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Author Topic: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!  (Read 71046 times)

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Offline EcoFurniture

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    • Eco Furniture
Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #60 on: March 12, 2009, 06:02 PM »

The OF 1400 cord and the TS 55 cord are the same, both are high-current cords.


Tom

Hi Tom,

Thanks for the explanation! You are saying the the OF1400 cord should work with the TS55... Well, mine doesn't. I even tried to use my second Ct MINI to find out if the problem is somewhere else. But I got the same results... I'm confused.

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Offline Tom Bellemare

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #61 on: March 12, 2009, 06:09 PM »
I'll go try mine to make sure I'm not halucinating. I'll be right back...


It works. Try plugging yours directly into a wall outlet. It might be the CT.


Tom
« Last Edit: March 12, 2009, 06:15 PM by Tom Bellemare »

Offline Charimon

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Re: Should Say "Why I Love the Plug-It Cord "
« Reply #62 on: March 23, 2009, 08:43 PM »
As with all things Festool, there is a practical and logical reason for the three cord configurations:

1) The smallest cord is designed to work with lower amp machines like sanders...While you can use the larger plug-it cord with the smaller machine...the reverse is not true.  Using the smaller cord (more flexible) also offers the greatest flexibility when working with the tool.  Imagine trying to sand with a 12 gauge extension cord  (not very flexible).  You would end up fighting with the cord instead of focusing on the task at hand.



I Do not think the "more flexible" feature in any way covers the PIA of not having a single universal plug it cord. We are not trying to imagine using a 12 ga extension cord but are arguing purchasing  16 ga cords to replace the (in the view of many of these posts) the deficient 18 ga cords that make Festool use Slower, Harder and Frustrating.  I must then conclude that in this area Festool is using an impractical and flawed logic. 

One cord for the Plug it tools is the best choice

Craig

"The existence of the flame thrower proves that at one time, somewhere, somebody said, " You Know, There's a group of people over there that I'd like to set on fire right now but they're too far away."

Offline Dovetail65

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #63 on: March 23, 2009, 11:04 PM »
I never notice any difference in the flexibility of the electrical cord because you have the vac hose to contend with anyhow. No matter how much more flexible the cord is the vac hose is the factor determining flexibility of movement. One cord for all is the way to go and the way I work. The reason for multiple cords is the same idea for any business, money.

I know many businesses say they are in business to make great tools or help the consumer, but any company is really in business to make money, period. Multiple cords must make them more money one way or another or at least they perceive that it will, otherwise why go through the hassle of the multiple cords. From a manufacturing point of view it must be simpler to offer one cord for everything, for them and the consumer. 

For something that is to work together as a system one cord makes much more sense because two or more cords is neither Faster, Easier nor Smarter.  I think the multiple cords probably makes them more money faster easier and smarter, but that's about it.

I have a drawer full of brand new Festool cords for the lighter duty tools if someone wants to purchase them.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2009, 11:06 PM by nickao »
The one who says it can't be done should avoid interrupting the person doing it.

Offline KorDes

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #64 on: April 21, 2009, 12:35 AM »
I dont see what all the fuss is about, I have one plug it cord in my CT33 and its my Domino cord. Works fine with my OF2000 to my LS130 and all my other Festool tools.

Offline Canucker

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #65 on: April 29, 2009, 11:27 PM »
Wow.. I just posted about this.. I just got a QF-1400 and thought that cord thing might be the dumbest thing I had ever seen.. lol..

So all this irritation is about having an 18ga or 16ga cord ?? ... I could see if it was an 18 ga. or an 8 ga. cord.. I didnt even know they where a different guage until I read this..


