Author Topic: Advice on a Dust Extractor  (Read 2541 times)

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Offline tomk

  • Posts: 5
Advice on a Dust Extractor
« on: June 16, 2021, 02:24 PM »
Hi everyone,

I'm looking to reimagine my dust collection setup. I'm currently using a Ridgid 14 Gal Shop Vac paired with a dust deputy attached to the side with some casters. This has done well for me over the years however it's very bulky and I hate moving it around (especially if I'm moving the dust deputy with it). The vacuum itself is so wide that it's easy to bang it into doorways and other objects when using it inside.

I thought I just needed an additional portable vac for interior work and tried a battery powered DeWalt toolbox vac however it's way too underpowered.

Rather than two vacs I figured I should just consolidate down to one vac that is portable enough to easily move it around. The new MIDI I looks like a great option however I am struggling with the price. Is the MIDI I a big enough upgrade to justify the expense? I do not currently own any other Festool products however in the future I may purchase a sander.

The size of the MIDI seems just about right. There's enough capacity if I decide to use it without a cyclone and enough power to use it with a dust deputy if I want to hook it to my lunchbox planer or table saw. I love the hose storage which saves a trip when transporting the vacuum around. The bluetooth switch is nice. I already have a remote outlook but this is integrated so one less piece of equipment to move around. IMO the touch buttons are a step down from the old controls but not a deal killer.

THAT said, if I'm going to spend this much $$ on a vac wouldn't I be better off with the Makita VC4012L? The Makita will have more capacity, quieter, better front casters, auto clean,  but will be more difficult to lug around. The budget option will be to purchase a small Ridgid vac. What would you all say to sell me on the upgrade to the Festool which is undoubtedly a better vac than any of the Ridgid.

Thanks!


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Offline Cypren

  • Posts: 153
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2021, 03:06 PM »
What would you all say to sell me on the upgrade to the Festool which is undoubtedly a better vac than any of the Ridgid.

In your situation, I wouldn't: you should go with the Makita unless you're planning to get more Festool gear in the future. The Makita dust extractors are a really excellent value for the money and, while they don't perform quite as well as the CT line, the difference is minor compared to the cost savings. (Like many other things, power tools have an exponential cost curve: when you get to the high end, you start paying huge amounts of money for very minor improvements to get to "the best".)

The main things you would lose by going with Makita are the Festool warranty and service (which are some of the best in the business) and the integration with the rest of the Festool system: bluetooth that connects to the Festool cordless power tools, the Systainer dock on top that lets you use it as a rolling toolbox cart, hoses that securely lock onto Festool tools rather than just gripping with rubber friction, etc. This is almost always a significant component of what you're paying for when it comes to Festool gear: everything is designed to work with everything else. Not very valuable if you only have one piece of the system, but the more you get, the more valuable it becomes until eventually your workshop looks like a temple to the Systainer Gods.

Offline Packard

  • Posts: 526
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2021, 03:11 PM »
I bought a Grizzly unit about 10 years ago.  It has worked well.  It moves a much higher volume of air than a vacuum, which is the important figure to look at for dust collection.

It is available at $415.00 and looks the same except for the on/off switch which I can't see in the photo.

https://www.grizzly.com/products/grizzly-1-1-2-hp-portable-dust-collector/g1028z2

I did have to add freight and about $100.00 for accessories (hoses, elbows, hose clamps, grounding wire, etc.).  My oil delivery company said if  I did not add dust collection they would not provide me with a service contract on my oil burner.  Apparently, the dust is an issue with the equipment.

I use this for my table saw, radial arm saw, track saw, router and my pocket hole jig.

Offline Dr. P. Venkman

  • Posts: 141
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2021, 03:13 PM »
I'll try to sell you on upgrading to either the Festool or the Makita, then leave you on your own to pick between them [big grin].

