Author Topic: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop  (Read 9681 times)

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Offline rjh

  • Posts: 24
Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« on: September 09, 2016, 11:37 AM »
Hi All,
I'm new to the forum but have been studying the Festool product line for a while now. I used to do finish carpentry and woodwork for a living but have taken an 8 year break. Now I want to get back into it. I sold all my tools a while ago so I'm starting basically from scratch. So I'm posting my ideas for investing in the Festool system from the ground up - trying to keep multi-functionality and portability in mind. (My job opportunities will be various as I do not yet have an official shop or business.) I'm looking for feedback with the above in mind. So...
Here goes!

DRILLING
T-18 +3 (with four chucks I wont need more drills)
2.6Ah battery (to cut down the weight of the T-18)
Snappy Festool 7-piece Cabinet makers set (because Festool's Installer Kit doesn't come with a self-centering bit!)
[Later: add the Installer set if it makes sense for jobs]
[Later: add the BHC Rotary Hammer if jobs require]

SAWING
HKC basic (batteries and charger are already with the T-18)
FKS rail (which one, if you had to buy only one to start?)
[Later: add a TS 75 if cabinetry and woodwork take off as main source of income]
Carvex basic (again, batteries and charger from T-18)
Carvex accessories (because I really wanted to spend more $$$ for decent functionality [wink])

ROUTING
1400 Router (best of both worlds, still pretty light but can take both 1/4 and 1/2 collets)
Guide for rails (that functionality, though)
[Later: add accessories as needed for jobs]

SANDING
Rotex 90 (yes, I know it's small but the multi-functionality is amazing plus its so portable)
[Later: any sander the job requires]

WORKBENCH
MFT/3 (as package deal with one of the above - miter capabilty, clamping, layout, etc. etc. everything the MFT is awesome at)
Clamps (yeah, clamps)
Sys-cart (rolling stackable cart for systainers, also brings height up to the MFT to double as a supporting table)
MFTB (Because it's better than the design of the Sys-MFT. You can build one that you can turn into a scroll saw with the Carvex and a router table with the 1400 inside - portable, compact shop, again, is the ideal.)
Extra 1400 guide rail with rail connectors (So as to join the 1080 rail and cut full length ply (will this work???))
[Later: accessories/clamps as needed... maybe another MFT/3]

DUST EXTRACTION
CT-26 (Still compact enough to lug around to job sites yet large enough to work a future boom/cart accessories)
Long life bag (wish this came with the CT)
[Later: CT-SYS.... when they make it battery powered! - you know they will]

Oops... just ran out of money. That was about... $4500

Next tools would be add a....
Kapex (need a big trim job)
Planer (need those nice custom tables......)
etc.

So, what do you all think? Again, the idea I'm going for is a small portable workshop that has as much functionality as possible. I'm going with batteries for the HKC and Carvex because those can be very useful cordless on a multitude of jobsites. (I obviously didn't include nailers and reciprocating saws because those would need to be from another brand)
Let me know if you have any suggestions or if you see any flaws in the plan? Your feedback is appreciated.





« Last Edit: September 09, 2016, 08:06 PM by rjh »

Offline rizzoa13

  • Posts: 587
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Machine (Shop)
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2016, 02:03 PM »
If I were starting over I'd buy a ct26 with a Ts 75. (Depth of cut and power).

I'd pick up a jobsite table saw of some sort with a nice stand. (Bosch gravity rise is convenient).

Get myself into a diverse battery platform (Milwaukee or metabo, I like metabo). In whichever line pick up a cordless circular saw,drills, sawzall and a Jigsaw.
Festool routers are nice, budget for various rough carpentry bits like mortise, round over, flush trim bits etc.

Build an MFTC cart. I haven't made one but it looks very well designed.

That would set you up for a good variety of work and put a lot of money in your pocket fkr specialty items, because we all know you could justify a new purchase on every single job.

