It will be interesting to see how well Festool will continue to do with
their marketing/supply/pricing policies. I would imagine they will be
immutable until their market share sags. Then the beanie weenies won't
be able to keep themselves away from "fixing" it.
Personally, in my rose colored world, I would like to think that the
Festool group is keeping their pricing intact so that they can keep
their product line intact and their quality up. (Toldja... rosy....
I remember all the manufacturer's beginnings in the price wars by
making a lower end product to compete and swallow as much market as
possble. I remember when Rockwell first made their plastic cased
tools; when Porter Cable (separate at that time) responded with their
plastic crap. And the same with all of them. To me (I am treading as
lightly as possible here as I know how proud many are of their tools -
no offense intended) most of today's tools are little more than
adequate, if that. I think all the crappy tools started with the
manufacturing companies getting involved in price wars intstead of
focusing on product. With that in mind, it seemed like the companies
were daring each other to come out with worse and worse quality tools.
Most of the absolute trash has disappeared, but most of the premier
tools aren't a spot on the ass of the ones I was using 30 - 35 years
ago. We kept them greased, put in new bearings and switches every once
and while and we were set.
I guess the offsetting factor is that you can buy an Milwaukee hole
shooter for the same price I bought my first one for in 1975. Later
that year I ditched my Craftsman circular saw and purchased a Rockwell
315 with metal box, rip guide and a tube of grease for $125. So from
that standpoint, that is good. Tools are plentiful and their prices
haven't even kept up with inflation.
Maybe, just maybe, Festool want to establish themselves in America
(long established in Europe) as a quality tool manufacturer. In order
to do that, you have to make a good tool, provide quality service after
the sale, and keep up with the needs of your target audience. I am
wondering if they are going to go the Lie-Nieson (sp?) route, or the
Bridge City tool route and just make their tools available as they see
fit in order to keep the quality high. Hope so. All that takes money,
and maybe if they make enough they will keep ploughing it back into the
company and products. Who knows...