Author Topic: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail  (Read 11810 times)

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Online Cheese

  • Posts: 8168
Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« on: July 01, 2020, 12:52 PM »
I just picked up this Mafell guide rail and set it next to the Festool guide rail and noticed quite a few differences. The Mafell MT 55 track saw can be used on the Festool rail or on a Mafell rail and that's what started everything off.



Here's the rear of both rails. They both have 2 each anti-slip strips and a splinter guard. However, the Mafell has 2 clamping positions versus 1 on the Festool. Also, the locations of the anti-slip strips and the clamping slots are a lot closer to the splinter guard on the Mafell so that narrower pieces of wood will be easier to cut.
On the Mafell the distance from the anti-slip strip to the splinter guard is 1 3/8" and 5 5/8" while on the Festool it is 4 3/8" and 6 1/4".
On the Mafell the distance from the clamping slot to the splinter guard is 7/8" and 5 1/8" while on the Festool it is 5 1/8".




The Mafell rail is narrower than the Festool item, is not nearly as stiff and does NOT have glide strips on the top surface. The glide strips do allow the MT 55 saw to glide more effortlessly on the Festool rail.




All of the strips on the Festool rail are attached with adhesive while on the Mafell everything is retained with extruded recesses.




To join Mafell rails one of the rail end covers needs to be removed. A simple task but it's also an extra item that can be easily misplaced. However, the Mafell rail can easily be converted to an Aerofix rail that uses the vacuum from a dust extractor to adhere the rail to the floor or any flat & smooth surface.

https://www.timberwolftools.com/mafell-aerofix-f-af-1-suction-clamping-system





Festool USA does not pre-approve the contents of this website nor endorse the application or use of any Festool product in any way other than in the manner described in the Festool Instruction Manual. To reduce the risk of serious injury and/or damage to your Festool product, always read, understand and follow all warnings and instructions in your Festool product's Instruction Manual. Although Festool strives for accuracy in the website material, the website may contain inaccuracies. Festool makes no representations about the accuracy, reliability, completeness or timeliness of the material on this website or about the results to be obtained from using the website. Festool and its affiliates cannot be responsible for improper postings or your reliance on the website's material. Your use of any material contained on this website is entirely at your own risk. The content contained on this site is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice.


Offline Reff@218

  • Posts: 5
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2020, 10:24 PM »
Thank you for the write up. I have the Mafell system. Losing or breaking the end clips has crossed my mind every time I join track. I do like that I can stow the track connector inside a section of track, without fouling the operation of the saw.

Jim

Offline Svar

  • Posts: 2340
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2020, 10:45 PM »
I do like that I can stow the track connector inside a section of track, without fouling the operation of the saw.
Not trying to compare functionality, but you can store Festool connectors inside the track too.

Offline ScotF

  • Posts: 2861
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #3 on: July 02, 2020, 12:20 AM »
I have both systems and each as its pros and cons.

The FT rails have more grip on the bottom and the saws glide on them better.

The Mafell's antisplinter is FAR better and the dual slots on the bottom allow for clamping thin material right on edge for safer cutting.

With the TSO guide rail connectors, it is not a big deal to connect Festool rails. It is fast with the Mafell system, though.

The narrower Mafell rail can cause some complications if using rail dogs since the side of the motor will hit the dog if cutting thinner material.

Offline socaljohn

  • Posts: 61
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #4 on: July 02, 2020, 01:23 AM »
 "have both systems and each as its pros and cons.

The FT rails have more grip on the bottom and the saws glide on them better."

Interested in knowing: If you were to take the saw on site to a job would you prefer the Festool rail over the Mafell?

Offline ScotF

  • Posts: 2861
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #5 on: July 02, 2020, 01:29 AM »
"have both systems and each as its pros and cons.

The FT rails have more grip on the bottom and the saws glide on them better."

Interested in knowing: If you were to take the saw on site to a job would you prefer the Festool rail over the Mafell?

Great question - if I were cutting prefinished ply or melamine and not able to clamp I would probably give the edge to Festool rails. If working solid lumber, being able to clamp right at the cut edge gives an advantage to the Mafell-style rails.

There are also more accessories for Festool style - the guide rail squares, parallel guides, etc... are all available for Festool. Mafell is still limited in this area - there are some companies across the pond offering setups for this style rail, but not readily available in North America. Hopefully this will change in the future.

Offline yetihunter

  • Posts: 755
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2020, 03:17 AM »
@Cheese

Now that you have the rail, you should get the KSS40 to go with it.  It’s my most used saw.

Offline socaljohn

  • Posts: 61
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2020, 03:37 AM »
"have both systems and each as its pros and cons.

The FT rails have more grip on the bottom and the saws glide on them better."

Interested in knowing: If you were to take the saw on site to a job would you prefer the Festool rail over the Mafell?

Great question - if I were cutting prefinished ply or melamine and not able to clamp I would probably give the edge to Festool

rails.

Thank You!

Offline DynaGlide

  • Posts: 904
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #8 on: July 02, 2020, 07:37 AM »
I got my Bosch rail last week as well. It's identical to the Mafell at a fraction of the cost.
Instagram @matts.garage

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 8168
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #9 on: July 02, 2020, 10:27 AM »
@Cheese

Now that you have the rail, you should get the KSS40 to go with it.  It’s my most used saw.

Ya that's pretty funny...I was thinking the same thing yesterday while cutting some 2x materials. I really like the HKC but was interested in what the Mafell equivalent was. It looks like it's the KSS 50.

You mention the KSS 40 and I looked at the pricing of it and it's whacky. The bare KSS 40 is $915 while for an additional $84 you receive 2 batteries, a charger and a Flexi-Guide.  [scratch chin]

https://www.timberwolftools.com/mafell-kss-40-18m-bl-cordless-cross-cutting-system

Offline jarbroen

  • Posts: 307
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #10 on: July 02, 2020, 12:05 PM »
The KSS40 is pretty awesome.  Especially for outdoor projects like siding, decks, fencing, etc.  The mitre settings are super accurate and easy to switch/repeat.  I have bogged it down and caused it to beep beep several times, but part of that is improving my technique.  I also did some interior trim with it and had good results if I held it properly.  I did bring out the Kapex for complex bevel/mitre cuts though.
It's a huge time saver when needing accurate cuts quickly.  No need to drag out a cord and a bunch of tools to make the cuts.  Just that little box and you're good to go.
I also considered the HKC.  The extra capacity for cutting would have been nice, but I wasn't as confident about the accuracy of the angle settings.

The pricing is funny on the KSS40, but the set is a pretty good deal.  Those batteries if purchased alone are pretty expensive.  Plus it comes with the flexi rail and a couple other things that I don't think come with just the base saw.  I debated the saw, $1000 for the set seemed steep at first, but now I've come to realize how much you get and how useful it is.
The weird price is part of their 'promo' along with the drop in price on the P1CC and MT55.

And definitely look into buying Bosch rails when possible.  I just got the angle fence thingy and the Bosch version was less than $100.
Same with finding a deal on the shorter rail for cross cutting on the MFT.
After using Festool rails for a few years I really appreciate how easy it is to join Mafell tracks and be confident that they are aligned.  The extra clamping groove at the front of the rail is also super handy for narrow cuts.

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 5023
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #11 on: July 02, 2020, 04:46 PM »
My neighbor asked me to cut a couple inches off the length of some readymade Melamine shelf boards.

Following the make it quick and easy principle I got out the KSS40. So nice to have it all in one easy to carry box. Only to find out length of cut was an inch too short. The Flexirail is way too long and floppy for a one foot plank and then I have to get a square.

Got out the HKC 55 and short rail. That rail is also too short. The medium rail is long enough but discovered that the cut qualify of the standard blade would be embarrassing to present.

Got out the TSC 55 and an 800mm rail and TSO square. Using the standard fine cutting blade. Set depth to 1mm below the rail to score coating then made another pass deep enough to cut through. The result was excellent and easily achieved.

Think I’ll get a fine cut blade for the HKC and KSS40 but I really wish the KSS40 could cut a little farther. I’d put up with a Sys 5 container to have a little longer rail.

The full kit of the KSS40 is obviously the best deal but it might make you start buying Metabo stuff. It did me...

Offline HowardH

  • Posts: 1313
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #12 on: July 03, 2020, 02:42 PM »
I got my Bosch rail last week as well. It's identical to the Mafell at a fraction of the cost.
+1  I will ordering a longer bosch track with the connector soon.  I could have used it today.  arhggg....
Howard H
The Dallas Texas Festool Fanatic!

Mark Twain:  "I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a letter approving of it." "If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything."

mft1080, P1cc, MFT/3, T15, TID-18, RO150FEQ, MT55cc, RTS400, CT22, CT36E, 800, 1080, 1400, 1900 rails, OF 2200, OF1400, CSX, C18, VacSys, Vecturo, Qwas dogs, Parf Dogs, Zobo's, Syslite Uni, CMS GE. Mafell DDF40, Sawstop contractor, PM 1500, Shaper Origin.

Offline HowardH

  • Posts: 1313
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #13 on: July 03, 2020, 02:46 PM »
\Set depth to 1mm below the rail to score coating then made another pass deep enough to cut through. The result was excellent and easily achieved.

That's a cool function of the MT55cc.  It has scoring function built in with the flip of a lever. 
Howard H
The Dallas Texas Festool Fanatic!

Mark Twain:  "I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a letter approving of it." "If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything."

mft1080, P1cc, MFT/3, T15, TID-18, RO150FEQ, MT55cc, RTS400, CT22, CT36E, 800, 1080, 1400, 1900 rails, OF 2200, OF1400, CSX, C18, VacSys, Vecturo, Qwas dogs, Parf Dogs, Zobo's, Syslite Uni, CMS GE. Mafell DDF40, Sawstop contractor, PM 1500, Shaper Origin.

Offline Reff@218

  • Posts: 5
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #14 on: July 07, 2020, 10:37 PM »
I do like that I can stow the track connector inside a section of track, without fouling the operation of the saw.
Not trying to compare functionality, but you can store Festool connectors inside the track too.

Thanks for heads up. Just got the Mafell kit.... previously used a piece of poplar with a strip of plywood for track. A 7 1/4 Milwaukee circular saw doing the rip.  Finally hit the 21st century.