Offline rst

  • Posts: 2177
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Machine (Shop)
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2016, 02:48 PM »
I agree with Rizzoa, buy the 75.  As far as rails, I use my 1900 and 3000 more than any.  I combined 1400s for a few years with the Makita connectors but finally got fed up with the process and inefficiency.  I like your other choices except that I use Milwaukee's 12 and 18V systems because they are much more diverse.  The 90 is a great choice but really consider getting the ETS EC 125.  You can use 5 and 6" pads and having just bought one (Have the ETS150/s and ETS125), it will do most every thing you will need in a finish sander.

Offline jobsworth

  • Posts: 5665
  • Festool Baby.....
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Machine (Shop)
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2016, 02:55 PM »
Let see, MFT3 w/ clamps and clamp elements,  2 1400 holy rails ( You may want the LR 32 later)  with rail connectors, CT 26, TS 55, OF2200, OF1010, and  sander I prefer the RO150.

Offline rjh

  • Posts: 24
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Machine (Shop)
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2016, 06:15 PM »
I'm wanting to go with the HKC saw because it will enable portability (cordless), great compound miter functionality, plunge/track capacity. It seems like the HKC is the "if you only could have one track saw..." saw. TS 75 is huge. Yes it can do everything but it is not convenient enough. Most tasks will not require it. But if cabinetry/furniture really took off I absolutely make the investment.

The Milwaukee thought is interesting. I looked long and hard at the M12 and M18. I would love to have them as a compliment to Festool. Benefits: Impact driver, grinder, reciprocating saw, percussion drill, NEW MITER SAW, and cordless Nailers. But I have some reservations.... The nailers are fairly heavy, have bad visibility on the tip and make huge unsightly holes (some kind of double hit mark). The Miter will be expensive ($700) and at that point I'm halfway to a Kapex which is actually fine woodwork-worthy. The grinder and recip saw and percussion hammer are less used for fine work. Honestly I was going to go with the Ryobi nailers (great reviews!), recip and grinder and just get the Festool percussion drill eventually!
Thoughts appreciated

Offline pettyconstruction

  • Posts: 514
Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Machine (Shop)
« Reply #5 on: September 09, 2016, 07:36 PM »
I would go with a Ts75/ ct 26 combo .
The saw is not that bad ,if you have used a skillsaw at all.
Mft would be nice (I don't have yet)
Good luck.
As a side note, I tend to shy away from to much battery powered stuff , cuz the bats always seem to be out of charge.

In my opinion , one of festools strong points is , the ability to haul/move a group of tool quickly and  safely.
Sys-cart is nice ( for me ).

Another thought is to not go to wild buying tools , get some jobs and let that dictate your needs.
Charlie 


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro

Offline Holmz

  • Posts: 4010
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Machine (Shop)
« Reply #6 on: September 09, 2016, 07:47 PM »
I like to think of keeping my feet firmly planted on the ground.
So either a tables saw or track saw.

Or a ladder and cordless tools if the work is towards the heavens.
Or if the work is in the other direction, like under a house.

Is it finish work or carpentry?

Offline rjh

  • Posts: 24
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #7 on: September 10, 2016, 01:40 PM »
I'm going for finish carpentry and woodwork with as few tools as possible - partly due to cost and partly due to the portability factor.
I'm just realizing that the HKC is really not suited for cabinetry (without a table saw) because of the rough cut on the outside. The TS saws will give clean cuts on both, hence they will work for smaller pieces like face frame materials, etc. I would have to do twice the cutting with the HKC. This makes those tasks incredibly inefficient.
Now I'm thinking of going cordless with TSC or just go TS 75 and marry festool to a good Milwaukee/Makita set....
...decisions....decisions...decisions...

Offline duburban

  • Posts: 1037
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #8 on: September 10, 2016, 04:15 PM »
I think that there are many ways to consider this idea.

A very important angle on this is to own a properly equipped woodshop. A proper jointer,planer,table saw, etc... the basics, and just do all the "woodworking" there. This is superior because you control your environment, can have stock on hand etc... Also, festool offers not options in the way of planing and jointing and all woodworking projects begin there.

