabo they're still smaller & lighter than the big Festo/ol.  The killer features of these tools are twofold:  firstly, an all-encompassing retractable cutterhead guard makes them the safest planer I've ever used, and the cut width of a full 4" with disposable TCT blades makes for unprecedented safety & usefulness.  As good as the Festo/ols may be, with their much more "gentle" slicing cuts, they don't even approach the AEG's levels of safety & convenience.  That TCT 4" cut in particular makes a world of difference in dressing the faces of framing hardwoods.

Nevertheless, a good 1/2" router and a Bosch/Holz Her/Milwaukee/AEG/Atlas Copco/Festo Belt sander (especially when fitted with a sanding frame) will be much more useful & accurate cabinetmaking tools than any planer ever could.
FOG-wit since '95:  Some say since birth...

Offline ScotF

  • Posts: 2288
Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #37 on: August 13, 2017, 06:03 AM »
Hi, Scott  -  I was thinking about the 850 planer but was stopped in my tracks because the bench unit is no longer available... I still may go ahead on it because of the spiral design of the cutterhead. I have an old Makita planer, and a cheap Bosch planer I actually won in a drawing - and they both seem to beat the crap out of wood- lots of tearout and poor cutting for the kind of work I want to do. I am currently redoing some cabinets with hard maple that has some funky grain that is prone to tearout. I even upgraded my Dewalt 735 to a spiral head to help with that (works great). I have some cabinet work that the spiral head on this would be great for that my stationary joiner doesn't really do a good job with.
I know you posted this a few years ago - any further thoughts on the 850? Did you ever get the rustic head? Anybody out there have a used one with the bench it, or just the bench unit for sale? And why was the bench unit discontinued. No one seems to have an answer... hmmm...

Thanks!
Larry

The 850 is one of my favorite tools. I bought it to level a bunch of studs in a remodel and it worked really well. Very, very smooth. But this tool is amazing in the bench unit. I set it up and use it all the time -- perfect for lots of quick smoothing and leveling tasks on smaller pieces. I am going to be using it with the angle fence to put bevels on several pieces for a coopered seat. I think 24 - 30 inch lengths is about its limit, but it works so well for these smaller pieces and I do not need to fire up the large jointer for quick passes. I did a couple of video reviews of this tool a year or so ago that shows the bench unit and some of the cuts it can make.

I have not tried the other heads yet, but will like buy the rustic head for an upcoming project where I want to add a little texture.






I still really like the planer and think the tables are useful. It is a shame they discontinued them. You can still find some at dealers, but it is not a guarantee. I did buy one of the rustic heads as I want to explore adding more texture to some of my pieces. I think it is a nice option to have. I got the fine undulating head to start, but will likely add the others in time.

Offline LDBecker

  • Posts: 55
Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #38 on: August 13, 2017, 05:38 PM »
I know this forum is the best place for objective advice.

Kidding aside, in the not too far future I may purchase a hand planer. I will use it for small things, like fitting the back into a cabinet, planing flat Miller (through) dowels, flattening edge trip around plywood panels, installing doors in my house. Eventually I will make a plywood table, made my gluing a bazillion pieces of plywood on face so that the edges form the top of the table. I will definitely have to plane this flat.

Normally I do not mind paying extra for a Festool, but the Festool 850 planer is literally 4 times as much as the non Festool top of the line planer, a Bosch. $600 is so much for a tool I will use only occasionally. The Bosch gets mostly 5 star reviews on Amazon, except for the 1 star reviews, which all have the same complaint: the sole plates of the Bosh do not sit flat and produce an uneven cut.

If the price between the two tools were even close (say that the Festool were only twice the price of the Bosch), I would certainly pick the Festool.

Anyone have experience using one or both of these tools?