Offline RKA

  • Posts: 1983
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #15 on: July 08, 2020, 08:35 AM »
Just to follow up on @socaljohn ’s comments.  I’m not sure I agree that the Festool rail grills better.  On bare wood I haven’t found much of a difference in how the track grips the work.  Maybe the surface of the material being cut can bring out the difference?

I do agree the saws don’t ride on the Mafell tracks as smoothly (at least mine doesn’t move as smoothly as the Festools).  I’ve waxed the rails and it helps, but not for very long.  I purchased some ultrathin clear UHMW tape to see if a few lines run down the track will improve things, but I haven’t tried it yet.  I suspect that will help.
-Raj

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 8168
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #16 on: July 08, 2020, 12:00 PM »
I do agree the saws don’t ride on the Mafell tracks as smoothly (at least mine doesn’t move as smoothly as the Festools).  I’ve waxed the rails and it helps, but not for very long. 

I purchased some ultrathin clear UHMW tape to see if a few lines run down the track will improve things, but I haven’t tried it yet.  I suspect that will help.

Ya there's a significant difference in smoothness when using the MT 55 on Festool rails vs Mafell rails.  [sad] [sad]

I'll be very interested in the results of your UHMW tape experiment.  [big grin]

FWIW...just received the Mafell track connector today and it comes with a combination hex wrench/screwdriver. The first thing I thought was this tool is just another item to lose. However, I then thought that Mafell is more thorough/thoughtful than that and decided to look at the MT 55 to see if there was a place on it to stash the new wrench. Sure enough, just remove the original hex wrench from the saw and the new combination wrench resides exactly in the same place. So...one combination wrench that allows for blade changes on the saw and also tightens up the track connector, that's pretty slick.  [cool]

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 5023
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #17 on: July 08, 2020, 12:46 PM »
@Cheese  so maybe that tool is the difference between the Mafell track and the cheaper Bosch track?

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 8168
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #18 on: July 08, 2020, 01:27 PM »
@Cheese  so maybe that tool is the difference between the Mafell track and the cheaper Bosch track?

Actually no Michael because the Bosch connector also comes with the same tool.


Offline RightAngleDesign

  • Posts: 49
  • Your best work just got easier®.
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #19 on: July 10, 2020, 09:26 AM »
Hi all,

FYI this bracket set is compatible with Festool and Bosch/Mafell rails:

https://dashboardpws.squarespace.com/products/guide-rail-brackets

Cheers,
Rob
Kapex, Domino, multiple sanders, 1400, LR32, TS55

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 5023
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #20 on: July 10, 2020, 11:07 AM »
That is a great bracket Rob! Perfect for people who want to build their own MFT style table.

Can it be fitted to a Festool MFT for those who want to upgrade?

Offline Svar

  • Posts: 2340
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #21 on: July 10, 2020, 12:46 PM »
I do agree the saws don’t ride on the Mafell tracks as smoothly (at least mine doesn’t move as smoothly as the Festools).  I’ve waxed the rails and it helps, but not for very long.  I purchased some ultrathin clear UHMW tape to see if a few lines run down the track will improve things, but I haven’t tried it yet.  I suspect that will help.
It's not just the plastic strips, it's also how the saw contacts the guide rib of the rail. Newer Festool saws have plastic pads on both sides of the groove. Older ones still have a bump in casting across from the green adjustment knob. On Mafell the entire length of the machined groove grinds against the rail causing greater friction. There is not much you can do about it.
« Last Edit: July 10, 2020, 01:06 PM by Svar »

Offline RightAngleDesign

  • Posts: 49
  • Your best work just got easier®.
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #22 on: July 10, 2020, 09:46 PM »
That is a great bracket Rob! Perfect for people who want to build their own MFT style table.

Can it be fitted to a Festool MFT for those who want to upgrade?

Yes. It's a direct retrofit for the MFT.
Kapex, Domino, multiple sanders, 1400, LR32, TS55

Offline phase3

  • Posts: 19
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #23 on: July 11, 2020, 12:06 AM »
Thanks for the post, Cheese!!
I just got a KSS60 2 days ago, and I was wondering about the regular Mafell rails.

I'm still getting used to it, but since I appear to have been forced into carpentry rather than just finish work, I treated myself to a nice dedicated saw. Besides, trying to bang out cuts of 2x4's etc with a plunge saw and no rail was horrifically dangerous. I was fighting the TS55 blade retraction while I tried to follow the line and keep the baseplate planted. An alternative was to bring each piece back to my MFT which was taking way too long and I didn't need that level of accuracy.

I like the saw so far, but there's still a lot I'm getting used to.

Question: Do Mafell saws on regular rails cut right at the edge of the splinter guard? My KSS60 cuts about 1/16" away from the rubber edge of its special guide track. Maybe there's some adjustment mechanism that I missed seeing in the manual, or maybe the saw on that carpentry guide track is just different from the saw on the regular guide rail.

The full kit of the KSS40 is obviously the best deal but it might make you start buying Metabo stuff. It did me...

LOL -- I went the other way around. I had my eye on a KSS-something as some wish-list, far-off-in-the-future possible purchase, and the Festool stuff were still in battery-transition, and I was absolutely fed up with the horrendously uncontrollable throttle on my Milwaukee impact driver, so I tried Metabo because of the CAS cross-compatibility. The first drill I bought, though, was the 18V hammer drill since the batteries on my older V18 Milwaukee hammer drill had died. Oh wow what a powerhouse. I even abused it by mixing concrete in a 5-gallon pail. It did that without any trouble at all!  Then I got the little 12V drill. Very nice and able to drive finish screws carefully. Superb trigger modulation on both. So I bought the impact driver. Beyond fantastic. Immediately I was no longer stripping screws! For once, the problem was actually the tool, not the idiot at the other end. Milwaukee can make some nice stuff, but gosh I hated that cheapo impact driver. (e.g. I just bought their cordless framing nailer, which is magnificent. I can now return my very kind friend's 20-yr-old Porter Cable and 80 lb compressor.)

Great drills, though I will gripe that I'm frustrated by the current fad of putting the giant battery pack forward toward the business end of the drill. I am so very often swearing at not being able to wedge the drill into a tight corner because of that stupid battery placement. I curse "BEING A FOOT IS NOT ITS MAIN PURPOSE!" and then I climb down from the ladder to go find the right length extension rod so I can get my job done. And Festool's done the same thing with their new ones. Ugh.
Sorry -- Total digression there. Back to Mafell saws and rails...

So while I was going broke on tools, and getting pushed further into carpentry duty while there aren't any *real* carpenters available for our remodeling project, I splurged on the KSS60 without the batteries & charger, since I already had those.

Offline Svar

  • Posts: 2340
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #24 on: July 11, 2020, 01:45 AM »
Question: Do Mafell saws on regular rails cut right at the edge of the splinter guard? My KSS60 cuts about 1/16" away from the rubber edge of its special guide track. Maybe there's some adjustment mechanism that I missed seeing in the manual, or maybe the saw on that carpentry guide track is just different from the saw on the regular guide rail.
Larger KSS saws do not cut on splinter guard and there is no adjustment unless you put a new one and trim it.

Offline yetihunter

  • Posts: 755
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #25 on: July 11, 2020, 01:51 AM »
@Cheese

Now that you have the rail, you should get the KSS40 to go with it.  It’s my most used saw.

Ya that's pretty funny...I was thinking the same thing yesterday while cutting some 2x materials. I really like the HKC but was interested in what the Mafell equivalent was. It looks like it's the KSS 50.

You mention the KSS 40 and I looked at the pricing of it and it's whacky. The bare KSS 40 is $915 while for an additional $84 you receive 2 batteries, a charger and a Flexi-Guide.  [scratch chin]

https://www.timberwolftools.com/mafell-kss-40-18m-bl-cordless-cross-cutting-system

Yup, it’s part of a special promotion for summer of 2019.  Suffice to say, they extended the promotion. 

The KSS 50 is, indeed, positioned against the HKC55.  It’s jab at Festool is that it can cut a 2x4 at 45...I haven’t used it but I’ve handled it a bit, it’s nice but if you have an HKC55, @Henrik R / Pingvinlakrits can probably chime in because he has owned both and has a betty and veronica relationship between the two.   I understand that the cordless version isn’t that much more powerful than the HKC.   I like Mafell’s depth adjustment (two router like rails) infinitely more than the common pivot style but Henrik feels the opposite. 
 
Also ran, I run HK blades in my Mafell tracksaw.  It should work the other way around (just not the included blade that is a bit wider).

The KSS40 has a tiny blade and so it performs very well with only one battery (it is as powerful as the <900 watt corded version).   I’m not going to lie, it isn’t the most balanced or ergonomic tool
but it gets 90% of the job done.  Crosscuts at max depth all day long, but also powerful enough to rip 3/4” and 1” material.  Blades are Leitz like Festool, so good stuff. 

Let me tell you the bad stuff:
The systainer that the kit comes in is practically exploding.  It was a tight fit with the older Mafell/Metabo batteries.   Now it’s shipped with the new more gigantic batts and you can’t put the tool in with a battery attached.  Add that to the height having to be adjusted a certain way and the flexi rail having to be wrapped the right way and in a perfect position...I’m telling you these things so that you won’t be surprised when you inevitably buy one. 

I bought one of these and now I don’t miss the Festool rails.  I have one of these too. Rad device, just don’t rely on it for perfect 90.

As a side-note, lots of people who buy the newer cordless Mafell products find themselves going on a Metabo purchasing tangent despite my protests.  Don’t fall into that trap.  They sell a lot of bad tools to fill out their line.

« Last Edit: July 11, 2020, 01:58 AM by yetihunter »

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 8168
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #26 on: July 21, 2020, 11:28 AM »
This is rather interesting...I was ripping 8' lengths of birds-eye maple yesterday using the MT 55 and 2 Mafell guide rails. After the first rip I noticed that each end of the guide rail and maple were flush with each other however, the middle of the maple was proud of the guide rail by about 1/64", or approx .5 mm.  LH end...middle...RH end.








I then placed the saw back on the rail and performed the cut again. Same results, ends flush, middle proud. I did this 4 more times trying to figure out where the real issue was. This plainly shows the extra material in the middle section of the maple.




I finally decided to clamp the Mafell rail on both ends, to the maple. That fixed the problem.

So, there's a slight movement of the Mafell rail if it's not clamped into position. That makes sense as the non-skid strips on the Mafell rail are very narrow compared to the Fetool version, 3 mm vs 19 mm.