I went down the road of equipping myself with festool to be mobile and accurate, but, although some of these tools are "game changers", the game has been played for a very long time without them.

Having a fully mobile shop will require a box truck, trailer, or multiple trips for a larger project. I would really just tool up for the work that you are contracted to do, otherwise you will accumulate junk (although really nice junk) everywhere. Festool is a highly materialist pursuit. Try to avoid the collector impulse and focus more on doing killer work.



Definitely do not buy a ro90 as your first sander. I use it in the shop or onsite the least. Also, how is it more portable than any other sander, are you planing on throwing away the systainers?
« Last Edit: September 10, 2016, 05:15 PM by duburban »
helper: i used a festool "circular saw" to do something simple and it made it really hard

me: exactly, it makes simple cuts complicated and complicated cuts simple

Offline Holmz

  • Posts: 4010
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #9 on: September 10, 2016, 07:52 PM »
^this^

I'm going for finish carpentry and woodwork with as few tools as possible - partly due to cost and partly due to the portability factor.
I'm just realizing that the HKC is really not suited for cabinetry (without a table saw) because of the rough cut on the outside. The TS saws will give clean cuts on both, hence they will work for smaller pieces like face frame materials, etc. I would have to do twice the cutting with the HKC. This makes those tasks incredibly inefficient.
Now I'm thinking of going cordless with TSC or just go TS 75 and marry festool to a good Milwaukee/Makita set....
...decisions....decisions...decisions...

Keep thinking.

You need a truck, trailer, etc.
What is the budget?

If you want to be portable, get some planes and Japanese saws and go old school.

A contractors table saw maybe worthwhile.

Offline duburban

  • Posts: 1037
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #10 on: September 10, 2016, 08:44 PM »
Also, make sure to check out these threads, especially the posts from Contractortalk

http://www.contractortalk.com/f40/job-site-trailers-show-off-your-set-ups-48819/

take a look at "spencers" van equipping project here, he has great work posted all over that forum also.

http://www.contractortalk.com/f41/should-i-get-transit-van-284266/index20/
helper: i used a festool "circular saw" to do something simple and it made it really hard

me: exactly, it makes simple cuts complicated and complicated cuts simple

Offline builderbob

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Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #11 on: September 10, 2016, 10:01 PM »
If you were only looking for one track saw, I would personally say TS55 in whatever variant, cordless or corded you choose. My 75 sits to the side because 99.9% of cabinetry work that I do doesn't require the depth of that saw...its big for typical needs. I wouldn't use the HK/C for cabinetry due to the off cut side not having zero clearance. I do a lot of field work...the CT26 is a good mid size choice. Take a look at the ETS EC 125. I would take that any day over the RO 90. The drill versatility is priceless!  I use the PDC which also offers the occasional masonry drilling when needed.

Seems like you're thinking along the right lines!
Kapex, TS55, CMS GE, Carvex 420, Domino DF500, MFK 700, OF 2200, OF 1400, OF 1010, EHL65, RAS 115, RTS 400, RO150, ETS 150/3, ETS 125, CT 22 (2), CXS (2), C-15+3, T-12+3, PSB 300 & more MFT's than i can count!

Offline Holmz

  • Posts: 4010
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #12 on: September 10, 2016, 10:35 PM »
If you were only looking for one track saw, I would personally say TS55 in whatever variant, cordless or corded you choose. My 75 sits to the side because 99.9% of cabinetry work that I do doesn't require the depth of that saw...its big for typical needs. I wouldn't use the HK/C for cabinetry due to the off cut side not having zero clearance. I do a lot of field work...the CT26 is a good mid size choice. Take a look at the ETS EC 125. I would take that any day over the RO 90. The drill versatility is priceless!  I use the PDC which also offers the occasional masonry drilling when needed.

Seems like you're thinking along the right lines!

While ^this all^ makes sense...
The OP stated:
...
 So I'm posting my ideas for investing in the Festool system from the ground up - trying to keep multi-functionality and portability in mind.
...