Offline Tom Bainbridge

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #66 on: April 30, 2009, 03:36 AM »
first

to my knowledge there WERE at one stage, a couple of versions of the plug it "tool end" connection

aparantly it was something to do with the cable cross section

however over a period of 6 years i have never come across the problem and i have a rake of festool gear



second

festool have changed the type of plastic from which they make the plug it "tool end" connection

it is also a tighter fit especially in the first months   

Bromley, Kent. UK

aka dirtydeeds

Offline Sometimewoodworker

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #67 on: April 30, 2009, 05:18 AM »
first

to my knowledge there WERE at one stage, a couple of versions of the plug it "tool end" connection

aparantly it was something to do with the cable cross section

however over a period of 6 years i have never come across the problem and i have a rake of festool gear

I think you will find that 240v cables are all the same. It is probable that the 110v cables are different depending on power consumption.
Jerome
TS55, OF1400, Elu MOF96, Rotex150, DTS400, ETS150/3 Domino, MFK700, CXS, HL 850, Trend T11, Makita LS1212, Original Mini CV06 Cyclone, Workshop supplies drum sander, & WoodRat. Don't have don't want list: MFT
http://www.flickr.com/photos/nui-jerome/

Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #68 on: May 28, 2009, 02:05 PM »
Hey, I bet I'm not the only knucklehead to find myself on-site with the ts75 and only the smaller gauge wire.  I know this is wrong in so many ways but I just cut that little nub off the wire that prevents you from using it for the higher amp tools.  But I agree with others for what we are paying they should ditch the thinner wire.

On a positive note.  I usually cut the wires on all my other power tools short and replace the plug.  I also don't allow my apprentice to place any tools on the bench while he is working if they are plugged in.  I've damaged too many machines tripping over the wire only to hear the tool crash to the floor and break. (Punctuated with !@#$%).  Being able to unplug the tool at the machine and leave it on the bench is much more convenient than looking for where it plugs into the extension cord.
leave no room for criticism

Offline summerwind

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #69 on: August 08, 2009, 10:33 AM »
i have another problem with this cord and it may or maynot be the cord......Festool has refused to warranty the issue as well without even seeing the tool.
the RO150 has been in use for 2 years now, and just recently had the cord replaced as the wire exiting the twist housing wwent south and basically had a broken wire from using it so much.
the new cord was attached (i never remove my Plug-it cords from any of my Festools) 3 months ago and was very much twisted on as required.
for some reason though i was getting burts of speed that was not there before. the machine was getting hot and the "plug-it" cord was getting real hot. i kept checking to be sure it was connected (twisted on) properly and confirmed that was not the isse with the intemittance.
it finally burned off one side of the plug.
having to finish my job though left me with no choice but to take the cord off my Festool jigsaw and use it.
10 more minutes of sanding finished my job, but the cord was becoming toasted...............the cord was twisted on as tightly as humanly possible, so what gives?

the word from our local rep here in Fresno, Ca is that it is a known issue when the cord is not twisted on all the way and is therefore a user error...........sounds more like a design problem that Festool is sweeping under the carpet.
so like i said, the cord(s) have been attached properly, but i can not at this time use my RO150...................instead i have to rely on my backup which is the one i bought 5 years ago where i have to use an allen wrench to change pads.

Offline summerwind

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #70 on: August 08, 2009, 10:42 AM »
one more thing, the rep in our area of Fresno, Ca did tell my install manager that i could buy Festoll's "hard wire kit" to remedy this issue........so if i should do that and there is a fire related to this issue, is Festool ready for this kind of liability?

Offline wnagle

  • Posts: 502
Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #71 on: August 08, 2009, 11:24 AM »
Summerwind,

Did you call Festool customer service?  I bet you could send it to them to check out.  Then you would find out if there is a problem with your saw or a problem with the way you are twisting the cord on.

I would call Festool customer service.  If its Festools problem they will fix it for free.  If it's your problem they will fix it for a charge.
Wayne

 

TS 55, CT 33 x2, ROTEX 150, RO 90, DOMINO 500Q SET, TRION PS 300, OF 1400, MFT/3, ETS 150/3, KAPEX KS 120, DOMINO XL.

Offline Charimon

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #72 on: August 08, 2009, 11:53 AM »
It would seem that the issue is in the plug it female end on the tool rather than the cord. I would follow Wayne's advice and check w/ customer service.