Offline JimH2

  • Posts: 1023
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #27 on: July 21, 2020, 12:16 PM »
Excellent points on the Mafell rails. The amount of rubber contact the wood is rather lean and I noticed it when I ran my MT55 for the first time. The connector with no jig required insert makes up for it as does it not putting dents in the rail.

I have both types of rails and there is no question the Festool ones are more solid, but the design elements of the Mafell beat it in every other design area one of the most important being the length of usable rail for cuts.

Offline DynaGlide

  • Posts: 904
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #28 on: July 21, 2020, 12:52 PM »
As a recent purchaser to the Bosch/Mafell rail (I bought a short length Bosch rail) for my newly acquired jigsaw. .I won't be moving my tools over. I like the features of the Festool rails too much. If the selling point is that the Mafell/Bosch rails link up easier, that's solved with aftermarket accessories for the Festool rails and is a moot point. I do like the Mafell/Bosch rails lean low profile feel but that's about it.

Instagram @matts.garage

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 8168
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #29 on: July 21, 2020, 01:20 PM »
1. The connector with no jig required insert makes up for it as does it not putting dents in the rail.

2. I have both types of rails and there is no question the Festool ones are more solid, but the design elements of the Mafell beat it in every other design area one of the most important being the length of usable rail for cuts.

1. Ya the Mafell rail connector is beyond awesome...leagues above other solutions. The option for the Festool rail is to use the TSO GRS-12 rail connector as the screws have a large flange on the bottom so they resist denting the rail.




2. Another thing I noticed is that because the clamp slot is very close to the anti-skid strip on the Mafell rail, narrow pieces of wood are easily ripped. Anything wider than 3/4" is doable. Here's what I was left with yesterday.




Another observation is that the Mafell splinter strip when cut by the saw, is a lot smoother than the Festool version. The Festool strip seems to have some smooth spots, some rough spots and is sometimes missing material. The Mafell splinter strip is ultra smooth which makes rail alignment with a pencil line a much easier task. Also the red color contrasts nicely compared to the Festool clear version.

Installation of a new splinter strip in the Mafell is also a breeze. Strip out the old, lubricate the slot and install the new splinter strip. It's a 3-4 minute task at the most.  [big grin]  No need for the removal of old adhesive.  [crying]

The only thing lacking in the Mafell rail is the lack of a TSO Guide Rail Square...however, I'm sure Hans @TSO Products is working on it as we speak.  [big grin]  [poke]  [big grin]
« Last Edit: July 21, 2020, 01:25 PM by Cheese »

Offline Svar

  • Posts: 2340
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #30 on: July 21, 2020, 01:29 PM »
Festool rail:
1) top t-track for accessories +++
2) light duty rail clamps useful elsewhere ++
3) wide, bench dogs don't interfere with saw base +++
4) glides smoother due to plastic strips +
5) better material grip +

Mafel rail:
1) better stock connector (scratch this one since TSO product came out) ++
2) second track for clamping close to splinter guard +++
3) better splinter guard, easy replacement +

I really like second t-track on Mafell, but don't care about the rest.
« Last Edit: July 21, 2020, 01:53 PM by Svar »

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Offline StanB

  • Posts: 555
  • I like building stuff with my hands.
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #31 on: July 21, 2020, 08:59 PM »
Has anyone tried the metabo rails?

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Offline JimH2

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #32 on: July 22, 2020, 09:38 AM »
Festool rail:
1) top t-track for accessories +++

Help me out on this what accessories do you use for this other than a limit stop?

2) light duty rail clamps useful elsewhere ++
3) wide, bench dogs don't interfere with saw base +++
4) glides smoother due to plastic strips +
5) better material grip +

Mafel rail:
1) better stock connector (scratch this one since TSO product came out) ++
2) second track for clamping close to splinter guard +++
3) better splinter guard, easy replacement +

I really like second t-track on Mafell, but don't care about the rest.

Un-scratch 1) one as requiring two connectors and flipping over the rails negates any benefit.

I'll add the Mafell rails have usable cut lengths equal to the length of the rail whereas the Festool ones to do not, which is why you need 120" rail to rip a sheet of plywood.

In the Festool column add more rigidity. I have never damaged any of my Mafell rails, but they definitely are not as strong, for lack of a better word.

Offline Svar

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #33 on: July 22, 2020, 12:28 PM »
Help me out on this what accessories do you use for this other than a limit stop?
Dog rail clips, parallel guides, gecko suction handle, squares and protractors - that's just some commercially available. Bunch of other shop made useful stuff I've seen on this forum over the years.
I'll add the Mafell rails have usable cut lengths equal to the length of the rail whereas the Festool ones to do not, which is why you need 120" rail to rip a sheet of plywood.
It has nothing to do with rail. It's the saw base design. Festool rails also have usable cut lengths equal to the length of the rail if you use MT55 on them.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2020, 12:53 PM by Svar »

Offline Michael Kellough

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #34 on: July 22, 2020, 12:36 PM »
Help me out on this what accessories do you use for this other than a limit stop?
Dog rail clips, parallel guides, gecko suction handle - that's just some commercially available. Bunch of other useful stuff I've seen on this forum over the years.
I'll add the Mafell rails have usable cut lengths equal to the length of the rail whereas the Festool ones to do not, which is why you need 120" rail to rip a sheet of plywood.
It has nothing to do with rail. It's the saw base design. Festool rails also have usable cut lengths equal to the length of the rail if you use MT55 on them.

Festool’s saws pre TS made better use of the track length. But the Festool rails in those days did not have the outboard upward T slot, a very useful addition.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2020, 12:49 PM by Michael Kellough »

Offline Svar

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #35 on: July 22, 2020, 12:44 PM »
Festool’s saws pre TS made better use of the track length.
This change in the saw base design (less contact area in the groove) decreased friction. One of the reason why FS saws glide better than Mafell.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2020, 12:47 PM by Svar »

Offline Michael Kellough

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #36 on: July 22, 2020, 12:51 PM »
Festool’s saws pre TS made better use of the track length.
This change in the saw base design (less contact area in the groove) decreased friction. One of the reason why FS saws glide better than Mafell.

Agree, but occasionally circumstances make me glad I still have my old ATF55.

Offline Svar

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #37 on: July 22, 2020, 01:10 PM »
Has anyone tried the metabo rails?
I have not, but they still owe me  [big grin]: https://www.festoolownersgroup.com/festool-wish-list/new-festool-guide-rail-this-is-what-festool-should-do/msg497464

And why did they omit the second very useful t-track?

Offline mrB

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there's nothing like the right tool for the job

Offline StanB

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #39 on: July 22, 2020, 10:53 PM »
Thanks I missed that thread. Good input.
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Offline ScotF

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #40 on: July 23, 2020, 12:37 AM »
FWIW - Mafell rails are also ground square and straight on the edge opposite the anti-splinter strip - useful if guiding a jigsaw against the rail.

Online Cheese

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #41 on: July 24, 2020, 01:17 PM »
FWIW - Mafell rails are also ground square and straight on the edge opposite the anti-splinter strip - useful if guiding a jigsaw against the rail.

That'd certainly be a nice touch if that is true...just looked at both of my rails and I could not detect any grinding marks of flycutter/endmill marks on the edge. The surface finish appears to be the same as the rest of the rail.  [sad]

Offline Svar

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #42 on: July 24, 2020, 03:52 PM »
FWIW - Mafell rails are also ground square and straight on the edge opposite the anti-splinter strip - useful if guiding a jigsaw against the rail.
That'd certainly be a nice touch if that is true...just looked at both of my rails and I could not detect any grinding marks of flycutter/endmill marks on the edge. The surface finish appears to be the same as the rest of the rail.  [sad]
Could be ground and then anodized? Would that make sense?
Regardless, a good quality extrusion is straight enough as it is for any woodworking task.

Online Cheese

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #43 on: July 24, 2020, 09:17 PM »
Could be ground and then anodized? Would that make sense?
Regardless, a good quality extrusion is straight enough as it is for any woodworking task.

It would have to be ground/flycut, then bead blasted and then anodized. All of which is possible and maybe explains why the rail is so expensive compared to the Bosch rail. The surface finishes over the entire surface of the Mafell rail are all exactly the same.  [smile]

Don't know...just love the connector though.  [big grin] [big grin] [big grin]

Offline ScotF

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #44 on: July 25, 2020, 01:41 AM »
I checked one of mine tonight and I stand corrected...don't think they are machined. Sorry for the misinformation!   [embarassed]

Still nice rails, though....Mafell and Bosch.

Offline tallgrass

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #45 on: July 25, 2020, 10:46 PM »
Ground? I seriously doubt that. Sound great but it makes no sense. Especially on a material as soft as aluminum. I checked my Festool  rails with a Starrett square. ALL of my rails seem dead on. Also if they were not, it would be painlessly easy to correct.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2020, 08:44 PM by tallgrass »

Offline yetihunter

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #46 on: July 28, 2020, 04:50 AM »
The only thing lacking in the Mafell rail is the lack of a TSO Guide Rail Square...however, I'm sure Hans @TSO Products is working on it as we speak.  [big grin]  [poke]  [big grin]

Hans came aboard the MUF a couple years back, tossing around the idea, ultimately he was pretty clear about not wanting to pursue it.

FC Tools makes the most praised model.

https://fctools.co.uk/product/fc-mafell-mf-rail-square

I own the Taiga and have no complaints.

https://www.taigatools.com/precision-rail-square-mafell-bosch.html

Apparently Benchdogs UK make one.

https://benchdogs.co.uk/products/benchdogs-rail-square-mafell-bosch


Offline yetihunter

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #47 on: July 28, 2020, 05:12 AM »
As a recent purchaser to the Bosch/Mafell rail (I bought a short length Bosch rail) for my newly acquired jigsaw. .I won't be moving my tools over. I like the features of the Festool rails too much. If the selling point is that the Mafell/Bosch rails link up easier, that's solved with aftermarket accessories for the Festool rails and is a moot point. I do like the Mafell/Bosch rails lean low profile feel but that's about it.

This is how I felt when I still owned sets of both.  There were virtually no aftermarket accessories for the Mafell rails for quite some time.  TBH, though, before Seneca and TSO got the ball rolling, there weren’t any Festool guide rail accessories for an almost equal amount of of time.  We’re looking at about a 2 year gap before people started copying those products and making them for Mafell/Bosch.  I agree: the Betterley product does it’s job.   I wouldn’t kick either out of bed but I’ve grown more partial toward the Mafell rails over time.

