Author Topic: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues  (Read 5833 times)

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Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2192
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #60 on: November 02, 2020, 05:44 PM »
Any Festool machines on display are not the same as brand new machines because they're on display for both staff to demo and customers to try out (under staff guidance or supervision). Some display units could be for years in the showroom depending on what they're.

   This is incorrect. In our store, we only have singles of some models. They are never used for demo purposes, ever. If any employee uses a display tool for demo, he or she has bought it and we make that known. We do have demo models of most of the tools we sell.

Terminology difference only: On display in my post = Demo models in your post. At my local vendor, all new stock is kept in the back/warehouse; anything on display (not counting pre-packed items like jawsaw blades, sandpaper, etc.) is for demo, etc. Whether it's the Kapex or XL (all unplugged), customers can handle them.
« Last Edit: November 02, 2020, 05:48 PM by ChuckM »

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Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 565
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #61 on: November 02, 2020, 06:31 PM »
Wow, I figured if in the box it was new, good to know.  I'm headed back up to the original store where they have 2 available ... I'll check it out to confirm it doesn't appear used, and hopefully it will cut as flush as the current replacement did ...

Bring some ply with you and check it out in person.

Unfortunately I hadn't seen this before I was already on my way.  I've Domino #3 home but need to cut some fresh boards as I used up the previous stock.  I'm running low on 3/4" Maple cutoffs, prefer not to break down a brand new sheet, and wonder if 3/4" MDF would be an acceptable stock to test with or not?

Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 565
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #62 on: November 02, 2020, 06:38 PM »
Any Festool machines on display are not the same as brand new machines because they're on display for both staff to demo and customers to try out (under staff guidance or supervision). Some display units could be for years in the showroom depending on what they're.

   This is incorrect. In our store, we only have singles of some models. They are never used for demo purposes, ever. If any employee uses a display tool for demo, he or she has bought it and we make that known. We do have demo models of most of the tools we sell. Further, I suspect that there is something in the dealer contract with Festool USA, or other national Festool operations to prevent selling a tool that has ever been used. If a dealer sells a used tool as new, the customer should contact Festool directly. One other thing, some tools that don't sell often can sit on the shelf for a long time. If you look at the nameplate with the serial number etc. you can find the month and year of manufacture. Also, you can look at the systainer label to insure it matches the tool serial number.

This is interesting ... the new Domino says (11) 200331 ... has this really been on the shelf since 2003?  This would mean it has the fence locking issue?
« Last Edit: November 02, 2020, 06:47 PM by Bugsysiegals »

Offline Cheese

  • Posts: 7860
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #63 on: November 03, 2020, 09:05 AM »
I think this display/demo thing is really store dependent. The bare tools on display at the local Woodcraft store are used both as store display models and also as functioning demo tools for customers and store employees. On more than one occasion a store tool was being demoed in the back shop area and a new version of the same tool was then opened up and used for comparison purposes, I have no idea why as I was was on the other side of the glass wall. So what happened to that new model tool that was just demoed? Don't know...

Last year Woodcraft was selling some of their demo tools. An absolutely spotless OF 1400 in a T-Loc and a pretty ratty OF 1010 in an original Systainer...how many years ago were original Systainers used by Festool?

Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 565
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #64 on: November 03, 2020, 03:20 PM »
I've done 5 different tests with Domino #3 and am averaging about 0.04mm difference between each side of joined panels whereas Domino #2 averaged about 0.02mm.  While the difference is double Domino #2, it seems small enough that I can sand smooth without burning through the veneer.  Have you all measured the difference and would you agree 0.04mm is acceptable?

Finally, I believe I read about a fence drift/sagging issue which was addressed with some changes ... based on the sticker, was this made in 2003 meaning it's possible I'll be going through more misalignment issues in the future?

Offline Cheese

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Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #65 on: November 03, 2020, 04:05 PM »
.04 mm is equal to  .0015”, tough to get any better/repeatable results with any hand held tool.  [smile]

Most already applied veneers are around .012”-.015” thick.

Offline grbmds

  • Posts: 2023
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #66 on: November 03, 2020, 04:30 PM »
I do notice extremely minor imperfections at the points that the joints meet, but these can be eliminated during clamping and only result in minor sanding sometimes. In general, I have always believed that, to some degree, these occur because of imperfections in the wood and due to some slight, unnoticeable movements of the tool by me during cutting of the slots. Nothing is perfect,  but the results you're getting are extremely close and might even get better over time as you gain some experience with the tool.