Craig
« Last Edit: August 08, 2009, 11:54 AM by score0matic »
"The existence of the flame thrower proves that at one time, somewhere, somebody said, " You Know, There's a group of people over there that I'd like to set on fire right now but they're too far away."

Offline Brice Burrell

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #73 on: August 08, 2009, 12:00 PM »
Summerwind, the plug-it cords can be very hard to twist a full 1/4 turn to make the correct connection when they are new. Your comment "twisted on as tightly as humanly possible" doesn't mean you it was on correctly. Your ability to twist the cord may be much different than mine. Your comments about your plug-it cords staying on your tools also makes me believe that you may have never attached the plug-it cord correctly when the tool and cord were new when the cord is at it's most difficult time to install. It may have come lose at some point as well. I'm not saying your at fault necessarily, some plug-it cords can be so hard to turn you truly believe it won't go any farther without breaking. They will turn the full 1/4 to lock correctly but it can be hard to do.

This isn't a problem Festool is trying to sweep under the rug. The manual clearly states the plug-it cord must be twisted a full quarter turn to be properly connected. Be sure to read your manual folks there is some good info in there.
« Last Edit: August 08, 2009, 12:09 PM by Brice Burrell »

Offline Brice Burrell

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #74 on: August 08, 2009, 12:04 PM »
It would seem that the issue is in the plug it female end on the tool rather than the cord. I would follow Wayne's advice and check w/ customer service.

Craig

Yes, there likely is. When the plug-it isn't attached correctly it arcs and burns out both the cord and the tool end of the connection. I too would strongly recommend you call Festool's service dept. and have them fix your Rotex.

Offline Tom Bellemare

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #75 on: August 08, 2009, 01:09 PM »
Another complication that arises is that after a cord has been damaged due to the arcing Brice described, if it is used on another tool, the problem can metastasize to that tool also.


Tom

Offline summerwind

  • Posts: 15
Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #76 on: August 08, 2009, 01:11 PM »
Summerwind, the plug-it cords can be very hard to twist a full 1/4 turn to make the correct connection when they are new. Your comment "twisted on as tightly as humanly possible" doesn't mean you it was on correctly. Your ability to twist the cord may be much different than mine. Your comments about your plug-it cords staying on your tools also makes me believe that you may have never attached the plug-it cord correctly when the tool and cord were new when the cord is at it's most difficult time to install. It may have come lose at some point as well. I'm not saying your at fault necessarily, some plug-it cords can be so hard to turn you truly believe it won't go any farther without breaking. They will turn the full 1/4 to lock correctly but it can be hard to do.

This isn't a problem Festool is trying to sweep under the rug. The manual clearly states the plug-it cord must be twisted a full quarter turn to be properly connected. Be sure to read your manual folks there is some good info in there.

Bruce,
i have been in the trades since 1974............have been a millman for nearly 75% of that time. i am currently in solid surfacing as it pays 3 times as much.
i am fully able to read and understand mechanical aspects of tools and their operation and requirments.
the plug-it cords have been fully locked.........one thing for sure is that when you look at the cam locking area on the cord is you will easily be able to identify with how much turn is needed to fully lock the cord, so there is no need to point out that i have not fully locked the cord. the tools i own were delivered to me without the cords attached, so i am the only one who has attached the cords.
the problem is that the RO150 is burning up these cords now.
2 pairs to be exact, and both were FULLY LOCKED into posistion.
this is a design flaw to start with, but right now it is a tool issue. anytime an AC powered machine starts pulling enough amps through a cord to burn it is a defect, or something has gone wrong internally.

if you'd like to identify with my skills as a craftsman/mechanic......please read through my current scale project here,

http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/m_8507751/tm.htm

i'm not a beginner at any of this.

Offline summerwind

  • Posts: 15
Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #77 on: August 08, 2009, 01:15 PM »
Another complication that arises is that after a cord has been damaged due to the arcing Brice described, if it is used on another tool, the problem can metastasize to that tool also.


Tom

i have installed 2 brand new Plug-It cords to this sander.............both were twist locked fully...........both have been cooked on the same peg.

but since my rep says a hard wire kit will fix this issue, i ask, the burning that has been seen on these 2 cords is obvious, and if hard wired, should that burn or cause a fire, will Festool take care of it?

why is the RO150 the only one i read about that has an issue?

