Festool Domino joiner or 1836 Grizzly open end Sander

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Forum topic by Alongiron posted 08-26-2013 02:12 AM 2887 views 0 times favorited 23 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Alongiron's profile


654 posts in 3742 days

08-26-2013 02:12 AM

OK..Here is the deal. I have been saving for awhile and I need some help. I have about $1500 I want to put back into my shop tools

I build my share of Arts and Craft style furniture which requires lots of Mortise and Tenon Joints. I have all the tools needed to do that but it takes a lot of time so I thought maybe I would get myself a Festool Domino Cutter;

I also make a lot of cabinets and doors in the arts and craft style, so I thought may be a nice open end sander would be a nice addition to the shop; I am aware that I will still need to finish sand BUT I am not sure how the sander would work on doors because I would be going across the grain on the top and bottom rails of the doors.

If it were your choice to make a nice addition to the shop, which of these would you chose? I would like some honest opinions and feedback to help me make my choice.



-- Measure twice and cut once.....sneak up on it! Steve Lien

23 replies so far

View DMC1903's profile


285 posts in 3376 days

#1 posted 08-26-2013 02:20 AM

The Festool, just for the convenience of making a M&T joint is a matter of minutes.

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

26044 posts in 4154 days

#2 posted 08-26-2013 02:32 AM

Steve, I’d buy the sander! But, it really depends on your needs. The morticing tool is pretty specific but the sander can be used for ton of projects where planing may ruin the surface and the only way is to dimension sand the pieces.

............My 2 cents worth!!............................Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View CrazeeTxn's profile


154 posts in 2999 days

#3 posted 08-26-2013 02:41 AM

Sanding is always a pain in the… I see a trade off. The time you gain using the sander, would off set what time you’d have to spend making m/t. And you already have the tools necessary for that task.

So I’d go with the sander.

View Mark Shymanski's profile

Mark Shymanski

5623 posts in 4761 days

#4 posted 08-26-2013 02:55 AM

+1 on the sander.

-- "Checking for square? What madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2

View Loren's profile


11132 posts in 4697 days

#5 posted 08-26-2013 03:00 AM

I find drum sanders aggravating (I own 2) and they leave
drum marks so while they will help with thicknessing
delicate stock, they do not eliminate orbital sanding and
they can ruin work with deep drum gouges too.

Look into a stroke sander. You could build one or buy
a used one and build a slot mortiser for less than
the price of a new domino machine.

Used drum sanders are easy to find because they are
so annoying to make friends with.

View waho6o9's profile


9015 posts in 3626 days

#6 posted 08-26-2013 03:15 AM

Judging by all those frames on Old Hickory Woodworking I’d say

a domino would save you tons of time, and once dialed in it’ll save you

on sanding time as well.

Good luck on your choice.

View HillbillyShooter's profile


5811 posts in 3341 days

#7 posted 08-26-2013 03:16 AM

Go for the sander first as you’ll use it more IMHO. At least that has been my experience.

If you go with the sander, get one of those giant erasers and keep the sand paper clean and free of build up to avoid drum marks and keep the sander efficient.

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

View Moron's profile


5048 posts in 4942 days

#8 posted 08-26-2013 03:22 AM


i personally prefer the domino

any “dumby” can sand lol

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View RodNGun's profile


118 posts in 3352 days

#9 posted 08-26-2013 04:09 AM

The Domino will save you tons of time and reduce the need for sanding because the joints fit so well. It is a game-changer tool for me.

View Alan72's profile


222 posts in 3082 days

#10 posted 08-26-2013 04:22 AM

Oh Hell, Just buy both it’s only money! Or buy the Domino and wait to find a drum sander on Craigs list.

View cajunpen's profile


14578 posts in 5115 days

#11 posted 08-26-2013 04:04 PM

Save a little more and get them both. In my opinion the Dominio is an overpriced tool, but that may be only because I can/t afford one. I do have a Performax 16×32 drum sander, and except for the pain in the a.. it is to change paper, I love it – really handy tool!

-- Bill - "Suit yourself and let the rest be pleased."

View Shawn Masterson's profile

Shawn Masterson

1325 posts in 2997 days

#12 posted 08-26-2013 07:53 PM

Let me start by saying Festool makes outstanding tools. They are obscenely overpriced. Because of this I refuse to own their stuff. They are very precise, well made, of the highest quality, but $1200 for a hand tool????? That nuts. That is more than any tool/machine in my shop, and I have a PM66 and a 20” planer. On to the drum sander, I am a Performax/supermax kind of guy. They are well made, hold their resale value, and parts are readily available. If you are going to get a DS I would try to get one that is not open ended. There is just too much flex. I had a 22/44 and it was a mess. I sold it and came into a 25×2 dual drum sander and it was a lot less fussy. JMHO

View pintodeluxe's profile


6343 posts in 3862 days

#13 posted 08-26-2013 08:03 PM

With planers leaving better finishes these days, I say it depends on your planer. If you have a helical cutterhead with carbide blades, the sander may not get used as much as you might think. If you need to random orbit sand anyways, the sander may be unnecessary.

Once the patent expires on the Domino, we will all be singing its praises. Until then, only the lucky few.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View Shawn Masterson's profile

Shawn Masterson

1325 posts in 2997 days

#14 posted 08-26-2013 10:01 PM

amen on the patent expiring

View cabmaker's profile


1745 posts in 3858 days

#15 posted 08-26-2013 10:38 PM

Domino would be my recomendation from your two choices That sander is little more than a toy and would likely give you poor results.

À drum sander I don’t think would earn its keep if your focus is arts and crafts. Many people dive into drum sanders because they don’t care for sanding.

If one believes the drum sander to be his salvation he probably has not been using premium sanders.

If you were in a commercial setting you could possibly benefit from larger one.

Buy the domino and get yourself some quality sanders ie: festool,etc. thank me later. JB

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