I have never bought a tool from the Woodcraft store I most often do business with in Madison, Wisconsin which showed any evidence of being used in anyway. That, and the fact that they have always given me good advice and help when I needed it, are the reasons I continue to buy my Festools from them, as well as most of my woodworking supplies and other tools. Nothing can be great service, knowledgeable staff, and being able to see the tool in advance of buying if desired. That describes the Madison Woodcraft Store.
Randy

Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 565
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #67 on: November 03, 2020, 04:32 PM »
.04 mm is equal to  .0015”, tough to get any better/repeatable results with any hand held tool.  [smile]

Most already applied veneers are around .012”-.015” thick.

Average thickness of standard copy paper is 0.05 to 0.10mm or 0.002 to 0.004" so I'm off by the thickness of the thinnest copy paper.  According to your #'s, the veneer is at minimum about 6 pieces of the thinnest copy paper so I'd agree I have plenty of room to spare if I can keep this consistency and the fence doesn't drift or sag on me.

Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 565
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #68 on: November 03, 2020, 04:36 PM »
I do notice extremely minor imperfections at the points that the joints meet, but these can be eliminated during clamping and only result in minor sanding sometimes. In general, I have always believed that, to some degree, these occur because of imperfections in the wood and due to some slight, unnoticeable movements of the tool by me during cutting of the slots. Nothing is perfect,  but the results you're getting are extremely close and might even get better over time as you gain some experience with the tool.

I have never bought a tool from the Woodcraft store I most often do business with in Madison, Wisconsin which showed any evidence of being used in anyway. That, and the fact that they have always given me good advice and help when I needed it, are the reasons I continue to buy my Festools from them, as well as most of my woodworking supplies and other tools. Nothing can be great service, knowledgeable staff, and being able to see the tool in advance of buying if desired. That describes the Madison Woodcraft Store.

We've a Woodcraft in New Berlin/Milwaukee just 35 minutes from me.  FWIW - the people at the store I was at said they don't have time for me to bring wood/domino's and demo the tool with them and that they'd just replace it as many times as it takes.  I guess this is good for the customer, no questions asked, but not that great for Festool and I'm surprised they wouldn't be trained and have you demo it so you're not stock piling the FestoolRecon site.
« Last Edit: November 03, 2020, 06:29 PM by Bugsysiegals »

Offline jcrowe1950

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    • Woodcraft Chattanooga, TN
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #69 on: November 03, 2020, 04:36 PM »

This is interesting ... the new Domino says (11) 200331 ... has this really been on the shelf since 2003?  This would mean it has the fence locking issue?

   Sorry for the delay in responding....I don't have access to this group at work. The format of the date is european format....first two digits are the year, second two digits are the month and third are the day. So, March 31, 2020.....
Festool Specialist at Woodcraft, Chattanooga, TN

Offline jcrowe1950

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Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #70 on: November 03, 2020, 04:44 PM »
I think this display/demo thing is really store dependent. The bare tools on display at the local Woodcraft store are used both as store display models and also as functioning demo tools for customers and store employees. On more than one occasion a store tool was being demoed in the back shop area and a new version of the same tool was then opened up and used for comparison purposes, I have no idea why as I was was on the other side of the glass wall. So what happened to that new model tool that was just demoed? Don't know...

Last year Woodcraft was selling some of their demo tools. An absolutely spotless OF 1400 in a T-Loc and a pretty ratty OF 1010 in an original Systainer...how many years ago were original Systainers used by Festool?

Hi Cheese,

    You are, of course, correct. Our Woodcraft franchise policy is as I stated. Others may differ. In fact, while I can't remember which Canadian dealer it is, there is one that has a ton of MFTs with various tools on each MFT for demo purposes. I only wish we had the space and resources to dedicate to such an approach.

    That said, no Festool should be sold as new if it's ever been used. That is one reason that, for instance, returned tools during the thirty day window are sent directly back to Festool where they are probably refurbed and sold on the refurb site.

