Festool Granat Sandpaper

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Quite a while ago I made some comments about Festool Brilliant sandpaper and how it was great for removing glue squeeze out.
A 6~8 weeks ago I purchased a 10 pack of 120 grit Festool Granat sand paper and happy to announce, better than Brilliant, in my experience.
Both papers do a good job but the baby blue colored Granat seems to hold up better and longer. This paper simply does not load up with melted glue.
I have posted pictures of the recent set of cabinets that I built for my wife's sewing studio and I am currently in the middle of finishing up on a 6 drawer cabinet that will set below my steel work bench. All 5 cabinets had double face frames that are glued, not screwed, together. So that is 10 face frames with center stiles on 8. I had 112 joints, front and back to sand and remove squeeze out. On top of that the 6 drawers had 24 joints to be sanded and 48 domino's that needed to be sanded flush after trimming with the multimeter. All of these had some degree of sanding and glue removal.
I used a total of "2", 120 grit Granat sanding disks to do all of that plus all the surfaces of the entire cabinet and drawers.
I will warn you however a box of 10 disks is $13.00. The remaining 8 disks should be good for 20 more cabinets.
I think I will buy again.
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wrote:

Oh boy! There goes the Festool hating thread again... ;-)
Which sander? I've been looking at them but have hesitated to pull the trigger (can't decide).
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On 9/18/2015 10:13 PM, krw wrote:

What do you want it to do? I have the RO125 Rotex and the RTS400 finish sander. The Rotex sands in two modes. The aggressive mode will just about keep up with a belt dander and in ROS mode it is closer to a finish sander. I use both modes equally. I use the coarse mode when sanding joints and removing glue.
The RTS 400 sander is a typical finish sander, not ROS but the patters is small enough that it does not matter. It has a rectangular pad so it gets into corners easily.
I have demo'd the ETS125 and that thing is "VERY" easy to control. I was able to turn it on and let go if it on the work. Then with a light finger touch on the top direct it where ever I wanted it to go. IIRC it seemed to float on air.
I am not sure however if I would ever buy it as the other two seem to cover all of my basis. BUT it is a nice sander. It would never replace the Rotex nor will I probably not ever be with out a Rotex.
Recently I have noticed that there is a new sander, ETS EC 150/5 EQ Random Orbital Sander. I watched a video and apparently it is well balanced and is supposed to be easily held up side down over head.
Anyway I would probably go with both top models again should I ever need to replace either.
If you are looking for a sander that will get some serious work done and can be converted to more delicate ROS sanding I would go with the Rotex. It comes in in 5" and 6". Since I do a lot of face frame sanding I chose the smaller 5" model and have not been unsatisfied with the size. The 6" is considerably larger and I felt it might be more difficult to control on narrow edges.
This sander takes a little getting used to as it it is a two handed unit but well worth having IMHO.
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On 9/18/2015 10:58 PM, Leon wrote:

One last thing, remember that if you don't like or feel another model might have been a better choice it you can return it within 30 days.
Well, one more thing. ;~) I use mine with the CT22 vac. I'm certain any would work but dust extraction is so good on these sanders that you will probably no longer be able to determine the condition of the paper visually. The sand paper wears out but not what you can determine visually, they way I used to know when to swap paper. The paper stays pretty clean and especially with the Granat that I mentioned above. Now if is seems that the cutting is slowing down I turn the sander off and feel the surface. Fresh paper definitely has a sharper feel.
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The vacuum depends... Some will create too much suction and the sander will skip and hop across the board instead of sanding nicely. I usually turn my Fein vac down to 3 with the RO125.
The Festool dust port isn't the Shop-vac standard 1 1/4", either. I had to get an adapter to use it with my vacuum.
Puckdropper
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Puckdropper <puckdropper(at)yahoo(dot)com> wrote:

Yeah. Suction can certainly be over done. Pays to experiment. I seldom go full force unless running the domino or the track saw.
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Puckdropper says...

