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Should I get a Domino?

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Has anyone here heard of this Festool Domino thing?

 

:D

 

I've gathered up a handful of unused tools and other things around the house to sell and it looks like a Domino is actually a possibility within a few weeks.  I've told the wife I don't want to use any new funds to buy it and want to only use money from things I already own. 

The thing is, I've only been into woodworking for a few years and I'm a bit afraid the Domino may become a huge crutch for me.  I've never cut dovetails and I've done limited mortise and tenon work.  I use pocket holes way too often, whenever I can rationalize it by telling myself the holes will be hidden or easily plugged, because they're sooo dang easy and fast.  A Domino would likely replace 95% of this work and become my new "go to."  It'd be hard to pass it up, even when a joint would be a good opportunity to learn or practice a new skill. 

With the money I would spend on a Domino, I could get shore up some my big deficiencies.  I'd like an extra router dedicated for mortising, better quality router bits, I need some quality chisels, some decent sharpening equipment (WS3000?), a fence for my bandsaw, a belt sander to replace my last piece of junk that I burned up....  That $1000 would take care of all or most of this.

On the other hand...I don't know when else I'd get the OK from the wife to drop $1000 on a single tool!

Opinions?

 

 

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I was in a similar situation.  For me, it boiled down to time.  The Domino allows me to build more stuff in the very limited time I get in the shop.  Would I love to know how to make traditional joints? Sure and some day when I have time, I'll focus on that.  Right now, my shop time is more enjoyable because I know I can complete projects in the time I have available.

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Short Answer: I would do it. Especially if you plan on doing lots of M&T work.

With that said, look at the types of projects you do and plan to do and ask yourself if the Domino would help in it. If the answer is more "Not really" or "No"; then don't buy it. Best advice I have been given is buy the tools based on the project/s you do, not based upon how "neat" you think it is. If you don't, you end up with just a lot of stuff that ends up as clutter you may not use and could have been spent on areas that you really need.

However, worst case scenario is that you decide you don't use it as much as you like and you sell it. Festool seems to hold their value, and there seems to be a good demand for the Domino since it is really the only game in town.

At the end of the day, do what makes you happy. If you are more about the learning experience and doing things by hand, then skip it and learn to do it by hand. However, if you are more about "I need to get this kitchen table done within the next four weeks" then get the Domino.

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From what I've seen   the green stuff is addicting... almost as bad as some drug addictions.. but then what do I know, I don't own any green stuff. And, at my age, nah, that kind of cash is for wood, I'll suffer through doing it the old way!

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I've only been doing this for about a year and cut my first m/t joint last week. They didn't turn out great but it was the marking, measuring and "finesse" that was enjoyable. For me learning and perfecting the basic skills is what keeps me coming back to the shop and off my Xbox. I built a coffee table and used a biscuit jointer for the joints and every time I look at it I wish I built it with m/t. Like others have said if getting it done fast is important than go for it. Personally I would upgrade the tools I have and use daily. 

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Hmm, you bring up a good point about not really knowing how to do traditional m&t so thinking of the domino as a crutch. Reading the rest looks like you are already using pocket holes as a crutch so what's the difference?  

Personally, I think a m&t joint is one of the few joints that people just should be able to do. With that said,  I'm not you.  If it's not important to you and you think a domino will help speed up your work flow,  grab one.

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The main reason I don't have a domino is because I enjoy making traditional mortise and tenon jointery and I'm usually not concerned about whether its going to take a few extra hours to do the jointery

That being said, if I ever need to build something that requires a more M&T joints than I want to do the old fashioned way, I will go out and buy one.

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WTO rule #1 - If the wife pre-approves a tool purchase you should never make a "should I" post because they can change their mind faster than you can type!

Enjoy your new Domino :D

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If you already have the CT vac or have money for it then yes. Keep in mind, you will be upgrading your sanders shortly after getting the CT. It's just how it works. These things have a certain momentum. 

If you are not ready, no.

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This is really only a decision you can make.  It totally depends on what you build, what your work flow is, and what your financial situation is.

To spend that kind of money on a tool that will only be rarely used in your shop would be foolish.

To spend that kind of money on a tool that will be used frequently and pay for itself in the time that it saves you would be a smart purchase.

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Side note:

I built this band saw fence on the cheap. Some scrap wood and $28 worth of  aluminum extrusion from open builds. Some incra t-slot rails, and tgeir 90* fittings.  

image.jpg

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45 minutes ago, Llama said:

If you already have the CT vac or have money for it then yes. Keep in mind, you will be upgrading your sanders shortly after getting the CT. It's just how it works. These things have a certain momentum. 

If you are not ready, no.

I really had no intentions of getting a CT vac.  I intended on the Dust Right small port hose kit.  If that won't be good enough, that will be a major issue to take into consideration.

With things I have built in the past and projects I have in mind for the future, I think the Domino would have use in most everything.  Granted, I'm not pumping out three or four projects a month, more like three or four a year.  I want to increase that, and the projects I have in mind could all benefit from the Domino I think.

It's not really that I don't know how to make m/t joints, I'm actually quite comfortable with the concept.  I just haven't used them often and am too slow.  A better plunge router and upcut bits would help that out a lot.

I do fully understand this is a personal decision that you all can't make for me, but simply typing out the pros and cons sometimes helps.

 

 

 

 

 

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I ran my domino on a Fein vac for years. All I had to do was put some o rings on the dust port to get the hose to fit snugly. 

Domino is an awesome tool. I rarely use my biscut machine any more .

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It's def a handy machine, I have some vac attachment I got from rockler instead of buying a CT, works fine.  I haven't had mine long and finally got to use it today, still learning the ropes.  One thing that sucks is I don't have an actual work bench to be able to clamp stuff down securely.  I had to rig a little table and used some sandpaper to help hold stuff from moving.  Think I need to build a bench sometime soon.

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I made a clamping board that fits across one end of my outfeed table. 3/4" ply sheet with a 1/2" ply 4" fence. I screw  Bessey's auto adjust toggle clamps  down with 4 or 6 11/4" Kreg screws . This set up lets you put a couple of parts clamped down with a swat to the handle, cut the mortices w the Domino, swap ends Domino those & move on to the next parts. 

The clamps move around depending on the needs of the part sizes so the board is full of screw holes. I just clamp the fence part to the table.

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The domino "thing" is a nice tool. It's easy to use and accurate. The 500 is good for most woodworking. The 700 is for the big projects. You are where all people new to woodworking were, be patient buy things(best quality you can afford,wait a little if need be). Maybe a table saw first, you can improve its performance with link belt, balanced pulley and HQ thin kerf blade. See my new website woodknut.com may encourage you a bit

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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I like my Domino but my favorite Festools are the track saw and the CT vacuum.  I use my domino a lot for mortises and even more for panel glue ups for alignment purposes.  Its cool but there are lots of ways to do mortises.  The track saw was a game changer for sheet goods and breaking down large stock.  The CT allowed me to put off a large dust collector for awhile and as a system with other Festools its a winner.   Yes, painfully expensive but I use it constantly for five years now.

Steve

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