Obviously, the Festool/Makita and the Ridgid are just totally different products.  If you're contemplating the Ridgid vs. these higher-end extractors, I'll assume that you plan to use bags and a HEPA filter with the Ridgid.  If the Ridgid has a higher stated airflow capacity than the Festool or Makita, the bags and the HEPA filter should knock it down to at least even (or maybe lower). 

To me, the tool outlet on the front, the bluetooth capability, and the variable suction for sanding are worth the price of the higher end vac.  The variable suction, in particular is a big deal to me - sanding is so much better with the suction turned down.

Combine that with the effectiveness of the fleece bag vs. the paper bag in the Ridgid, and I can't imagine you regretting going the Festool/Makita route. 

As for Festool vs. Makita:
  • They both have the outlet on the front and variable suction - the only thing the Makita is missing is the integrated bluetooth/remote.
  • If you aren't using any of their tools, there's not a lot of reason to have Festool's proprietary hose connector on the end (though it will work with non-Festool tools). Ditto for the ability to store systainers on the top.
  • I have always felt like the biggest benefit of the festool is that it maintains its suction really well as the bag fills up (especially compared to something like a Ridgid, but also compared to other high end extractors).  These guys did a comparison a couple of years ago, and the Festool and the Makita were the runaway winners at maintaining suction with a dirty bag.
  • Definitely the capacity and noise matter, so point for Makita. 
  • So does cost - another point for Makita. 
  • I've not had a problem with the casters on my Festool, and I don't know how much better "better" front casters would be. 
  • Depending on what you're doing, the auto-clean may or may not be of much value - mine gets used for mostly wood chips/dust (hardly any drywall), and the main filter basically never gets dirty.  I'm not sure that auto-clean would improve my experience at all.

I expect you would be very happy with either the Makita or the Festool.  If you were using a bunch of Festool tools, I would definitely vote for the Festool, but in your case, I'm not sure that it matters - just get the one with the footprint and form factor that you prefer.  If the Makita is cheaper, larger, and quieter, that may be your best bet.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2021, 03:25 PM by Dr. P. Venkman »

Offline afish

  • Posts: 556
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2021, 03:19 PM »
Here is a video that did a really good comparison its slightly outdated now with many new models replacing those.  As someone who will be getting either the festool planex 2 or the mirka leros in the near future I need an AC extractor as well.  Im planning on the CT36AC but keeping my options open especially if I go with the Leros.  What strikes me as odd the Hilti and Milwaukee both look like Nilfisk units but they scored pretty far apart.  Im going to watch again.  Im pretty sure Nilfisk makes the makita units too. 


Offline nicholam77

  • Posts: 82
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2021, 03:50 PM »
@tomk what about the CT15? It's the same motor / capacity as the MIDI, just with a few neutered features, like no bluetooth, no filter clean lever, no locking casters, and comes with budget hose.

Unless you need bluetooth, it's a pretty great deal.

I picked one up as my first Festool vac and added the MIDI hose garage (part #204717) for Systainer compatibility and better hose storage.



$349 for vac only, hose garage was extra $49. Still gets you variable suction, much quieter than shop vac, full HEPA, compact, light, auto on-off with tool, etc.
CT15 | ETS 125 REQ

Offline tomk

  • Posts: 5
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2021, 06:32 PM »
This is great information. Let me try to respond...

@tomk what about the CT15? It's the same motor / capacity as the MIDI, just with a few neutered features, like no bluetooth, no filter clean lever, no locking casters, and comes with budget hose.

Unless you need bluetooth, it's a pretty great deal.

I picked one up as my first Festool vac and added the MIDI hose garage (part #204717) for Systainer compatibility and better hose storage.

$349 for vac only, hose garage was extra $49. Still gets you variable suction, much quieter than shop vac, full HEPA, compact, light, auto on-off with tool, etc.

