Author Topic: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?  (Read 2990 times)

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Offline Ray.DuBose

  • Posts: 27
About to pull the trigger on a MFT/3 Table and a TS75.  What are some of the must have accessories to get the most out of this table?

Thanks,
Ray

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Offline GoingMyWay

  • Posts: 1081
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #1 on: January 16, 2020, 02:01 PM »
I think the SYS-MFT-FX Clamping Set would be useful, but I think that's no longer available in the US.  I use the Clamping Elements all the time and one can seemingly never have enough Quick Clamps.

I replaced the stock MFT/3 fence with Fence Dogs: https://benchdogs.co.uk/products/fence-dogs?variant=7439204220986.
Inquiring Minds Want to Know

TS55, CT26, RO150, CXS, ETS 150/3, ETS EC 150/5, MFT/3, TS75, DF500, DTS400, OF1400, CT SYS

Offline Route24Design

  • Posts: 185
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Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #2 on: January 16, 2020, 04:13 PM »
The MW1000 Table to use as support and extension has been something I use every project.  Also the Flop Stop for the guide rail.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2020, 04:18 PM by WoodworkTech »
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Offline Peter Parfitt

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Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #3 on: January 16, 2020, 04:22 PM »
Hi Ray,

Get the basic MFT3 and then use tall and short dogs to do your right angled cuts. This will save you buying the full MFT3 kit. There are plenty of sources for tall and short dogs - Veritas (Lee Valley), QWAS and Axminster.

Peter

Offline jobsworth

  • Posts: 6285
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Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #4 on: January 16, 2020, 08:28 PM »
@Ray.DuBose

Well how much money you want to spend  [big grin] [big grin]

You'll definately need some of the quick clamps,

 some clamping element,

Set of dogs,

set of rail dogs
 
and if ya have a few bucks left over,

MFt extension

Vacuum system set


Offline Gregor

  • Posts: 1739
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2020, 04:22 AM »
You might not know it yet, but you definitively want a dust extractor.

Regarding the MFT itself: In case you're not keen on having a V-groove (to attach MW 1000 tables or Kapex UG wings) you might want to consider

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zW2e6b93mrk&feature=youtu.be

from this guy here on the forum.

Offline grbmds

  • Posts: 2008
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2020, 10:56 AM »
There are so many possibilities from third party suppliers these days. I own the MFT3 and TS55, one of the first Festool I purchased. After investing in various dogs, etc., I found that, in my work, I just use the basics that came with the MFT3. I'd look around and see what type of dog systems are out there before buying. If your plan is to use the table/saw mostly for getting square crosscuts, then I would say you probably don't need to initially invest in anything beyond the MFT. I'm sure many will disagree but, for me, I'm sorry I didn't just keep my money. For me, the MFT3 and saw works well for the most accurate crosscutting and cutting plywood down to size ever. I've tried using the setup for ripping but, in the end, bought a small table saw for that work. So, if you buy the MFT3, I'd try it for awhile before investing in accessories. Depends how you actually use the table and saw.
Randy

Offline jarbroen

  • Posts: 271
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2020, 11:09 AM »
I agree with grbmds.

Start with the MFT 'set' - it's only $100 more and comes with a 1080 rail which costs that alone.
Try out the MFT fence and definitely watch videos/read guides on squaring and use.
Definitely get a set of quick clamps. You'll need those for securing the rails/material on almost any cut as well as sanding and other uses.

Dogs and all the other accessories can be great, but can also be a lot of fiddling/learning how to get the most out of.
Personally, I like the simplest approach that gets me repeatable accuracy.  Speaking of - definitely invest in a really good square like the Woodpeckers 1281(or bigger) if you don't already have one.  Great for squaring the rail to your work or squaring the MFT fence/rail.

That's it, about $200 in extra accessories and then see what works for you and what you really need.  I've tried a lot of different accessories and add on and have gone back to basic.

Offline JeffSD

  • Posts: 17
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Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #8 on: January 17, 2020, 09:49 PM »
Ray, I set up my new MFT/3 this past fall and have a few suggestions.

1. Don't assume that the factory installed stops for the guide rail supports will result in a cutting edge that is exactly 90 degrees to the front and back of the table and parallel to its CNC'd holes.

I'm sure my table left Germany well-calibrated, but by the time it reached California it was off by 1/8th of an inch over the length of my guide rail. I found the manual a bit cryptic on this point and I didn't see it discussed in the Festool setup video.

