Author Topic: Does holding a Festool make you feel better?  (Read 20527 times)

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Offline Tayler_mann

  • Posts: 416
Re: Does holding a Festool make you feel better?
« Reply #30 on: February 26, 2017, 09:38 AM »
Holding a Festool does make you feel better, but it's because it's a quality tool. I get the same feeling every time I pick up my Milwaukee brushless sawzall with the 9.0 battery. I guess it's not quite as satisfying as plunging my domino and inserting 5-10 perfectly matched  mortises. Boy thinking about it is making me wanna go use it right now.

Offline Bullhorn

  • Posts: 4
Re: Does holding a Festool make you feel better?
« Reply #31 on: March 03, 2018, 12:29 AM »
Sometimes, opening up a Systainer just makes me feel guilty.

I'm not a rich man, and since I don't make my living with tools, Festool equipment is a serious indulgence for me -- and I have several magic green boxes' worth now.

My tool purchases are generally justified by one or both of two criteria: practicality and emotions. Power tools have always fallen into the "practicality" bracket for me -- will it do what I need at a reasonable price? Will it save me time and improve task performance? How cheap can I get it, and how long will it run? My favorite value propositions have included a big Rikon bandsaw (cheap... but green!), full-weight worm-drive Skil, and the "buttersaw," an old but bomb-proof, 8.5" Hitachi SCMS.

Emotion-based acquisitions are driven directly by sentimentality. They incline steeply toward hand tools. I keep my great-uncle's wooden plough and sash fillister planes around, along with a Stanley 55 multiplane passed down from my stepfather's stepmother, and my grandma's anemic Skilsaw. When I splash out my limited cash on high-end tools, they're generally tools I intend to keep for a lifetime AND tools with a strong tug on my heart, e.g. the Lie-Nielsen and Clifton planes I bought to make furniture for my second wife, and the Diefenbach bench I slept on while she was divorcing me.   [blink]

My Festool collection would never have begun had I not been hit by a meth addict in a Subaru. That broke my spine for the third time, and broke it pretty good though fortunately without paraplegia. My hypoid Skil, which I used to single-hand at need, was suddenly too heavy to safely operate with both hands. Around the same time, I was diagnosed with moderate COPD, and dust control started to look much more important. My first Festool purchase was a CT-36 with an ETS 150/5 sander.

That sander has gotten a LOT of use. I owned a Porter-Cable 333 random orbital for a bunch of years, and sanded many, many square feet with it -- everything from furniture to floor finish repairs to cast iron skillets. It was top-heavy, a bit skittery, noisy as a nearby jet engine, dusty as a farm road in summer, and reliably triggered my Reynaud's. The first time I powered on my Festool sanding setup, it felt like a miracle of efficiency and comfort.

Miracle enough that I spent a big chunk of the insurance settlement from that back injury on a Domino XL, TS 75, a rectangular finish sander, Carvex 420 jigger (boy, was I happy to send my P-C jigsaw down the road -- worst blade holder in the history of industrial design), and a fair number of bits and bobs to go with them.

A year and a half back, just as I was starting to do more things again, I had another accident. That one mostly killed me; but for the grace and professionalism of TBICU personnel at UAB Medical Center, it certainly would have. There's been a fair long recovery road, and all my tools lay fallow while I learned how to breathe again, then talk, and walk, and eventually even swallow my own food. Shiny and mostly unused, thousands of dollars worth of Festool goodies sat snugly in Systainers, silently running out their warranty periods.

Like my motorcycles, I couldn't stand to look at them. Every time I got into the shop, I mostly just lurched around and knocked things over. My shop is small, so storage kind of depends on me being able to reach up and haul things down, or bend over and lift them up without bouncing my butt off something and running my head into something else... and I couldn't do it. Wasn't sure I ever would sort that out.

After more than a year of daily workouts at the local YMCA, I slowly started moving tools around again. There were a couple of starter projects around the house, then I started on a gate for my father-in-law's house on Birch Bay. He's not much older than I am and a lot less busted up but, thanks to genetics, his ticker is a grenade with a loose pin. Gary's a good man. I want him to have a solid cedar gate to replace the rotted one before his own warranty period expires.

So I pulled out my Domino XL -- a tool I had used on only two previous projects; a tool without a scratch on it -- and it failed on the fifth mortise. The stomach clench of dread kicked in when I realized I'd never sent in the warranty cards for any of my green magic.

Festool, it turns out, is a stand-up company. Nobody laughed -- at least, not to my face -- about my whiny R.O. Wordlessly, they replaced the armature, a couple of bearings, washers, and wheels, and bounced my Domino back to me (with a couple of fancy stickers) so fast I'd barely had time to curse the lag. I work pretty slowly, anyway. Super-slow, truth be told.

When I took that tool out of the UPS box, it felt good in my hands. Solid. An item of quality, built and repaired by a quality outfit. I felt good about having it.

Those gate parts are done now. This evening, I sanded the stile flats with my ETS 150. No dust mask required, and my glasses stayed clear. Despite my much-reduced grip, the mighty black-blue sander didn't skip around, make grinding noises, or blow dust up my snoot. It's a helluva fine item.

When I got done, I stood there for a few minutes and thought about it. I don't feel quite so guilty, anymore.

I've used the Carvex for a couple of curved arbors and other projects where I previously would have changed the design to avoid using my Porter-Cable jiggy; it's just a delight to use and favors my un-young eyes with its strobing laser. Breaking down plywood sheets is infinitely less obnoxious now that I have the track saw. Compared to my biscuit joiner, the Domino boggles my mind with the precision and strength of its joinery. And that sander... well.

