Rotex Comfort Zones
In working with different types of tools, I have a constant interest in exploring comfort zones. Mine, and the tool’s. A 6″ RO150 Rotex sander with a 5mm (3/16″) stroke is a bit of a step up in size and potential aggressive tendencies compared to the standard 5″ orbitals that we have all used forever. Where a large sander often gets uncomfortable is on smaller tasks.
So, one of the first things I look at with Rotex sanders is control issues.
Can we even use this tool as a finish sander on stain grade finishes?
One of the many ways we shake down a question like this on a tool like this is to hit a yard sale or two and pick up some guinea pig antique furniture.
Click here for a video of two rickety tables in the process of getting stripped and finish sanded with the RO150 walking up through Granat grits from 80 to 150 in preparation for dye stain and oil modified finish. As has been the case in much of our Festool testing, there is a profound lack of surface dust on the test pieces, due to the cohesion of the sander and dust extractor. Sanding is getting to be quite a bit more interesting.
[Read about the 3.5″ Festool Rotex RO90 Sander]
We are also working with the two little Rotex brothers of the 150. Putting them through both straightforward and counterintuitive paces on everything from exterior wood restoration to cabinet grade work. I hope to continue hearing from Rotex users. Many online colleagues have contacted me via email and forum messages to clarify their questions on what are the newest Festool technologies as they contemplate tool upgrades. It is helpful to understand each of these sanding tools in the context of the rest of the line. Stay tuned for continued coverage of the newest incarnations and features in the full range of projects that we do.
As always, we thank FestoolUSA for supporting the concept of better prep resources for painters, and for submitting their gear for our assessment in paint applications.