Author Topic: Help me prioritize - which festools are *much* better than other offerings?  (Read 8327 times)

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Offline hazmat

  • Posts: 5
Hi gang,

Just entered the "club" this week.  I picked up a Domino & CT22 on Monday.  After playing around with it for 5 minutes I've convinced myself to add to my collection.

I am an avid DIYer - mostly home improvement & furniture projects.  Currently building cabinets for a 3rd floor media/playroom.  Next home projects include two baths (vanities) and kitchen (cabinets).  For furniture perhaps an entertainment center for family room & bunkbeads for bedroom.

I'm most unhappy with my router & jigsaw currently, but it seems that everyone raves about the TS saws (which are often the first festool bought).

So - help me set priority - which tools are *much* better than their counterparts?  For reference a sampling of my current capabilities below.  I'm looking for the best "bang for the buck" - Ie which festool is going to save me the most time or yield the largest gain in "quality".

Cutting
Dewalt CMS with sawhelper fence system (no complaints except dust collection)
Powermatic cabinet saw with sliding table - works great
PC circ saw & clamp system to break down sheet goods - works OK (some chipout), haven't tried it hooked up to the CT22 yet.  Calculating the offset does get old.
Dewalt jig saw - lots of splinters & no dust collection

Sanding
Bosch 6" DA & rotary sander (model 1250?)- works fast, DC somewhat poor, need to try it with CT22
Makita 5" DA "palm"- OK

Routing
PC router with plunge & fixed bases - mostly an exercise in frustration
Grizzly shaper with incra fence system - no complaints

Just bought a makita cordless drill & impact driver, so not in the market for the festool drill right now.


Offline Dan Clark

  • Posts: 402
    • talkFestool
Hazmat,

The TS55, some guide rails, and an MFT would probably give you great bang for the buck.   

The Festool Trion jigsaws are very good and dust collection is OK.  I have the D-handle Trion and I like it a lot.   That said, Bosch Jigsaws get great ratings too and are tops in some reviews.  Both use guides that allow for cleaner, straighter cuts.  Tough choice there.

I have an 18V Makita Impact driver that I just bought a few weeks ago. (I already have the Festool C12 drill.)  The Makita drill and driver are great tools.

The Festool sanders are excellent, probably the best available.   You might want to try your CT22 hooked to your sanders before making changes.   If you decide to add to your sander collection, check out this post: http://festoolownersgroup.com/index.php?topic=334.0 and this post: http://festoolownersgroup.com/index.php?topic=1460.0 for more info choosing the right Festool sanders and abrasives for your needs.   (An RS2 might be the ticket for all those panels.)   

I have the Festool OF1400 router.   Great router.  That said, your shaper might be the better alternative if routing profiles for your vanity and cabinet doors.

I hope this helps.

Regards,

Dan.

Offline Greg_R

  • Posts: 153
What don't you like about your PC router?

IMO Festool's big advantage is not a specific tool but a system of working.  I used to break down sheet goods with a circ saw and clamped guides.  The Festool system is significantly better (i.e. make a finished cut the 1st time).  For example, I just broke down 14 sheets of plywood for some bookshelves and all my cuts were with the Festool saw and guide rail.  Having the boom arm on my DC made this even nicer.  If I had a MFT then I'd have been able to set up a series of repetitive cuts and my job would have been even faster.

Festool's sanders are a significant improvement over other sanders I've used (I own the Bosch as well).  The equivalent Festool sander (to the Bosch) has slightly less vibration and _drastically_ improved dust control.  With the Festool 'round' sanders you can choose between the aggressiveness of the cut when you buy the unit (ETS/3 vs ETS/5, etc.).  This is in addition to the 'speed' control on the sander.

IMO I'd get a boom arm for your DC and an MFT + quick clamps.  From there you can add tools to your 'system' (like a TS55 or a nice sander) as you need them.

Offline Jesse Cloud

  • Posts: 1498
  • Festooling at the end of a dirt road in New Mexico
You've got good advice already.  Can't argue with any of it.  Here's my own experience....