Yes, I did see the CT15 which looks like a fantastic deal. I'd absolutely need the hose garage. The downgrade in hose is a bummer but they have to cut cost somewhere and that's a big one. I don't care much about the kick stand. The missing bluetooth might be a deal killer though. Since they went to the touch controls with standby my one-button RF remote wouldn't work. The vac would just power on but not actually turn on (unless someone can confirm otherwise). Also, I can't stand cleaning the HEPA filter on the Ridgid. Does the filter cleaning feature on the MIDI I actually make a difference? I read the instructions and it didn't say how it works. I'm guessing you build up negative pressure by holding your hand on the hose and when you press the lever it opens a door on the motor side of the filter - wouldn't that just dump the dust into the dust compartment? Or is the dust routed back to the filter bag somehow with some sort of blast gate?



In your situation, I wouldn't: you should go with the Makita unless you're planning to get more Festool gear in the future. The Makita dust extractors are a really excellent value for the money and, while they don't perform quite as well as the CT line, the difference is minor compared to the cost savings. (Like many other things, power tools have an exponential cost curve: when you get to the high end, you start paying huge amounts of money for very minor improvements to get to "the best".)

The main things you would lose by going with Makita are the Festool warranty and service (which are some of the best in the business) and the integration with the rest of the Festool system: bluetooth that connects to the Festool cordless power tools, the Systainer dock on top that lets you use it as a rolling toolbox cart, hoses that securely lock onto Festool tools rather than just gripping with rubber friction, etc. This is almost always a significant component of what you're paying for when it comes to Festool gear: everything is designed to work with everything else. Not very valuable if you only have one piece of the system, but the more you get, the more valuable it becomes until eventually your workshop looks like a temple to the Systainer Gods.

and

I'll try to sell you on upgrading to either the Festool or the Makita, then leave you on your own to pick between them [big grin].

Obviously, the Festool/Makita and the Ridgid are just totally different products.  If you're contemplating the Ridgid vs. these higher-end extractors, I'll assume that you plan to use bags and a HEPA filter with the Ridgid.  If the Ridgid has a higher stated airflow capacity than the Festool or Makita, the bags and the HEPA filter should knock it down to at least even (or maybe lower). 

To me, the tool outlet on the front, the bluetooth capability, and the variable suction for sanding are worth the price of the higher end vac.  The variable suction, in particular is a big deal to me - sanding is so much better with the suction turned down.

Combine that with the effectiveness of the fleece bag vs. the paper bag in the Ridgid, and I can't imagine you regretting going the Festool/Makita route. 

As for Festool vs. Makita:
  • They both have the outlet on the front and variable suction - the only thing the Makita is missing is the integrated bluetooth/remote.
  • If you aren't using any of their tools, there's not a lot of reason to have Festool's proprietary hose connector on the end (though it will work with non-Festool tools). Ditto for the ability to store systainers on the top.
  • I have always felt like the biggest benefit of the festool is that it maintains its suction really well as the bag fills up (especially compared to something like a Ridgid, but also compared to other high end extractors).  These guys did a comparison a couple of years ago, and the Festool and the Makita were the runaway winners at maintaining suction with a dirty bag.
  • Definitely the capacity and noise matter, so point for Makita. 
  • So does cost - another point for Makita. 
  • I've not had a problem with the casters on my Festool, and I don't know how much better "better" front casters would be. 
  • Depending on what you're doing, the auto-clean may or may not be of much value - mine gets used for mostly wood chips/dust (hardly any drywall), and the main filter basically never gets dirty.  I'm not sure that auto-clean would improve my experience at all.

I expect you would be very happy with either the Makita or the Festool.  If you were using a bunch of Festool tools, I would definitely vote for the Festool, but in your case, I'm not sure that it matters - just get the one with the footprint and form factor that you prefer.  If the Makita is cheaper, larger, and quieter, that may be your best bet.

All great points however the issue is still that the Makita VC4210L is nearly as pricey as the MIDI I at $619.00 USD



https://www.amazon.com/Makita-VC4210L-Gallon-Filter-Extractor/dp/B07ZMN75V2

It might also be too big and bulky for my typical usage especially after wrapping the hose up on the top. Might need to see it in person. At least it should work with my current remote. I can't see using the PTO much on either of these because of the amp draw. I have two 20 amp circuits in the garage so I usually split them between the vac and the tool so I don't get any surprises in the middle of a cut.