That sander is a jewel. It's a joy in the hand, and a light load on the ears and nose. It is a gateway drug to the "green dispensary" of Festool items on Aisle Three. It's the most emotionally satisfying power tool I've ever purchased. My whole body hurts and it probably always will -- not griping about it; I earned that -- but the green tooling in my shop has been elevated from a hobbyist's indulgent luxury to a set of practical shop prostheses that allow me to keep building things.

Next up on the bench is a walnut cradle for my first grandchild -- and boy, am I looking forward to meeting her! I plan to smooth that cradle down so fine that no stray splinter could possibly catch so much as the finest wispy strand of baby's hair. That'll require a fair number of sanding sessions with my good, solid ETS.

Pretty sure I'll continue to feel just a little bit better, every time I pick it up.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2018, 03:39 PM by Bullhorn »

Offline mrB

  • Posts: 712
Re: Does holding a Festool make you feel better?
« Reply #32 on: March 03, 2018, 09:49 AM »
This forum needs a like button ^^^
there's nothing like the right tool for the job

Offline rst

  • Posts: 2402
Re: Does holding a Festool make you feel better?
« Reply #33 on: March 03, 2018, 10:05 AM »
 [big grin]

Offline Peter Halle

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Re: Does holding a Festool make you feel better?
« Reply #34 on: March 03, 2018, 10:11 AM »
@Bullhorn , I read youR first post here in the middle of the night.  I went back to bed honestly confused on how to comment.  Your stamina and heart to attack obstacles is beyond amazing.  Your honesty and writing is up lifting.

My wish is that you will continue to feel good using your tools - all your tools - not just your Festools.

You are an inspiration.


Offline ScotF

  • Posts: 2770
Re: Does holding a Festool make you feel better?
« Reply #35 on: March 03, 2018, 10:45 AM »
Very good post - one of the better ones I have read. Good stuff!

Offline jobsworth

  • Posts: 6195
  • Festool Baby.....
Re: Does holding a Festool make you feel better?
« Reply #36 on: March 04, 2018, 12:18 PM »

I usually just pass over threads like this and not even bother to read them.

I decided this Sunday morning to just take my time and look through all the folders and the threads that interest me.

This type of thread usually doesn't interest me.

 But after reading your post,Im glad I did read it.

 I found it very inspirational  thank you for such a fine and inspiring post.

Please post photos of some of your work. If they are anything like your post they would be very inspirational as well.

Offline jobsworth

  • Posts: 6195
  • Festool Baby.....
Re: Does holding a Festool make you feel better?
« Reply #37 on: March 04, 2018, 01:08 PM »
Ok as I already said, I dont usually respond to these sort of threads but I thought why not.

Well First thing is using festools have not caused me to lose weight  [big grin]

Ive been wood working for about 23 years. At one time I had my shop full of stationary power tools. Then I discovered festool.

First it was a MFT and a TS55 w a CT 26. Then I found I needed clamps, then I needed something else and on and on.  Soon I bought the RO90 I didnt preorder it and had to wait till it was released. So I bought a RO150 first to ease my pain.

Eventually I had enough festools to where I very seldom used my stationary tools.

Thats the thing about festool if ya get into their tools youll find you have to buy more and more to get the best out of the system they sort of hook you into using and buying more of their products.

So then I moved to the UK I literally gave all my stationary tools to a very old and good friend and took the festools overseas with me.

For a small shop the fe festools were awesome. I could do anything I wanted in a very small space.

Upon my return I didnt replace my tablesaw with a TS75 in a CMS module plus bought the jig saw module and as I had a CMS GE, I bought just the CMS VL stand (for some reason they dont sell just the stand here in the US you have to buy the complete unit.)   so I have my router permenantly sitting in my CMS VL and the the TS 75 sitting in the CMS module that
 I dont have. 

I bought the CS50 fence and the extension side table for the CMS to make it more like a regular table saw.  I had nothing but problems using that fence.

 The cuts were not as good as the TS 55 on a track.

I had the UK festool rep come out and have a look and he couldnt figure it out either. So for the longest time I just accepted that this just gave cuts like a cheap jobsite saw would and not the quality I expected from Festool.

I just recently got it resolved when I was reading something a post or video and I had a idea that it might be the fence alignment the blade.

So I discovered my fence was out of alignment with the blade using my woodpecker 1281 I adjusted the fence to the blade and Im now getting great cuts.

Basically my feelings as to whether using festools makes me feel better is this:

It depends.

 When they work like they should and the woodworker find the info they eed to use them properly and are adj properly (which is a major issue with festools you can tell just by the type of post here on the FOG and Sedges training videos help tremendously) and Ive gone through the research gone through the learing curve, yes it feels great using them. They feel good as using a quality tool does and Ill admit my tool snobbery (being a top snob) comes out thinking i can actually afford these tools ( I have a complete festool shop). The only real non festools I have is a Makita thickness planer and a Jet 6" jointer.

But during that learning curve and adjustment period its more frustrating than fullfilling to me. During those times I question why I didnt keep my stationary tools. When working correctly how they should and me having te knowledge to use them gained primarily from this site and the festool end user training Ive been to. They are a real pleasure to work with.

I know that with my enthusiasm I have for festools on the forum here that this post will surprising to some.

Im just being honest in my feelings toward these tools.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2018, 01:27 PM by jobsworth »