I use the MFT every day, even with non-Festool stuff.  I have a european style workbench with a tail vise and a patternmaker's vise, but I still find the MFT superior for clamping and holding stuff in pace.  After the MFT, I use the TS55 the most, just about every day.  You should definitely try your current sanders with the CT22, but I sold my old sanders and absolutely love the rotex and the ets-150/3.  The hole pattern in the Festool system works way better than others and the workpiece stays clean - you are sanding wood instead of moving dust around - so sanding goes much faster.  The rotex works very fast, but the ETS is the smoothest least vibration sander I have ever used.  The boom arm makes everything sweeter - keeps the cords and hoses out of the way and you just gently swat it away when you are through with it. 

I love the domino, but haven't used it as much as I thought I would. 

I have the OF1400 and I love it, but its features are more "convenient and cool" than revolutionary or empowering.  Let us know what bugs you about your router and maybe we can be more specific.

Offline hazmat

  • Posts: 5
Thanks for the comments so far

A couple things bug me about the router:

1 - it seems to take forever to get the depth dialed in for a cut (on either base)
2 - the plunge rails are "stiff" - It takes significant effort to "plunge" the router.  Not sure if the rails are binding or the spring is to strong...

At my day job I'm involved in lean manufacturing & design for manufacturing / assembly.  Some of the core principles are quick setup/changeover and repeatable processes.  Woodworking at home is often a frustration for me as I spend more time setting up a process than actually performing the process.  This is what excites me about the festools - if the router is as easy to set & adjust as the domino, I'll be a happy man.

Offline PeterK

  • Posts: 878
This one is hard to answer. You have received lots of great advice so far. I have 4 different Festool sanders, barrel grip jig saw, 55 plunge saw, 1400 router, CT33 vac, CT12 drill - maybe more that is lost in my shop ;-). If I want to impress someone unfamiliar with Festool, I let them use the jig saw. For anyone used to using a $100 or less cost jig saw, they will guaranteed be blown away with the difference. Of course, Bosch makes a nice unit and is the only other one I would consider. To me, the sanders - especially the 150/3 or /5 are the best bang for the buck in the Festool lineup. The 55 plunge saw is addictive as you get finished cuts from it - pricey but you will forget that shortly after using it. Don't have the MFT but most everyone with one here rants about them as well. Wish I had the shop space for one. As to routers, I have many different ones - Dewalt, PC, Bosch, Festool - 11 I think. The Festool 1400 is a great tool but again pricey. You can get a really nice Dewalt plunger for hand use and a fixed base PC for the router table for close to the same price. Depends upon your needs.
Pete

Offline Jesse Cloud

  • Posts: 1498
  • Festooling at the end of a dirt road in New Mexico
Thanks for the comments so far

A couple things bug me about the router:

1 - it seems to take forever to get the depth dialed in for a cut (on either base)
2 - the plunge rails are "stiff" - It takes significant effort to "plunge" the router.  Not sure if the rails are binding or the spring is to strong...

At my day job I'm involved in lean manufacturing & design for manufacturing / assembly.  Some of the core principles are quick setup/changeover and repeatable processes.  Woodworking at home is often a frustration for me as I spend more time setting up a process than actually performing the process.  This is what excites me about the festools - if the router is as easy to set & adjust as the domino, I'll be a happy man.

Hey Hazmat!

Those two problems should go away on the OF1400.  Depth setting is very straightforward, though like other Festool calibrations - its metric.  The plunge is very smooth.

Some other things that make setup go faster:
  The collet nut ratchets, so you don't have to keep taking the wrench off and putting it back on
  The dust control attachments attach with no tools
  The template guides attach with no tools
   The rods and parallel guide and the guide that sits on the guide rail attach with no tools.
   The router uses the same hose and power cord as the saw, sanders, and domino so you don't have to untangle half a dozen power cords.
   The dust control is good enough that cleanup is a snap.

I found that it took me about 15 minutes longer with my DeWalt router to do a simple job because of the complexity of setup and the inferior dust control that required more cleanup.  Needless to say that puppy went on craigslist after a couple of weeks.

Two caveats about the 1400 though, most of the neat features are pointless in a router table and it is a little awkward using it on the guiderail because it sits a little higher than the workpiece.  Festool supplies an outrigger thingy to even up up, but that is awkward itself.  There are several workarounds discussed here at the forum, my favorite, from Davidbubya is an additional base plate on the bottom to make up the difference - easy to make in the shop.

