Festool RO 125 sander and CT 26 dust extractor

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Review by Sandra posted 02-08-2014 03:07 AM 7634 views 0 times favorited 45 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Festool RO 125  sander and CT 26 dust extractor Festool RO 125  sander and CT 26 dust extractor Festool RO 125  sander and CT 26 dust extractor Click the pictures to enlarge them

Woodworking background – Hobbyist

Bought from: Lee Valley

Paid: $1126.00 for both components

Pros:Automatic start of dust extractor

Long lasting abrasives

Amazing dust control

Reasonable noise level

Variable speed and two sanding modes

Cons: None other than price

Without a doubt, this is a luxury purchase for a hobbyist like myself. Previous to this sander, I had been using a Bosch ROS which worked just fine. The dust control however was lousy. I work out of our crowded garage, and essentially was unable to sand with an ROS inside the garage without huge clouds of dust billowing everywhere and settling on every surface. The other issue I had with the Bosch is how many sanding discs I went through. I had nothing to compare it to until now, but the Festool abrasives last at least twice as long.

After ordering this combo from Lee Valley, I felt so queazy about the price that I considered cancelling the order. I’m very glad that I didn’t. I’m presently working on a tie cubby for a friend, and have already more than satisfied myself that it was worth the splurge because of all the sanding I’ve been able to do in the garage. With the weather being what it is this winter, sanding outside is not an option.

The dust extractor and sander both fit nicely under the utility table next to my bench. The wheels on the extractor swivel easily making it very maneuverable.

The feature I love the most is that the sander plugs into the dust extractor. When you turn on the sander, the dust extractor automatically turns on, and when you’re done sanding, the extractor turns off. So the sander can be left on my workbench with no set up time when I get back to work on the project. I simply pick it up, and start sanding. When I’m done, there is NO cleanup required other than an extremely slight dusting maybe on my bench. The workpiece is clean, and my nose doesn’t look like it’s full of wood putty.

Set to the fine sanding mode, I can easily hold and control the sander with one hand. Set to the aggressive mode, it’s harder to control, so the work piece has to be clamped down. The aggressive mode however quickly removes stock just as well as the youtube videos preach. In either mode, the speed can be changed easily with a dial.

While I still need hearing protection, the noise from the sander and dust extractor is far less than my Ridgid vac and is a lower pitched noise rather than the high screech of a regular shop vac.

Am I dying to buy more Festool? Not particularly, but I’m very pleased with this purchase.

-- No, I don't want to buy the pink hammer.

View Sandra's profile


7207 posts in 2843 days

45 comments so far

View CFrye's profile


11002 posts in 2608 days

#1 posted 02-08-2014 03:16 AM

Congratulations on the new tool (toy) Sandra! Sounds like you are one satisfied customer. That auto start of the dust extractor would be a big plus in my book. Don’t want to think about how many times I hooked up the Shop Vac to the ROS and forgot to turn it on!

-- God bless, Candy

View DIYaholic's profile


19918 posts in 3443 days

#2 posted 02-08-2014 03:18 AM

Good review.
Should I win the lottery….

I love the bit about buyer’s remorse & that you did NOT succumb to it.
I’ll be shipping all my sanding needs to The Great White North!!!

One question….
What are you now using for wood putty??? ;^)

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procrastination a bad thing?

View lightcs1776's profile


4256 posts in 2422 days

#3 posted 02-08-2014 03:22 AM

Very good review with a lot of details. Glad you kept the unit.

-- Chris ** If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace. — Tom Paine **

View Sandra's profile


7207 posts in 2843 days

#4 posted 02-08-2014 03:23 AM

Randy – the dog produces enough eye boogers to keep me in putty…..

-- No, I don't want to buy the pink hammer.

View DocSavage45's profile


8956 posts in 3610 days

#5 posted 02-08-2014 03:24 AM


Nice Review.

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View Sandra's profile


7207 posts in 2843 days

#6 posted 02-08-2014 03:28 AM

Thanks Doc! Hope your shop is coming along.

-- No, I don't want to buy the pink hammer.

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30550 posts in 3106 days

#7 posted 02-08-2014 03:29 AM

Great deal. Waiting to see the projects coming forth.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View JL7's profile


8773 posts in 3733 days

#8 posted 02-08-2014 03:29 AM

Very cool Sandra…...that is quite the rig…...I’ve heard that the aggressive mode is great when you really need to get down to business…...

I can appreciate the dust collection and the auto start because I have a pair of Fein extractors, and working in the basement, sanding was a real problem….the difference is amazing. And leaving the sander setup and ready is a nice luxury….....

Enjoy the cool new toy….......

-- Jeff .... Minnesota, USA

View WhoMe's profile


1568 posts in 4011 days

#9 posted 02-08-2014 03:44 AM

Sandra, welcome to the land of the green kool-aid…. Thanks for posting the good review with your impressions and experience.
Where I work, I have had a chance to play with many of the Festool products and the Rotex 125 and a CT 26 would be my first purchase too. The Domino would probably be second. ...

-- I'm not clumsy.. It's just the floor hates me, the tables and chairs are bullies, the wall gets in the way AAANNNDDD table saws BITE my fingers!!!.. - Mike -

View JAAune's profile


1880 posts in 3085 days

#10 posted 02-08-2014 04:05 AM

The Rotex in our shop is 7 years old at the moment and has probably sanded over 300 pieces of furniture and a few hundred lineal feet of cabinetry.

It suddenly went dead earlier this week so I’ll have to send it in for repair. Fortunately that should take less than a week. Unfortunately we only had one week to finish up our current job.

Only now do I realize how spoiled we’ve become since acquiring that sander. It just had to die while we still had 12 or so pews out of 32 to sand. Finishing the job off with Porter Cable random orbit and belt sanders made it really tough to stick to our schedule.

-- See my work at and

View eddie's profile


8565 posts in 3382 days

#11 posted 02-08-2014 04:29 AM

Sandra thats a sweet rig there ,you got me to thinking

-- Jesus Is Alright with me

View redryder's profile


2393 posts in 3870 days

#12 posted 02-08-2014 07:02 AM

$1126.00 for a sander.
Sandra, you must be a 1%’r.

-- mike...............

View CharlesA's profile


3430 posts in 2566 days

#13 posted 02-08-2014 09:59 AM

I have a Bosch ROS, and I find hooking it up to my DC system (shop vac + dust deputy) a bit of a pain, but it eliminates virtually all dust. I’m curious why your system ore firmed so poorly. (Maybe I have lore standards)

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View HillbillyShooter's profile


5811 posts in 3060 days

#14 posted 02-08-2014 12:04 PM

Congratulations on a fine review and a great purchase! Welcome to the wonderful world of green. IMHO the Festool dust collection systems are second to none and all of their products are top notch. Just remember you don’t need to purchase everything at once—slow and easy wins the race with periodic treats to look forward to.

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View Mainiac Matt 's profile

Mainiac Matt

9550 posts in 3096 days

#15 posted 02-08-2014 12:49 PM

Nice review….

New strategy, everyone send you pieces to Sandra for sanding :^)

She’ll appreciate the opportunity to play with her new sander.

-- Matt -- I yam what I yam and that's all what I yam

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