The main problems here whether FT provides more, better multi functionality, and/or more/better portability.
It is not matter of "how portable" or "how multi functional" the tool is, if it is the wrong tool.
Since we do not know what he will be doing exactly it is not clear that we can begin to suggest the right tool.

All I know for sure is that a HKC cannot effectively replace a table saw.

But @builderbob list is still a good list, which generally would get well used... unless one is doing cattle fences or timberframing.
Whether the TS55 and ETC/EC is better than a tablesaw and/or a 1/2-sheet sander depends on the exact work.

The only thing we are clear on is that a portable workshop needs to get to its portable location, and hence the trailer/truck/van.

However the standard model is that finished installation is done on-site and finish carpentry is normally done in a dedicated shop.
So does the premise need chin-scratching?

Offline builderbob

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Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #13 on: September 10, 2016, 10:45 PM »
@Holmz I think I took the "cabinetry" portion and ran with it lol!  I would never be without a portable small table saw in a field situation, cabinetry or trim work. If I were forced to work out of a Yugo then I may have to reconsider my approach...
Kapex, TS55, CMS GE, Carvex 420, Domino DF500, MFK 700, OF 2200, OF 1400, OF 1010, EHL65, RAS 115, RTS 400, RO150, ETS 150/3, ETS 125, CT 22 (2), CXS (2), C-15+3, T-12+3, PSB 300 & more MFT's than i can count!

Offline Holmz

  • Posts: 4010
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #14 on: September 10, 2016, 10:53 PM »
@builderbob There was no like button for your post, and it made a lot of sense to me.

Here what it says about the Yugo (http://content.time.com/time/specials/2007/article/0,28804,1658545_1658533_1658529,00.html):

"Malcolm Bricklin, he of the Bricklin SV1, wouldn't be satisfied until he had forced every American to walk to work. To that end, in 1985, he began importing the Yugo GV, which turned out to be the Mona Lisa of bad cars. Built in Soviet-bloc Yugoslavia, the Yugo had the distinct feeling of something assembled at gunpoint. Interestingly, in a car where "carpet" was listed as a standard feature, the Yugo had a rear-window defroster — reportedly to keep your hands warm while you pushed it. The engines went ka-blooey, the electrical system — such as it was — would sizzle, and things would just fall off. Yugo. Or not."

But it looks like if one pulled out the back seat, then a table saw could fit into it?
However you probably need to keep the passenger seat so you have someone along to help push it.

Offline builderbob

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Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #15 on: September 10, 2016, 10:56 PM »
@Holmz I think the hand warming method would be a deal breaker for me!  ;)
Kapex, TS55, CMS GE, Carvex 420, Domino DF500, MFK 700, OF 2200, OF 1400, OF 1010, EHL65, RAS 115, RTS 400, RO150, ETS 150/3, ETS 125, CT 22 (2), CXS (2), C-15+3, T-12+3, PSB 300 & more MFT's than i can count!

Offline Holmz

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Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #16 on: September 10, 2016, 10:59 PM »
@Holmz I think the hand warming method would be a deal breaker for me!  ;)

That hand warmer was for your assistant, as he/she will be pushing...

In your most bossly/bossy voice, you need to say, "Hey, Yugo Push".

Offline rjh

  • Posts: 24
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #17 on: September 11, 2016, 05:05 PM »
Thank you for your thoughts. Let me put this differently. I'm about to invest in a significant amount of Festool products. I know a considerable amount about woodworking and fine Carpentry. I know about shops, vans, trailers, etc. I want the limited amount of festool products I can purchase (about $4,500 worth) to cover the widest range of tasks and applications possible. I need to stay compact and lightweight due to life circumstances. I can always pick up a Dewalt compact table saw or somesuch. But ts 55/75 would cover about 75-90% of table saw needs. I'm wanting the best festool centred setup and then supplement out from there.
I'm now leaning towards the TSC 55 instead of the HKC 55...I thank you in advance for further advice.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2016, 05:54 PM by rjh »

Offline duburban

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Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #18 on: September 11, 2016, 11:46 PM »
Cool.

