LumberJocks

Disappointment with Festool - Complete failure with minimal use

  • Advertise with us
Review by Dangerreuss posted 07-14-2018 02:45 PM 3949 views 0 times favorited 22 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Disappointment with Festool - Complete failure with minimal use Disappointment with Festool - Complete failure with minimal use Disappointment with Festool - Complete failure with minimal use Click the pictures to enlarge them

I am extremely disappointed with this product.
SHORT SUMMARY: The tool’s primary components are poorly made and will likely fail.

I used this tool very sparingly over 4 years of ownership as a hobbyist; maybe 20 times for less than 30 minutes in total. I only used one blade its entire life and it is still sharp. The tool then stopped working – the motor and lighting are still functional, but the blade no longer cuts. Sometimes the blade oscillates as normal, but then stops upon contact with wood. I suspected there was damage to the pendulum device, so I sent the item in for repair (which was outside the warranty period). I have attached the repair cost estimate of $489. Given the quote, I obviously elected to not have the unit fixed, but did opt to pay $14 to have my unit shipped back as I wanted investigate the damage myself. It was very quick and easy to open the device and locate the problem (less than 10 minutes). The problem was stripped gears which I have shown in the pictures. Needless to say, I am very disappointed the tool failed in such an integral manner with such little usage. This tool retails for almost $400 which is 2-3x the price of competitors, and to have such a primary component fail is indicative of a brand whose quality is slipping and whose focus is more on frivolous features vs durability. I do fine woodworking and this tool was never subject to carpentry style abuse. Its ironic, I have cheaper tools that I use for heavy-duty work, and they take the punishment in stride. Meanwhile, this tool was treated delicately and failed.

I am also disappointed with Festool’s suggested repair bill. I have attached the repair in which they needlessly included a variety of expensive components such as a new motor. The motor works fine! The gear cover appears fine as well. The only damage is to the two gears (highlighted in yellow) that total only $53.16. Perhaps replacing the drive gear/wheel would require the $24.05 balancing device, but the majority of charges appear unnecessary. This device could have been fixed for less than half the suggested amount, perhaps even less. I understand I was outside the warranty period and that tools can’t be guaranteed forever. I’m not mad about that. This repair bill smells of a shady car mechanic, not a brand supposedly known for quality and customer service. (I should qualify that I am not a Festool service tech and this is just my humble opinion, but the damage/repair seems very straightforward in this case)

Save your money. Buy another brand. This tool is grossly overpriced and will likely fail if used moderately. You have been warned. Some Festool products are truly unique and warrant the premium price. A prime example of this are the domino machines. Other examples include the dust extractor and track saws, although competitors have largely caught up these products. This jig saw is NOT one of those and should be avoided.

On the upside, the festool service experience aside from gouging of unnecessarily components was a positive experience. The system they use is pretty slick, and the process was quick and seamless. If the product was under warranty, it would have been a different experience.




View Dangerreuss's profile

Dangerreuss

9 posts in 2666 days



22 comments so far

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

4928 posts in 3329 days


#1 posted 07-14-2018 07:41 PM

I would suspect that they thought you wanted it completely refurbished, like new, not just repaired. You may have just gotten the one out of 1000 that had a flaw in it. I would have imagined Festool should make good on the repair to protect their reputation.

View diverlloyd's profile

diverlloyd

2938 posts in 1943 days


#2 posted 07-14-2018 08:39 PM

That’s a tough repair bill when you can rebuy the whole tool for $390. Was you able to tell if they even took it apart to see what was wrong or was it just here’s a bill for everything? I agree that seems like a bad mechanic bill that they would only replace the gears and the charge for the rest but no replace it.

View ChuckV's profile

ChuckV

3152 posts in 3612 days


#3 posted 07-14-2018 09:47 PM

Could you buy replacements for the damaged parts (perhaps here) and replace them yourself?

-- “Big man, pig man, ha ha, charade you are.” ― R. Waters

View NormG's profile

NormG

6216 posts in 3089 days


#4 posted 07-15-2018 01:09 AM

Wow, and from Festool of all manufactures.

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View Desert_Woodworker's profile

Desert_Woodworker

1542 posts in 1300 days


#5 posted 07-15-2018 10:53 AM

My sympathies, from experience with other brands…

Also, here is a YTube vid- mature language, yet like your review- what are they putting inside that plastic shell?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oezp-_DcUgg

-- Desert_Woodworker

View Dangerreuss's profile

Dangerreuss

9 posts in 2666 days


#6 posted 07-15-2018 12:13 PM

@diverlloyd – I can’t say i know whether or not they took it apart. As part of the process, when I elected to have the item shipped back they indicated that the item would return disassembled. Makes sense, as why would they spend the time to reassemble? Well, not that it clearly answers the question but it was returned fully assembled.


That s a tough repair bill when you can rebuy the whole tool for $390. Was you able to tell if they even took it apart to see what was wrong or was it just here s a bill for everything? I agree that seems like a bad mechanic bill that they would only replace the gears and the charge for the rest but no replace it.

- diverlloyd

@ChuckV – I did not know there was an aftermarket for festool parts. I may look into this. Thanks.


