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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-27-2012, 11:07 AM Thread Starter
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Default Festool Domino?

I was chattling with someone I met at a dinner party on the weekend who turned out to be a veteran (i.e. 30-year) woodworker. He makes furniture and he made this astonishing statement: The Festool Domino changed my life.

He claims it has replaced his biscuit joiner and his doweling jigs and has simplified his life when it comes to making mortises and tenons. He couldn't say enough good things about it.

I use a $100 Freud biscuit joiner and I have a basic dowel jig and I'm not advanced enough yet to even attempt tortoises and ... er ... mortises and tenons so I was intrigued.

First thing I noticed on the web, however, was that the Festool costs $981 in Canada ($850 for the similarly equipped model in the U.S.). As a hobbyist, I have gotten by with biscuits and dowels and No. 6 wood screws but I am fascinated by the possibliity of doing more advanced work using a simpler (but more expensive) method.

Has anyone here tried this thing?Is it really worth a grand? I have read complaints about alignment issues.

What about the Dowelmax, another thing I came across on the Web? Are the two comparable? I'd love to hear what people think about these questions.

Thank you,

Joel
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-27-2012, 12:15 PM
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Joel, it's a bit rich for my blood - but let me also say this: Festool makes some very nice tools, but isn't it just a quick way to do loose tenon joinery? If I needed something like that, I think I would first look hard at something called "Beadlock" - I've not used it, but feel confident someone on the Router Forum can tell you everything you would need to know about Beadlock, as well as the Festool Domino. I have an old, yet very effective dowelling jig that I've been using for quite a while and for my needs it is the best I've seen. I'll take a shot of it and get some info on it for you and reply again with that stuff on this same thread!

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-27-2012, 12:26 PM
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-27-2012, 12:29 PM
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Okay, here is the info on my aforementioned dowelling jig. I just found it on the internet quite easily. It is the Leichtung "Double Edge to Edge Dowel Jig". I found mine at an estate sale. The son of the deceased man had a lot of tools for sale and I "cleaned him out" of some cool and interesting stuff. I seem to remember the Dowel Jig was $5.00! Anyway, it was without bushings - so I bought several of all sizes available online. I use probably 100 linear feet of dowels per week and am a big believer in wooden dowels for my type of work - which is building unique prototypes - and as a hobby I also build old-type counting machines: Abacus, Soroban, Iota and Salamis Tablets.

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-27-2012, 01:22 PM Thread Starter
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You people are amazing. Now I have TWO alternatives that do the same thing at a much more reasonable price. Festool is also rich for my blood unless I save my workshop budget for the next three years.

Thanks very much, Jigs and Otis.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-27-2012, 06:35 PM
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The Domino is fast, accurate, versatile and yes....pricey.
It's a fine tool and virtually dust free in operation with extraction.

As with any tool, there is always an alternative, weigh the need, the budget and go with what's best suited. Perhaps learn mortise and tenon with homebrew jig and routerwork.

Loose tenon (and dowel) does simplify the cut list quite a bit.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-29-2012, 02:11 AM
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Don't forget the beadlock pro from rockler. It works well. It was $99 in one of the adds they sent me. It's a loose tenant joint.
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