Offline Cary Swoveland

  • Posts: 50
This one is hard to answer. You have received lots of great advice so far. I have 4 different Festool sanders, barrel grip jig saw, 55 plunge saw, 1400 router, CT33 vac, CT12 drill - maybe more that is lost in my shop ;-). If I want to impress someone unfamiliar with Festool, I let them use the jig saw. For anyone used to using a $100 or less cost jig saw, they will guaranteed be blown away with the difference. Of course, Bosch makes a nice unit and is the only other one I would consider. To me, the sanders - especially the 150/3 or /5 are the best bang for the buck in the Festool lineup. The 55 plunge saw is addictive as you get finished cuts from it - pricey but you will forget that shortly after using it. Don't have the MFT but most everyone with one here rants about them as well. Wish I had the shop space for one. As to routers, I have many different ones - Dewalt, PC, Bosch, Festool - 11 I think. The Festool 1400 is a great tool but again pricey. You can get a really nice Dewalt plunger for hand use and a fixed base PC for the router table for close to the same price. Depends upon your needs.
Pete
I agree with you, Pete, though I might move the jigsaw down the list a bit, depending on the poster's needs.  I have one, and like it very much, but find I use it mainly for rough cuts in wood, or cutting metal, where other brands would be nearly as good.  For better cuts I normally use a band saw and scroll saw.  If I didn't have the scroll saw, in particular, my views might be different (and the poster doesn't appear to have one).

I too believe the sanders offer the best bang-for-the buck.  I suggest the poster's next purchase be the ETS 150/3 or 150/5 random-orbit sander, or the RO 150 dual-mode sander.

Cary   
Cary

Offline Dan Clark

  • Posts: 402
    • talkFestool
A couple things bug me about the router:

1 - it seems to take forever to get the depth dialed in for a cut (on either base)
2 - the plunge rails are "stiff" - It takes significant effort to "plunge" the router.  Not sure if the rails are binding or the spring is to strong...
Regarding the second issue, I find my OF1400 very smooth.  I also have a Triton 3 1/4 horse router which I got for a router table.   The Triton is a better alternative for a table than the OF1400.

Regarding your first issue, I found the OF1400 to be VERY easy to get dialed in.   And I'm not that experienced with a router.   Other folks have addressed this, so I won't continue except describe how I bought my OF1400...

I had originally bought a Hitachi M12V as a short-term solution for my bathroom project. My plan was to go with a cheaper solution for the short-term and then install it in a router table (where it gets very positive reviews). Then I was going to buy a Festool OF1400 in the next year or so. But it didn't work out that way...

After reading the Hitachi's instructions MULTIPLE times, hitting the internet several times, and futzing with it for more than four hours, I couldn't even get the Hitachi zero'd. Maybe mine was defective, but I found it very frustrating to work with.

In frustration and because I had to keep my project moving, the next morning I ran down to Woodcraft in Seattle and got the OF1400.   I took the it home, yanked it out of its systainer, briefly read the users guide, popped in a slot cutter bit, zeroed and set the depth, and ran a test cut in a piece of 3/4" plywood.   With limited experience with routers and with NO experience with a Festool router, I got a perfect test cut in less than 15 minutes!!!  Two minutes later, I made a perfect "production" cut in my plywood. 17 minutes total from the time I first opened the OF1400 until I made a precisely centered cut.   

I love the OF1400.  Am I biased?  Absolutely!  But then again, it worked perfectly out of the box (systainer) and saved me lots of frustration.
Regards,

Dan.

p.s.,my new Triton router is the table replacement for the Hitachi.

Offline Lou Miller

  • Posts: 482
  • North Wales, PA
    • Some of my work
IMO, the TS55 and ETS150/3 are clearly the best in their class. I'm not including the Domino because its in a class all by itself. I've used tons of circular saws and sanders over the years, and nothing comes even remotely close to either of these. I don't know if I'd say they are a great bang for the buck though. They are exceptionally well designed and manufactured and that obviously leads to a higher price. You do get what you pay for with these two though.

