Author Topic: Another Newbie Needs Sander Advice  (Read 4442 times)

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Offline Adirondack Girl

  • Posts: 2
Another Newbie Needs Sander Advice
« on: October 20, 2017, 11:11 AM »
I am looking to invest in my first set of Festool tools. I am doing a lot of lead paint stripping on windows and, although the infrared heat gun does a good job, it is pretty slow going and I have a lot to do. The window trim is all flat- about 5" wide but the muntins have a curved profile. There are glass windowed cabinets too.
I do not want to grow out of what I buy but I also do not want to do overkill and spend more money than I need to. I am an experienced painter but not a professional. I am a 60 year old woman who is reasonably strong but hefting weighty tools for hours is not great for me.
I am considering buying the CT Midi and
either the RO 90FEQ (I like the delta shape option) or the RO 125FEQ
and/or one of those with with the DTS EQ or RTS 400EQ (depending on if I need the delta shape option or not).
There are so many ways to go with this that I really need advice. I did read "1st Sander" in this discussion room but still have these questions.
Thank you for your help!
Thank you-


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Offline Timtool

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Re: Another Newbie Needs Sander Advice
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2017, 12:18 PM »
Welcome to the forum,
I generally go for the RO90 for these kinds of tasks, but the RO125 could be more effective if the surfaces are mostly flat.

The DTS is a finish sander, even though with the right paper it can be quite aggressive. But certainly not comparable to the RO90. I wouldn't take the RTS at all for this.

As for the shop vac, the CTL midi is great. But you're mentioning lead paint, others will have to fill in if the CTL is technically suited for that. You may need a CTM or CTH if you're working inside and want to be totally safe, but that's up to you to decide.
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Offline grobkuschelig

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Re: Another Newbie Needs Sander Advice
« Reply #2 on: October 20, 2017, 05:28 PM »
I would second Tim‘s comments. I love my RO 90 for the versatility (aggression in ROTEX, normal in RO, very efficient as Delta).
I also have a couple of „interface pads“ that make it adapt easier to shapes or different kinds.

But as soon as you are facing larger flat areas, you will be very thankful for the added efficiency and speed of a 5“ or 6“ sander.

But especially on strange shapes I have always been thankful for the RO 90.

Offline Sparktrician

  • Posts: 3806
Re: Another Newbie Needs Sander Advice
« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2017, 05:52 PM »
Welcome to the FOG.  Since you're admittedly a new kid to Festool sanders, I urge you to watch

this video starring Larry Smith.  Larry gives you a tremendous info regarding usage of the Rotex sanders.  There are those that think of the RO 125 as a truly surly beast that bucks and tries to bite its handler.  It really isn't anything other than a refined sander, but it does require up-front knowledge as to how to 1) set the dust extractor, 2) hold the sander (counterintuitive), and 3) clean your surfaces between grits to eliminate swirls.  Festool manuals are notoriously poor in teaching users the "how-to" of sanding, but Festool USA has contracted with Rick Christopherson to create some truly useful supplementary manuals that you can find here.  In the video, Larry is using an RO 150 which is easier to handle than the RO 125.  I'd suggest holding the RO 125 NOT by the handle, but by the power cord and dust extractor connections with one hand while keeping the other hand on the head, but using very light pressure only.  Let the tool do the work.  Enjoy your time here on the FOG, and don't hesitate to reach out if you have questions. 
- Willy -

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Offline Holmz

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Re: Another Newbie Needs Sander Advice
« Reply #4 on: October 20, 2017, 08:00 PM »
The RO sanders can be a handful... But the older DX93 work great for corners and they come up used for ~$200.
I send my sister mine as she needed to do some corner sanding. I woul dnever send her an RO-## as they act possessed to the beginner and they weigh a lot.

For narrower things you may want to try something like these:

The Mirka screens come in 25-M rolls, so that is 125 sheets/roll for the 8" screen/pad, which is 20 cents/screen. And they last longer than paper.

That little beast uses a light weight Mirka hose and plugs into my Festool vacuum... and if the screen does get clogged, then just remove it and shake it out.

I just got 3 rolls in 180, 240 and 320.
You would probably want 120 or 80 and 120.
If you PM your address I can post an 8-1/2 " piece of each in an envelope.
Even with a machine for a lot of it, the hand sander seems to eat up corners and edges where the machine does not really like to get to.

If it is a machine only, then it will not be too great if it is a round pad job , AND if you are actually trying to sand inside a jam.

So the sander will likely need to be rectangular to be useful.
and the sander will need a vacuum hose, and a vacuum is needed... if there is lead.

The heat gun and scraper, or a rotary paint stripper seems like it is the right approach get the majority of it.
One you are digging out the paint in the pores of the word, then a sander comes into play.
So any brand sander with a vacuum outlet will work...

Therefore... I suggest:
1) mini/midi.
2) Maybe try the hand block approach with the Mirka screens
3) Start seeking used DX93 delta sanders (Craig's list etc), or get a Bosch or Fien or whoever does a dedicated corner sander, rather than having to buy a "do it all" RO sander solely using it for a delta pad sanding function.
4) Look into the "rotary planer" paint strippers.
5) The previously mentioned rectangular Festool sanders seem like the right ones to be considering as ones to use.
« Last Edit: October 21, 2017, 05:31 AM by Holmz »

Offline Adirondack Girl

  • Posts: 2
Re: Another Newbie Needs Sander Advice
« Reply #5 on: October 22, 2017, 06:44 PM »
Thank you for all your advice. I found the Youtube video particularly helpful. I am now the happy owner of an RO 90 and a CT midi and I think they were the perfect choice- not that I can't envision other additions to the arsenal in the future! I can't believe how well the dust vac works and the sander- where do I begin? Love at first sanding.

Offline SS Teach

  • Posts: 286
Re: Another Newbie Needs Sander Advice
« Reply #6 on: November 28, 2017, 08:24 PM »
Welcome to fog. I would suggest the Protector Set for the Ro 90.  It’s a $36.00 item, actually 3 items that can be attached to the 90. They allow you to sand up to the caulk line without ripping it up. Three different sizes depending on how wide the caulk line is. They work well. Check them out on YouTube. One other thing you will end up with more sanders. It just happens. Good luck.
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