Author Topic: Straightening out a rail?  (Read 2018 times)

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Offline acer66

  • Posts: 98
Straightening out a rail?
« on: December 31, 2021, 09:37 AM »
Hello,

For some reason I just  remembered a post here saying that Makita rails come sometimes bowed and I just checked my 118” (?) rail and it is off a shy 1/16” in the center.
Is that fixable?

On a side note, how often does that happen with Festool rails?

Thank you.

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Offline Crazyraceguy

  • Posts: 1449
Re: Straightening out a rail?
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2022, 11:08 AM »
As I understand it, things like these rails are straightened by stretching. They come from the extruder fairly straight and get stretched to the final tolerance. I would assume that this tolerance varies to some degree by the different manufacturers. I would also guess that there is a lot of complex calculation going on with that. As things are stretched, they get thinner, that would have to be figured in, for the rail to turn out as required. From what I have heard, the guaranteed straight part of a Festool rail is the edge of the raised section that is nearest the splinter guard side, not necessarily the whole thing, there may also me some machining going on too. I have no idea where Makita considers the straight part to be or exactly how straight they call acceptable.
That said, it may be within spec in the first place, whether that's good enough or not.
Also, it may be able to be perfected, but quite costly to do that. Trying to straighten it yourself might make it worse.
Some people I have worked with over the years call this the 95-100 rule/thing. When something is at 95%, trying to make it too 100% usually makes it worse. Then either it costs so much in time or money to get back to where it was before, it's not worth it.
That said, under 1/16" bow in almost 10 feet is not horrible, unless you want to match two edges together on long panels, where the error would double. If that is the case, it might be better to do a mirror cut, where both panels are cut at the same time, parallel to each other. Then even if they are not perfectly straight, they are the same. A router and a straight edge make it easy, just the tiniest amount needs to be removed.
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Offline Mike Goetzke

  • Posts: 838
Re: Straightening out a rail?
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2022, 11:31 AM »
Hello,

For some reason I just  remembered a post here saying that Makita rails come sometimes bowed and I just checked my 118” (?) rail and it is off a shy 1/16” in the center.
Is that fixable?

On a side note, how often does that happen with Festool rails?

Thank you.

I have all Makita rails. One 55" was not straight so I returned it for a good one. My 118" is very good but don't remember the measurement.

Can you explain how you measured it? (1/16" over 118" may not be bad depending how it was measured???)

Offline TSO_Products

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  • Posts: 430
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Re: Straightening out a rail?
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2022, 02:10 PM »
@acer66 - the practical answer to your question about straightening an existing guide rail:
     "No - "

What are you building?

Hans


Offline woodferret

  • Posts: 150
Re: Straightening out a rail?
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2022, 03:17 PM »

On a side note, how often does that happen with Festool rails?


It happens.  I had a 800 rail that was off.  My 1900 and 1400 were perfect though.  I just sent the bad one back to the dealer with no hassle.

Offline acer66

  • Posts: 98
Re: Straightening out a rail?
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2022, 05:33 PM »
Hello,

For some reason I just  remembered a post here saying that Makita rails come sometimes bowed and I just checked my 118” (?) rail and it is off a shy 1/16” in the center.
Is that fixable?

On a side note, how often does that happen with Festool rails?

Thank you.

I have all Makita rails. One 55" was not straight so I returned it for a good one. My 118" is very good but don't remember the measurement.

Can you explain how you measured it? (1/16" over 118" may not be bad depending how it was measured???)
Cut a straight well not so straight edge its seems at a 8’ ply and turned the rail around so the non cut side of the rail was facing the fresh cut on the ply.
Lined the rail with the ends of the fresh cut plywood edge up flush and there was a recess towards the edge roughly in the center of the rail.

While I am typing this I realized that I doubled the error by doing that so maybe that is something I can live with.

I am building cabinets with it.