    Sorry for the misunderstanding.
Festool Specialist at Woodcraft, Chattanooga, TN

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2192
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #71 on: November 03, 2020, 05:30 PM »
Others may differ. In fact, while I can't remember which Canadian dealer it is, there is one that has a ton of MFTs with various tools on each MFT for demo purposes.

Lee Valley Tools is definitely one of them. Both corded and cordless tools are on display for customers to handle. For safety, except the drills, tools are unplugged until staff set them up for power.

Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 565
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #72 on: November 03, 2020, 06:30 PM »

This is interesting ... the new Domino says (11) 200331 ... has this really been on the shelf since 2003?  This would mean it has the fence locking issue?

   Sorry for the delay in responding....I don't have access to this group at work. The format of the date is european format....first two digits are the year, second two digits are the month and third are the day. So, March 31, 2020.....

Perfect, it seems I finally have a Domino that I can be happy with!  Looking forward to trying out some butt joints now and getting things calibrated.

Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 565
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #73 on: November 03, 2020, 08:24 PM »
I've swapped the alignment pins in the 3 possible configurations.  Replacing the Right pin seems to bring the lines slightly closer than stock.  Replacing both pins brings them even a bit closer and replacing the Left pin may be the same as both but with the line on the opposite side ... is there a way to get them closer without replacing the Left pin and slowly filing a little off the stock Right pin?

Stock
322767-0

Right Pin Only Replaced
322773-1

Both Pins Replaced
322771-2

Left Pin Only Replaced
322769-3
« Last Edit: November 03, 2020, 08:33 PM by Bugsysiegals »

Offline Bohdan

  • Posts: 991
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #74 on: November 03, 2020, 09:16 PM »
Are the pins symetrical? i.e. see if swaping the Left with the Right makes a difference.

Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 565
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #75 on: November 03, 2020, 09:27 PM »
The pins look like you could possible push the mounting pin through and use them on an opposite side, and I considered trying this but wasn’t sure and didn’t want to break it. Can anybody confirm if they work in this way?  It’s a shame but maybe these aren’t meant to be that accurate?
« Last Edit: November 03, 2020, 09:31 PM by Bugsysiegals »

Offline grbmds

  • Posts: 2023
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #76 on: November 04, 2020, 09:18 AM »
If it were me, I'd just keep returning then until you get one that performs to your satisfaction. The Domino is a great tool but only if it performs as it is supposed to. I guess I feel lucky I have never had the problems with Festool or the places I've bought the tools from that you are experiencing. Maybe it just is a sign that Festool's quality control has slipped over the years. I haven't bought one for at least 2 years so I can't tell about present quality. Good luck.
Randy

Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 565
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #77 on: November 04, 2020, 09:57 AM »
If it were me, I'd just keep returning then until you get one that performs to your satisfaction. The Domino is a great tool but only if it performs as it is supposed to. I guess I feel lucky I have never had the problems with Festool or the places I've bought the tools from that you are experiencing. Maybe it just is a sign that Festool's quality control has slipped over the years. I haven't bought one for at least 2 years so I can't tell about present quality. Good luck.

Do your paddles actually align better than mine and do you use the paddles?  I assumed they'd be useful for quick corner joints on shorter lengths since you can avoid laying out lines but in reality maybe their seldom used?

Offline Birdhunter

  • Posts: 3239
  • Woodworker, Sportsman, Retired
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #78 on: November 04, 2020, 01:58 PM »
I don’t trust the locators on either my 500 or 700. Just not accurate unless I’m doing narrow/wide mortises. The pins on my Mafell Doweler are dead nuts accurate.
Birdhunter

Offline BarneyD

  • Posts: 100
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #79 on: November 04, 2020, 04:26 PM »
I've also never used the paddles. In fact, I keep mine locked in the retracted position so they're not in the way. I just make lines.
Barney

Offline grbmds

  • Posts: 2023
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #80 on: November 04, 2020, 05:11 PM »
If it were me, I'd just keep returning then until you get one that performs to your satisfaction. The Domino is a great tool but only if it performs as it is supposed to. I guess I feel lucky I have never had the problems with Festool or the places I've bought the tools from that you are experiencing. Maybe it just is a sign that Festool's quality control has slipped over the years. I haven't bought one for at least 2 years so I can't tell about present quality. Good luck.

Do your paddles actually align better than mine and do you use the paddles?  I assumed they'd be useful for quick corner joints on shorter lengths since you can avoid laying out lines but in reality maybe their seldom used?