Fortunately, before making the first cut on my table I saw Andy Guile's ("The Woodgrafter") MFT/3 setup video. At 6:34 of part 1, he discusses how to check the accuracy of the factory stops and make adjustments, where needed.



2. As mentioned above, a good square is essential and I picked up a 16" x 10.5" Kinex DIN 875/1 machinist square from Taylor Toolworks for what I thought was a reasonable price. Here's a link: https://taytools.com/collections/brands-kinex/products/kinex-2-piece-din-875-1-machinist-squares?variant=18087098253363

3. I found that the tab in the front guide rail support (where it connects with the channel on the bottom of the guide rail) had some play in it. Apparently, this is so common that an enterprising person developed an inexpensive product called "Slop-Stop" to deal with it. I bought one and it did the trick.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Tune-your-Festool-MFT-rail-with-Slop-Stop/274200711773

4. Peter Parfitt and others have suggested purchasing dogs for your table and I would definitely agree. Following Peter's advice, I've been getting accurate 90 degree and 45 degree cuts with my TS55 just using dogs and the calibrated guide rail. You can view Peter's excellent "New Brit Workshop" videos here:
 http://www.youtube.com/user/StoneMessage/featured

5. Dust extractor? I tried going with a cheaper shop vac, but quickly broke down and got a CT Midi. The Festool vacs are very good.

Good luck!

 











Offline simonh

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Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2020, 04:35 AM »
I have the MFT but didn't get along with all the getting and keeping all the pieces square to one another (despite having a wide array of expensive setup gadgets).  Now I use the TSO GRS-16PE guide rail square (attached to the MFT flip bracket) and one of the TSO TPG parallel guides attached to the rail square. IMO this is the most accurate no-fuss setup for perfect square cuts and with the parallel guide it also makes repeatable length cuts a doddle with a minimum one time calibration.

Also, with the TSO system you get the benefit that when a large 2800x2100 sheet of material arrives I can drop it down on the floor (even on the driveway if it's heavy) on some foam and still use the parallel guides for long rip cuts and the rail square for cross-cuts. 

I have a 3m Festool rail with 2 parallel guide adaptors so I can quickly hook on the TPG 30 inch track with flip stops for rip cut. Then I have the 1.9m and 1.2m Festool rails for use with the TSO square and up to the 50 inch track and a couple of stops so I can quickly flip between lengths when making cross cuts for cabinet parts.

It's not cheap when you add up everything but for handling sheet materials it is an amazing system. If you are using the MFT setup instead of a table saw and mitre saw for real wood then other systems may suit better (actually the TSO precision triangle set is amazing for replacing the mitre saw if one desires).

-Simon

Offline Ray.DuBose

  • Posts: 27
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2020, 04:34 PM »
Thanks for all the info everyone.  I went ahead with the one that comes with the track and miter. As some said it's cheaper to buy it up front and I do have projects with weird angles.   

Contacting Axminster monday to see when this set will be back in stock as I love the cam clamps and looks like this kit will fit the bill to get started.  Also it's quite a bit cheaper than the Woodpecker / Veritas Sets.  Thanks Peter for the heads up on these things and the video's you did on them!! 

https://www.axminster.co.uk/ujk-technology-accessory-kit-in-t-loc-case-106161

I started off dipping my toe in the water with festool with a Domino 700 and one of the 2019 Midi's and found I needed a better work surface to build everything off of so those that recommend getting a dust extractor I've got one.  My "Dust Extractor" prior was a shopvac I didn't hook to any tools and a leaf blower to blow it all out of the garage.. Needless to say my wife was less than thrilled with that setup.  The Midi will live by the MFT/3 for use with festool stuff.. still have my shopvac for everything else currently.

Sad part is we moved a couple years ago and waiting to see if I settle in this area or we move again so we are in a rental house and I can't hook up everything how I want it.  I have a Oneida 5HP Dust Gorilla Pro that I'll get hooked in when we are back in our own house as the Midi isn't going to keep up with my Hammer A3-31 and Hammer K3 Winner.  I usually have to just sweep after those. 