TS55 for sure, its the heart of my system. I'd still get the portable dewalt table saw though. MIDI vacuum, Brushless 5" or 6" sander, RO150, Definitely consider the MFT table unless your going to be doing a DIY version like Paulk or the MF slab. Festool Jigsaw isn't worth spending extra money on if you already have one. I have both dominoes and use the 500 much more.

What type of work will you be doing? Its hard to know where to spend your money.
helper: i used a festool "circular saw" to do something simple and it made it really hard

me: exactly, it makes simple cuts complicated and complicated cuts simple

Offline rizzoa13

  • Posts: 587
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #19 on: September 12, 2016, 06:17 AM »
I understand you have the knowledge to do the job and all but take the advice being given by those of us who have all the tools you originally asked about.

First off, you can't make money with a track saw only. You mentioned face frames eventually and that right there makes me think the most important tool you need to buy is a good portable table saw. Seriously a table saw is more important  than you think for production, no ones going to want to pay you to fiddle around with a track saw all day and if your bidding by the job then your losing yourself money. Yes you need one but you also need a table saw.

The second issue is that while $4500 sounds like a lot it just isn't if your trying to spend it all on the most expensive stuff you can buy.  Save some money where you can so that you can outfit yourself with the myriad of tools you actually need. Milwaukee is going to be a big money savings over festool for cordless and honestly the festool cordless range is lacking. By not buying festool drills, jigsaw and cordless circular saw you can then afford the truly worthwhile tools like the ct, track saw, router and sander.

What about a router table setup also? I have a big porter cable that goes on the right hand side of my portable table saw and since putting it all together I wouldn't be without it.  There are many times that a plunge routers just downright awkward and slow to use in comparison to a table mounted. Just make sure your thinking it all through before dropping all of your start up money on one brand Because as a business owner your going to struggle with that kind of blind loyalty. (Sorry to be harsh)

Offline duburban

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Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #20 on: September 12, 2016, 01:37 PM »
I have certainly fiddled with a track saw/connecters/parallel guides/ etc... for way too much time BUT it is part of redefining the way you work. Tom has some great jigs and work flows for making face-frame stock with a track saw on here. I have yet to imitate but I should make a jig in his style for adjustable stock widths.
helper: i used a festool "circular saw" to do something simple and it made it really hard

me: exactly, it makes simple cuts complicated and complicated cuts simple

Offline Vondawg

  • Posts: 276
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #21 on: September 12, 2016, 07:35 PM »
Rizzoa13 - well put...not harsh...just reality spoken.
There are no mistakes....just new designs.

Offline rjh

  • Posts: 24
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #22 on: September 15, 2016, 04:42 PM »
Alright, a little math in accordance with the suggestions.

Recommended Corded Festool Tools
$1258.50 for TS 55 and MFT3
$992.5 ETS EC 125/3 and CT 26
$560 OF 1400 Router
=$2,811
$280 Bosch JS572
$350 Milwaukee Drill Driver Fuel (brushless) kit
===$3441===

Cordless Festool Setup with same or more functionality:
$1196 TSC 55 Basic and MFT3
$992.5 ETS EC 125/3 and CT 26
$560 OF 1400
=$2748.5
$578 Cordless Carvex and Accessory Kit
$625 T 18+3
===$3951.5===

Difference: 3952-3441=511

So the first option has the advantage of saving $511 and having a brushless impact driver. (Also, some will see cords as being advantageous on the TS and jigsaw.)

With the second option the advantage is having cordless capacity on the TSC and Jigsaw and Drill, having Systainer storage for all of these, having the different chucks (right-angle, eccentric, etc.) and quick changing with the drill. For jigsaw work one would have better quality and flexibility with the Carvex.