Is there _any_ sander on which it _is_?
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OK, while that's impressive I'm having a problem thinking of a case where I'd need to sand over my head.
Anyway, back to the paper - in your judgement, will they show the same ungumming performance in the finer grades when sanding a finish?
John
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On 9/19/2015 8:26 AM, John McCoy wrote:

Many people apply finish and sand after assembly. I did that countless years. Can you think of an occasion now? I used to absolutely hate sanding the top panel, inside cabinets. And typically to sand the bottom of a panel regardless of how high it is you need to be able to see what you are doing. The sander has to pretty much be over your head in that situation. Holding a sander in any position other than simply sitting on top of the work is more effort. If that can be improved, that better.
Because I use gel varnishes 95% of the time I can sand and finish many components prior to assembly in a timely manner. Timely manner meaning Not having to worry about dust or handling the pieces prior to the varnish completely drying. I almost always varnish both sides of a piece at the same time. You can lay a freshly gel varnished surface on a clean work surface immediately to apply varnish to the other side. Then if gets set on edge to completely set up.

I have not used either paper, Granat or Brilliant in a finer grit than 120. BUT the less expensive paper intended for wood, is the Red Festool Rubin paper. In all grits that I use on that paper, 120, 150, and 180, any excess glue tends to immediately form those little hard spots on the paper. The Brilliant and Granat are made to remove paint and they come in finer grades up to 400. Because paint melts and will gum up paper that is an issue with regular paper too. Removing a varnished surface has it's similar issues too.
So with that in mind, I would assume that you would not have the same issue with the Granat as you would with the Rubin.
Keep in mind also that all of the glue should be gone after using the 120 grit. So the glue should not be an issue with the finer grits regardless. One of the reasons that the glue is an issue is the high temperature that melts the excess glue. The more coarse the grit the faster it cuts and the less heat. If you are using a finer grit when you should be using a coarser grit you are probably heating the surface up too much. You should be moving your sander at about 1" per second. If you are concentrating on a spot you are not moving that fast. When I sand joints/mating surfaces, and glue squeeze out, I am typically concentrating more time on that spot compared to anywhere else so glue melting can become an issue. While I might do better with a more coarse grit than 120 in those areas It only takes me 3~4 seconds on a joint to handle the mating surfaces with or with out glue squeeze out and the glue gives way long before the wood does.
Now having said all of that. The Granat seems to last longer than the Rubin even with out sanding glue.
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wrote:

Remove wood, in varying degrees. ;-)

That's sorta what I was asking. The ETS is much cheaper than the RO and was wondering about the practical differences.

I was considering either the RO125 or ETS125. I figured that 5" was a good tradeoff of size and control. I looked at the RO125, again, at Woodcraft yesterday but they didn't have any ETS sanders, making it hard to compare.

Even in ROS mode? I can understand it in aggressive mode (belt sanders aren't one-handed tools, either) but would expect it to tame a lot in finish mode.
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On 9/20/2015 10:00 AM, krw wrote:

The Rotex will accomplish more. The ETS is basically only a finish sander. The Rotex can be used as a finish sander however its scratch pattern is a bit larger in the ROS mode than the ETS and you "might" need to sand a grit or two in finer grits.

Think of the Rotex as being more of a one size fits all sander. It can replace a belt sander, ROS sander, and a finish sander. Except in closed corners. The ETS is a finish sander, period.
Now just a point of view observation, until I bought the ETS finish sander I always used a Porter Cable Speed Bloc finish sander. I actually wore one out after replacing the pad numerous times and eventually the whole pad/spring loaded paper holder. The sander would not run faster than idle and replacing the brushed sid not help. And no, it was not variable speed. LOL I bought another PC speed Bloc to replace it. Both of these sanders would create a pile of dust in a very short time. They were IMHO superior result sanders.
Then I bought the Domino and vac. I was impressed with the quality and decided to give in to Robatoy's suggestion to get a Rotex. He was actually the one that made me aware, through YouTube, of the Festool Domino a year or two before it was available in the United States.
He had been using the Rotex sanders in his counter top business for many years prior to that.
Any way my PC Right angle ROS was getting long in the tooth and I decided to go with the Rotex to eliminate sometimes having to use a hand held belt sander too.
I was more than impressed and dust collection was amazing with my vac hooded up. I looked at the PC Speed Bloc and said to my self it's days are numbered.
While it is easy to see progress/results with the Rotex as you see stock that has been removed, in an imperfect join, it is more difficult to see results with a finish sander expect for the amount of dust on the surface. When I switched to the ETS, attached to the vac, I had to be more hands on with feeling the surface to evaluate progress. It seemed that the ETS was hardly doing any thing at all, at first. And the fact that the paper lasts much longer because it is not recutting the dust too I was concerned that I was not getting as good of results as with the old PC Speed Block. That was when I started doing the feel test on the surface and realized that it was properly doing its job in a timely manner and with out all the dust. It collects dust so well that I seldom worry with using a tack rag to remove dust before gel varnishing. If I see any dust I will blow that off. That dust is typically from edge sanding where the surface being sanded does not completely cover the sander pad and escapes the vacuum air flow.
I don't know if you are using a vac with your sander now but if not your are in for a delightful surprise if you go this route.

