Trimming edge-banding on sheet goods is about as important an operation that a modern cabinet shop does. A lot of shops around here use an edge lipping planer, which is a great tool, but more expensive and not as versatile is this modular router. When rumors of the router's existence first began, everyone said, sign me up! because of this. The great news is that the MFK Modular Router is a lot more than just a laminate trimmer. Festool asked some key questions in designing this tool: first, what do people want in a laminate trimmer? And second, how can you make the machine more versatile? Well, one feature I want in a small router for edges is stability. The MFK 700 has a nice wide base with an outboard handle, so you can position the router precisely on the edge and run it around your work with little fear of wobbling or getting an uneven edge. But - and this is the really cool part - Festool makes systems, not just isolated tools, so the core router pops out and also attaches to an included vertical base, so that when you want to run the router parallel to the edge of the work (not the face as usual), you can switch bases and still have a wide, stable base running on the face of the work, with the router running the right way with a really cool ball bearing fence. The vertical fence is canted at 1.5 degrees so that you can safety trim edge-banding requiring NO ADDITIONAL FINISH WORK
. This timesaver alone guarantees the tool will be an instant favorite. With the new bearing design, you can even get flush trimming around corners. No tools are required for switching bases, which saves oodles of time looking for wrenches.
Another really great feature that we all take for granted on a Festool is the dust collection. With routers, having the chips sucked out continually means that your cutters aren't re-cutting them and wasting effort, and the chip aren't flying around interfering with a smooth cutting action. So the obvious bit is that you cut faster, cleaner and cooler, with less chance of clogging up a bearing. But most of all I like the idea of working clean. I like to know that in our small little work space I can cut and glue edge-banding on, trim it, and not have a cloud of little particles that accumulate in piles, go where they're not supposed to, make it much harder to cleanly glue the next bit of banding on, get tracking into the finish room, etc. Even without the great ergonomic features I would be getting this laminate trimmer just to stay clean. And of course dust collection works both horizontally and vertically.
I'm really excited to see what other bases and attachment Festool will come up with over the next few years but as it is the two included bases are near revolutionary in their application.
Optional accessories are available including a parallel edge guide fence with a 0.1mm micro adjustability. The included 1.5 degree base is perfect for most trimming, but a 0 degree horizontal base is also available for when you need a flush cut like when you are applying the banding first and laying veneer over it.
Accessory bits for the router are also available, but of course you can use any standard 1/4" bit with the included 1/4" collet. The standard Festool collet is 8mm and is easily adjusted with one wrench.
Other Features include a variable speed control tool with a powerful 720 watt motor with onboard thermal monitoring - to ensure you control and a long motor life. The base plate material is designed to prevent scratches, glide easily and be a stable and flat bearing surface. The dual locking knobs prevent movement once you set the depth.
The basic router comes with:
The router with the extraction hood, 1/4" collet, 8mm collet, 1.5° table with extraction hood, guide system, operating tool all packed in a Systainer SYS 2.