Author Topic: OF1400 + MFT3 vs router table  (Read 1365 times)

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Offline Kodek64

  • Posts: 1
OF1400 + MFT3 vs router table
« on: January 14, 2021, 01:54 AM »
Hi everyone,

Im looking to get my first router. I’m really excited! I’m a huge fan of my other Festool tools (CT MIDI, CT Cyclone, ETS125, Domino 500), so I’m considering a Festool router. Ive a few questions; hoping to get some feedback.

For context, I’m a relatively new woodworker. I’m only building home projects (storage/furniture). My goal for the router is to do flush trimming, cutting dados, and other grooves. I’d like to complement my SawStop JSS in my small garage shop. Good dust collection is a top priority!

Questions below. Sorry If I’m all over the place!

 1. I believe the OF1400 is considered the more well-rounded router sold by Festool, right? It seems that people end up getting multiple routers, but let’s put that aside for now :)

 2. For table operations: would I be happy with a Festool router and an MFT3, or would it be better to get a router table with a cheaper fixed-base router? My alternative is a JessEm table with a Bosch router.
 
 3. How is the MFT3 nowadays? I’d love to get one, but I hear it’s a pain to keep squared. Is that still the case? I really like the flexibility of the dog holes.

Thank you!

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Online mkasdin

  • Posts: 426
Re: OF1400 + MFT3 vs router table
« Reply #1 on: January 14, 2021, 02:16 AM »
If you’re only going to get one router then get the of1400. If you plan on doing more handheld work ie flush trimming or lr32 look at the of1010. The 1500 accepts half inch shanks. Better because less vibration and more depth per pass. I have a Dewalt palm router, and a Bosch 1617 evs. I don’t like changing out bits half way through a job so it saves time to leave the bit in. Hence you need multiple routers. The Bosch 1617 was on sale at rockler for under $200. It accepts half inch bits and I plan to mount that in a router table or use in a sled for flattening. The of1400 will go into Festools cms table, but I don’t know much about it other than it’s hard to mount in other tables?

The MFT nowadays I would be tempted to get Peter Parfits UJK 32mm hole jig and build your own 32mm table out of mdf. Once you buy the jig, you can make multiple tops The Festool mft is very nice and you give up workspace real estate for portability. So you need to determine what’s important to you. It’s kind of expensive, but it’s sturdy enough without the cross braces and you need a square to keep things 90. Look at TSO 90 degree square or the woodpecker square. You can also make an mdf jig to align the fence to the dog holes.

Welcome to the fog.

Offline wood pulp

  • Posts: 289
  • Each another's audience...
Re: OF1400 + MFT3 vs router table
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2021, 09:12 AM »

Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 702
Re: OF1400 + MFT3 vs router table
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2021, 10:30 AM »
I tried to use my OF1400 for flush trimming and it was to heavy to produce a consistent result.  I recently bought a 1/2" compression bit for making dado's with it and will try it on some future projects.

I bought the OF1010 afterwards and it's definitely better for flush trimming.  I've left some gouges when not paying attention but I'm learning how to control it and take off thinner layers near the end which has produces a result which can be sanded out nicely.  I also use this router with the LR32 and when the router was in for repair, broken base, I put the project on hold rather than using the bulkier OF1400.

I also have a router table but it's only used for profiling edges of doors/drawers.  Since I've the Incra fence with micro adjust ability I may just use the 1/2" compression bit in the table and sell the OF1400 as it really doesn't fill any niche for me.

The MFT/3 stock fence/guide rail alignment leaves a lot to be desired but the table itself can still cut well when paired with aftermarket products.  That said, for the price, unless you're going mobile, I'd recommend a home made MFT table.  It would like be stronger, bigger, have better components, and still wind up cheaper.

Offline Birdhunter

  • Posts: 3316
  • Woodworker, Sportsman, Retired
Re: OF1400 + MFT3 vs router table
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2021, 12:32 PM »
The 1400 is a great router, no doubt.

The main advantage of the MFT set over a home made table using a MFT top is the flip down rail. I use mine all the time with my TS55. I never have an alignment/squaring problem.

The main disadvantage of the MFT set over a home made table using a MFT top is the lack of a big vise. Also, the MFT is shaky whereas a custom table is not. The MFT leg braces are a waste of money as they only marginally improve stability.

I have two conjoined MFTs and I have added an extension to hold a big vise. The steel legs on the extension solidify the MFTs. No shake even when sawing or planing.
Birdhunter

Offline LaVike

  • Posts: 6
Re: OF1400 + MFT3 vs router table
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2021, 04:02 PM »
Birdhunter,
Any chance you could show a picture of your extension on your 2 MTF/3's?

I've got very little space and was gifted an MFT/3.  I'm trying to figure out how to get it stable enough to saw & plane.  I'm also trying to figure out how to attach a router "extension" onto my MFT/3 to be able to use the MFT/3 for outfeed and support.

