Festool Domino DF 500 Joiner

WOOD magazine rating
Average reader rating
4.8
out of 5
Brand:
Festool
Model:
DF500
Price:
$850

Description

Combination set includes: Domino DF 500-Plus Joiner (In Systainer 2), DOMINO cutter D 5, Support Bracket, Operating Tool, Trim Stop, Cross Stop, Plug-It Power Cord, and #2 Systainer (Festool Case). The Domino Joiner, with its revolutionary cutting method, utilizes a patented mortising technique, simple indexing features, and adjustable mortise sizing to make flawless mortises. Powerful 420 watt motor drives the cutter spindle at 23,400 RPM. Precise positioning and accurate mortising with the viewing window. Use 1 of 3 mortise width adjustments for perfectly fitting joints and fast assembly; easy to adjust while the jointer is operating. Cut long mortises in an instant thanks to the simultaneous turning and oscillating movement without kickback. 11/16" dust port extracts up to 95 of chips generated when used in conjunction with any one of Festools vacuum systems. Retractable stop pins for quick and precise positioning of the initial domino tenon on both workpieces. Five catch positions at 0, 22.5, 45, 67.5, and 90 degrees, as well as infinitely variable mortising angles from 0 to 90 degrees. Simple, precise mortising fence height adjustment (with scale) offers accurate stops for locating mortising opening in the center of material thicknesses: 16, 20, 22, 25, 28, and 40mm. Quick, precise adjustment for 5 different mortising depths. Robust inner mechanism for consistently accurate routing results. Works on everything from face frames and workpieces as small as 1" x 5/8", to large projects and heavy furniture. Uses pre-fabricated, solid beech domino tenons for superior strength.

WOOD magazine review

Combining mortise and tenon joinery with ease of using a biscuit joiner

Review Summary

This revolutionary tool looks and operates like a biscuit joiner. But, instead of cutting a thin, radiused slot, it uses a spinning, oscillating spiral boring bit to plow a flat-bottomed mortise that receives the domino-shaped, solid-beech tenons. The tool proves easy to set up and align with your marks on workpieces. You can take the tool to whatever you’re working on, rather than having to take the workpiece to the tool. All the settings are metric.
It’s best to hook a vacuum to the port for complete dust and chip extraction; we were able to plug the chute without a vacuum, and that created alignment difficulties. The tenons fit so tightly into the mortises you’ll need pliers to pull them out after a dry-fit. Still, that won’t prevent a good glue bond; just be sure to saturate the mortise walls and domino tenons with glue using a small flux brush for best results.

Detailed Ratings

4.8
out of 5

Performance

5

Features

5

Ease of Use

5

Value

4

Reader Reviews

An elegant solution for loose tenon joinery

Review Summary

The Festool Domino system excels in situations where you want to take the tool to the wood (as compared to taking the wood to the tool, as is the case with mortising drill presses). For times when you need to place a mortise and tenon into the center of mass of a large board, or into a complicated set of parts, the Domino is your tool. A lot of people have balked at the price tag of the system and its associated domino loose tenons.
But when you compare the ease and simplicity of this sytem with the head-scratching you'd have to do to place mortises in hard-to-reach places the decision is an easy one. I've had my Domino system for three years and in that time I've gone through over 500 of the loose domino tenons. It's performed flawlessly and has helped me quickly and easily get through joinery operations which were difficult and time consuming before. This tool is most definitely on my Mikie Likes It list. VERY highly recommended.

Detailed Ratings

4.8
out of 5

Performance

5

Features

5

Ease of Use

5

Value

4

It's an investment, but well worth the money

Review Summary

I paid about $750 for my Domino several years ago, and it's become my go-to tool for joinery. I use it whenever I can because it's as easy to use as a (metric) biscuit joiner with the strength and rigidity of a mortise and tenon joint. The fence, scales and adjusters on the tool let you dial in precision like no other tool not named Incra. Plus you get total dust collection when hooked up to a shop vac.
I can find no problems with it, although I do wish Festool would make it adaptable to make deeper mortises without having to buy a whole new tool. And even though I give it 4 stars for value because I honestly think they could make it for less if they wanted to, I still feel this is some of the best money I've spent on tools. I'm not a pro, but if was, this tool would easily pay for itself in just a few projects.

Detailed Ratings

4.8
out of 5

Performance

5

Features

5

Ease of Use

5

Value

4

Makes Loose Tenons Easy!

Review Summary

Others have written about the standard features of this unit. The best thing for me is it worked intuitively and flawlessly right out of the box. I got perfect alignment with panel glue-ups the first time I tried! I could never do that with my old biscuit joiner, even after years of trying.
I no longer fear or avoid mortises and tenons. By the way - the next time someone expresses concern about the cost of one of these, remind the person that a certain high-end biscuit joiner from Switzerland costs about the same amount as one of these but won't do half as much. It's worth it!

Detailed Ratings

4.8
out of 5

Performance

5

Features

5

Ease of Use

5

Value

4

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