Offline Tom Bellemare

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #78 on: August 08, 2009, 01:58 PM »
That indicates that the outlet on the sander is the culprit.

You should call Festool service at 800-554-8741 during business hours. They should be able to take care of you. They are very helpful and friendly.


Tom

Offline Brice Burrell

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #79 on: August 08, 2009, 02:29 PM »
SW, your experience in the trades isn't in question here. You described your problem and I'm telling you what likely caused the problem. This isn't a new issue and it's not only happened to RO150 sanders, almost all of the time it is a user problem. I've put my Festool tools through years of daily professional use without my plug-it cords coming lose on their own. Only one time did a plug-it cord come lose, it was because I didn't attached it correctly. You said you're no beginner, that's fine but what makes you think only a beginner would make this mistake? It can happen to anyone at anytime.


i have installed 2 brand new Plug-It cords to this sander.............both were twist locked fully...........both have been cooked on the same peg.

I'm not sure I understand what happened to your first plug-it cord that caused you to replace it but maybe there was damage to the Rotex's side of the connection at that time. With a burned the pin on the Rotex the first replacement cord burned up and so did the second one because of the Rotex's damaged pin/connection. In other words, it didn't matter if the cords were installed correctly or not it was going to burn up. This is probably why you feel like you aren't at fault.
« Last Edit: August 08, 2009, 02:31 PM by Brice Burrell »

Offline summerwind

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #80 on: August 08, 2009, 02:38 PM »
Bruce,
the original cord finally broke internally where the cord exits the connector..........nothing to do but to replace it right?

please don't get me wrong, i'm not taking your advice adversly, only explaining to you that i know how to use my equipment and keep it properly maintained.

the reason i posted was to describe my problem as i have been told by the rep and read all the previous posts in this topic about locking the cord. i assure you that all precautions have been taken to make sure that locking the cord has not been an issue.
what i am finding grief in here is the rep refusing (or being in denial) that there is a deeper issue and taking care of me in. i cut loose all my Fein sanding equipment in favor of the Festool system and the fact that you get a 3 year warranty........being told "oh, you didn't have the cord locked properly, so therefore no warranty" is BS, and i'm not going to just toss the unit and go buy another one.
the dealer that carries Festool's line wouldn't even send the tool in as they are assuming the same thing..............that too is BS

Offline Michael Kellough

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #81 on: August 08, 2009, 02:45 PM »
Could be that the sander has a loose wire, frayed wire, or poorly crimped connector
so it's pulling more current through the remaining conductor than designed.
The tool should go back for repair since replacement cords don't solve the problem.

Offline Festool USA

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #82 on: August 08, 2009, 03:10 PM »
Call us at 888-337-8600 on Monday after 8am EST.  I have no doubt that the issue can be quickly and accurately diagnosed and remedied.  I think anyone who has dealt with our company will attest to the superb quality of customer service that's provided.  We stand firmly behind our tools and our warranty.  Let's not speculate about the cause of the problem.  Just call us and we will make sure it gets resolved to your satisfaction.

I am disappointed about what you were told by you dealer.  Please send me a private message with the name of the dealer you have been working with.

Offline ForumMFG

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #83 on: August 10, 2009, 07:01 PM »
I really think festool could improve in this area slightly.  I think just by extending the outlet just a little would allow us to grab a hold of the plug and turn it easier.  Some of the tools are very hard to access the plug-it and then turn.  It's not a must needed improvement but I do find myself thinking that it would be nice if I had more room to turn it.  I've never had any problems attaching it before like stated above.

Offline Brice Burrell

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #84 on: August 10, 2009, 09:25 PM »
Once the plug-it cords break in they attach much easier. As for ease of accessing the plug-it, no question some tools are easier than others but I've found a little forethought and you'll figure out a better way. For example, the TS 55 it's hard to get your hand around the plug-it to twist it enough. Solution, bevel the saw and you'll have all the room you need to get your hand around the cord. For the sander attach the cord first then the vac hose. Without the hose on the sander it's much easier to attach the cord.