Offline yetihunter

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #48 on: July 28, 2020, 05:16 AM »
Has anyone tried the metabo rails?



No, but I’ve tried those Metabo rail saws.  You can have them, but you’ll have to ask my neighborhood waste management truck driver where he took them to.  😇

Offline Svar

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #49 on: July 28, 2020, 12:56 PM »
There were virtually no aftermarket accessories for the Mafell rails for quite some time...
There is still virtually none and it's not going to change. Simply because there is no place to attach the accessories.

Offline yetihunter

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #50 on: July 28, 2020, 03:08 PM »
There were virtually no aftermarket accessories for the Mafell rails for quite some time...
There is still virtually none and it's not going to change. Simply because there is no place to attach the accessories.

 😁

https://fctools.co.uk/product/parallel-guide

And the aforementioned three readily available squares.  What am I missing? 

I was going to post pics of my OF1010 sliding along a Mafell rail but this website has been having hiccups with photo uploads and so you’re just going to have to take my word for it.




« Last Edit: July 28, 2020, 03:25 PM by yetihunter »

Online Cheese

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #51 on: August 06, 2020, 12:14 AM »
The more I use the Mafell rails the more I like them. Just like what was previously mentioned, the MT 55 is so easy to change blades that you don't think twice about changing a saw blade...too easy peasy. Well the Mafell rails are in the same category. Join them, disconnect them, join them again, it's all so easy with the Mafell rail connector. And the MT 55 stores the rail tool on-board so it's always at the ready.

I've been cutting/ripping a lot off birds-eye maple lately and it's just so easy to add and subtract rails and change saw blades with the Mafell offering. I'd never go back to Festool and I still own the TSC 55 and an early TS 55. You really have to experience it for yourself.  [smile]

Offline ScotF

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #52 on: August 06, 2020, 12:22 AM »
I like both systems and will use both for the foreseeable future. The Festool rails stick to the surface better and I do like the green glide strips vs the metal on metal with the Mafell. I also like the anti-splinter insert for the offcut on the Festool and think it yields slightly better cuts vs the Mafell on certain plys - but it is negligible. The power of the Mafell and ease of blade change and better DC are what I really appreciate with the MT55 - same power as my TS75 in a lighter, smaller package - which is great. Clamping close to the cut line is also key for narrow stock.

It is good to have options and choices.

Online Cheese

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #53 on: August 06, 2020, 02:00 AM »
The Festool rails stick to the surface better and I do like the green glide strips vs the metal on metal with the Mafell. I also like the anti-splinter insert for the offcut on the Festool and think it yields slightly better cuts vs the Mafell on certain plys - but it is negligible.

I'll readily give you that the Festool rails will allow both saws to move down the rails easier, significantly easier. However my splinter strips on my Festool rails have always been rather hacked up and look terrible. Consequently it's always an issue when trying to align them with pencil lines. The splinter strips on Mafell rails are always smooth and are vey easy to align on the pencil line.

I'll post something tomorrow about ripping narrow pieces on the Mafell rails.

Offline Svar

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #54 on: August 06, 2020, 02:19 AM »
However my splinter strips on my Festool rails have always been rather hacked up and look terrible. Consequently it's always an issue when trying to align them with pencil lines. The splinter strips on Mafell rails are always smooth and are vey easy to align on the pencil line.
Contrasting color sure helps, but how hacked up they are is simply a function of amount of use.

Offline thudchkr

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #55 on: August 06, 2020, 06:23 AM »
However my splinter strips on my Festool rails have always been rather hacked up and look terrible. Consequently it's always an issue when trying to align them with pencil lines. The splinter strips on Mafell rails are always smooth and are vey easy to align on the pencil line.
Contrasting color sure helps, but how hacked up they are is simply a function of amount of use.

I agree with Cheese on this. The splinter strip on the Mafell rail retains it’s edge much better than the Festool offering. I don’t trust my Festool rails to be spot on when I align my marks to the exact edge of the strip. Unless it’s a brand new strip on that specific rail, my cut is usually just beyond my marks because the edge hasn’t held up very well. This is not the case, however, with the Mafell rail. I have not changed the strip on any of my rails and they all continue to cut right at the edge of the installed strip.

I like Cheese’s “hacked up” comment. It’s how I think of my edges on “my” Festool rails.

The Mafell rails get tuned for the precision cuts nowadays.  Not so much on the Festools.
Clint

Online Cheese

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #56 on: August 06, 2020, 10:35 AM »
Yesterday I needed to cut some drawer fronts but I was having difficulty sliding the Mafell clamps into the forward hold-down slot on the Mafell rail.

Chased it down to this culprit.



When they punched the rails for whatever reason, a very small burr was left on the underside and prevented the clamps from sliding on easily.



Just use a small flat Nicholson file on the underside of the slot. It doesn't take much. Both ends of the 2 rails had this issue although the RH end was always easier to slide on than the LH end.



Online Cheese

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #57 on: August 07, 2020, 11:27 AM »
This update segues nicely with a previous post that dealt with the need/use of Starrett double squares.

So, I needed to rip 6 drawer fronts to the proper width. They came from 6 different boards that were different widths. All had previously been run through the thickness planer.

I wanted to come up with a method that would accurately cut each different width board to the proper width and I wanted it to be repeatable as the drawer fronts will be next to each other with just about 1" to spare.

I decided to register off of the rear of the Mafell rail using a pair of Starrett double squares set to the same distance.






The rear board behind the double squares is just to keep the squares in place as you move the rail in position to touch each square. Without the rear board the double squares will move because nothing restrains them, the rear board being held by your hand does the restraining and keeps the squares nicely in place.






Make sure you clamp the Mafell rail as it moves easier than the Festool rail because of its narrow anti-skid strips.
Here's the result, 5 boards exactly the same width while the 6th board is 1/2 mm narrower on one end only for about 1" in length. Don't know what happened there... [eek]  but I'll take it and make sure that drawer front is used on an end.


« Last Edit: August 07, 2020, 11:30 AM by Cheese »

Offline Blues

  • Posts: 92
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #58 on: August 07, 2020, 03:51 PM »
Recently i bought the Mafell Aerofix and am loving it.  Takes a little bit of getting used to it.  Like once you position the rail, have to start the saw so the vacuum kicks in providing the required clamping force giving it an additional second or so before you engage. But the joy of not using clamps makes the work flow go quick. Also the additional unit that's shipped let's you use it from the top allowing you to position the rail at floor level. 
What could have been better is that the bottom of the Aerofix could have been used as a reference for perfect 90°. Sadly it is not.
I was able to connect a larger rail and rip a full 4x8 sheet and the vacuum provided fantastic clamping all through the length of the sheet. It is a bit pricy. But you don't have to fiddle with clamps and all you do is position and cut. I am using my mft a lot less after i got the Aerofix.
« Last Edit: August 07, 2020, 03:55 PM by Blues »

Offline FestitaMakool

  • Posts: 845
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #59 on: August 07, 2020, 04:15 PM »
Cheese, so.. now you say that I (we) need to buy 2-two double squares.. cause they work so well in pairs  [big grin]. Pocket friendly parallel guides they are!
How do you like the Mafell clamps? I see Bessey are now offering them with their name on them, I like the features..
“The Stig” Yes, it is true, at least some part of it..
“If you have an old Land Rover and a fit wife, you’re most likely always busy”

Online Cheese

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #60 on: August 07, 2020, 10:33 PM »
Cheese, so.. now you say that I (we) need to buy 2-two double squares.. cause they work so well in pairs  [big grin]. Pocket friendly parallel guides they are!
How do you like the Mafell clamps? I see Bessey are now offering them with their name on them, I like the features..

Ya that's funny Festita...the original thread was "Why do you need a Starrett double square?" and here, less than a week later, we've since morphed into why we need 2 Starrett double squares.  [big grin]

This method is real slick and will provide uniform cut widths.

I rather liken it to the original TSO GRS-16 guide rail square who's form was reminiscent of a Starrett combination square. That works from one edge only...then later TSO came out with their GRS-16 PE which resembles a Starrett double square. That works from both edges.

The new Mafell clamps are really nice...better than I thought they'd be. I originally contacted Mafell and asked to purchase the original metal screw version because they were metal and just seemed to be more robust than the newer glass reinforced nylon clamps. The metal screw clamps were basically obsoleted and I now know the reason why. These are a lot nicer.

The only thing to note is that if you place the Mafell rail on the pencil line and then tighten the new clamps, they will move off the pencil line by about .25-.50 mm.

Thinking about it, maybe that's the reason Mafell ditched the screw clamp version. I would expect the screw clamp version to move more than the latest iteration because you're tightening the screw and the screw pad is moving around on the surface of the wood. Any movement of the pad would produce a movement of the rail.

The new clamps tighten by moving vertically so to minimize any rail movement.



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Online Cheese

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #61 on: August 07, 2020, 10:48 PM »
Recently i bought the Mafell Aerofix and am loving it.  Takes a little bit of getting used to it.  Like once you position the rail, have to start the saw so the vacuum kicks in providing the required clamping force giving it an additional second or so before you engage. But the joy of not using clamps makes the work flow go quick. Also the additional unit that's shipped let's you use it from the top allowing you to position the rail at floor level. 

So, I'm curious if once the Mafell rail is placed on the pencil line if the rail moves with the Aerofix?  I suspect not but I am curious.

The Mafell clamps will move the rail a smidgen.

Offline ScotF

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #62 on: August 08, 2020, 01:11 AM »
I have thought about the Mafell quick clamps. I have the Bosch version and they work well. The Mafell are spendy, but do more..

Online Cheese

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail for Narrow Stock
« Reply #63 on: August 08, 2020, 10:24 AM »
Here's something that's difficult to do using a Festool guide rail because the clamp slot is 5" away from the splinter strip. On the Mafell guide rail that clamp slot to splinter strip distance is less than 1".

I was cutting up some wide birds eye maple boards into strips 1 1/2" wide and in this case I was left with a piece that was 1 19/32" wide. So I needed to clean up the edge and remove 3/32". Pretty simple to do with the Mafell rail. [big grin]








Offline Michael Kellough

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #64 on: August 08, 2020, 10:45 AM »
@Cheese your drawer fronts are only 1-1/2” tall? Are you making flat files?

