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Author Topic: 55 REQ vs HK  (Read 2392 times)

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Offline ChrisAD

  • Posts: 2
55 REQ vs HK
« on: January 04, 2018, 08:47 PM »
Can somebody please explain to me the difference between the track saws Festool makes?

Which is most current? What are the specific features?

I'm trying to decide which to buy, also looked at Makita because of the price, but I think Festool might be better for me.

I don't plan on buying any other saw. Not getting into woodworking, I just want something that can handle all the small projects I might come up with. Small cabinets, tables, shelves. Things like that. Both solid and ply.

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Offline lwoirhaye

  • Posts: 252
Re: 55 REQ vs HK
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2018, 09:15 PM »
HK has some cool features, especially the proprietary track and ability to lock in plunged position.  The REQ saws have superior dust collection.  I have an HK right now and have had a REQ in the past.   I haven't bought fancy finishing blades for the HK so I can't say if it's weaker in that respect than the REQ saws.   The REQ saws also have a plastic insert that helps make a cleaner cut on the waste edge when cutting with a track.

If you're bucking lumber to length in addition to working with sheet goods I'd say go with the HK.  If you're doing indoor install jobs or strictly cutting sheet goods go with the REQ.

Offline ChrisAD

  • Posts: 2
Re: 55 REQ vs HK
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2018, 09:50 PM »
Thank you, yeah I'm kinda looking for a one saw fits all type deal.

Offline rst

  • Posts: 2241
Re: 55 REQ vs HK
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2018, 07:14 AM »
The 55 is more suited to the type work you mention.  The HKs are more building construction oriented.  I started out with a Makita and Festool rails but now own a 55, 75, and the HKC but I do everything from rough framing to fine woodworking.  The 75 was my second saw because the Makita did not like cutting 1/2" polycarbonates.  Many find it heavy, but my main saw for years was an 8 1/4" 15 lb Skilsaw so it's all a matter of perspective.

Offline mrB

  • Posts: 560
Re: 55 REQ vs HK
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2018, 07:21 AM »
I agree with the first reply..

But will add that the TS55 is basically uncontrollable freehand,  without the track or parallel guide! I can't be bothered to explain why, but trust me it is.

By comparison the HKC is a bit more fiddly when used on the normal FS tracks (not talking the special FSK track here) but can still achieve what the TS can.

there's nothing like the right tool for the job

Offline gunnyr

  • Posts: 172
    • https://www.instagram.com/compassfinecarpentry/
Re: 55 REQ vs HK
« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2018, 08:09 AM »
Thank you, yeah I'm kinda looking for a one saw fits all type deal.

I've yet to find any one saw that does it all!  I have both the HKC 55 and the TS 55 REQ, as well as a table saw, chop saw and assortment of western and Japanese hand saws.

I use the HKC for framing and interior trim.  I used the HKC to install several high end ceiling beams over the last year, the FSK rail allowed me to easily repeat precise angles and bevels on 12'-18' beams without dealing with the issues of wrestling them on a chop saw.  My TS is used almost exclusively in my shop or on site for cabinet construction/installation. 

The TS is my choice for the sort of tasks you describe:  "Small cabinets, tables, shelves. Things like that. Both solid and ply."  For these tasks the precision and cut quality of the TS is superior IMHO.
Semper Fi,

TS 55 REQ|HKC 55|PSB 420|DF 500|PRO 5 LTD|ETS 150/3|DTSC 400|RO 90|RO 150|OF 1400|MFK 700|LR 32|MFS 400/700|CXS (2)|PDC 18|DWC 18-4500|CT MIDI|CT 26|CT 48|MFT/3 (2)|VAC SYS-SET|DUO-SET|SYSLITE KAL II
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Offline Festool USA

  • Festool USA Employee
    FOG Administrator
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  • Posts: 8429
    • Festool USA
Re: 55 REQ vs HK
« Reply #6 on: January 05, 2018, 08:30 AM »
Everyone has provided great info here. I'll add/reiterate a few other thoughts:

  • The TS saws (TS 55 REQ, TSC 55 REB, TS 75 EQ) are ideal for ripping.
  • The HK carpentry saws (HK 55, HKC 55) are ideal for crosscuts.
  • The TS saws are compatible with the FS guide rails.
  • The HK saws are compatible with both the attachable, retractable FSK guide rails and the traditional FS guide rails.

I agree with @gunnyr that for the work you're doing (tables, cabinetry, etc.), the TS 55 REQ seems like the best fit.


Offline Cheese

  • Posts: 6454
Re: 55 REQ vs HK
« Reply #7 on: January 05, 2018, 12:51 PM »
I own the TS 55, TSC & HKC. I use the track saws for ply and hardwood. The HKC for building decks and framing garages.

I’d think your project list would align itself closer to the TS/TSC choice.

Offline tjbnwi

  • Posts: 6075
  • Cedar Tucky Indiana
Re: 55 REQ vs HK
« Reply #8 on: January 05, 2018, 12:55 PM »

Add a TSO GRS and you have close to the best of both worlds.