Most of the other tools can be debated about and how good they are really depends on what type of work you do and how you want to do it. The Deltex93, for example, is an awesome tool. However, I can see where many wouldn't really have a need for it. I use it all the time and its one of those tools I'd never be without again. The LR32 hole drilling system is very much the same as the Deltex, IMO. If you have a need for it, its awesome.

I'm not a Festool cheerleader though. IMO, some of their tools are not the best in their class and there are better, much less expensive, options available. To avoid triggering any debate, I won't name those tools.

Offline SRSemenza

  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 5364
  • Finger Lakes Region, NY State , USA
Hi,

   Looking at your list of tools.  It seems that the TS55 with Guide Rails of various lengths would do a lot for you. Breaking down sheet goods will become enjoyable!

    And the OF1400 router will do wonders compared to the PC you have now. Everything that goes on it is designed to be quick change. It is very smooth, and has excellent dust collection.

    For the most bang for the buck based on the list you provided I think the TS55, Guide Rails, OF1400 would do a lot for you.


Seth
Seth R. Semenza
 
S. R. Semenza Woodworking


Festool Service 800-554-8741

Offline Dave Rudy

  • Posts: 771
  • Coloroda Front Range, in the lee of Pikes Peak


I agree with you, Pete, though I might move the jigsaw down the list a bit, depending on the poster's needs. 

Priority of choice of tools is largely dependent on what you do.  I also find that I use the jigsaw quite infrequently, so for me it would be further down the list.  I think the OF1400 is over the top for on top routing.  I agree that it is a mistake to use it in a table. 

But in addition to all the other benefits mentioned already, the balance and feel of the tool when routing by itself makes it worth it for me. 

HTH

Online Corwin

  • Posts: 2103
If it's "bang for the buck" you're after, you might consider the saw and MFT package deals.  These are currently the only package offerings that include a MFT -- and since you have already purchased the vac you probably won't want another.  Well, not just yet anyway :D.
Shirt Size:  L

Offline Overtime

  • Posts: 265
  • Eastern Iowa USA
 Since your shop is already so well equipped, the Domino and CT22 was an excellent intro to the Festools. As mentioned the domino is in a class all by itself.  The domino is a perfect fit for the "setup/changeover and repeatable processes" that makes things go smoothly and accurately.
   
   Most of the festools have the same effect on  "setup/changeover and repeatable processes ", well the ones I have do anyhow.
  If you like the quality of what you see so far then go for the OF1400 and OF1010 routers and sell the others.  Get a rail and some clamps. Next time you reach for a router you will be happy, and set up and adjustments will no longer be a drag.  And down the line, other festool components such as MFS, VS600, LR32 can be added and used with these routers if you wanted those capabilities. Lot of versatility there. Lot's of bucks but lot's of bang also.
 
 Having a cabinet saw w/slider and a CMS, the TS55 and MFT1080 Combo would be a hard sell. but hey this is a Festool Owners Forum  ;D   Breaking down sheet goods, that's a good use for it. But they will also compliment not compete your existing equipment. The MFT and the 55 will increase your productivity and at the same time the quality and accuracy of the work will easily equal the Powermatic.

 
   
   
Patrick

Offline hazmat

  • Posts: 5
Thanks for the additional feedback.

As I was using my $99 Dewalt jigsaw today & getting chips in my eyes (wearing safety glasses, not "googles") I couldn't help but think, I can't wait to get my hands on the festool jigsaw.  The router & TS55 are on the list (as are the sanders).  Need to space it out a bit (in case the boss happens to catch the credit card bill) :-[

I hooked up my PC circ saw & bosch sander to the CT22 vac.  The DC was better (not great though).

I used my old craftsman shop vac since trying the CT22.  I was planning to save it for the messy / wet jobs, but I'm temped to pitch it out the window - it is so loud

Offline Dave Ronyak

  • Posts: 2234
  • Flyin' from NE Ohio
I kept my Craftsman vacuum for wet/messy jobs, and for cleaning out wood burning fireplaces.  I also found the Craftsman hose and coupling fittings useful for some combinations with Festools hoses.  Craftsman's 2 1/2 inch hose and fittings are slightly differently sized relative to the "big end" (vacuum machine end) fitting and hose-to-hose couplings from Festool.