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 8168
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #65 on: August 08, 2020, 10:52 AM »
@Cheese your drawer fronts are only 1-1/2” tall? Are you making flat files?

LOL...ya with the 1/4" bottom ply and its dado there isn't a lot of space available... [big grin]

Offline FestitaMakool

  • Posts: 845
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #66 on: August 08, 2020, 08:26 PM »
@Cheese your drawer fronts are only 1-1/2” tall? Are you making flat files?

LOL...ya with the 1/4" bottom ply and its dado there isn't a lot of space available... [big grin]

For art, large photo prints and sketches of the coming projects I presume  [wink]

Thanks for the insight of the clamps, but I suppose if not careful the FT style will also shift the rail sideways. The potential shift of the Mafell I can see. You’ll need to have the clamp set to 90° to the rail below before engaging pressure due to the high rise of the lower foot? I did also notice that they are prone to slightly lift the center of the rail, since they attach at the edge of the workpiece.
“The Stig” Yes, it is true, at least some part of it..
“If you have an old Land Rover and a fit wife, you’re most likely always busy”

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 8168
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #67 on: August 09, 2020, 12:28 AM »
For art, large photo prints and sketches of the coming projects I presume  [wink]

Thanks for the insight of the clamps, but I suppose if not careful the FT style will also shift the rail sideways. The potential shift of the Mafell I can see. You’ll need to have the clamp set to 90° to the rail below before engaging pressure due to the high rise of the lower foot? I did also notice that they are prone to slightly lift the center of the rail, since they attach at the edge of the workpiece.

Well @FestitaMakool you and @Michael Kellough are very good at hedging your bets...a wink and a nod, quite a pair to draw to.  [big grin] [big grin]

I knew Michael was going to be all over me on this posting but what the hey...I'll give him some more fodder tomorrow.  [poke]

When it comes to the rail shifting, you don't know what you don't know...and I'm still trying to understand the implications. Some of the implications are indeed deep in the weeds if you're used to machining metal versus wood. Wood is so much more forgiving.  [smile]

Because the Festool splinter strips become so "beavered up" through use, it's difficult or impossible to reliably place them on a pencil line and say they are "exactly" on the line. My experience has been that they are usually close, that being within 1/64" to 1/32".

The Mafell splinter strip on the other hand, because of the material it's made from, is extremely smooth and thus it's really simple to place it on the pencil line.

If accuracy in aligning a pencil line with a splinter strip is your mission in life  [smile]  then by all means the Mafell splinter strips complete that task in spades. It's dead nuts...

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 5023
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #68 on: August 09, 2020, 12:43 AM »
Looking forward to Sunday’s posts, reply #65 was less than satisfactory  [poke]

The congruence of the splinter guard to the kerf was what drew me to Festool in the first place. But we all know that relationship degrades, sometime rapidly. I learned to move the splinter guard out with the aid of a heat gun but I haven’t done that in more than a year to any of my rails.

Sometimes I stick a Post-It note to the bottom of the rail to get a fresh indication of where the kerf is but often I just use a steel rule butted against the aluminum rail to register the appropriate increment to the mark. A metric rule usually works best.

Online Cheese

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Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #69 on: September 26, 2020, 12:10 PM »
Looking forward to Sunday’s posts, reply #65 was less than satisfactory  [poke]

The congruence of the splinter guard to the kerf was what drew me to Festool in the first place. But we all know that relationship degrades, sometime rapidly. I learned to move the splinter guard out with the aid of a heat gun but I haven’t done that in more than a year to any of my rails.

Sometimes I stick a Post-It note to the bottom of the rail to get a fresh indication of where the kerf is but often I just use a steel rule butted against the aluminum rail to register the appropriate increment to the mark. A metric rule usually works best.

Well @Michael Kellough  this doesn't answer your first issue but it does address the 2nd & 3rd issue...in a round-about fashion.  [big grin]

Recently, I've been using both the Festool rails & the Mafell rails with the MT 55. When using the Festool rail it's been very difficult to decide which part of the splinter strip I should align with the pencil mark because it's so chewed up. I should note that I changed the splinter strips on all the Festool rails last fall, so this shows the amount of damage over 1 year with only intermittent use.




When I place a straight edge along the strip this is what it looks like. Dimensionally that's about a 1/32" gap.




Here's what the Mafell looks like.




Zooming out a bit this is the view. Note that there is a gap of various widths starting at the 2 3/4" mark and extending to the 10 13/16" mark. This makes aligning the splinter strip with a pencil mark difficult. The semi-solution would be to mark the splinter strip in 2 places and then use those marks to align to the pencil line.




In comparison here's the Mafell rail.




This issue started after I ripped several long pieces of maple to the same width using both brands of rails and noticed a difference in width between the pieces. The Mafell rails produced very uniform widths while the Festool rails produced scattered results. Some of the pieces from the Festool rails even had a different width on each end of the board. [mad]

I don't think the source of the problem is caused by the saws (MT 55, TSC 55 & HKC 55), by the manufacturer of the rails or by the fit of the saws on the rails. I think it's the material that Festool chose to use as a splinter strip is the issue. I believe it's HDPE and it tends to be on the brittle side.

It would be interesting to attach a material similar to what Mafell uses, to the Festool rail, cut the splinter strip and then compare. 
« Last Edit: September 28, 2020, 09:58 AM by Cheese »

Offline heidtwd

  • Posts: 14
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #70 on: September 26, 2020, 12:36 PM »
@Cheese

Now that you have the rail, you should get the KSS40 to go with it.  It’s my most used saw.

+ 1

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 5023
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #71 on: September 26, 2020, 01:26 PM »
@Cheese said, “ I don't think the source of the problem is caused by the saws (MT 55, TSC 55 & HKC 55), by the manufacturer of the rails or by the fit of the saws on the rails. I think it's the material that Festool chose to use as a splinter strip is the issue. I believe it's HDPE and it tends to be on the brittle side.

It would be interesting to attach a similar material, similar to what Mafell uses, to the Festool rail, cut the splinter strip and then compare.”

I’m still using the old black neoprene strips (so I can’t compare) and they get torn up plenty.

My guess is it’s the difference in the saws/blades. Difficult to say for sure since you can’t run the Festool saws on the Mafell rails but since there is so little erosion on the Mafell strip it’s unlikely that the Mafell saw contributed to the erosion of the Festool splinter guard.

The splinter guard only gets chewed up when the blade wanders out of it’s proper path so there will be commensurate damage to the wood. I haven’t used my cordless MT55 all that much but so far so good as far as the cut surface goes, and no noticeable wear of the (Bosch) splinter guard.

Offline Svar

  • Posts: 2340
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #72 on: September 26, 2020, 01:35 PM »
If accuracy in aligning a pencil line with a splinter strip is your mission in life  [smile]  then by all means the Mafell splinter strips complete that task in spades. It's dead nuts...
Unless you bevel it. Then it's 2 mm off. To clarify, this is caused by the saw, not the strips.

I don't know what you do with your FT splinter strips, but I used my cutting hardwood, ply, aluminum, plastics, solid surfaces with different blades. After years of use (hobby) I can still cut on a pencil mark within 0.25 mm. Sure, there are few bumps in it but most is perfectly fine for accurate alignment. The biggest problem was delamination from excessive heat after cutting thick aluminum.

I'm not disputing that Mafell strips are better, just that I don't see a problem with FT.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2020, 03:58 PM by Svar »

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 5023
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #73 on: September 26, 2020, 01:36 PM »
@Cheese

Now that you have the rail, you should get the KSS40 to go with it.  It’s my most used saw.

+ 1

I get a little disappointed when I can’t make the cut with the KSS40.

One thing I like that I haven’t seen mentioned is that you can stand the whole thing up on it’s butt.



I just wish it was easier to set the bevel precisely.

Offline FestitaMakool

  • Posts: 845
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #74 on: September 27, 2020, 07:18 PM »
The material in the Mafell splinter guard seems to be better suited.

One thing strikes me; do you cut your fresh/new splinter guards fully plunged?
- I know I did, per FT instructions.. but it think it’s wrong: I’ll cut as if I was cutting thin material next time, with the blade protruding maximum 1-2 mm’s below. It seems that the splinter guard easily gets tear out, and it might help cutting it plunged just below the thickness of the splinter guard.
“The Stig” Yes, it is true, at least some part of it..
“If you have an old Land Rover and a fit wife, you’re most likely always busy”

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 5023
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #75 on: September 27, 2020, 07:39 PM »
I think the best results are as FestitaMakool said, but also have the blade actually cut wood. Still, that condition is short lived.

Offline mkasdin

  • Posts: 474
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #76 on: September 28, 2020, 02:18 AM »
Looking forward to Sunday’s posts, reply #65 was less than satisfactory  [poke]

The congruence of the splinter guard to the kerf was what drew me to Festool in the first place. But we all know that relationship degrades, sometime rapidly. I learned to move the splinter guard out with the aid of a heat gun but I haven’t done that in more than a year to any of my rails.I don’t have a lot of faith in the splinter guard. I see it as more of a consumable. Last summer I worked on a house with no AC the glue doesn’t hold after a time from high heats. The only fix is to replace the strip.

Sometimes I stick a Post-It note to the bottom of the rail to get a fresh indication of where the kerf is but often I just use a steel rule butted against the aluminum rail to register the appropriate increment to the mark. A metric rule usually works best.

Well @Michael Kellough  this doesn't answer your first issue but it does address the 2nd & 3rd issue...in a round-about fashion.  [big grin]

Recently, I've been using both the Festool rails & the Mafell rails with the MT 55. When using the Festool rail it's been very difficult to decide which part of the splinter strip I should align with the pencil mark because it's so chewed up. I should note that I changed the splinter strips on all the Festool rails last fall, so this shows the amount of damage over 1 year with only intermittent use.

(Attachment Link)


When I place a straight edge along the strip this is what it looks like. Dimensionally that's about a 1/32" gap.

(Attachment Link)


Here's what the Mafell looks like.

(Attachment Link)


Zooming out a bit this is the view. Note that there is a gap of various widths starting at the 2 3/4" mark and extending to the 10 13/16" mark. This makes aligning the splinter strip with a pencil mark difficult. The semi-solution would be to mark the splinter strip in 2 places and then use those marks to align to the pencil line.

(Attachment Link)


In comparison here's the Mafell rail.

