Author Topic: Domino 500 - pins or paddles  (Read 993 times)

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Offline rookie08

  • Posts: 208
Domino 500 - pins or paddles
« on: June 13, 2020, 08:56 PM »
I was flipping houses for many years and the first one I ended up doing all the work myself.  I bought a bunch of tools including most Festools.  Even though you make more money doing the work yourself, you can only do one at a time so I stopped doing the work myself and contracted everything out.  So I’ve got a ton of Festool stuff in my workshop and I’m starting to use it more for home based stuff.  For some unknown reason I bought 2 Domino 500’s both with the assorted domino systainers.  I only want to keep one.  What do people like better, the pins or the paddles?

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Offline PeterJJames13

  • Posts: 246
Re: Domino 500 - pins or paddles
« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2020, 08:57 PM »
Pins!


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Offline Christopher Fitch

  • Posts: 126
Re: Domino 500 - pins or paddles
« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2020, 09:16 PM »
Pins.

Offline Cheese

  • Posts: 8562
Re: Domino 500 - pins or paddles
« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2020, 10:28 PM »
The paddles are absolutely the best solution. The pins are a real pita so off load that dinosaur and sell it to me. I’ll make sure it receives the death knell it deserves.

Offline Birdhunter

  • Posts: 3477
  • Woodworker, Sportsman, Retired
Re: Domino 500 - pins or paddles
« Reply #4 on: June 14, 2020, 01:53 AM »
My 500 has paddles that I rarely use. I bough a a Mafell DDF40 Doweler that uses pins. Now, I really like pins. I wish I could retrofit the 500 with pins.
Birdhunter

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2698
Re: Domino 500 - pins or paddles
« Reply #5 on: June 14, 2020, 10:49 AM »
Pins are better, but not for all the "wrong" reasons that some people have put forward, such as using them to register against mortises for placement. For most registration purposes, it's absurd to do that as you'd be cutting mortises too close or be cutting too many mortises (dominoes aren't free). The cross stop is an accessory that allows you to do most, if not all, of the registration functions of pins.

The only time that pins excel over paddles is when you want to cut angled mortises on narrow strips, for example, for louver shutters. But it doesn't mean you can't make angled mortises with the paddled DF (see image).

Paddles can be retracted, helpful in some situations, but I don't know if pins can be (someone told me the earlier version of pins could not be retracted. True?).

Here or somewhere else I learned that Festool did not have a patent violation issue with the pins but chose to use paddles. If that was true, the best marketing opportunity (missed?) was to offer an optional pin base for the paddle users. I'd certainly get one as a spare -- for the rare occasions when pins may work better. Or, include both retractable pins and paddles in the base as a new design!

For the majority of DF500 users at any level and furniture makers, I'd argue that the differences between two versions matter little to them in practice.

If I were having two DFs like the OP with one to sell, I'd give the potential buyer a choice: paddles at $x OR pins at $x + a premium.
« Last Edit: June 14, 2020, 11:48 AM by ChuckM »

Offline rookie08

  • Posts: 208
Re: Domino 500 - pins or paddles
« Reply #6 on: June 14, 2020, 02:25 PM »
Thanks for all the input everyone.  Seems like it’s 50/50 overall.  I think I’ll start using both for a short time and then sell one of them.

Offline Frank-Jan

  • Posts: 1189
  • Dutch Canadian living in Belgium
Re: Domino 500 - pins or paddles
« Reply #7 on: June 14, 2020, 07:44 PM »
...
The only time that pins excel over paddles is when you want to cut angled mortises on narrow strips, for example, for louver shutters. ...


I only have one domino 500, with the pins. But to me the calibration method of the pin fence seems superior aswell. (you can adjust one of them by turning an excenter bushing, as oposed to swapping one paddle for a slightly thinner paddle.)

If I recall correctly there were other minor improvements made to the fence when they changed to the paddles,
one was that it would be less likely to slip and change the height setting, and another that it could be lowered a bit further for better centering 4 mm dominos in 12 mm stock. (I luckily haven't had the problem of the fence height slipping during use with my machine), the option of locking them in seems also handy in some situations.


Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2698
Re: Domino 500 - pins or paddles
« Reply #8 on: June 14, 2020, 09:06 PM »
Frank,

Indeed, the pins are much easier to adjust. I did not change any paddles as the unit came properly calibrated...and I've never dropped the machine or anything like that. ;D