Dave R.
Friends, family and Festools make for a good retirement.  PCs...I'm not so sure.

Offline Lancashire Fusilier

  • Posts: 106
  • Perth, Western Australia
I am interested in the comments concerning the use of the 1400 in a table.

I am relatively new to the forum but wondered if this could be cleared up for me (and maybe others out there) before laying down the cash.

I am on the cusp of investing in the Compact Module System here in Oz and have already purchased the 1400 separately (got it for $700 aussie complete with the systainer of router bits) second hand but had never been used. The cord was still tied up and you could tell it had never been used on timber before.

As such I was planning to use the 1400 as a table mounted router for jobs like profiling hard wood (Jarrah) for picture frames and basic small cabinetry type jobs.

Anyone care to comment on this plan? I hope this is not hijacking the thread - please let me know!
Paul M. Hamilton
Lancashire Fusiliers & 20th Foot
Historian, Researcher & Collector

Offline CharlesWilson

  • Posts: 452
I am interested in the comments concerning the use of the 1400 in a table.

If you scour this forum, you will find that the 1400 is not considered a good choice as a table mounted router. It doesn't have built in height adjustment from the other side of the plate, and the plunge feature will probably make setting bit height somewhat awkward.

Charles
Charles Wilson

Offline Loren Hedahl

  • Posts: 161
I think you already have enough power tools to do about anything with wood.

At this point, most anything you would add from the Festool line would be redundant.

Unless you already have done so, why not get some really good hand tools, e.g., Lie Nielsen or Veritas planes, say a block plane, a #4 and a scraper plant?  Also some really good chisels and a couple of Japanese pull saws of different types.

As I became more experienced with hand tools, I found I like moving the tool rather than moving the wood.  The result is I am replacing "heavy metal" tools with Festools and enjoying wood working more.
Location (generally):  Thirty five miles west of Seattle by the way the crow flies.

You can tell a Norwegian, but you can't tell him much!

Offline Lancashire Fusilier

  • Posts: 106
  • Perth, Western Australia

If you scour this forum, you will find that the 1400 is not considered a good choice as a table mounted router. It doesn't have built in height adjustment from the other side of the plate, and the plunge feature will probably make setting bit height somewhat awkward.

Charles

Thanks Charles, I am new to the forum and am trying to read and scour through as much as possible so please excuse the double up in some cases. The 1400 I have is brand new and never been used so I am more than happy to put it on eBay and purchase something more appropriate. Which router should I look at mounting in the CMS do you think?
Paul M. Hamilton
Lancashire Fusiliers & 20th Foot
Historian, Researcher & Collector

Offline Dan Clark

  • Posts: 402
    • talkFestool
Fusilier,

The OF1400 is not considered a good choice for a traditional router table.  However, if "router table" = "CMS", I believe that's a different story. 

Regards,

Dan.

Offline brandon.nickel

  • Posts: 241
  • Currently Peoria, IL - Eventually back to CO
This one has been debated many times.  The consensus is that the OF1400 is way overkill for a router table in terms of function and cost.  It does not have an easy method of adjustment from above the table, nor does it really have the power to spin large panel raising bits (75mm+).  For less money you can get a router and lift that are more powerful and work with the router lifts from Woodpeckers and JessEm.  I personally have a Porter-Cable 7518 motor mounted in a Woodpecker's QuickLift.  I think the OF1400 is too good of a hand-held router to limit it to under-table work.  I'm also personally too lazy to mount and dismount it whenever I want to change operations, so for me two separate routers is a must.  The PC7518 is the de-facto high-end standard, but many people are using Freud or Triton and are very happy with them. 
TS55, MFT1080, Domino, OF1400, LR32, RO150E, DTS400, Trion, CT33

Offline rodwolfy

  • Posts: 80
This one has been debated many times.  The consensus is that the OF1400 is way overkill for a router table in terms of function and cost.  It does not have an easy method of adjustment from above the table, nor does it really have the power to spin large panel raising bits (75mm+).  For less money you can get a router and lift that are more powerful and work with the router lifts from Woodpeckers and JessEm.  I personally have a Porter-Cable 7518 motor mounted in a Woodpecker's QuickLift.  I think the OF1400 is too good of a hand-held router to limit it to under-table work.  I'm also personally too lazy to mount and dismount it whenever I want to change operations, so for me two separate routers is a must.  The PC7518 is the de-facto high-end standard, but many people are using Freud or Triton and are very happy with them. 