(Attachment Link)


This issue started after I ripped several long pieces of maple to the same width using both brands of rails and noticed a difference in width between the pieces. The Mafell rails produced very uniform widths while the Festool rails produced scattered results. Some of the pieces from the Festool rails even had a different width on each end of the board. [mad]

I don't think the source of the problem is caused by the saws (MT 55, TSC 55 & HKC 55), by the manufacturer of the rails or by the fit of the saws on the rails. I think it's the material that Festool chose to use as a splinter strip is the issue. I believe it's HDPE and it tends to be on the brittle side.

It would be interesting to attach a similar material, similar to what Mafell uses, to the Festool rail, cut the splinter strip and then compare.

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 8168
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #77 on: September 28, 2020, 10:45 AM »
The material in the Mafell splinter guard seems to be better suited.

One thing strikes me; do you cut your fresh/new splinter guards fully plunged?
- I know I did, per FT instructions.. but it think it’s wrong: I’ll cut as if I was cutting thin material next time, with the blade protruding maximum 1-2 mm’s below. It seems that the splinter guard easily gets tear out, and it might help cutting it plunged just below the thickness of the splinter guard.

For both Festool & Mafell rails, I placed the rail on a sheet of foam and then cut the splinter strip so that the kerf in the foam was maybe 3-4 mm deep.

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 8168
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #78 on: October 14, 2020, 11:15 AM »
This is just a heads-up for those of you that are using a Mafell track saw and rail. Be careful when you use the clamp slot that is closest to the splinter strip (Mafell rails have 2 clamp slots in them) if you're beveling at the same time.

This happened as I was cutting finished ply at a 15º bevel angle.  [eek]




Offline FestitaMakool

  • Posts: 845
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #79 on: October 14, 2020, 06:54 PM »
It might just be me, but you need new twist knob [scared]
“The Stig” Yes, it is true, at least some part of it..
“If you have an old Land Rover and a fit wife, you’re most likely always busy”

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 8168
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #80 on: October 15, 2020, 11:08 AM »
It might just be me, but you need new twist knob [scared]

Ya, I guess a new knob is in my future.  [big grin]

The funny thing is that I made several 15º bevel cuts and had just readjusted the saw for some additional 45º bevel cuts, I placed the saw on the track, pulled the trigger, plunged the saw and for some reason I decided to check the underside for clearance. [eek]

If I had moved that saw just an additional 3"-4" that clamp would have been cut in half, to say nothing of the additional noise and confusion that cut would have created.

 

Offline HowardH

  • Posts: 1313
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #81 on: December 27, 2020, 10:25 PM »
That is a great bracket Rob! Perfect for people who want to build their own MFT style table.

Can it be fitted to a Festool MFT for those who want to upgrade?

Yes. It's a direct retrofit for the MFT.

Just saw this.  What a great system!  I suppose one can continue to use the Festool fence or use Parf Dogs, etc.  Is that correct?
« Last Edit: December 27, 2020, 10:31 PM by HowardH »
Howard H
The Dallas Texas Festool Fanatic!

Mark Twain:  "I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a letter approving of it." "If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything."

mft1080, P1cc, MFT/3, T15, TID-18, RO150FEQ, MT55cc, RTS400, CT22, CT36E, 800, 1080, 1400, 1900 rails, OF 2200, OF1400, CSX, C18, VacSys, Vecturo, Qwas dogs, Parf Dogs, Zobo's, Syslite Uni, CMS GE. Mafell DDF40, Sawstop contractor, PM 1500, Shaper Origin.

Offline periquito

  • Posts: 8
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #82 on: January 21, 2021, 06:49 PM »
I have both Mafell and Festool guide systems.

I own a Mafell mt 55 cc incision saw

In my opinion and after having tested it with this incision saw, without a doubt, with the mafell guides a cut with greater precision is achieved, in the mafell guide, after adjusting with the wheels there is a high force for the oscillating saw, in The festool rail no matter how much the head saw is tightened, this could cause some slight deviation in the cut in demanding cuts of thick and hard materials.

For cutting boards it may not have any influence but if you start to demand the saw with cuts in hard and difficult wood there is no doubt that the cutting precision on the mafell rail will be superior.

We must also say in favor of festool of its compatibility and the number of accessories.

And in fact the anti-splinter rubber band of my festool guides is damaged and bitten in some parts of the guide, an unequivocal sign that sometimes the cut deviated slightly, none of that happens in the anti-splinter rubber band of the mafell guide.

The only clear advantage that I recognize to the Festool rail is its better adherence to the piece if clamps are not used.

It is not true that it goes smoother in Festool than in Mafell (With the MT55 saw) and as long as the wheels are adjusted to avoid oscillation behind, in front of the saw.

The winner is clear, the Mafell guides are superior in most variables, although the Mafell saws have prices that are sometimes double that of the Festool and there are far fewer accessories.

Undoubtedly, Mafell tools are more oriented to professional use and wood handling. Festool in general seems to be more concerned with reducing costs and offering versatile tools, it has good products and good value for money but it does not reach the refinement of Mafell tools.



« Last Edit: January 21, 2021, 07:16 PM by periquito »

Offline periquito

  • Posts: 8
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #83 on: January 21, 2021, 07:31 PM »
Looking forward to Sunday’s posts, reply #65 was less than satisfactory  [poke]

The congruence of the splinter guard to the kerf was what drew me to Festool in the first place. But we all know that relationship degrades, sometime rapidly. I learned to move the splinter guard out with the aid of a heat gun but I haven’t done that in more than a year to any of my rails.

Sometimes I stick a Post-It note to the bottom of the rail to get a fresh indication of where the kerf is but often I just use a steel rule butted against the aluminum rail to register the appropriate increment to the mark. A metric rule usually works best.

Well @Michael Kellough  this doesn't answer your first issue but it does address the 2nd & 3rd issue...in a round-about fashion.  [big grin]

Recently, I've been using both the Festool rails & the Mafell rails with the MT 55. When using the Festool rail it's been very difficult to decide which part of the splinter strip I should align with the pencil mark because it's so chewed up. I should note that I changed the splinter strips on all the Festool rails last fall, so this shows the amount of damage over 1 year with only intermittent use.

(Attachment Link)


When I place a straight edge along the strip this is what it looks like. Dimensionally that's about a 1/32" gap.

(Attachment Link)


Here's what the Mafell looks like.

(Attachment Link)


Zooming out a bit this is the view. Note that there is a gap of various widths starting at the 2 3/4" mark and extending to the 10 13/16" mark. This makes aligning the splinter strip with a pencil mark difficult. The semi-solution would be to mark the splinter strip in 2 places and then use those marks to align to the pencil line.

(Attachment Link)


In comparison here's the Mafell rail.

(Attachment Link)


This issue started after I ripped several long pieces of maple to the same width using both brands of rails and noticed a difference in width between the pieces. The Mafell rails produced very uniform widths while the Festool rails produced scattered results. Some of the pieces from the Festool rails even had a different width on each end of the board. [mad]

I don't think the source of the problem is caused by the saws (MT 55, TSC 55 & HKC 55), by the manufacturer of the rails or by the fit of the saws on the rails. I think it's the material that Festool chose to use as a splinter strip is the issue. I believe it's HDPE and it tends to be on the brittle side.

It would be interesting to attach a material similar to what Mafell uses, to the Festool rail, cut the splinter strip and then compare.

The lack of precision that you mentioned in some cuts with the festool guides is not due to the anti-chipping strip but is due to the anchoring of the saw on the rail, in the mafell guides it fits more precisely and does not oscillate easily even when high forces are applied on the festool rails there is oscillation

Offline Svar

  • Posts: 2340
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #84 on: January 21, 2021, 08:05 PM »
The lack of precision that you mentioned in some cuts with the festool guides is not due to the anti-chipping strip but is due to the anchoring of the saw on the rail, in the mafell guides it fits more precisely and does not oscillate easily even when high forces are applied on the festool rails there is oscillation
I disagree. Both saws can be adjusted on their respective rails with zero side to side movement. FYI, I have both saws.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2021, 08:07 PM by Svar »

Offline periquito

  • Posts: 8
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #85 on: January 22, 2021, 04:09 AM »
The lack of precision that you mentioned in some cuts with the festool guides is not due to the anti-chipping strip but is due to the anchoring of the saw on the rail, in the mafell guides it fits more precisely and does not oscillate easily even when high forces are applied on the festool rails there is oscillation
I disagree. Both saws can be adjusted on their respective rails with zero side to side movement. FYI, I have both saws.

Not true, with the Mafell MT 55 saw.

No matter how much the adjustment wheels are tightened, the saw nods if force is applied, the oscillation is clearly visible visually, not even by tightening the maximum that it is very hard and is impossible to use like that. I have checked it and there is no doubt.

And if you have this saw, check to intentionally move the saw and you will see that the saw oscillates and the same does not happen when you put the saw on the mafell rail, there is no oscillation that can be seen visually.

Festool rails do not allow very high precision. Its should not be used for cuts that require high precision or for demanding cuts in wood
« Last Edit: January 22, 2021, 06:12 AM by periquito »

Offline mino

  • Posts: 222
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #86 on: January 22, 2021, 08:28 AM »
Festool rails do not allow very high precision. Its should not be used for cuts that require high precision or for demanding cuts in wood
This is some very strong statement here.

IF what you describe is true, then it would be a limitation of the MT55 with Festool rails aka the MT55 not really being optimized for Festool-style rails.

But that would not be a problem of the rails in any way.
AGC 18(@AGC 125 flange), BHC 18, C 12, CTM 36, DRC 18/4, PSC 420, RS 200, TSC 55
Narex: EDH 82, EFH 36(fixed@LR32), EVP 13 H-2CA
My Precious FS/2: 376, 376, 376 holy, 632, 1016 holy, 2520

Offline Svar

  • Posts: 2340
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #87 on: January 22, 2021, 10:39 AM »
Festool rails do not allow very high precision. Its should not be used for cuts that require high precision or for demanding cuts in wood
I've used FT saws for many years on everything from softwood to aluminum and from large sheets to tiny parts. They have proven to be extremely precise, able to consistently shave off 0.1 mm if needed. I'm sure tens of thousands of woodworkers worldwide would agree.

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 5023
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #88 on: January 22, 2021, 12:39 PM »
I agree that how the saws engage the guide slot is not substantially different in terms of yaw stability.