Offline joemodern

  • Posts: 32
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #11 on: January 20, 2020, 08:16 AM »
Sounds like you have it all sorted out. I almost balked at the price of the clamping elements but now use them, as well as the quick clamps, on nearly every project. The QWAS dogs also keep stuff from sliding around and have been invaluable.
Joe Modern Limited Co.
www.joemodern.com

Offline zapdafish

  • Posts: 590
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #12 on: January 20, 2020, 10:09 AM »

I found these veritas planning stops quite useful for dominoing
https://www.leevalley.com/en-us/shop/tools/workshop/workbenches/benchtop-accessories/69837-veritas-planing-stop


This cam wedge set is usefull too. Helps keeps things tight against the dogs when cutting.
https://tsoproducts.com/accessories/ujk-technology-cam-wedge-clamping-set/
CT22, TS55, Kapex, RO150, Domino, RS 2 E

Offline Gregor

  • Posts: 1739
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #13 on: January 20, 2020, 12:59 PM »

I found these veritas planning stops quite useful for dominoing
https://www.leevalley.com/en-us/shop/tools/workshop/workbenches/benchtop-accessories/69837-veritas-planing-stop
These combined with some normal dogs, a pack of MFT-SP and another of FS-HZ (or the cheaper Bessey original) and you can skip the Festool MFT-FX-Set.

Offline Ray.DuBose

  • Posts: 27
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #14 on: January 20, 2020, 03:12 PM »
Yea the Cam Wedges you list below at TSO are the ones I was getting.  May have to grab a couple of those Veritas planing stops as well. Thanks


I found these veritas planning stops quite useful for dominoing
https://www.leevalley.com/en-us/shop/tools/workshop/workbenches/benchtop-accessories/69837-veritas-planing-stop


This cam wedge set is usefull too. Helps keeps things tight against the dogs when cutting.
https://tsoproducts.com/accessories/ujk-technology-cam-wedge-clamping-set/

Offline grbmds

  • Posts: 2008
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #15 on: January 21, 2020, 01:02 PM »
Many people seem to recommend not buying the Festool hardware miter setup for the MFT. I think it depends on what you are doing. I was never sorry I bought the MFT3 set. I use it on every project I do for the most accurate cross cutting that I have ever been able to do. There are many ways to make the MFT work with your track saw and routers. For me, the MFT3 set has worked well. I own but don't use dogs much for anything but holding wood on the MFT during assembly or possibly gluing.
Randy

Offline kdzito

  • Posts: 352
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #16 on: January 21, 2020, 07:15 PM »
Go with the set and get some dogs and a slop stop ....
Building one day at a time.

Offline six_of_6

  • Posts: 1
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #17 on: June 02, 2020, 08:43 PM »
Plenty of people selling 20mm dogs on eBay for very reasonable prices.  Got nice machined aluminum black anodized set of 4 for less than brand named versions.  Can't imagine brand name versions being any better functionally.

Festool hold down clamps went for sale on the festoolrecon site. Check regularly for sales.  I find them fast to set up but occasionally short on reach.

Festool inline clamps are super nice, fast, and easy to use but expensive. One pair is all I need.

My downsizing project turned my MFT/3 to a router table as well. Added a router lift and a sweet Jessem fence.

Recently added a WoodPeckers combination t-slot/miter track to the MFT/3 which opens up a lot more hold down options.

Might add a sliding table in the future with some spare 80/20 aluminum parts...


Online Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 334
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #18 on: June 03, 2020, 11:22 AM »
Before I ever bought Festool I purchased a SawStop.  I received a reduced price by letting them keep the stock fence as I already knew I needed the Incra Joinery System instead.  I was immediately sold on the system once I watched the video which showed the 1/1000" accuracy and ability to move the fence, realize you needed one more piece of a previous dimension, and ability to return the fence to exactly the same position it was previously for identically sized pieces.

That said, the stock MFT/3 fence was a disappointment as it lacked repeatable cuts but most importantly is that it had way to much deflection for somebody who desires a high degree of accuracy.  I read on the FOG the stock fence would work well if I bought an extra fence clamp, 495541, and mounted it with 2 of these ... it was not good enough for me but FWIW I'm a bit OCD.  I also tried some fence dogs mounted from underneath and these also had enough deflection that I couldn't settle on it as a solution.

My OCD is finally settled ... I've bought the Incra Track System 52" and Shop Stop to bring the repeat-ability feature to my MFT/3 and to eliminate deflection, I spent about a few weeks designing, 3D printing, and tweaking until I had a mount which fit the MFT/3 profile perfectly.  My MFT/3 fence is now perfect and it can be removed and reinstalled easily all while keeping consistent measuring scale accuracy ...