You guys are right about the need for variable speed when sanding. I also did see that older ToolBoxBuzz recently and I too was impressed with the amount of suction the Festool and Makita were able to muster with a dirty bag. Both vacs will allow me to mount a dust deputy to the top but the Makita is quite a bit taller which makes the setup less useful for picking up larger debris such as rocks, concrete, or plaster. So I guess I need to figure out how to order my priorities and then rate the MIDI I, CT15, VC4210L, and smaller Ridgid.

1. Balanced portability (within reason for a DIY'er)
2. Remote on/off
3. Performance (quiet, good suction, dust stays in the bag instead of getting all over the vac)
4. Ease of cleaning( manual/auto filter cleaning, washing the dust compartment, dusting the motor compartment)
5. Variable speed
6. Power take off
7. Misc features such as kick stand, aux handles, booms, accessory storage.




Offline squall_line

  • Posts: 588
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #7 on: June 16, 2021, 06:37 PM »
Perhaps a lightly used first-generation MIDI with the knob controls?  I think I saw one posted for sale online recently.

Offline afish

  • Posts: 556
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2021, 06:46 PM »
Unless you need AC then the Makita starts looking like a really good deal and a solid competitor to the ct 36/48 ac.  What is that rack looking deal on top of the makita?  If I end up with the planex 2 I will most likely just get the CT36ac just so my OCD isnt triggered by miss matching blue and green but If I get the Leros all bets are off and will probably get that makita. Looks just as good and puts me 300 closer to some other goodies. 

Offline Peter_C

  • Posts: 1119
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #9 on: June 16, 2021, 07:05 PM »
First of all I am not brand loyal, but look for what is best for me.

Three of the greatest features of the Festool vacs for me is:
#1 FAR LESS NOISE. Really they are pretty quiet.
#2 Bluetooth. Never really thought it was necessary until I was using a vac that didn't have bluetooth, and I so missed the remote being on the end of the hose.
#3 Being able to control the amount of suction. Not just for sanding, as there are times even vacuuming I like to turn the suction down.

I wouldn't even consider a vacuum that didn't have a plug for tool triggered turn on of the vac. Yes you can rig up an Ivac switch, which in some ways is more ideal in that they offer to pull power from multiple outlets.

Owning two CT36's with one being a CT36AC, there are times a smaller more portable unit would be nice. As I do some concrete work and a little drywall work using a Planex, a vac with a thumper is important to me, but will not be important to everyone. There are times my small LOUD Ridgid vac is the tool of choice. For instance it fits thru access holes into places like attics. Other times I just need straight up max suction and another larger shop vac I have supplies all that I desire. In other words I wouldn't count on getting rid of the Ridgid just yet. Festool does offer a wet filter for sucking up water and I often do so with both of my CT36's.

Offline Lincoln

  • Posts: 130
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #10 on: June 16, 2021, 08:47 PM »
Unless you need AC then the Makita starts looking like a really good deal and a solid competitor to the ct 36/48 ac.  What is that rack looking deal on top of the makita?  If I end up with the planex 2 I will most likely just get the CT36ac just so my OCD isnt triggered by miss matching blue and green but If I get the Leros all bets are off and will probably get that makita. Looks just as good and puts me 300 closer to some other goodies.

The rack on top is the Systainer holder.

Offline Lincoln

  • Posts: 130
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #11 on: June 16, 2021, 09:04 PM »
I have a CT26 M class and a Makita VC42 M class. The Makita is a rebadged Nilfisk, so great quality. It's too big for in-and-out site work, so stays in the shop. It's a fantastic unit, and has one feature that is sorely missing from the Festool vacs - extended 'run on'. It keeps going for about 7 seconds after your tool stops, which makes a big difference to keeping your hose clear. The supplied AS hose is great and the tubes are metal. The wand/handle (also metal) clips onto the hose end, so you're not relying on a friction fit. Big wheels make it very easy to wheel around. M Class has auto clean, which can be turned off. Optional rear handle and systainer dock are available.