To my mind, the math is clear and the advantages of the second option are worth the extra $511. However, I can understand why others prefer the first option. Some of it just comes down to personal preference and idiosyncrasy. I use a jig saw a LOT, and in ways that other people usually reach for other tools. On the other hand, I have very little use for an impact driver, especially with a T18 (This is why I went for it rather than a CXS - power). But I made it pretty clear that there was room to grow in this setup and I appreciate the sage advice of the experienced.
$4500 was just the initial budget for power tools. The rest will present itself as time and jobs go on. With the cordless option I still have $500+ left to buy a small dewalt table saw and a couple other accessories.
Thanks again though.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2016, 05:20 PM by rjh »

Offline Michael Kellough

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Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #23 on: September 15, 2016, 05:10 PM »
With the title in mind, I'd get a CT Midi instead of the 26.

Is the TSC the basic tool only version? That's what I'd go for since you are already buying a power supply with the T 18. Buy extra batteries (now) if you think you need them. For some odd reason Festool 18v 5.2 Ah batteries cost half as much as M18 5 Ah batteries.

Finally either get the cordless Carvex or get a Bosch jigsaw.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2016, 07:40 PM by Michael Kellough »

Offline rjh

  • Posts: 24
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #24 on: September 15, 2016, 05:26 PM »
With the tile in mind, I'd get a CT Midi instead of the 26.

Is the TSC the basic tool only version? That's what I'd go for since you are already buying a power supply with the T 18. Buy extra batteries (now) if you think you need them. For some odd reason Festool 18v 5.2 Ah batteries cost half as much as M18 5 Ah batteries.

Finally either get the cordless Carvex or get a Bosch jigsaw.
Thanks. Yes, the T 18's batteries are serving as the power for the TSC 55 and Carvex. That's why I bought a 2.6Ah battery for the T 18 to cut down on size and weight while using the 5.2ah batteries in the saws.
Do you feel that the MIDI gives that much better portability? I kind of want the boom or tool stand eventually...hence the ct26
« Last Edit: September 15, 2016, 07:50 PM by rjh »

Offline duburban

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Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #25 on: September 15, 2016, 05:31 PM »
Id rather 2 Midi than a Midi and CT26, they pack up so much better.
helper: i used a festool "circular saw" to do something simple and it made it really hard

me: exactly, it makes simple cuts complicated and complicated cuts simple

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 3942
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #26 on: September 15, 2016, 07:43 PM »
You can't use a boom arm with a midi but you can't take a boom out of the shop either, unless you have a big truck and a helper.

Offline Holmz

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Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #27 on: September 16, 2016, 01:19 AM »
... I use a jig saw a LOT, and in ways that other people usually reach for other tools....

Your whole process is starting to show more easily followed thought and care now.

On the jig saw.
I used to consider them a tool of last resort, or for general caveman work.
After getting the p1cc I have found that they can be very capable in the right paws.

Now if you NEED a cordless jigsaw, then the Carvex is probably the right choice.
I could picture a cordless jigsaw and a corded TS55. As I cannot picture NEEDING a cordless track saw, but I can picture others needing them for valid reasons. And I do not prefer a cordless track saw, but understand that some do.

In my mind your whole set up hinges on you jigsaw.
If you go Bosch or Mafell then you need Bosch rails, and that puts you onto a Bosch or Mafell track saw.
I believe that the FT router fits on the Bosch version of their 32-mm rail. And I use my p1cc and the MT55 on an MFT along with a CT26. Or you go with a Bosch router. I dunno for sure, the kit is an OFA Kit32 or something like that.

This insight does not help the costing for you. But if your work favours a jigsaw, and the jigsaw needs to be used on a track, then it is seems worth investigation. If you are never on-track with the jigsaw, or need cordless then disregard.
« Last Edit: September 16, 2016, 01:24 AM by Holmz »

Offline JimD

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Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #28 on: September 16, 2016, 09:36 PM »
I have a Ryobi brad nailer and have put several thousand 2 inch brads through it putting trim in a lot of our house.  I recommend it.  A compressor and pneumatics are cheaper but the cordless nailer is much handier.  The batteries (I use the little lithium ion) last a long time.  No regrets.  I see that they make 16 and 15 gauge models now.  They are bigger - and the 18 gauge is not small - but I bet they work well too.