Maybe periquito used a TS saw with an warped base that wobbled?

There is a little more roll movement possible with the TS saw.

Offline periquito

  • Posts: 8
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #89 on: January 22, 2021, 02:32 PM »
I have the festool DSC-AG 125 that comes ready to use with the festool guides so tomorrow I will check if it fits accurately without any oscillation.

However, in this forum there are many festool users and many complain about bites in the festool anti-splinter piece, the same thing has happened to me with the Mafell MT 55, for me it is proof that sometimes the cut can be twist slightly and that is what produces those irregularities.

I maintain that the Mafell guide has a superior precision and for what I have read and in other posts in this same thread, the majority in this forum supports it, a forum in which it is assumed that there are many more users of Festool tools than of Mafell and yet there is no problem in recognizing superiority and that happens because this superiority is unquestionable.

And what is more, if demanding cuts were made, for example in tropical, hard wood and large widths. This difference in precision would be much more evident because entering the saw in hard material creates greater torsional forces and this is where festool guides have their vulnerable point.

I have both guide systems and say that the Mafell / Bosch guides are far superior to the Festool.

I have more Festool guides than Mafell so I'm not particularly happy to have found this little problem with the Festool guides.

However, I do not know if I explain it well, I am talking about putting a Mafell MT55 saw, the best plunge saw in the world, on a Festool rail, adjust the slide in such a way that it is very rigid and grab the saw from the front and the back and try Turning it with force, the saw oscillates slightly visibly during force so adjustment without movement is impossible. On the Mafell rail, an adjustment is possible without visually appreciating an oscillatory movement.

I will limit myself to saying that with this configuration MT 55 and rail festool it is impossible to achieve a very high precision and it is because the saw does not fit so precisely.

I understand that as a consequence of the design of the festool channel, the tools have a contact surface much greater than that of Mafell, the friction is higher, perhaps the developers of Festool preferred to sacrifice minimally the precision to achieve a better sliding for their rail, this is something that anyone notices from the first moment, extreme precision does not have to be a priority for the majority, it is not something that one can be sure of from the first minute, it requires demanding the machine and the guides.

As this post tries to compare both systems, in the comparison, for design reasons it is very difficult that with this design the festool guides have as precise a guide as the Mafell / Bosch guides

As I said I will check it with a specific tool for festool rails and here I will say it

But as I said in another post, festool guides have the advantage of better grip
« Last Edit: January 22, 2021, 04:21 PM by periquito »

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 5023
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #90 on: January 22, 2021, 03:07 PM »
“ However, I do not know if I explain it well, I am talking about putting a Mafell MT55 saw, the best plunge saw in the world, on a Festool rail, adjust the slide in such a way that it is very rigid and grab the saw from the front and the back and try Turning it with force, the saw oscillates slightly visibly during force so adjustment without movement is impossible. On the Mafell rail, an adjustment is possible without visually appreciating an oscillatory movement.”

I’m not sure what you mother tongue is but you express yourself in English infinitely better than I could in any other language.

So, it seems you are talking about how the Mafell saw performs on the Festool rail. You noticed that it exhibits more yaw than it does on it’s native rail.

I used my cordless MT55 on Festool rail a few times before I bought some Bosch guide rails but the cuts weren’t very demanding and I didn’t notice any poor performance. Once I had a proper Mafell style rail l never used the MT55 on a Festool rail again so haven’t made a comparison.

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Offline periquito

  • Posts: 8
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #91 on: January 22, 2021, 04:42 PM »
I am from Spain, My native language is Spanish.

At first I didn't notice any differences either, it was when I made a lot of cuts and realized the bites in the anti-splinter band. I decided to evaluate both systems more closely and that's when I discovered that there is no way to adjust the Festool rail on the MT55 so there is no back / forth oscillation.

I am not saying that with the festool rails the cut does not come out straight, what I am saying is that sometimes it can be twisted a little in certain circumstances and this happens because there is too much free space between the channel and the tool, the wheels give adjustment margin but not even As long as this fit is perfect, the saw always moves a little when force is applied and this limitation can sometimes reduce accuracy a bit.

Of course, these problems will accentuate the more difficult and demanding the cut to be made.

Offline periquito

  • Posts: 8
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #92 on: January 22, 2021, 06:54 PM »

This issue started after I ripped several long pieces of maple to the same width using both brands of rails and noticed a difference in width between the pieces. The Mafell rails produced very uniform widths while the Festool rails produced scattered results. Some of the pieces from the Festool rails even had a different width on each end of the board. [mad]

I don't think the source of the problem is caused by the saws (MT 55, TSC 55 & HKC 55), by the manufacturer of the rails or by the fit of the saws on the rails. I think it's the material that Festool chose to use as a splinter strip is the issue. I believe it's HDPE and it tends to be on the brittle side.

It would be interesting to attach a material similar to what Mafell uses, to the Festool rail, cut the splinter strip and then compare.

This is precisely what I have commented that happens in my previous posts, but it is not how you suggest a problem with the splinter protection but rather the problem is that the saw does not fit with precision and rigidity in the channel, no matter how much the wheels are tightened adjustment, it is not possible to achieve a rigidity comparable to that obtained in the Mafell / Bosch rail.

And this taking into account that to reduce the oscillation in the festool guide you have to put it so hard that you have to have good arms to move the saw along the rail and it does not even equal the rigidity that you can get in the Mafell / Bosch guide on top of having a normal and fully functional glide.

I have the same configuration as you and I have the same symptoms. What already depends on each one the importance that you give to precision or how meticulous you are with these parameters, also, the materials you cut and the work you do but without a doubt the Mafell guide seems an improved design and is more suitable for professional use, where they don't have time for adjustments and need to work quickly and accurately.

I conclude that the Mafell / Bosch guide system is an evolution, it is more professional, more precise.

The Festool system is very widespread, with many accessories, it is feasible to make cuts without holding the pieces (With caution)

I do not agree with many comments about the best sliding of the Festool guides (with the MT 55) It glides very well, yes but only if the adjusting wheels remain loose, the saw can be used like this but it takes very little force The saw oscillates so the cut can be deflected relatively easily. How the saw is gripped will also have an influence.

On the other hand, with Mafell / Bosch guides, the jaws are very suitable and necessary, but if they are not used, you have to be very careful with the cut, the guide can be easily deviated

Offline mino

  • Posts: 222
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #93 on: January 23, 2021, 06:04 AM »
This is precisely what I have commented that happens in my previous posts, but it is not how you suggest a problem with the splinter protection but rather the problem is that the saw does not fit with precision and rigidity in the channel, no matter how much the wheels are tightened adjustment, it is not possible to achieve a rigidity comparable to that obtained in the Mafell / Bosch rail.
...
Sorry, but you really should stop spreading FUD here.

It is the job of the saw to "not wobble on a rail".
It is the job of the rail to be straight on its reference surface - nothing more, nothing less.

What makes the Festool system work well, and not wobble at all, is the nylon skids which register the saw in the rail. Use a cheapo tracksaw with friction cams (like a Lidl or even the Makita) and your accuracy will be limited. Limited by the inadequate saw interface.

Your problem with a wobble is an UNSUPPORTED COMBINATION of a Maffel saw with a Festool rail.

Any issue with such a combination has absolutely nothing to do with Festool and everything to do with Maffel who (possibly) skimped on their Festool rail compatibility or you have a bad saw or it has bad cams etc.

You should warranty your saw with Maffel if you believe the saw is not fulfilling their claim in some way.


The rest of this topic is about people using their splinter guard as a reference and expecting spot-on accuracy which was never its (primary) purpose. The splinter guard job is to ensure clean cuts At this a hard-material is better as it put more point-pressure on the material being cut. That it can be used as a "quick & dirty" reference point which is often "good enough" is just a secondary benefit. That is a completely different topic from your saw not fitting well on a Festool rail.
AGC 18(@AGC 125 flange), BHC 18, C 12, CTM 36, DRC 18/4, PSC 420, RS 200, TSC 55
Narex: EDH 82, EFH 36(fixed@LR32), EVP 13 H-2CA
My Precious FS/2: 376, 376, 376 holy, 632, 1016 holy, 2520

Offline periquito

  • Posts: 8
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #94 on: January 24, 2021, 04:39 PM »
As promised, I have tested the Festool rails with a Festool machine, the AG 125 De

Machine made in the Czech Republic

I have this machine since this past summer, it seems manufactured in July 2020, I have used it a couple of times but never on the Festool guidelines.

When testing the machine on the Festool guides I discovered that the rear plastic piece (in this case it is not a wheel but a piece of plastic and a screw) The screw has passed and it does not tighten the plastic piece against the guide. what the fastening is deficient.

A serious failure in quality control, I think it can be solved by changing the screw.

I'm sorry if someone has been offended or thinks their interests are affected but I have spent a lot more money on Festool tools than on tools from other brands and I can't help but feel disappointed, first of all with the Festool guides, good looking, many interesting accessories but the adjustment with the machines is not very good, it is not rigid and if you are not careful the cut can deviate

I am not saying that you cannot make straight cuts, what I am saying is that you cannot trust everything to the guide, it does not fit with enough rigidity to move the saw forward and not worry about applying a certain force on the machine to prevent it from the saw oscillates.

Because if someone buys these guides for approximately € 100, it is because they trust a perfect guide, since a straight cut can also be made by supporting the tool on an aluminum or wood guide for a much lower cost.

I have both systems and I am in a position to ensure that with the Mafell guides the oscillation is minimal, I have recorded a video with the saw on and using a lot of force, the oscillation is minimal and the applied force is great, so much that it displaces the guide itself. the surface, the rigidity is superior and therefore its precision is also.
 I also understand that in this forum there are many users of Festool tools and rails and I am sure that there will be many happy users but I am not because I invested a lot of money in this system and after evaluating it with the competition I feel the disappointment of those who made a decision wrong.

The videos where the problem is appreciated:

https://dai.ly/x7yw0q8

https://dai.ly/x7yw0ue


The channel surface on Mafell / Bosch guides is much smaller so they can afford to make a much tighter hole without increased friction that makes the tool immovable.

Therefore, the problem with Festool guides is with the design of their channel and it could only be solved (without changing the shape of the guide) with bearings or some other complicated fitting system at the base of the tool, something that would make the product and it seems that Festool is rather looking at how to cut costs and not spend money on excellence that would inevitably drive up the price of its tools.