Any pictures or additional explanation would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!

Offline Birdhunter

  • Posts: 3316
  • Woodworker, Sportsman, Retired
Re: OF1400 + MFT3 vs router table
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2021, 06:20 PM »
I’ll post a picture in the morning
Birdhunter

Offline Birdhunter

  • Posts: 3316
  • Woodworker, Sportsman, Retired
Re: OF1400 + MFT3 vs router table
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2021, 06:26 PM »
If you will search with “MFT extension” as the subject and Birdhunter as the author, you should find the thread on my modification.
Birdhunter

Offline Crazyraceguy

  • Posts: 114
Re: OF1400 + MFT3 vs router table
« Reply #8 on: January 14, 2021, 07:57 PM »
As a guy who makes his living with these tools, it's hard to "de-tune" to the needs of an average hobbyist, but I'll try.
Since production (speed) likely isn't a priority, changing bits and/or set-ups is part of the deal. The OF 1400 is the "do it all" choice. It is one of the most versatile routers around, but as with most things that "do it all", there are disadvantages too.
That said, if you are only going to have one.....it is the one to get.
There are times when the smaller OF1010 would do the same task easier, just because of the smaller lighter package, but that size can be a disadvantage in other cases.
The ability of the OF1400 to use 1/2" shank bits is a big thing because the availability of 8mm shank bits is fairly limited. There are out there, but not at all what you would call common in the US.
With very few exceptions, I use 1/2" shank bits whenever the cutter diameter is  1/2" or greater.
Cut quality is almost always better with the bigger shank.
I suppose that it depends upon what kind of things you make or how much you would use a router table, but I would have a dedicated router for one, in that case. Swapping one in and out is a hassle and you will avoid using it because of that.
As far as routers for a table, I don't think you can beat a Triton. They function very much like a built-in router-lift.
I'm a bit over the top for most people, but I would say that the minimum would be 3 routers. One capable of 1/2" shanks in a table, another also 1/2" for freehanded use, and a small palm router (trimmer) for the light duty 1/4" shank bits.
Triton MOF001 or Triton TRA001
OF1400
Bosch Colt or Makita RT0701

If you only have one, the OF1400 for sure.
CSX
DF500 + assortment set
PS420 + Base kit
OF1010
OF1400
MFK700
TS55, FS1080, FS1400 holey, FS1900, FS3000
CT26E + Workshop cleaning set
RO90
RO125
ETS EC 125
RAS115
ETS 125 (2)

Offline jarbroen

  • Posts: 285
Re: OF1400 + MFT3 vs router table
« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2021, 09:04 PM »
If you are only getting one router for now, definitely the 1400.  My wife got me that as my first router and it’s awesome.  I’ve since added a few more routers, but that one is the most versatile.
It will do good sized dados in one pass where the 1010 would take 2 or 3.  The edge guide for the 1400 is much more polished than the 1010 version and comes with all the parts.  The rail guide attachment works awesome for dados or detailing away from the edges.
That’s another use of the MFT flip fence - routing.

I started out with making a large, 42”x78” Paulk style bench/cart.  I used the Parf hole jig and made the top.  It worked okay, but was super bulky and didn’t allow reconfigurations or reclaiming space when needed.  Basically, not flexible.

I decided to spend the money on the MFT3 and have been super happy.  I now have 2 and also use the extension table from the Mobile Work cart.
I can cut large sheets easily or break up into separate stations for different tasks.
I can also put one or both away if I need space.
That’s the thing about the “system” once you embrace it you will find how well all the pieces compliment each other.
Definitely watch lots of videos, especially the Sedge ones, and learn about how the different options would work for you.

Offline LaVike

  • Posts: 6
Re: OF1400 + MFT3 vs router table
« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2021, 10:30 AM »
If you will search with “MFT extension” as the subject and Birdhunter as the author, you should find the thread on my modification.

Birdhunter,
I did the search and found a picture of what you did.  I couldn't find a specific post on how you did it but what you have done is amazing to me and exactly what I'd like to try and do.  Which Festool profile pieces/parts did you need to use to connect the extension to your MFT/3?  Did you use the Shop Fox D2659 28-Inch Deep Work Bench Leg?

Any help or insights would be greatly appreciated.

Sorry for hi-jacking the thread.

Offline Birdhunter

  • Posts: 3316
  • Woodworker, Sportsman, Retired
Re: OF1400 + MFT3 vs router table
« Reply #11 on: January 15, 2021, 02:07 PM »
I bought a Festool extrusion and cut it  in half. I also bought the Festool connectors that link the extrusions together.

I bought the legs from Amazon. I think they were Shop Fox. I had to drill my own holes to get the exact height.
Birdhunter