I have a pretty complete set of Ryobi cordless.  I have two drills, the impact driver, the reciprocating saw, jig saw, circular saw, and oscillating saw.  And a light.  And a weed whacker and a bush trimmer.  I like them all.  But my Bosch jig saw is a lot more capable than my Ryobi and my DeWalt corded reciprocating saw will do work the Ryobi just won't do.  Some of it is the batteries.  The saws go through them quickly.  But there are bigger batteries.  But part of it is the tools are not as good as the best corded tools.  The blade on the jig saw wanders more than the Bosch.  The stroke of the reciprocating saw is shorter than the DeWalt.  I think the cordless are worth having and I grab them first a lot but I would get the corded first.  You're going to need them sometimes.

If you can live without the Systainers my DeWalt track saw is pretty darn nice.  My Rigid shop vac with Dust Deputy, auto-on switch, and quasi heap filter works great for a lot less than a Festool dust extractor.  But it is also not nearly as impressive looking.  Festool might make sense if your clients will witness your setup.  But I'd still go Bosch for the jigsaw, cordless should be OK if that's the way you want to go.  And Ryboi drills and nailers will work well for you.   

Offline antss

  • Posts: 1453
Re: Building a Lean, Mean Portable Finish Carpentry/Woodwork Shop
« Reply #29 on: September 16, 2016, 11:21 PM »
My musings:

How are you going to turn on your vacuum if you go cordless on the track and jigsaws ?  I'll bet you'll go lazy and eventually not turn them on at all - negating much of the Festool benefit in the first place.  The carvex doesn't have dust collection with the angle base either so consider that too.

I seriously question whether a carpenter can make $$$ doing face frames on site with hand tools in the first place. It's simply not efficient ,and I don't care how many kreg jigs, or dominos, or pin nailers you have in your collection. Site built framed cabinetry only makes financial sense for the customer if the craftsman doing the work is working for peanuts, and we all know peanuts don't buy no stinkin Festools.

A midi or mini is infinitely more portable than a ct26.  Both in terms of size and weight - especially after the bags fill with dust !  If you NEED a vac in the shop, the 26 or 36 is the ticket for sure.  But if you're doing site work and are changing sites every other day or even a different one a week - lugging the 26 gets old fast. If you NEED a site vac , the the midi or mini is almost always a better choice. If your worried about $$$ and capacity with the mini being too small - consider adding a dust deputy and you'll get portability and capacity for those instances when you really need it without the weight penality when you don't.  That combo adds way more versatility than a 26 even if the form factor isn't as sleek.

You mentioned a Kapex - I'd drop that notion if your wallet is sensitive as the risk seems too great given all that saw's problems mentioned here in the 110v version.

I also fail to see the allure of the cordless carvex.  I find it waaaay to heavy and a bit unbalanced with the battery.  My personal bias for sure, but with no triggered dust collection I just dont see an operation where a full sized cordless jigsaw is an advantage.  For a few tasks where it might be - I think something more compact and lighter like Bosch's js120 would be preferable.  At $150 the economics would seem more favorable too.

A Bosch js572 doesn't seem like much of a savings after you figure in the cost of a systainer to put it in to make it portable with the rest of your Festool kit. Might as well get the Carvex. The is 572 does allow you to make beveled cuts without spending an additional $200 like you must on the Carvex.

Echoing what has been mentioned already - consider your immediate NEEDS when trying to allocate capital expenditures on tools for your business. If a tool is idle , it's not making you any money and the capital you spent on it has been wasted.  Resist the urge to acquire pretty blue and green (or any color for that matter ) tools that
just look good on your shelf or in the back of your truck. 

Now if your business is rolling in cash, balance sheets can have a category for vanity and emotional purchases but they still impact return on investment.


« Last Edit: September 17, 2016, 03:55 PM by antss »