Brandon,

You seem to be familiar with routers. I have a Bosch 1617vs with the plunge & fixed bases, a 1618Dvs, a Hitachi 3hp (in a table), a Bosch Colt, a Makita Laminate trimmer and a 3hp Felder shaper. The only thing that I don't like about the Bosch's is the lack of dust collection, especially on my Leigh D4R. Do you or the others really think that the Festool 1400 is worth the money over the other routers out there? What could I do with it that I cannot do now? I'm sure that I could figure out some way to run my current routers off the guide rail...

Rod

Offline Overtime

  • Posts: 265
  • Eastern Iowa USA
 
   Fusilier,

  The good news is that you now own "one of The best hand held plunge routers made"  It is Best in it's class ( open for debate or scrum ) ;D  The 1400 is loaded with features that are easy to use. The router was designed for hand held use. It has way more features and functions than a table mounted router would typically have.  Here in the US of A the trend for router tables is to have a dedicated router mounted in a "router table" and the router is adjusted from the top. Like a shaper. 
  Jessem

 This is what I have with a PC7518
 
 Festool has made it possible to use their routers and other festools in the CMS table. The only problem would be switching the router from table to hand held use and making bit adjustments. That will test your patience. But they would not effect the use of the router, only the time required to accomplish the task at hand. I suggest that you try to see the CMS in person and see how it is used in conjunction with your router. If you can keep the 1400 - Bob's your uncle !  :D   
Patrick

Offline hazmat

  • Posts: 5
Well I spent some more money last night & snuck some systainers into the shop under the cover of darkness...

TS55 saw & MFT 1080 combo and Barrel grip jigsaw followed me home.

Only got a chance to play with the TS55.  10minute impression - cuts are as good as my cabinet saw with zero clearance insert.  Dust collection is better.  Cross cutting is easier than using my exator sliding table, but the cabinet saw is still "king of ripping" or any cut that can be done as a "rip" - for example cross cutting smaller plywood pieces where the width is close to the length (thus enough "contact" on the rip fence to maintain alignment).

I was really impressed by the performance of the guide rail even w/o clamping it.

I really shoulda tried festool earlier.

Offline Lou Miller

  • Posts: 482
  • North Wales, PA
    • Some of my work

Brandon,

You seem to be familiar with routers. I have a Bosch 1617vs with the plunge & fixed bases, a 1618Dvs, a Hitachi 3hp (in a table), a Bosch Colt, a Makita Laminate trimmer and a 3hp Felder shaper. The only thing that I don't like about the Bosch's is the lack of dust collection, especially on my Leigh D4R. Do you or the others really think that the Festool 1400 is worth the money over the other routers out there? What could I do with it that I cannot do now? I'm sure that I could figure out some way to run my current routers off the guide rail...

Rod

I'm not Brandon, but I'll toss my two cents in anyway... The OF1400 integrates with the whole Festool system nicely and that's probably the single biggest reason to get one. Using it with the guide rails is nice, the ratcheting collet is cool, the dust collection works well for some operations (only so-so for some too), and the plunge is very smooth. Having said all of that, the only thing it really does differently is guide rail use. Other than that, its just another router, IMO. Its very well made and its solid, but its not really head and shoulders above the competition. Not IMO anyway.

Don't get me wrong, I like mine and I'm glad I have it. However, to say it was truly worth the extra cost, I don't really think it was. It may be the best one on the market, but there are some very good routers available for a lot less money. If you want to invest the time setting up another router for use with the guide rails, you'll be able to do the exact same operations with it. It's not like the saws in terms of how unique they are.