What if I ask please is that you do not offend me with insinuations, in this post it is about comparing both systems, there is no possible comparison, Mafell / Bosch guide systems are clearly superior and starting with the precision of guidance and rigidity, something fundamental, first of all.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2021, 05:28 PM by periquito »

Offline mkasdin

  • Posts: 474
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #95 on: January 24, 2021, 05:08 PM »
There are a lot of happy Festool users that own various tools... I can’t comment on the accuracy of the ag(c) 125 grinder on the FT rail, I’ve never seen the tool. As far as head to head which is better Bosch vs Festool rail. Can’t comment there. Never seen the Bosch rail. I have heard that the Bosch (mafell) makes a nice rail: aero fix, double clamps underside, better alignment with random tracks. Part of the appeal of the Festool is the use of an mft and the rail clamping in singularly into a 20mm bench hole. Most of the time I just drop the track on the stock and go. At the end of the day can I make a straight cut on the Festool system. As far as running a calibrated cut with a grinder I’ve only had one situation, but overall I’m pretty good freehand.

So I guess we can nitpick this or that with Festool. Like you can with Tesla - I don’t own one and never would? But out of the vast assortment of tools FT makes it’s a winner. Mafell does make some very ,very good tools. The two companies have different focuses and market segments.

You’re certainly entitled to your own professional opinion and your experiences obviously differs from mine. I think everyone is fairly objective on FOG so. Yah, maybe that attachment (point) falls short on the ag 125  🤷‍♂️

I agree in part about the Festool saw and the rail, it does take a bit of finesse and ability to get the desired results, but it is achievable.  You need to tighten down the cams for the track and back them off ever so slightly.  I do find depending on how you hold, apply pressure and move the saw linearly during the cut you can introduce some variance. It takes a steady hand, sharp blade and patience to let the saw cut the material. It’s not a worm drive Skillsaw Mag77 where you can shove the blade in Willy Nilly, drive into a DF stud or slap a demo blade on and reduce the pile into firewood.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2021, 05:19 PM by mkasdin »

Offline mino

  • Posts: 222
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #96 on: January 25, 2021, 11:32 AM »
As promised, I have tested the Festool rails with a Festool machine, the AG 125 De

Machine made in the Czech Republic
...
Yeah, and you will hate me for this, but I have to say - specifically - the AGC attachment is likely the worst choice you could make to a comparison. It is a "rough building work tool" all the way in and out.

Lets get back on the track saws, which are precise tools. I do not have much time but will try to make a couple photos to show how the cams and the guide works on the TS/TSC line. I am not aware of a good video addressing the precision aspects of the design (both on rail and saw side). Hopefully it will be more clear why so many people are so adamant "this cannot be an (undamaged) rail issue".


Off-topic ref. the DCC AG sled as I have all the 3 AGC attachments and use it with the AGC 18 (with a shim).

Compared to AGC 125 (I had the Protool), the cordless one is less demanding vibration-wise as is heavier and has lower rpm.

The DCC rail-guide is excellent - compared to a freehand grinder. The dust extraction is a game changer - the primary reason for getting, at least for me.

But it is  a "1 mm here and there is fine" tool. That is not really an issue as better accuracy is actually impossible with a grinder due to the vibrations. The compatibility of the sled with the FS/2 rail system always seemed to me an afterthought. The DCC sled has its own wheels and does not really need a rail to work, the loss of already-low depth of cut to a ludicrous 20mm on rail is another reason. Additionally, you really want a dedicated "rough work" rail for using the DSC as it can damage a "fine work" enough to make it a problem for precise wood work.

The DCC sled could have been made more precise, but Festool chose not to bother apparently. Probably thinking it is "good enough" for the use case. One problem I am sure they faced is the vibrations of a grinder in operation. A cast slide would not work - it would be too fragile for the abuse these thinga must be able to absorb. A machined metal one or compound one would cost an arm, a leg and the second born's kidney..

In any case, the DCC is nowhere close to even the cheapest circular saw "slide" accuracy, not to mention an actual tracksaw. It is more accurate than free hand, but that is about it.

The DCC is not suitable for precise cuts - this is by design. The metal base of the slide is simply not made to the tolerances needed for such and it cannot be made such as long as it is a banded steel plate.

I do think it is "good enough" for its purpose though, so the only complain from me would be it could be a bit cheaper. As usual for a Festool thingie. :)


Now, how this may relate.

I would advise you check your rails for any damage of the reference surface - it is the first vertical surface closest to the cut edge. It must be exactly perpendicular to the rail flat part, be perfectly smooth and must have no marks you can see.

If you used it with DCC a lot, or for some heavy/rough work, it is possible your rail is damaged/used up and this is affecting the Maffel cams preventing them to engage properly - the cams can then be "jumping" out of the rail guide.

I personally use cheapo "BigShop" 700mm rails with the DCC as do not want to risk damage to my woodworking ones.

EDIT:
Replaced DSC (the name for the grinder + DCC set) with "DCC" to avoid confusion as the DCC can be used with other grinders in practice.
« Last Edit: February 01, 2021, 08:28 AM by mino »
AGC 18(@AGC 125 flange), BHC 18, C 12, CTM 36, DRC 18/4, PSC 420, RS 200, TSC 55
Narex: EDH 82, EFH 36(fixed@LR32), EVP 13 H-2CA
My Precious FS/2: 376, 376, 376 holy, 632, 1016 holy, 2520

Offline periquito

  • Posts: 8
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #97 on: January 31, 2021, 06:11 AM »
I agree with you, the Festool DSC-AG 125 is a fudge.

It is very simple, for its quality the price is exorbitant, its price is around € 400 and manufactured in the Czech Republic, a country with a salary 3.5 times less than Germany ... Someone is making a lot of money.

Now the Mafell MT 55 is known for being the best plunge saw in the world, it fits better than the AG125 on Festool rails.

I think I said it clearly, the problem is in the shape of the channel where the tool fits, it is too large, too much surface, more precision is more friction. The system cannot be easily changed to ensure compatibility with your tools.

Mafell / Bosch opted for a smaller guide channel with less surface area, more precision can be achieved without increasing friction to intolerable limits.

Many things have been discussed in this thread about the advantages of one system or the other. I have both systems and in general I agree with most of what has been said but nobody had talked about the precision of guidance, it is superior with the Mafell / Bosch rails

I have two Festool rails one FS 1400/2 and another FS 1400/2-LR 32

Theoretically, the only difference between both rails are the holes for the LR32 system, but the reality is that with the same configuration there is more slip on the FS 1400/2-LR 32 guide.

Both guides have little use but it is visually appreciated that the surface of both is not the same. This causes that when joining both pieces the guidance is different in both pieces, in the FS 1400/2 it costs more to advance than in the FS 1400/2-LR 32

Festool must improve their products in general, you can see that they are very concerned about selling and making money but they are neglecting some important details. Confidence is hard to win but it is lost quickly, I am beginning to look at Festool in a different way, with a magnifying glass.

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 8168
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #98 on: January 31, 2021, 10:09 AM »
The DSC sled has its own wheels and does not really need a rail to work, the loss of already-low depth of cut to a ludicrous 20mm on rail is another reason.

Just curious, are you referring to this item the DCC-AG 125?

« Last Edit: January 31, 2021, 10:51 AM by Cheese »

Offline Svar

  • Posts: 2340
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #99 on: January 31, 2021, 02:16 PM »
Mafell / Bosch opted for a smaller guide channel with less surface area, more precision can be achieved without increasing friction to intolerable limits.
The surface (contact) area between rail and saw in Festool system is actually smaller. Saw only touches the rail on two plastic strips and 4 points inside the channel. All contact points are between anodized aluminum and plastic.
In Mafell/Bosch the contact area is along the entire machined channel, and the contact is between anodized aluminum and bare aluminum. Mechanically it is more similar to the old Festool ATF55.
In my experience Festool slides with less effort.

Theoretically, the only difference between both rails are the holes for the LR32 system, but the reality is that with the same configuration there is more slip on the FS 1400/2-LR 32 guide.
Both guides have little use but it is visually appreciated that the surface of both is not the same. This causes that when joining both pieces the guidance is different in both pieces, in the FS 1400/2 it costs more to advance than in the FS 1400/2-LR 32
The contact surface of both (LR32 and regular rail) is the same. They are identical extrusions. The reason you experience more friction on one is because the guide rib on it is slightly wider than the other. It shouldn't be, but it happens on rare occasions (poor quality control?). When you adjust your saw to one rail, it may be too tight when you move to the other. My rails happen to be all the same, but this variation has been reported by few people on this forum.
On Mafell/Bosch rail the guide rib is thin, and it is probably easier to manufacture it having consistent width.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2021, 02:30 PM by Svar »

Offline mino

  • Posts: 222
Re: Festool FS Guide Rail vs Mafell F Guide Rail
« Reply #100 on: February 01, 2021, 08:25 AM »
Just curious, are you referring to this item the DCC-AG 125?
Yes! Well, kinda, both!

DCC AG is the correct slide name while DSC AG is the name for a set with grinder. The naming simple but always confuses the heck out of me.

On Mafell/Bosch rail the guide rib is thin, and it is probably easier to manufacture it having consistent width.
On Festool this is not machined to begin with - just the precision of the extrusion is sufficient.

I believe this is a superior approach - Festool instead invested in the high-quality nylon-style plastic "sliding strips" and in a pretty complicated plastic slider system on the reference contacts with the "rib". I am sure they also patented the plastic slider approach while at it...
This plastic slider has a secondary benefit - unlike the machined approach on the Mafell, it has a bit of "give" on the screw side which allows it to "absorb" a bit more of the rail width variance without losing precision on the reference surface which is not compressible.

I bought it because of the general "proper tracksaw" as these details are not marketed besides the "it just works well" which everyone notes. But I strongly believe the plastic-slider-with-some-elasticity approach is superior one relying "just" on tight machining tolerances. It is just smart engineering. I always love to see these. /Call me partial, if You will./
« Last Edit: February 01, 2021, 11:55 AM by mino »
AGC 18(@AGC 125 flange), BHC 18, C 12, CTM 36, DRC 18/4, PSC 420, RS 200, TSC 55
Narex: EDH 82, EFH 36(fixed@LR32), EVP 13 H-2CA
My Precious FS/2: 376, 376, 376 holy, 632, 1016 holy, 2520