Hand-held planers are in general a pretty rough & crude tool.  They're more the province of carpenters (first & second fix, kitchen fitters etc.) than cabinet makers, which is what you (as per above) appear to wish to do.  For accurately gauged rebates, you'll be much more successful with a guided router, for planing end-grain composite blocks a belt sander is the obvious tool.  Just as with any type of planer (manual or electric), the blade will rip the living daylights out of any end grain.

I've had a few planers over the years.  The HL 850 E is good, but is really big for the size of cut, and the ergonomic layout of the tool demands a two-handed grip, which is often inconvenient.  Better in my opinion are smaller alternatives, such as the baby Makitas or (my personal favourite) Metabo's HoE 0983, which is an electronically controlled one-handed compact & lightweight tool which when coupled with a more powerful motor can accomplish much more, more conveniently & safely.

My best planers of all are the AEG/Atlas Copco family, now unfortunately long discontinued.  Whilst bigger than the Metabo they're still smaller & lighter than the big Festo/ol.  The killer features of these tools are twofold:  firstly, an all-encompassing retractable cutterhead guard makes them the safest planer I've ever used, and the cut width of a full 4" with disposable TCT blades makes for unprecedented safety & usefulness.  As good as the Festo/ols may be, with their much more "gentle" slicing cuts, they don't even approach the AEG's levels of safety & convenience.  That TCT 4" cut in particular makes a world of difference in dressing the faces of framing hardwoods.

Nevertheless, a good 1/2" router and a Bosch/Holz Her/Milwaukee/AEG/Atlas Copco/Festo Belt sander (especially when fitted with a sanding frame) will be much more useful & accurate cabinetmaking tools than any planer ever could.

Hi from Los Angeles. Thanks for the reply- as I mentioned, I have the old Makita and a small Bosch electric planer, and they do indeed rip things up a bit. Definitely for rough work. I was looking to the Festool 850 to be able to be used more delicately - and there the size of the thing might add some stability. My current jointer/planer is a 750 lb 12" Robland (imported by Laguna) with a 6' or so bed that I got 15 years ago or so. I've added better Teresa-type removable knives to it, and use it for big stock, but anything with figure in the grain gets a bad case of tearout. It has one speed- fast! I've given up on it as a planer at all, and went with a DeWalt 735 with a Helix head and carbide cutters. It has two speeds, and I use it on slow. The finish is ok, and certainly with a light sanding, very good. When I build boxes or other things I LIKE the figure and funky grain, and don't like having to avoid it because of tearout that is so bad it can't be sanded out.

I use the Robland just as a jointer now, and even though you can vary the speed that you move the stock through, I still get tearout. So... that's why I think I might try the Festool 850- spiral head, more shearing a action than direct cutting. I don's see any other hand-held planer that has that.

Larry

Offline LDBecker

  • Posts: 55
Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #39 on: August 13, 2017, 05:39 PM »
Hi, Scott  -  I was thinking about the 850 planer but was stopped in my tracks because the bench unit is no longer available... I still may go ahead on it because of the spiral design of the cutterhead. I have an old Makita planer, and a cheap Bosch planer I actually won in a drawing - and they both seem to beat the crap out of wood- lots of tearout and poor cutting for the kind of work I want to do. I am currently redoing some cabinets with hard maple that has some funky grain that is prone to tearout. I even upgraded my Dewalt 735 to a spiral head to help with that (works great). I have some cabinet work that the spiral head on this would be great for that my stationary joiner doesn't really do a good job with.
I know you posted this a few years ago - any further thoughts on the 850? Did you ever get the rustic head? Anybody out there have a used one with the bench it, or just the bench unit for sale? And why was the bench unit discontinued. No one seems to have an answer... hmmm...

Thanks!
Larry

The 850 is one of my favorite tools. I bought it to level a bunch of studs in a remodel and it worked really well. Very, very smooth. But this tool is amazing in the bench unit. I set it up and use it all the time -- perfect for lots of quick smoothing and leveling tasks on smaller pieces. I am going to be using it with the angle fence to put bevels on several pieces for a coopered seat. I think 24 - 30 inch lengths is about its limit, but it works so well for these smaller pieces and I do not need to fire up the large jointer for quick passes. I did a couple of video reviews of this tool a year or so ago that shows the bench unit and some of the cuts it can make.

