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Forum topic by jdmaher posted 845 days ago 1732 views 0 times favorited 18 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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jdmaher

279 posts in 1206 days


845 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: question sander

Am I too cheap?

I’m not happy with my sanders. A Porter Cable ROS and a Dewalt orbital. The Dewalt’s a couple of years old and functional – but numbs my hands. The Porter Cable is the second in two years; first just up and died after a year; this one won’t hold the dust bin on (after repeated gasket replacements) – and don’t collect dust worth a lick when it does.

I’m not that crazy about my shop vacs, either. The Craftsman is just under-powered, when hooked up with a Vortex bucket – though that definitely saves the filter. The Fein is okay when empty, then loses suction when half full (which happens quickly).

I’ve been reading reviews. I’m liking the idea of a Festool Rotex 125. Rave reviews, but pricey. And the most favorable reviews are from those who also have Festool dust collection.

So, I noticed that Woodcraft has combo deals. Not that much off; we’re still talking about $1K+ for 125 Rotex and a CT 48.

Better prices somewhere? Sales periodically? If they really are that good, and they’ll really last 10 years – maybe I can work myself up to giving up the cash (MAYBE, and reluctantly).

What do you think?

-- Jim Maher, Illinois


18 replies so far

View Loren's profile

Loren

7399 posts in 2275 days


#1 posted 845 days ago

I’ve owned the 6” Festool sanders. You get something like 30% more
sanding area when you go to 6” pads. The Rotex sanders have a
barrel and I often steer the sander by the cord or vacuum hose to
keep my hand off it. All electric sanders will numb your hands if you
put your hand on the sander body in my experience. It’s an
occupational hazard.

I used to have a Festool vac and don’t have it anymore. Sold it
when making a move. It was a good tool. Now I have an inexpensive
Kobalt 2 stage vac from Lowes with a Bosch hose and in terms
of sander dust collection and noise it works about as well. The
wheels and “system” quality of the Festool vacuums definitely
increase their appeal if you have systainers for your tools.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View IndianaJohn's profile

IndianaJohn

19 posts in 956 days


#2 posted 845 days ago

I have this and it has very little vibration. Craftsman and Festool are apples and oranges, but if you’re looking for low vibration at a low price, the Craftsman may be worth looking in to. The Craftsman model wouldn’t do anything about your dust collection issue though. I would imagine you can find low vibration ROS from other manufacturers too.

View blackcherry's profile

blackcherry

3156 posts in 2450 days


#3 posted 845 days ago

I was in this same dilemma a couple years back and found a guy selling a festool vac and sander at a couple hundred below retail, either unit had never been used so I bit the bullet and started off the Festool addiction since then I purchased the saw, domino, router and table all threw CL at considerable discount. The vac I had to send in for repair at no charge to me so Festool stand by there product. So lets talk about the sander I have the 150-3 5inch sander which I absolutely love due to the vac system. As far as hand fatigue if use for long periods it like any other sander. But it twice as fast as any other sander I’ve used. This is a orbital sander and will leave orbit sanding marks if your not careful, do not over pressure the sander let it work for you and results are great. With all this said let talk price these tool are not cheap by no means even buying them use but I’ve paid them off with commission jobs in no time flat. The domino cost me 850.00 with the systainer’s full of dominoes and cutters. I built one large piece of furniture and got all my cost back and then some. The table and saw are off the charts with unbelievable precision with the smoothest cut, even in plywood. I hope this help you with your future plans but let me warn you buy one and its a slippery slop my friend….BC

View waho6o9's profile

waho6o9

4825 posts in 1204 days


#4 posted 845 days ago

You’ll replace your sanders with Festool, but you won’t replace your Festools with anything, anywhere, no way. Except for maybe a Mirka Ceros (spelling?) or a Dynabride (an air sander).

As an added bonus the sandpaper, though pricey, lasts a lot longer because of the dust extraction.

http://www.festoolusa.com/default.aspx

View Greg..the Cajun  Box Sculptor's profile

Greg..the Cajun Box Sculptor

4993 posts in 1935 days


#5 posted 845 days ago

Go for it…

-- If retiring is having the time to be able to do what you enjoy then I have always been retired.

View Shane Holland's profile

Shane Holland

20 posts in 2073 days


#6 posted 845 days ago

If you don’t believe the hype, take advantage of Festool’s 30-day money back guarantee. Get a sander and dust extractor, use them for up to 30 days, if you don’t think it’s worth the money just take it back for a refund. No risk, no questions asked.

Each sander has a custom ground counterweight that results in no vibration. The dust extraction is so good you could eat off of the surface right after sanding. I definitely don’t miss the dust.

For information specifically on the Rotex sander which feature an aggressive mode that quickly removes material and a random orbital mode for finish sanding, head over to http://rotex.festoolusa.com.