Could you buy replacements for the damaged parts (perhaps here) and replace them yourself?

- ChuckV


View splintergroup's profile

splintergroup

2210 posts in 1308 days


#7 posted 07-15-2018 03:03 PM



Could you buy replacements for the damaged parts (perhaps here) and replace them yourself?

- ChuckV

Site references like this are pure gold!

View diverlloyd's profile

diverlloyd

2938 posts in 1943 days


#8 posted 07-16-2018 02:12 AM



@diverlloyd – I can t say i know whether or not they took it apart. As part of the process, when I elected to have the item shipped back they indicated that the item would return disassembled. Makes sense, as why would they spend the time to reassemble? Well, not that it clearly answers the question but it was returned fully assembled.

That s a tough repair bill when you can rebuy the whole tool for $390. Was you able to tell if they even took it apart to see what was wrong or was it just here s a bill for everything? I agree that seems like a bad mechanic bill that they would only replace the gears and the charge for the rest but no replace it.

- diverlloyd


So they didn’t even look at it then and just sent the maximum repair bill that they could. Sounds like a good business model over charge( at the price point real machined gears not powdered metal gears should be used) for the tool to begin with by 400%. Then give the customer a repair bill even higher then that. Sounds like it’s time for a nice Bosch. I use a $1 auction buy black and decker from the 60s or 70s and have abused it like it stole everything I owned. I have used it to cut through 1/2”steel diamond plate for a truck bed 3/4 titanium 1/2” stainless steel oh and wood and cardboard. She still works very well and doesn’t vibrate to bad for a jigsaw.
New tools no matter the price are becoming more and more disposable.

View playingwithmywood's profile

playingwithmywood

424 posts in 1682 days


#9 posted 07-16-2018 03:24 AM

all I can say is #RightToRepair and no I do not buy Festool cause I do not support companies that force dealer price fixing

View Ted78's profile

Ted78

401 posts in 2085 days


#10 posted 07-16-2018 01:28 PM

Keep in mind the stirpped gears could very well be a symptom of something else wrong. A bad bearing, a shaft that got inserted cockeyed, a screw that came lose, a missing retention spring around a shaft etc. Those look like pretty well made oversized gears, it’s possible they didn’t get sintered properly or something but I suspect something other than the gears is the real culprit. I would expect Festool to just send me a new one if I had spent that much money on a tool, and it was fairly obvious the failure wasn’t from excessive use or abuse, but something wrong with the tool from the get go.

-- Ted

View Ryan Nicholson's profile

Ryan Nicholson

54 posts in 289 days


#11 posted 07-16-2018 02:24 PM

I have been lured by the shiny Festool bait many times but have resisted buying because of the ridiculous prices and horror stories from people like you. Thank you for the review.

View Redoak49's profile

Redoak49

3402 posts in 2074 days


#12 posted 07-16-2018 03:35 PM

Sorry to hear about your problems.

I have a couple of Festool and never a problem. I bought them for the ergonomics and dust collection. How soon will we see competitive products with similar characteristics?

View PPK's profile

PPK

1095 posts in 895 days


#13 posted 07-16-2018 04:11 PM

I’m waiting for a non-festool “domino” machine to be made. Then I’ll buy one. I don’t care who you are, tools break, they all have annoyances, etc. So why pay the Festool price?? I’ll tell Trump to make dominoes great. He’ll make me a Trump-branded ‘Merican domino machine that has no tariffs! hee hee…

I do have one serious point to make however:
Unless I’m mistaken, the only thing that Festool is holding onto (that nobody has copied/currently makes) is the domino machine. Lots of other brands make pretty darn good track saws, sanders, dust extractors, etc. So once somebody else can make a domino machine… Well, Festool better improve their customer service or make/do something to make them stand out I guess.

-- Pete

View Mario's profile

Mario

181 posts in 3481 days


#14 posted 07-16-2018 05:17 PM

I side with you, I own a couple of Festool products and almost bought the Kapex until I went and compared it with the industrial Makita’s and DeWalt’s. As you mentioned, this brand is becoming a frivolous, over expensive, and difficult to maintain and repair tool brand. Only once did I had one of our Domino’s repaired and it was appalling. Other than the Domino, I see no reason why not buy from Makita or Dewalt, I use my tools day in and out, and would expect from a mitersaw both fine and heavy duty performance, no place for unreliable expensive tools.

View diverlloyd's profile

diverlloyd

2938 posts in 1943 days


#15 posted 07-16-2018 11:50 PM



I m waiting for a non-festool “domino” machine to be made. Then I ll buy one. I don t care who you are, tools break, they all have annoyances, etc. So why pay the Festool price?? I ll tell Trump to make dominoes great. He ll make me a Trump-branded Merican domino machine that has no tariffs! hee hee…

I do have one serious point to make however:
Unless I m mistaken, the only thing that Festool is holding onto (that nobody has copied/currently makes) is the domino machine. Lots of other brands make pretty darn good track saws, sanders, dust extractors, etc. So once somebody else can make a domino machine… Well, Festool better improve their customer service or make/do something to make them stand out I guess.

- PPK

Would the tool be orange and gold plated?

showing 1 through 15 of 22 comments

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com