Author Topic: Homemade guide rail connectors (not your typical ones)  (Read 63877 times)

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Offline Mixxedupmedia

  • Posts: 2
Re: Homemade guide rail connectors (not your typical ones)
« Reply #60 on: April 23, 2018, 10:56 AM »
Great ideas! I just joined the site ...should have done this before buying the stock connectors.😕
Bad decisions make the best stories.

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Offline mwest

  • Posts: 2
Re: Homemade guide rail connectors (not your typical ones)
« Reply #61 on: August 29, 2018, 02:06 PM »
In the original picture/posting, there are some 80/20 brackets hanging on the side of the MFT side rails. Are these modified to hang on the Festool MFT "extrusion"? I want to hang some small boxes for clamps and dawgs, etc. Any recommendations?

Offline brentasmith

  • Posts: 6
Re: Homemade guide rail connectors (not your typical ones)
« Reply #62 on: September 07, 2018, 11:08 PM »
I noticed Festool is extremely quiet on this thread...

I needed to join two rails and checked out connectors. Wow! $32 for a pair of metal bars with holes in them. You’ve got to be kidding. Profit margin must be over 90% on that thing <end of rant>.

I stopped by the hardware store to pick up a piece of metal about 12x6 mm. They didn’t carry that, but instead (as it turned out later fortunately) had one 12.7x3.2mm. I then realized I could do better than the stock part.

I often read complaints that joined rails don’t stay aligned together. Festool warns not to over tighten the screws, in fact, boasts flat heads to prevent just that. And the connectors are about only Festool item that has bad reviews on Amazon. No wonder they can’t be secured well; steel screws dig into soft aluminum rail.

My solution is to make the connector consisting of two thinner 3.2 mm parts (see picture). The top one has threaded holes with Allen screws (M6, 6mm long). The bottom one has non through (1/3 deep) cone shaped holes that align with the screws. These holes help to fully engage the threads and prevent lateral sliding of two parts. As you tighten the screws the two pieces are pushed apart and firmly press against inside of the slot distributing pressure over large area. You can tighten them very well.

While fitting the connectors I discovered that two t-slots of the guide rail have different width by about 0.3 mm and had to file the bars a bit :-(.

I tested the setup. After joining two rails I moved, rotated, flipped, lifted by one end, and kicked them around. Checked again with a straight edge – perfect.

P.S. Festool, if you like the idea e-mail me a thank you card attached to a banknote or a green tool of your choice :-)  [poke]

(Attachment Link)

Offline Cheese

  • Posts: 6363
Re: Homemade guide rail connectors (not your typical ones)
« Reply #63 on: September 08, 2018, 12:02 AM »
I noticed Festool is extremely quiet on this thread...

And FWIW...I don’t think Festool will weigh in on this one. From a corporate standpoint, they have way bigger fish to fry (from a class action suit perspective) with the Kapex self immolation issues.
There was a great thread about manufacturing your own connectors by another FOG member Malte. I can’t remember his web name... [crying]

Offline Peter Halle

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  • Posts: 12003
  • MacGyver - My boy 2010 - 2019 RIP
Re: Homemade guide rail connectors (not your typical ones)
« Reply #64 on: September 08, 2018, 07:42 AM »
Festool doesn't comment on many threads anymore.  I suspect that a thread that started 6 years ago and is about an accessory won't be noticed or rise to the top of the list.

Just my 2 cents.

Peter

Offline oberlin1

  • Posts: 19
  • Larry
Re: Homemade guide rail connectors (not your typical ones)
« Reply #65 on: January 09, 2019, 04:19 PM »
Finally finished my set...no one will mistake me for a machinist but they work and they seem to stow okay in my shorter rail.   [wink]
CXS, ETC-125, TS-75, CT-26E, LS-130, RO-150 FEQ

Offline cubevandude

  • Posts: 51
Re: Homemade guide rail connectors (not your typical ones)
« Reply #66 on: February 21, 2019, 04:30 PM »
https://www.mcmaster.com
Low carbon steel 4mm x 12mm x 3'  6775T43  $5.84
Low Carbon steel 2mm x 12mm x 3'  6775T23 $4.69

BTW, I used 10x32 1/4 setscrews and they work great.

Thanks for sharing this info.  I ordered 4pc @12" of each of the 4mm and 2mm and made 4 sets of connectors.  I also got a bag of 100 - 10-32 X 1/4" setscrews off ebay from Hong Kong.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/10-32-x-1-4-Thread-Hexagon-Socket-Set-Cup-Point-Alloy-Steel-Grub-Screw-100-Pcs-/391548169756?hash=item5b2a16ee1c

I put one setscrew in the middle of each, in from the back, so the head is flush to hold them together.  They work great and I was able to make 4 for the price of 1 Makita connector.  I'll post pictures when I get a chance.

« Last Edit: February 25, 2019, 01:58 PM by cubevandude »

Offline cubevandude

  • Posts: 51
Re: Homemade guide rail connectors (not your typical ones)
« Reply #67 on: February 22, 2019, 10:58 AM »
Here are the pics.  My dollar store screwdriver (Felo Smart Clone).  I sanded some of the mill scale off with 220 grit sandpaper which made them nice and smooth.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2019, 01:58 PM by cubevandude »