The only time I use the paddles is if I want Dominos the same distance from each edge of a board. If I’m putting more than 2 Dominos then I usually mark the internal slots and may use the paddles for the two outermost slots. I’m unsure how you are using them but, if it’s to locate a slot on both boards the same distance from an edge on each, I don’t understand how that could be misaligned. I do find that I mostly just put the boards together, mark the locations on both, and cut the slots. As for side to side alignment I many times cut 1 slot with the small width and the others with the mid-size slot to allow some adjustment. However, I have cut all the slots the same size and usually get great results. Don’t know if that helps.
Randy

Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 565
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #81 on: November 04, 2020, 05:20 PM »
If it were me, I'd just keep returning then until you get one that performs to your satisfaction. The Domino is a great tool but only if it performs as it is supposed to. I guess I feel lucky I have never had the problems with Festool or the places I've bought the tools from that you are experiencing. Maybe it just is a sign that Festool's quality control has slipped over the years. I haven't bought one for at least 2 years so I can't tell about present quality. Good luck.

Do your paddles actually align better than mine and do you use the paddles?  I assumed they'd be useful for quick corner joints on shorter lengths since you can avoid laying out lines but in reality maybe their seldom used?

The only time I use the paddles is if I want Dominos the same distance from each edge of a board. If I’m putting more than 2 Dominos then I usually mark the internal slots and may use the paddles for the two outermost slots. I’m unsure how you are using them but, if it’s to locate a slot on both boards the same distance from an edge on each, I don’t understand how that could be misaligned. I do find that I mostly just put the boards together, mark the locations on both, and cut the slots. As for side to side alignment I many times cut 1 slot with the small width and the others with the mid-size slot to allow some adjustment. However, I have cut all the slots the same size and usually get great results. Don’t know if that helps.

The results I've shared are with me aligning the edges, drawing a line, and joining with one single Domino on narrow setting.  The misalignment comes when you have a difference in distance between the edge of the mortise and the pin on either side.  This is why the replacement/calibration pins are slightly thinner as to allow the mortise to be offset more on one side and bring the line into alignment.

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2192
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #82 on: November 04, 2020, 06:04 PM »
Calibrate the paddles by following the steps shown in the manual until they offer the desired (perfect?) results. I've used paddles since Day 1 the machine was brought home.

Unless you can eyeball and align the machine with pencil lines every time when using the narrow setting on both mating mortises (I can't, my success rates vary around 50% to 60%), calibrated paddles give you built-in repeatability and accuracy.

Of course, you don't need to use the narrow setting for every mating mortise. When you do as in the case of doing shelf/partition joints (where the show edges must meet flush), the paddles excel -- without failure.
« Last Edit: November 04, 2020, 06:15 PM by ChuckM »

Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 565
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #83 on: November 04, 2020, 06:22 PM »
Calibrate the paddles by following the steps shown in the manual until they offer the desired (perfect?) results. I've used paddles since Day 1 the machine was brought home.

Unless you can eyeball and align the machine with pencil lines every time when using the narrow setting on both mating mortises (I can't, my success rates vary around 50% to 60%), calibrated paddles give you built-in repeatability and accuracy.

Of course, you don't need to use the narrow setting for every mating mortise. When you do as in the case of doing shelf/partition joints (where the show edges must meet flush), the paddles excel -- without failure.

I followed the instructions of removing the set screw, flipping the paddle upwards, removing it, installing the replacement which has thinner paddle, pushing it back down, and re-installing the set screw.  I did this on the Left pin only, Right pin only, and both pins replaced, which are the photo's I've taken.  I'll run through it again just to double check there wasn't some tear-out fiber which got in between the paddle and edge.  Is there some recommended way of sliding the Domino up to the edge for consistency?

Offline darita

  • Posts: 320
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #84 on: November 06, 2020, 09:45 AM »
Haven't read thru all the replies, so I'm sure this has already been mentioned...I had my Domino for a short time and thought I knew what I was doing.  All of a sudden, like you, I couldn't get the faces of boards flush to one another.  I finally realized that the boards I was machining were slightly thinner than the distance from the Domino fence face to the table top I was using.  This caused the fence to be raised up very slightly off the workpiece face, resulting in the misalignment of the faces.
Once I realized this, I put a piece of stock under the workpiece, raising it off the table top, allowing the fence face to sit flush on the face of the workpiece.  All was good after that.

Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 565
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #85 on: November 06, 2020, 09:50 AM »
Haven't read thru all the replies, so I'm sure this has already been mentioned...I had my Domino for a short time and thought I knew what I was doing.  All of a sudden, like you, I couldn't get the faces of boards flush to one another.  I finally realized that the boards I was machining were slightly thinner than the distance from the Domino fence face to the table top I was using.  This caused the fence to be raised up very slightly off the workpiece face, resulting in the misalignment of the faces.
Once I realized this, I put a piece of stock under the workpiece, raising it off the table top, allowing the fence face to sit flush on the face of the workpiece.  All was good after that.

Yep, I've the edge having over the edge of the MFT/3 so I'm referencing with the Domino fence rather than base but thanks for pointing it out.  The horizontal alignment is only off by about the thickness of a piece of copy paper which is totally fine but now the paddles/alignment pins do not align even after swapping out the other paddles in the package for calibration ... hoping to be able to double check today.

Offline jcrowe1950

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    • Woodcraft Chattanooga, TN
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #86 on: November 06, 2020, 11:05 AM »
Yep, I've the edge having over the edge of the MFT/3 so I'm referencing with the Domino fence rather than base but thanks for pointing it out.  The horizontal alignment is only off by about the thickness of a piece of copy paper which is totally fine but now the paddles/alignment pins do not align even after swapping out the other paddles in the package for calibration ... hoping to be able to double check today.
Hey Bugsy,

    One other thing I wanted to mention. What was your plunge speed? When I was learning from the Festool folks, I was told a slow, steady plunge works best. Here's the theory behind this and as a longtime router user, it immediately made sense. The Domino is essentially a waggling router. When it waggles one way it's a regular cut but when it waggles the other way it becomes a climb cut. A climb cut will push the work away from the cutter. In any case, if you are suffering from loose tenons, (sounds like a drug commercial) try counting to eight for your plunges. My experience was that getting that chop down developed a bit of muscle memory such that I can now tell by the feel of the cutter in the material if I'm going too fast. Also, the typical overly fast plunge will result in a tombstone cut on the top of the mortise. Not sure if this helps, but keep up the good work....
Festool Specialist at Woodcraft, Chattanooga, TN

Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 565
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #87 on: November 06, 2020, 11:22 AM »
Hey @jcrowe1950, yes my plunge speed is about 8 seconds as you'll see in the video.  I definitely don't push hard and fast as I don't want the climb cut or for the bit to nut cut fast enough and the tool to deflect and come out of parallel with the fence.  I'm really looking forward to making some cabinets/bookshelves with the Domino and hope I can sort out the side to side alignment with the pins as it could really speed things up on shorter pieces...

Offline jcrowe1950

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Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #88 on: November 17, 2020, 06:46 PM »
Hey @jcrowe1950, yes my plunge speed is about 8 seconds as you'll see in the video.  I definitely don't push hard and fast as I don't want the climb cut or for the bit to nut cut fast enough and the tool to deflect and come out of parallel with the fence.  I'm really looking forward to making some cabinets/bookshelves with the Domino and hope I can sort out the side to side alignment with the pins as it could really speed things up on shorter pieces...
Hey Bugsy, et al,

     Not to revive this thread but last night I discovered a glitch with my D500 and remembered Sedge talking about the fix. I was dominoing fronts/backs of drawers to the sides. I began to notice during dry fit that the edges were not flush and I had been very careful in my process. Then I checked my setting on the fence with my setup blocks and, indeed, they had drifted off by enough to irritate me. What I did was to reset fence height locking lever to make it tighter. You do this by taking out the small phillips screw, removing the lever from the splined shaft and rotating it a little counter clockwise before replacing it. Then you replace the screw and away you go....this may have nothing to do with your issue but it did solve mine.

Festool Specialist at Woodcraft, Chattanooga, TN

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2192
Re: Domino DF500 Accuracy/Alignment Issues
« Reply #89 on: November 17, 2020, 08:24 PM »
I fixed mine from Day 1 when the factory setting wasn't quite right (the lever went beyond the fence when tightened). Luckily, as a newbie, I tracked down what to do in the manual.