Offline Tom Bellemare

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #85 on: August 10, 2009, 09:38 PM »
I agree, Brice. They get easier with use and there are ways to make them easier to grip.

Another thing that can help with the Plug-It cords and the latches on the Systainers and many other things that are tough to deal with is dry-lube. Just don't spray it on the electrical contacts.


Tom

Offline Michael Kellough

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #86 on: August 11, 2009, 11:22 AM »
It's the outside collar on a new cord that's difficult to rotate.
With use it gets easier to twist but some cords don't get changed
very often and it takes a long time for them to become easy to operate.
Is there a lube to reduce the friction in a tight collar?

Offline summerwind

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #87 on: August 12, 2009, 05:38 PM »
hi Shane,

i tried the RO again today with the new cord i bought for my jigsaw..........twisted on, and i even checked it every other minute while using the machine...........again it started burning the plug.
i'd like to call you this Friday.

Offline Rick Christopherson

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #88 on: August 12, 2009, 08:05 PM »
hi Shane,

i tried the RO again today with the new cord i bought for my jigsaw..........twisted on, and i even checked it every other minute while using the machine...........again it started burning the plug.
i'd like to call you this Friday.

I saw your discussion previously, but didn't respond at the time because other posters had already sent you in the right direction. By the way just as a forewarning, Shane is not part of the service department, so he could only forward you on to service if you called him direct.

You are burning up your cords because you have a poor connection between the tool's inlet and the plug-it connector on the cord. This results in a high resistance connection and possibly even small arcing at the connector, which in turn causes very high heat. Unfortunately, once this occurs even once, it creates a cascading degradation of the connections (that's true for any electrical plug, not just Plug-it).

The leading cause for this occurrence is not fully tightening the twist-lock on the Plug-it cords. This is the reason why I specifically point this out with a full graphic image in all of my Owner's Manuals. I know that this was mentioned previously, but it is an important enough topic that I want to make sure that everyone reading this thread fully understands it. Some Plug-it cord to tool interfaces are snug enough that when the owner turns the twist-lock, they think that they have fully tightened it, but instead, it is just beginning to hit the detent snap position. The most reliable way to ensure the twist-lock is fully engaged is to note that the twist-lock must rotate a full 90-degrees (1/4-turn).

If I recall, you have already stated that you were positive that the twist-lock was fully engaged. So given the assumption the twist-lock is fully engaged yet you are experiencing overheating problems, then it is quite clear that the electrical pins in the inlet of your sander have been damaged from previous occurrences of high heat. What happens is that once the plastic gets hot and soft, the pins no longer fit their shell as tightly as they should, and frequently, this means they will get pushed back inside of the body of the inlet. In essence, the pins are too short (from getting pushed back) to make full contact with the brass sockets in the plug-it's body.

So the bottom line is that even though you were noticing the damage on your plug-it cord(s), and drawing the conclusion that the multiple plug-it cords were the problem, the actual root cause was the inlet on the tool. Regardless what the cause of the original overheating condition, you now appear to have a damaged inlet on the tool.


Offline summerwind

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Re: Why I HATE the "plug-it" cord!
« Reply #89 on: August 12, 2009, 08:21 PM »
well Rick, since i basically have done everything you pointed out in terms of proper connection of the original and first replacement cord, then i see this as a defect caused by the machine.

for the dealer and the rep to completely refuse to look into the fact that the machine is at fault is not acceptable.
they are saying that Festool will not honor the warranty.
telling me to hardwire a machine without even trying to properly diagnose the problem is also irresponsible.

i agree that the pins are now shot, but the cause was not a loose cord, and i will say this once again for you and those who are not paying attention, "the cord was properly attached, period!"

the dealer and rep have not acted in any other way than to show lack of knowledge of the tooling they say they stand behind.

if the Plut-it cord is so senstive to a bit of arcing, then it is quite reasonable to say that this is a design flaw, and the bottom line is that Festool is in denial of this.