It is a two handed sander, by design. As you have noticed, the motor is off to the side so it will not stay standing in sanding position with out one hand holding the motor end up. The other hand naturally sits on top directly over the disk. My right angle PC sander had the same basic design. Technically the center of gravity is not directly over the disk so you need two hands. It is no harder to use than a belt sander, probably easier. There is basically no learning curve with any finish sander, as they are single hand units. It is probably more of an operator learning to coordinate right and left hands with most any right angle stye ROS. It is nothing that you will even think about once you use it a few hours and see what it can do. As pointed out by Pucdropper experimenting with vacuum suction settings will make a difference with most any sander. You can absolutely have too much suction and that makes moving the sander, fluidly, more difficult.

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On 9/20/2015 11:29 AM, Leon wrote:

A "rustic" style the client likes, wish I could find the original picture of this table top before I started, full of gouges, and gravy stains that had set up for years.
Used my Festool Rotex 125 w/dust extractor, in lieu of my belt sander, to sand the old finish off for a remodel client a couple of weeks back:
https://picasaweb.google.com/111355467778981859077/EWoodShopJigsFixturesMethods?noredirect=1#6196642763892532354
It was one of those SLJ's (shitty little jobs: "Oh, and can you sand just this table top down so it can be refinished?"), added to the punch list by the client as an afterthought as we were finishing up the larger project.
The Rotex made it possible to profitably do the unexpected change order job, in the dining room of the house, with the client in residence, and with virtually no dust.
As a testament to how easy the 125 is to handle, I also used it to re-sharpen the beveled edges of that table top as well, while I was sanding, no router/router dust control needed.
I used your Granat, for the rough sanding, and finished up with 180 Rubin, all on the Rotex 125:
https://picasaweb.google.com/111355467778981859077/EWoodShopJigsFixturesMethods?noredirect=1#6196642767571385986
Another shining example of Festool cost effectiveness ... no money spent on dust control, taping off windows, blinds, furniture, entry doors and floors, and all done in an hour or so.
Easiest $225 (for running through six grits to ready for finish) I made all day. That sander and dust collection system has paid for itself dozens of times, in a like manner.
Back in service 12 hours later, after the paint sub applied, in situ, finish dried overnight:
https://picasaweb.google.com/111355467778981859077/EWoodShopJigsFixturesMethods?noredirect=1#6196642786555014466
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On 9/20/2015 12:33 PM, Swingman wrote:

8~0) My Granat?
No kidding, I got up to count my remaining Granat disks. Half way to the shop I thought to my self, what the hell are you doing. Now I am here responding. I didn't count them. ;~)

Looks great!
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On 9/20/2015 1:50 PM, Leon wrote:

BTW I see the plugs in the table top. Did you inspect to see how the wop was attached?
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On 9/20/2015 1:55 PM, Leon wrote:

Nope ... not my yob. For the price, and in light of the last minute request, didn't do nuttin' I wasn't asked to do ...
Besides, the client very much likes rustic, so it's hard to go wrong since the more cracked, broken, gouged crippled and split, the more preferred..
And, like Wobbit, I too am velly esspensive ...
AAMOF, I was puzzled when was asked, in the original contract task list, to attach these "things" to old cabinet doors (they were originally attached with picture frames hooks, and free to swing in the breeze):
https://picasaweb.google.com/111355467778981859077/EWoodShopJustStuff?noredirect=1#6196681845055102482
https://picasaweb.google.com/111355467778981859077/EWoodShopJustStuff?noredirect=1#6196681827892121218
Yep, I'm equally puzzled ...
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On 9/20/2015 2:43 PM, Swingman wrote:

I was just wondering if you were just wondering. ;~)
I wold not have touched anything other than what you did.

Howwwww.......lovely.
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On 9/20/2015 3:31 PM, Leon wrote:

LMAO ...
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wrote:

The top is Italian? ;-)
I noticed those, too. They're close to the edges of the boards, which led me to believe they're functional. Is there a cross-beam under each set of plugs?
Looks nice!
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On 9/20/2015 6:36 PM, krw wrote:

Yeah wop, can I say that w-word? ~)
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wrote:

Sounds like the expensive paper is the cheapest.
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