Author Topic: Review of the Festool LR-32 hole drilling system  (Read 7658 times)

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Offline Steve Rowe

  • Posts: 830
  • Teach them safety when they are young.
Review of the Festool LR-32 hole drilling system
« on: February 14, 2011, 06:15 PM »
This is my review of the Festool LR-32 hole drilling system.  Several years ago, I replaced a 1980’s vintage line boring machine with the Festool system to recover shop space and provide for easier setup.  While it was really cool to depress a foot pedal and drill 29 holes simultaneously, the setup of the line boring machine was time consuming since it was an old machine and not very well refined for setup.  When I converted to the LR-32, I only ordered those parts of the system needed to bore system holes since I already had a hinge boring machine.  I use this system with the OF-1400 router.

My setup consists of the LR-32 Hole drilling set which includes a guide plate, centering mandrel, 2 linear stops and 2 edge stops.  Also included is necessary mounting hardware for use with the Festool routers.  I also purchased an LR-32 guide rail, a pair of clamps, and a 5mm drilling bit.

These are the contents:
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The guide plate is attached to the bottom of the router with two screws.  I have the centering mandrel in the collet just hand tight and plunge the router to put the mandrel through guide plate hole and then tighten the two screws.  The mandrel is then removed and your router is aligned with the guide plate.

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The two linear stops are installed on the guide rail.  I purchased an additional set of these stops which I have modified to use with the KISS32 system that I use.  Note the rounded end has had 3mm milled off.  With the KISS32 system a 35mm offset is desirable for reasons unique to that system.  The LR-32 as supplied stops permits either 16mm or 32mm offsets.  Note that you really don’t need to modify your stops to achieve a 35mm offset since you could just align the end of your work piece with the edge of the hole in the guide rail (see picture of installed stop).

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I then set the edge stops for the desired setback which in this case is the standard 37mm.  After attaching to the guide rail, I then setup and clamp the rail to the work piece. 

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To set the plunge depth, I install the router with guide plate on the rail and plunge the bit to contact the surface of the work piece.  I then use a system screw to set the plunge stop.  This gives me a hole that is sure to be deep enough without the potential for measurement errors.

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I use a number 2 pencil to mark on the guide rail any special start and stop locations.  Mark it in the correct spot and you can actually see the marks through a conveniently placed opening in the guide plate.  Mark it in the wrong place and you will need those special Superman X-ray vision glasses to see your mark.

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Now it is off to the races drilling holes.  I find this to be fairly effortless with a quick re-learning of the coordination between plunging and releasing/moving the guide plate.  The dust collection with the CT22 extractor is perfect.  The system holes are now perfectly positioned at the desired setback and the longitudinal location. 

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I am very happy I made the conversion to the LR-32 system and the 40+ square feet of shop space recovered was much needed.  I am also very happy that there is no dust laying around with the conversion.

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Offline BTDT

  • Posts: 75
Re: Review of the Festool LR-32 hole drilling system
« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2011, 10:51 AM »
To set the plunge depth, I install the router with guide plate on the rail and plunge the bit to contact the surface of the work piece.  I then use a system screw to set the plunge stop.  This gives me a hole that is sure to be deep enough without the potential for measurement errors.

Thanks for the review, excellent tip regarding the use of the system screw to set the plunge stop. I will definitely be using some of your tips the next time I use my LR32!

Brad