Beyond the Multimaster ?

I have just finished completely renovating a two-bedroomed flat. No alone, but supervising and a lot of finishing work. I had expected to find my Fein Multimaster the greatest help in this task but I am disappointed: so often another tool did it better (jigsaw, delta sander, Dremel-clone, . . .). Especially this last was a revelation. But what you REALLY need is a beefed up version of the Dremel that could take 6mm (1/4") accessories. So often it was necessary to shave off 1 to 2 mm to make something (like a door) fit. A 6mm "Dremel" with a router bit and a simple fence is the answer, I think. Google "suggested" a die grinder(!), an edge trimmer like the Trend T4, or a RotoZip (available in Europe? now - like Dremel - in the Bosch family).
What is the experience/advice of other uk-diy'ers ? Rob
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On 5/1/2014 8:19 AM, Rob Simpson wrote:

Hand Plane.
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I was going to suggest a Festool electric plane. An HL850 would do nicely. It even has an accessory to convert it into a bench mounted planer.
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On 5/1/2014 8:34 AM, Swingman wrote:

+23
I've never owned (nor missed owning) either w/ one exception--the multi-master works well for trimming the ends of plaster lath to the center of studs prior to repair when have to open old plaster walls for access. Other than that, I've never found a need in 55+ yr of ww'ing and/or restoration/building.
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On Thursday, May 1, 2014 8:59:18 AM UTC-5, dpb wrote:

Bought a knock off a few years ago and had I known what it would do, I woul d have bought the Fein and happily paid a few hundred for it.
On the last kitchen: - Profoundly unlevel floor, leveled the base units with app. 100 wedges, so me as thick as 1/4" so that I could get the tops string line perfect. Cut all wedges under the toe kick with the buzzer after leveling
- Old, fragile pluming under the sink that looked like it would fall off if touched. Disconnected the supply lines and cut a 6" square around them at the wall (intact) and pulled cabs out for demo. Easy for the plumber to g et to replace cutoffs and replace galv. wall pipes with no leaking pipes du ring the process. NO doubt the pipes would have broken in the wall during d emo causing panic by me as plumber wasn't scheduled for a week
- Customer decided on disposal >>after<< cab install. Plunge cut into the back of cabinet and into the sheet rock for electrical box (this in OLD hou se)with buzzer and had very minimal dust, plus perfect hole
- Back door had the trims and half the jamb "tiled in" many years after ori ginal install. Instead of working the old trim out and taking a chance on breaking tiles, I flush cut them with the buzzer and put the new jamb and t rims on top of the flush cut nubs. NO tile damage, crack (1/16")filled wit h caulk
- I hang doors the way they did 50 years ago or more. I take the trim off b oth sides of a door kit, cut some 12" wedges in various widths and dial on the fit until it meets my specs. A tiny tap on this wedge, and offsetting t ap on another, and you can fit them perfectly. Problem: LOTS of wedges. S OLUTION: Shoot them in to secure them and cut off everything that sticks pa st the jamb with the buzzer
- New cabinets 24" longer than the old set. Measured off the correct lengt h, and cut the base/shoe molding straight for flush fit to new cabs to appe ar as original installation
- Cut through a bizarre, not from this planet framing detail over the range to install the vent a hood exhaust. It looked like they were getting paid by the block of wood when it was framed, and the area was so cramped no oth er tool would fit in there to cut the extraneous crap away to get the 8" li ne in. The buzzer was perfect
- Installed a new, large refrigerator on the old location. But the cheap b astards that put in the tile didn't tile to the wall, but left the back sid e with exposed and broken asbestos tile the width by 3". Asbestos chipped off OK, but tile man wasn't happy with the old asphalt adhesive fouling the new adhesive. The smooth scraper mounted at about 20 degrees melted it up and off. Ruined the blade, but got the job done and the tile man was happy
- used (read: sacrificed!)a blade and cut out bad tiles in the bath for qui ckie repair to reset and regrout. It was the bi metal blade, so it was toa st after cutting though the grout lines. That old grout is much harder tha n the chalky stuff we use today in bathrooms
- lent it to the homeowner so he could finish the long promised laminate fl oor installation by using it to cut under the jambs and trims so he could s lide the laminate underneath it
- cut in three gang box in dining room paneling. Using the buzzer was real ly fast and didn't make much more dust than hand sawing. It was fast enoug h I had my helper hold the shop vac nozzle right next to the cut for just a few minutes until I finished
There's more, that's just what comes immediately to mind on that kitchen. Years ago a fella named Rob told me to quit being so cheap and just buy one and the things I used it for would just astound me. If I had only listene d then...
Robert
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Another masterful post from Robert.
I know that the cheap knockoff you are referring to is the Harbor Freight version. I was at a Harbor Freight store a couple days ago. It opened close to me. And they had a huge display of the "multi function" tool. An employee was stocking the display. I asked him how well it sold. He says he has to restock the display weekly. Somebody is buying them. And they had a big display of the various blades too.
Half serious, half joking. Robert, you sure go through a lot of blades!
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On 5/2/2014 8:29 AM, Lee Michaels wrote:

