Author Topic: MFT/3 For Use Outdoors? With what?  (Read 1156 times)

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Offline jiffff

  • Posts: 6
MFT/3 For Use Outdoors? With what?
« on: February 05, 2019, 05:43 PM »
I'm coming towards the end of a period of renovation and have quite a lot of furniture to build: bookshelves, alcove units, fitted wardrobe, side units etc. Perhaps against my better judgement I'm thinking it would the perfect opportunity to explore a long forgotten love of woodworking. Really impressed with what I've seen of the Festool system so am likely to buy a MFT/3, TS55 Rebq, Vac, Domino and suitable random orbital sander and router. I figure that will be enough to let me make the majority of what I need.

My problem is workspace... I've got a tiny shed and no room to buy a bigger one, so am going to have to work on a patio. The patio is fairly flat, but far from perfect.

The MFT/3 TS55 combo seems excellent, but I'm conscious that I'll need some sort of extension table - potentially either side of the MFT/3. I can store the MFT/3 in the shed, but I can't store two extension tables as well - I would need something that folds.

Any suggestions on what I should consider?

I'm also thinking about what I will use for routing? One of the things I'll be doing is cutting grooves in the undersides of shelves to inset led strip. Routing set-ups I've used in the past have been router tables, with the router mounted pointing upwards. On first glance this doesn't seem compatible with a MFT dominated setup.

(I've never used a hand-held router, so not sure on the merits/safety of taking that router).

Grateful for any advice.

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Offline Tom Gensmer

  • Posts: 687
  • Residential Remodeler in Minnesota
Re: MFT/3 For Use Outdoors? With what?
« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2019, 09:02 PM »
For intermittent outdoor use, the stock MDF top will be fine just don't leave it out in the rain. If you plan on using in inclement weather and don't want to regularly replace your top, I suppose you could make a top out of rubber wood or some manner of plastic such as UHMW.

I recently bought a DominoFix MFT drilling template from Toolnut and the Festool 20mm boring bit, I'm looking forward to cranking out some new tops out of ultralight plywood.

For outfeed support, the Kapex extension wings attach directly to the MFT, otherwise you can use the Aigner table extensions with the Ruwi table adapters.

Extension Table adapter for MFT:
Extension Table from Aigner, also available from Martin USA:

I've been using MFT tables outdoors for over ten years now. They don't like to be left out in the rain, but beyond that they hold up just fine. Eventually the legs rust out, just order new ones through EKAT and you're back to the races.

Hope this helps!
CT-MIDI, C-18, RO-150, RO-90, OF-1010, OF-1400, MFK-700, MFK-700EQ/B, EHL-65, DTS-400, LS-130, MFT/3 (x4), MFT/Kapex (x3), KA 65 Conturo, endless Systainers

Offline jobsworth

  • Posts: 5788
  • Festool Baby.....
Re: MFT/3 For Use Outdoors? With what?
« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2019, 10:41 PM »
Unless its raining or snowing no problem using the MFT outside. Even then if ya get a canopy you can do it. You can get a MFT and the New MW1000 (or whatever its called for a out feed table). I suggest getting a festool router the MKF 700 or 1010 would be good starts.

If you havent used a router before. I suggest taking a festool end user class. Greg Paolini in NC has a router class coming up in May. The festool classes start with the very basics and you'll have a handle of routing when you finish. Woodcraft has router classes to I cant comment aout the quality or indebth the training is as Ive never taken one from them

Offline cpw

  • Posts: 138
Re: MFT/3 For Use Outdoors? With what?
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2019, 11:28 PM »
You might want to look at a centipede.  It folds up quite nicely, so you could store it in the shed; and is better than an MFT for a 4x8 work surface to break down sheet goods.  They in no way replace the function of an MFT as a suitable surface for work holding, but are also fairly inexpensive so I think would make a great complement for your use case.

Offline Mario Turcot

  • Posts: 932
Re: MFT/3 For Use Outdoors? With what?
« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2019, 06:52 AM »
 [welcome] to the forum.

If most of your work will be outside, I suggest that you apply at least a sealer to the top of the MFT/3. As for extension I would find an attachment that fit the MFT/3 profile with a long piece of 19mm plywood. It doesn't have to be the same width of the table. 30mm (12") is enough and with a profile attachment you can move it on the short end of the table to stabilize your boards. Cut the piece long enough that it can be stored under the MFT/3 when folded.

Something similar to what @tjbnwi  Tom did a while ago.

Here the full story

For a router, I would start with a small one like the ones @jobsworth mentionned. The OF 1010 is a strong and small machine capable of doing more then it look  [eek]
« Last Edit: February 06, 2019, 06:59 AM by Mario Turcot »

Offline grbmds

  • Posts: 1909
Re: MFT/3 For Use Outdoors? With what?
« Reply #5 on: February 06, 2019, 10:41 AM »
Festool is going to sell an extension table which will fit on the MFT (actually an accessory for the new mobile work center). That extension fits right on to the MFT as well and folds up. The downside is that it's $250.

I agree that, if you are going to use the MFT outside (and extension as well), you should seal the top(s) and definitely not leave it outside after use. Regardless of sealing, it will not stand up over time if it gets rained on multiple times. Also, keep it covered inside the shed even while folded up. I think it will last longer. The aluminum frame might require cleanup once in awhile, but I think there are others who use the MFT outside as part of their remodeling or carpentry/builder business. It is portable after all.

Offline kbwoodworker

  • Posts: 12
Re: MFT/3 For Use Outdoors? With what?
« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2019, 10:23 AM »
I have a plastic and aluminum Husky work table from Home Depot.  It's an older version that doesn't have the router capability. Otherwise the same as their "Husky 1.8 ft. x 3 ft. Portable Jobsite Workbench". 

It's very weatherproof and extremely stable, the feet pivot for uneven ground, easy to set up.  Surprising how sturdy it is.  Mine has clips for 2x4's along the side to extend it quite a bit. I don't store mine outside, but can't see any way that could harm it.  At about $80 U.S., very inexpensive for how handy it is.  Maybe store your MFT in the shed and leave this outside.  One thing I wouldn't be without.  I thought of it because you mentioned the router capability 

As for an extension, it's slightly taller than the MFT (about 20mm, I think), but there are folks on FOG who have adjusted the height of the MFT, so that's a potential.     
« Last Edit: February 10, 2019, 10:45 AM by kbwoodworker »