315675-0

315679-1

315681-2



« Last Edit: June 03, 2020, 11:42 AM by Bugsysiegals »

Offline rst

  • Posts: 2445
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #19 on: June 03, 2020, 11:45 AM »
Hey Bugsy...I'm glad to see someone else that was not satisfied with the stock fence arrangement. Although in my case I wanted the additional cross cut capability.  I made model years ago using UHMW routed and screwed together, giving me 27 1/2" width cutting using the same Incra and have two stops. You'd is a much more elegant solution.  The other thing I did was extend the fence with a piece of 3/8" aluminum so that short pieces are supported thru the cut.  Also, routed the square cut line with dovetail slot so I could use another UHMW removable kerf insert.
« Last Edit: June 03, 2020, 11:52 AM by rst »

Online Bugsysiegals

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Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #20 on: June 03, 2020, 12:12 PM »
Hey Bugsy...I'm glad to see someone else that was not satisfied with the stock fence arrangement. Although in my case I wanted the additional cross cut capability.  I made model years ago using UHMW routed and screwed together, giving me 27 1/2" width cutting using the same Incra and have two stops. You'd is a much more elegant solution.  The other thing I did was extend the fence with a piece of 3/8" aluminum so that short pieces are supported thru the cut.  Also, routed the square cut line with dovetail slot so I could use another UHMW removable kerf insert.

Thanks!! It was two weeks of frustration as I continually adjusted the model so it fit snug in all areas while keeping 90 degrees to the surface.  It feels like it snaps into place and doesn't need the knobs but I put them on just for safe measure.  I've not cut many short pieces but when I did I put a longer piece behind the short piece to "extend" the fence ... It would be worth seeing what you've done!

Offline tjskinny

  • Posts: 92
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #21 on: June 03, 2020, 01:20 PM »
Nice design Bugsy!   I’ve been sketching out similar designs to attach a fence just behind the mft top like that.  I was going to use UHMW / aluminum and have a fence on the offcut side like rst, and with your brackets would be easy to do as well.   All to say your design is very elegant and thanks for sharing!

Offline Mr_Mod

  • Posts: 81
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #22 on: June 04, 2020, 07:06 AM »
Bugsy,

Are the brackets that attach to the MFT/3 extrusions 3D printed? i think they are great, wouldn't mind a set if they were available to buy

Offline rst

  • Posts: 2445
Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #23 on: June 04, 2020, 05:52 PM »
While Bugsy and used the Incra fence, I use the flip down stops.  I often make multiples of differing lengths so it is more convenient to be able to flip out of the way. 

Offline jcrowe1950

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Re: Pulling the trigger on MFT/3 Table What are the must haves?
« Reply #24 on: June 04, 2020, 07:47 PM »
I have the MFT but didn't get along with all the getting and keeping all the pieces square to one another (despite having a wide array of expensive setup gadgets).  Now I use the TSO GRS-16PE guide rail square (attached to the MFT flip bracket) and one of the TSO TPG parallel guides attached to the rail square. IMO this is the most accurate no-fuss setup for perfect square cuts and with the parallel guide it also makes repeatable length cuts a doddle with a minimum one time calibration.


Hi Simon,
   I am very interested in your use of the Festool MFT flip bracket with the TSO TRS-16PE and parallel guides as I was actually considering something similar. Since buying both of the squares and the full parallel guide setup from TSO, I have been blown away by the accuracy and precision of the square and parallel guides. Can you actually post any photos? I like the MFT/3 a lot and if properly set up it can be very accurate with repeatable cuts. The protractor is nice as well, but when people complain about the holes in the MFT not being "calibrated" to the stops in the sides, there's no way that is possible due to slop in the attachment of the top....and it was not designed that way. Hans Friedebach from TSO Products made the point that much of the Festool gear has been around a good, long while and it functions as designed. The aftermarket companies like TSO, Woodpecker, Seneca have the luxury of seeing a functional design and improving on it. In any case, I am personally very impressed with both the MFT/3 and the aftermarket tools. To the original poster, I'd consider the Woodpecker MFT Setup square. You can get your MFT fence to guide rail dead nuts accurate with it but you need to look at some of the Festool expert MFT setup videos on Youtube. Some people claim that the setup causes slop to develop between the guide rail and the steel tapered pin on the guide rail support on the front of the MFT. It turns out that is caused by a mistake in setup (I know this because I made that mistake a few times myself). In any case, best of luck.
Festool Specialist at Woodcraft, Chattanooga, TN