The 26 is great for site work. I have it with a 36mm AS hose and bluetooth remote. I'd much rather the 26 to the Midi, unless the extra size is a problem to you. Probably the perfect site vac, for general tasks. A great combo of capacity and portability, even with a sys attached.

The 26 could definitely be a shop AND site vac, but for me the Makita is too big for site.

Offline squall_line

  • Posts: 588
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2021, 09:57 PM »
I have a CT26 M class and a Makita VC42 M class.

This reminds me; it would be beneficial if the OP said which continent he/she is located in.  My guess is North America, since they talk of HEPA, but when I hear "M Class", I think of two things: Star Trek categorizations of planets, and "Non-North American dust collectors" (Europe and Australia?).

Offline tomk

  • Posts: 5
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #13 on: June 16, 2021, 10:46 PM »

This reminds me; it would be beneficial if the OP said which continent he/she is located in.  My guess is North America, since they talk of HEPA, but when I hear "M Class", I think of two things: Star Trek categorizations of planets, and "Non-North American dust collectors" (Europe and Australia?).

Point taken - profile updated.

I have a CT26 M class and a Makita VC42 M class. The Makita is a rebadged Nilfisk, so great quality. It's too big for in-and-out site work, so stays in the shop. It's a fantastic unit, and has one feature that is sorely missing from the Festool vacs - extended 'run on'. It keeps going for about 7 seconds after your tool stops, which makes a big difference to keeping your hose clear. The supplied AS hose is great and the tubes are metal. The wand/handle (also metal) clips onto the hose end, so you're not relying on a friction fit. Big wheels make it very easy to wheel around. M Class has auto clean, which can be turned off. Optional rear handle and systainer dock are available.

The 26 is great for site work. I have it with a 36mm AS hose and bluetooth remote. I'd much rather the 26 to the Midi, unless the extra size is a problem to you. Probably the perfect site vac, for general tasks. A great combo of capacity and portability, even with a sys attached.

The 26 could definitely be a shop AND site vac, but for me the Makita is too big for site.

@Lincoln this just blew my mind. The Makita is the Nilfisk ATTIX 44. I don't know how I feel about that... It's a pretty sweet rig to be sure with that 2-stage filter and all but you'd think Makita would want to design their own tool especially one so critical on the job site these days. According to the specs the CT26 is 3 inches longer but 1 inch shorter and 1 inch narrower than the Makita/Nilfisk. Good to know that it really makes that big of a difference as the portability is high on my list.


Offline Lincoln

  • Posts: 130
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #14 on: June 16, 2021, 11:12 PM »
You'll find that most branded vacs are made by someone else - Nilfisk, Starmix etc.

Offline Peter_C

  • Posts: 1119
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #15 on: June 17, 2021, 12:48 AM »
For size reference the CT36 is the same foot print, just the tub size is taller than the CT26, and uses bigger bags. Although I do it, the CT36 foot print and weight is a little much for carrying up tight stairs and through hallways with ease, especially as the bag gets full. The Midi is much smaller and portable. If I wanted a 3rd more portable unit, the Midi would be my size preference. If it was the only dust collector I had, then a cyclone would save substantially on bags, when throwing lots of wood chips like with a router.

Isn't Milwaukee's dust collector also a Nilfisk?

Offline Alex

  • Posts: 7549
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #16 on: June 17, 2021, 01:34 AM »
@Lincoln this just blew my mind. The Makita is the Nilfisk ATTIX 44. I don't know how I feel about that... It's a pretty sweet rig to be sure with that 2-stage filter and all but you'd think Makita would want to design their own tool especially one so critical on the job site these days.

You should feel good about that. Nilfisk is a great brand that makes high quality vacs.

Lots of big tool brands like Bosch, Metabo and Makita get their vacs from a dedicated company like Nilfisk or Starmix.