I have not tried the other heads yet, but will like buy the rustic head for an upcoming project where I want to add a little texture.






I still really like the planer and think the tables are useful. It is a shame they discontinued them. You can still find some at dealers, but it is not a guarantee. I did buy one of the rustic heads as I want to explore adding more texture to some of my pieces. I think it is a nice option to have. I got the fine undulating head to start, but will likely add the others in time.

Offline LDBecker

  • Posts: 55
Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #40 on: August 13, 2017, 05:42 PM »
Hi, Scott  -  I was thinking about the 850 planer but was stopped in my tracks because the bench unit is no longer available... I still may go ahead on it because of the spiral design of the cutterhead. I have an old Makita planer, and a cheap Bosch planer I actually won in a drawing - and they both seem to beat the crap out of wood- lots of tearout and poor cutting for the kind of work I want to do. I am currently redoing some cabinets with hard maple that has some funky grain that is prone to tearout. I even upgraded my Dewalt 735 to a spiral head to help with that (works great). I have some cabinet work that the spiral head on this would be great for that my stationary joiner doesn't really do a good job with.
I know you posted this a few years ago - any further thoughts on the 850? Did you ever get the rustic head? Anybody out there have a used one with the bench it, or just the bench unit for sale? And why was the bench unit discontinued. No one seems to have an answer... hmmm...

Thanks!
Larry

The 850 is one of my favorite tools. I bought it to level a bunch of studs in a remodel and it worked really well. Very, very smooth. But this tool is amazing in the bench unit. I set it up and use it all the time -- perfect for lots of quick smoothing and leveling tasks on smaller pieces. I am going to be using it with the angle fence to put bevels on several pieces for a coopered seat. I think 24 - 30 inch lengths is about its limit, but it works so well for these smaller pieces and I do not need to fire up the large jointer for quick passes. I did a couple of video reviews of this tool a year or so ago that shows the bench unit and some of the cuts it can make.

I have not tried the other heads yet, but will like buy the rustic head for an upcoming project where I want to add a little texture.






I still really like the planer and think the tables are useful. It is a shame they discontinued them. You can still find some at dealers, but it is not a guarantee. I did buy one of the rustic heads as I want to explore adding more texture to some of my pieces. I think it is a nice option to have. I got the fine undulating head to start, but will likely add the others in time.

I have my dealer looking for a table, but his normal contacts don't have any. Do you (or anyone else!) know of a dealer I can point him to for ordering one?  I will likely move on the planer in the next week or so. I won't need it on my current project for about two weeks.

Thanks!

Larry

Offline LDBecker

  • Posts: 55
Re: Festool or Bosch hand planer
« Reply #41 on: August 16, 2017, 02:05 AM »
So, I picked up the HL 850 E planer and the WA-HL angle stop today. I am very pleased with the surface that the planer gives. You can just take off a HAIR to clean up the saw marks or whatever, or straighten out a board so easily. The surface reminds me of what I'd get using an old school hand jointer plane (though I know the sole of the 850 at only 13.5" isn't long enough to be truly good at jointing a long edge). Funky grain patterns are cleanly cut and, though it might not be as good as a true smoothing plane, it's pretty good. Trying this wit other planers, i got chatter, funky grain tearout, and was not happy at all. This is a completely different animal. The dust collection is phenomenal. Using it with both heads of my Vac Sys, i have a quite stable platform for working the wood. The angle stop gives enough beef to adequately hold the planer to the wood, and as it's movable, you can cover the unused portion of the blade. 

Thanks all for the advice... still looking to give an unwanted bench unit a good home (hint, hint!).

Larry