If you have specific questions, let me know. ~ Shane

View HillbillyShooter's profile

HillbillyShooter

4494 posts in 919 days


#7 posted 845 days ago

The first Festool purchase is the hardest, BUT it proved well worth it for me as the Rotex 125 and CT22 were my first. No regrets, only great results! Also, after using Festool, it’s amazing how easy subsequent acquisitions become. Like waho6o9 observed: “You’ll replace your sanders with Festool, but you won’t replace your Festools with anything, anywhere, no way.” Go for it.

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112011 posts in 2204 days


#8 posted 845 days ago

I have never owned a Festool so I can not compare them to the vac and sander I use. I use a Milwaukee ROS among 7 others I’ve owned I favor it and a Fein II vacuum. I know they have done a great job for me and that their price point is far less than Festool.
Here’s a comparison of the two vacs

http://www.rockler.com/blog/index.cfm?mode=entry&entry=7F493404-1372-6771-F67436E6B3263AE3

and my sander

http://www.amazon.com/Milwaukee-6021-21-Random-Sander-collection/dp/tags-on-product/B0012RWCF6

what ever you select,happy sanding

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View killerb's profile

killerb

150 posts in 1025 days


#9 posted 845 days ago

I too have the festool 150-3. Have air sanders and had old porter cable 6” sanders. I went though lots of PC’s. The festool is flat out the best I have used and I use it a lot. Hours at a time. I have it hooked to a cheap 6 gallon shop vac and bucket thing from Oneida. Other then having to turn on the vac and the sander seperate, no issues at all. It just keeps going and going. I do use sandpaper from Industrial Abrasives. To me it works better then the festool stuff. I do 99% figured wood, and this just does a great job. Had a fein vac until it dies. The dust seal for the motor was not real good. Way to expensive to a vac anyway. No hand or arm issues. Had problems years back, but it went away. Good luck in your choices. bob

-- Bob www.bobkloes.com

View AandCstyle's profile

AandCstyle

1286 posts in 884 days


#10 posted 845 days ago

I have had 2 Bosch sanders and moved up to the Festool when the second one died. I am extremely happy with my ETS 150/3 sander. Lately I have been using it on end grain cutting boards and it does the job without causing any numbness in my hands.

For my vacuum, I chose a Nilfisk Alto Attix model. This machine was the quietest shop vac I could find. It comes standard with attachments that Fein and Festool charge extra for and it fits the sander perfectly. I would buy it again in a heartbeat.

If you do purchase a Festool sander, use their abrasives as well, because I have been told that the design of their hook and loops is different from others and you will shorten the life of the pad by using competing products.

HTH and good luck with your search.

-- Art

View Loren's profile

Loren

7399 posts in 2275 days


#11 posted 845 days ago

In terms of high-end tool vacuums, you might want
to check this out too:

http://www.mafelltoolstore.com/dima.html

If you want a sander and vac he might cut you a deal. I’ve
bought from him but have not negotiated.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View AJswoodshop's profile

AJswoodshop

1057 posts in 903 days


#12 posted 845 days ago

Festool sanders a very high in features. But are really pricey. If you want to pay 600 bucks for a sander go right ahead but you’ll have no moneyin your wallet. You should stick with the rockwell 5’ orbital sader. Or the porter cable 5’ Sander.

Festool is great for the guy that is using tools every second of the day. Then festool is the way to go. But if your a guy that likes to just have fun making projects. Then dont buy a sander for $600 bucks.

AJ

-- If I can do it.....so can you! -AJswoodshop

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AJswoodshop

1057 posts in 903 days


#13 posted 845 days ago

Take that back look on craiglist always look on there.

AJ

-- If I can do it.....so can you! -AJswoodshop

View Loren's profile

Loren

7399 posts in 2275 days


#14 posted 845 days ago

yeah, actually I concur in a way because if you are doing
woodworking for joy it’s a lot more fun to do your surfacing
with planes and scrapers.

You know, a year or so ago I did this shelf job with walnut
vertical things and cantilevered maple shelves and I sanded
it from 80 to 150 grit with a Festool sander and it took
awhile. When I was done I was like “that was a pain hanging
onto that sander for all those parts” so I grabbed my Lie Nielson
4 with a decent sharp iron and surface a piece of walnut
scrap with it.

It was a real forehead slapping moment. I’d forgotten just
how fast hand planes can surface your wood if you know
how to sharpen the irons.

My guess is I would have got to finishing in half the time if
I’d used my planes and scrapers on that walnut instead of
the orbital.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

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thedude50

3511 posts in 1105 days


#15 posted 845 days ago

I only use a sander if i have too.The finish i get from my hand planes is far superior to any sander that i have.I almost stopped sanding at all. nothing like the glass smooth feel of a board that was hand planed with a good blade. I know I am in the minority but I haven’t used a sander on wood in the last two years. I have used my scrapers and hand planes simply do a better job. Now if your sold on the sander Idea I will be testing a new sander from Rockwell in the next couple of weeks and it is supposed to be top shelf in regards to dust collection and has a new technology to reduce vibration at a fraction of the cost of a festool. I will post a review on this new sander as soon as I can but in the meantime pick up a nice hand plane

-- when I am not on Lumberjocks I am on @ http://thisoldworkshop.com where we allow free speech

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