Offline woodbutcherbower

  • Posts: 69
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #17 on: June 17, 2021, 07:35 AM »
As someone who has no tool-related brand loyalty whatsoever - I put off buying a Festool extractor for years, making do with a Nilfisk Aero 26 - a really excellent vacuum which did exactly what it was supposed to do - and for not very much money. But then one day - I had a customer hire me to build a pile of solid 2" thick oak doors for her house - a monster 12-panel front one, an even bigger back one, plus 14 internal ones, all with new frames to match. Since most of my work is site-based, my garage doubles as my shop where all this kinda stuff is built.

Suddenly there was an awful lot of machining to do..........

I got through 28 x 26-litre Nilfisk dust bags in just the first 4 weeks of this build, and realised that it was now time to buy a cyclone separator - so the initial CT-VA-20 was a no-brainer. But having bought this, and immediately realised just how unwieldy and unworkable it was without a Festool extractor to mount it on - my journey down the Festool extraction rabbit hole began, starting with a CTL26. As another poster said - everything is designed to work with everything else, and I also bought the optional metal handle which turns it into a brilliant roll cart, which is great for me since virtually every piece of equipment I own is housed in a Systainer. It's super-quiet (it just purrs compared to virtually everything else out there), and the variable speed is useful for sanding - not because I've ever had a sander clamp itself to a surface, but because at lower airflow, the cyclone catches a much, much larger percentage of the fine dust which would otherwise be filling my bag or packing out my filter.

The cost of a CT26 + CT-VA-20 (the ideal setup for both site and shop IMO) is offensively high, but it only hurts once. Something of lower quality (or a compromise) often hurts every time you use it. I’m really glad I bit the bullet - and to be perfectly truthful, within a few weeks I couldn't even remember exactly what I'd paid for it. Hope you get fixed up.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2021, 10:53 AM by woodbutcherbower »

Offline tomk

  • Posts: 5
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #18 on: June 19, 2021, 12:09 PM »
Well the local Rockler had a MIDI I in stock so I pulled the trigger yesterday. The size is perfect for both inside and out. The bag and filter setup is well thought out - even if it does eventually get messy it will be much easier to clean than the Ridgid. I wish the hose were just a tad longer since the connection was moved to the middle of the machine. None of my existing small hose attachments fit the hose so I'll need to find some with a larger diameter to fit over the end of the festool hose. I love the storage garage on top. Variable speed is very nice - in fact most of my cleanup indoors can be done on setting 1 or 2 which is very quiet. I noticed the machine does a great job of keeping constant suction even on the lower settings.

Overall is it worth $640 USD? Yeah probably just. The shop vac is probably my most used tool even though I never thought about it that way.

I'll be making a bathroom vanity cabinet this week so we'll see how well it keeps up.

Offline Peter_C

  • Posts: 1119
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #19 on: June 19, 2021, 01:28 PM »
My most used hose is one of the new style, like the Midi comes with, but in a 36mm size and 5 meters long. Some folks buy the 7 meter hose and cut some off adding new ends for additional uses. The 5 meter is plenty long enough for me, and allows the dust collector to be outside the room I am working in. The D27 hose the vac comes with should be able to plug onto the end of the D36 hose. The Ridgid hoses should fit right into the Festool dust collector.

I like the metal Festool cleanup tools, but they are expensive, where plastic will get the job done. *shrugs*

No Bluetooth yet? Once you add a longer hose, Bluetooth becomes a feature you will not be able to imagine how you ever got along without.

Offline tomk

  • Posts: 5
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #20 on: June 19, 2021, 02:12 PM »
My most used hose is one of the new style, like the Midi comes with, but in a 36mm size and 5 meters long. Some folks buy the 7 meter hose and cut some off adding new ends for additional uses. The 5 meter is plenty long enough for me, and allows the dust collector to be outside the room I am working in. The D27 hose the vac comes with should be able to plug onto the end of the D36 hose. The Ridgid hoses should fit right into the Festool dust collector.