Offline rodwolfy

  • Posts: 80


I'm not Brandon, but I'll toss my two cents in anyway... The OF1400 integrates with the whole Festool system nicely and that's probably the single biggest reason to get one. Using it with the guide rails is nice, the ratcheting collet is cool, the dust collection works well for some operations (only so-so for some too), and the plunge is very smooth. Having said all of that, the only thing it really does differently is guide rail use. Other than that, its just another router, IMO. Its very well made and its solid, but its not really head and shoulders above the competition. Not IMO anyway.

Don't get me wrong, I like mine and I'm glad I have it. However, to say it was truly worth the extra cost, I don't really think it was. It may be the best one on the market, but there are some very good routers available for a lot less money. If you want to invest the time setting up another router for use with the guide rails, you'll be able to do the exact same operations with it. It's not like the saws in terms of how unique they are.
[/quote]

Lou,

Thanks for the post. I was wondering about getting one or something else. I wanted to get the package discount of buying two tools at once - saw/mft and then vacuum/??? Ideally, they would have some kind of a package deal for a discount on 3 tools, but no such luck! I've been thinking about the Domino, but at a cost of about $1k for the unit and tenons, it's quite steep. (I already have a mortising machine and biscuit joiner!) Anything else I should consider?

Offline chughes

  • Posts: 26
I've been in the field since 1985 and have used about every brand of portable power tool known to man.  When I went to college I worked for PC as a repair tech.  So I've seen alot.  Currently I own a TS 75 and four rails, a rotex  125, 1010 router, and a mft extended to about 78".  I would say that the tool I use the most is the TS 75.  It replaces my portable table saw for most uses, although sometimes I have to break out ruseau table and drop in the makita bench top.
 I have used alot of different sanders most recently a bosch 5", but recently I bought the RO 125.  When I upgraded from a dewalt 5" to the bosch I thought " wow, now I'm moving material".  That was nothing compared to the impression that the RO left.  I bought the tool to strip a stairway that had been poorly finished, but before I got to that job I decided to practice sanding to get a feel for the sander.  Sanding normally done with wide belts our drums can be done in the field using RO's.

Offline Lou Miller

  • Posts: 482
  • North Wales, PA
    • Some of my work
Lou,

Thanks for the post. I was wondering about getting one or something else. I wanted to get the package discount of buying two tools at once - saw/mft and then vacuum/??? Ideally, they would have some kind of a package deal for a discount on 3 tools, but no such luck! I've been thinking about the Domino, but at a cost of about $1k for the unit and tenons, it's quite steep. (I already have a mortising machine and biscuit joiner!) Anything else I should consider?

It depends on the work you do, but I'd seriously consider getting the Domino despite its price tag. Its just an awesome tool. I owned a mortiser and a biscuit joiner before buying mine too. I've since sold them both. If not the Domino, how about one of the sanders? I have the RO150, ETS150/3 and a Deltex93. All of which are great tools and way better than any of the competitions offerings in their class. The ETS150/3 is, by far, the nicest sander I've ever used.

Offline rodwolfy

  • Posts: 80

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It depends on the work you do, but I'd seriously consider getting the Domino despite its price tag. Its just an awesome tool. I owned a mortiser and a biscuit joiner before buying mine too. I've since sold them both. If not the Domino, how about one of the sanders? I have the RO150, ETS150/3 and a Deltex93. All of which are great tools and way better than any of the competitions offerings in their class. The ETS150/3 is, by far, the nicest sander I've ever used.
[/quote]

Lou,

I actually already purchased an RO 150 FEQ when it came out last year. I already had a fein vac, so I wasn't planning on getting a Festool vac. However, my wife has taken over using my fein for around the house cleaning, so it's only in my shop 1/2 the time. I'm building a set of cabinets at my parents house (about 40 mile drive r/t), so I need an extra vac. The fein is $300, but I like the idea of getting the boom arm set up as the cord and hose is a PTA when I'm using it around my shop. I was debating trying to come up with the extra $ for the OF1400 to get a discount, as it looks really convienent to use it on the guide rail for dados & rabbits (you can do rabbits OK, right?).

Actually, I'm having a rotator cuff repair, so I'll be off work for a couple of months. I'm going to have my dad do most of the cutting on the cabinets in his garage, while I tell him how and what to do.

Rod