Probably the biggest drawback to the Multimaster was the patent protection. Blades are absolutely a relatively short lived consumable item. For the pro this is built into the cost of the job. For the hobbyist this is a major expense.
Once that patent came to an end you saw numerous copies and the price of the Fein blades dropped to about 1/3 of their original cost.
I recall a typical blade costing at least $35 and a 3 pack costing about $95. The price of these things and their life spans made a WWII blade looks like something you would find at HF.
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On 5/2/2014 9:56 AM, Leon wrote:

I always wonder if it makes sense to soak the users on price. When you look at it, wouldn't it be better to half the price, and get 3-4 times as many customers?
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On 5/2/2014 8:59 AM, woodchucker wrote:

[snip]

LOL! Tell that to Gillette... or Schick<g>
Actually, you can find some decent deals on blades if you keep your eyes open. Menard's was selling their own brand (interchangeable with Bosch, et al) and I got a pretty decent selection and quantity for cheap.
Are they the best blades available? Not by a long shot, but I do have a decent array of blades that I can genuinely consider "one job consumables" and when I hit a nail or whatever, it don't give me any heartburn<g>
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On 5/2/2014 8:59 AM, woodchucker wrote:

I'm sure the tool/s were probable even more expensive than they were 6~7 years ago. I'm sure they were quite comfortable with profit and volume. Increased volume might have cost more than they were willing to give up. I'm sure it probably fit with in a business model for a patent protected item.
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On 5/2/2014 2:04 AM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Don't go to a job site without it ... and sooner or later it comes out on every job.
A certain guy we won't mentioned apparently glued a drop-in sink to a counter top. :)
Years later, when replacing the counter top but keeping the sink, the subs could not get the sink out (when I came on the scene just in time to stop them, they, in their frustration, actually were in the process of setting up a jack under under the sink to try and jack it out?!!?
My Fein Multitool, and a few polypropylene shims, to the rescue ... when you absolutely need it, nothing else will do.
But, I would only use it to trim a door to fit out of desperation. ;)
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On 5/2/2014 10:04 AM, Swingman wrote:

IT WAS WHAT WAS PROVIDED WITH THE SINK!!! LOL

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On 5/2/2014 10:52 AM, Leon wrote:

Yeah ... that's what they all say. ;)
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On Fri, 2 May 2014 00:04:53 -0700 (PDT), " snipped-for-privacy@aol.com"

I got the same revelation out of the Festool Domino. Leon filled me in on all the details of it. And, I didn't even go to 'Festool day'. Other than watching a few Youtube videos and Leon whispering in my ear, I bought it blind. And damn, if it wasn't the most accurate, time saving tool I've ever used ~ A virtual revelation.
Yup, my wallet cried all the way home, but it was worth it.
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<...snipped...>

I use this more for metalworking, not too much for woodworking, but for those times when a coompressor is not convenient, I've found it very handy.
http://www.harborfreight.com/electric-die-grinder-with-long-shaft-44141.html
Yes, it is from HF and may not be suitable for professional or high-volume use, but for heavy-duty work i would bring along an air compressor and use a pneumatic die grinder.
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I know, right? The split jam pre hung units are so poorly executed, my second year carpentry students could do much better.
I have gone to buying solid jam stock, and completely mortising and hanging a slab, and applying stop and casing. I can't live with the quality any other way.
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Jim in NC


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