I like the metal Festool cleanup tools, but they are expensive, where plastic will get the job done. *shrugs*

No Bluetooth yet? Once you add a longer hose, Bluetooth becomes a feature you will not be able to imagine how you ever got along without.

Ha yeah there was no way I was going to leave the store without the bluetooth remote. I'm already used to having the remote on my old vac and I'd never go back to using the manual switch again.

Offline afish

  • Posts: 556
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #21 on: June 22, 2021, 06:37 AM »
Ok so I have been going back and forth between the Makita vc4210 and the ct 36 ac and figured I would mention a few things I didnt see previously.  Im only comparing the makita to the ct 36ac as both have the AC function which may or may not be important for some.  However its the two closest models spec wise.  Here is why I have decided against the Makita.

1. The Makita BT requires an extra box to be plugged into the vac and hangs off the vac via what looks like a velcro strap.  This might not seem like a big deal at first but anyone who has tried to move around a jobsite that already has obstacles everywhere and has what seems like an endless supply of items to snag a cord will understand you dont want any extra cords or junk to get hung up and slow you down.  After all isnt this the reason cordless tools have become so popular

2. From what I can tell it looks like there is no ON/OFF button on the makita BT and requires you to buy an extra transmitter for each tool and it will only work with Makita tools.  Chime in if Im wrong on that.

3. Hose and cord storage. This is another annoying factor of the Makita.  Both the cord and hose are externally hung or clamped to the outside of the unit.  Making moving and transporting from jobsite to jobsite more frustrating.  I see that makita hose popping off at least twice or the helper dragging it behind him/her on the way back to the truck or van.  This seems like a minor issue at first but its always been an annoyance with those unwieldy hoses that sometimes seems like they have a mind of their own.  The nice tidy hose garage and cord storage of the festool looks waaaay better and more refined to me. There are a lot of condos in my area so this often requires moving tools and equipment long distances through common areas such as lobbies, hallways, elevators etc. So being neat and tidy and moving as much in/out, in as few trips as possible becomes very important.

4. the Makita BT is more expensive which eats into the the cost savings of getting it in the first place.

Just figured I would point those items out since only #3 was obvious to me at first.  These items may or may not matter to you just as the AC function may or may not matter.  If you dont need AC then the price gap narrows even more. The Makita is still quieter which is nice but in the end it looks like Festool is the winner to me and as you may or may not know I dont always consider Festool to be the better choice.   

Offline afish

  • Posts: 556
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #22 on: June 23, 2021, 08:44 PM »
Well talked myself into it thanks to you guys.  CT 36 AC will be here next week.  Still trying to decide on planex 2 or Mirka.  Seeing some reports that the planex 2 is harder to use and more prone to leaving swirls.

Offline guybo

  • Posts: 107
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #23 on: June 24, 2021, 09:31 PM »
Hi again mirka is nice  w/180 head movement good level 5 and ceiling sander does not like texture though, the planex light shows every sin  [big grin] but great on texture removal .guy
« Last Edit: June 24, 2021, 09:34 PM by guybo »

Offline afish

  • Posts: 556
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #24 on: June 24, 2021, 09:56 PM »
I also like how the festool can have a section removed for tight spaces but that mirka looks like its more user friendly and better finish. Its had for me to believe the festool leaves swirls easily. Dust collection and ease/quality of finish is primary importance. the light is nice but I feel like it can be added pretty easily so its not a huge deciding factor but is a very nice feature.

Offline demographic

  • Posts: 696
Re: Advice on a Dust Extractor
« Reply #25 on: June 25, 2021, 04:52 AM »
The bluetooth add on is a real joy to use, the remote button that goes on the end of the hose allows any tool that fits the hose to be used with the extractor without ratching about under the workbench to knock it on and I find I tidy up my workspace a lot more now its so easy to use as well.

One thing that Festool really needs to get on top of is the cordless extractor thing cos most tradesmen who work on snagging type jobs where they are constantly on the move really need it.
Currently Makita and De-Walt are ahead of them in this respect and it loses them sales to tradesmen.