Fred wrote in about Festool’s new sleeved dust extraction hoses, which will be launching alongside their new EC brushless sanders. The cheaper of the two, a 3.5 meter (11.5 foot) combo, is priced at $250. The larger, a 10 meter (32.8 foot) combo, is priced at $375.
The new Festool hose with sleeve, models 500276 for the 3.5 m version and 500940 for the 10 m version, features a dust extraction hose and a power hose, wrapped together with a fabric sleeve.
These sleeved hoses are designed to help avoid hose wear and catching, which often happens as the hose is dragged after the tool during use. You would use one of these to avoid damaging delicate work surfaces, damaging your dust extractor hose, or to avoid potential issues that could arise when the ribbed hose catches and pulls on a worksurface or table top.
$200 to $375 each for a vacuum hose ?! I thought that other Festool prices seemed high.
I must admit, I too was surprised by the pricing. $250 for a sleeved dust extractor hose? Ouch. But then I looked at the nitty gritty. It’s not just a hose, it’s an antistatic hose, a power cord, a heavy duty sleeve, and a Systainer.
Let’s price out the components of the 3.5 meter sleeved hose system, which will probably be the more popular size.
- Anti-static hose, 3.5 meters x 27 mm: $119 via Amazon
- Plug-It power cord, 16 gauge x 13 ft: $46 via Amazon
- Systainer 3: $78 via Amazon
So that’s $243 for the separate components, not including the sleeve. The 3.5 m sleeved hose setup is $250.
Buy Now(via Amazon)
More Info(via Festool)
If the sleeve was available separately, and I hope it will be at some point, it might be priced at what, $45-65? It’s made from heavy duty abrasion-resistant material, with a full-length zipper, a wrap at the dust extractor end, and pockets for the power cord.
Price-wise, yes, $250 is hard to swallow, especially since your dust extractor probably already came with a 27 mm hose, and your Festool tool already came with a Plug-It power cord. But when you price out the cost of the components, the $250 price tag doesn’t look so crazy.
A lot of Festool tools come with a little bit of sticker shock, and it’s no different with these hoses. Although the price seems reasonable once you look at the prices of the individual components, it’s still $250 for a dust extractor hose.
I own a Festool dust extractor (do you remember when I jumped onto the Festool bandwagon 4-1/2 years ago?), and although the initial investment really hurt my wallet, I have never regretted the decision. I also own another Festool antistatic hose – the 36 mm size – and I bought a short 50 mm hose for a different tabletop dust extractor. I also bought a cheap and simple ShopVac hose for when I don’t need Festool’s build quality or antistatic properties.
The sticker shock and wallet hurt has long since faded, but I continue to enjoy the stellar performance of my Festool extractor.
I had the opportunity to check out the 3.5 m sleeved hose today, and I must say – it’s definitely not a thrown-together product. If Festool starts selling the sleeve separately, they’re going to have a big problem keeping it in stock, which is probably why they’ve launched it as part of new hose and Plug-It cord bundle packs.
Plus, there might be times when a user doesn’t want to couple their power cord to the dust extractor hose. I could definitely see situations where users switch will want to switch between using the sleeved hose, and an unsleeved hose and separate Plug-It power cord setup. It’ll depend on the tool and how it’s being used.
The material feels thick and durable. The zipper is snag-free, although I don’t think anyone who buys this will be removing and reattaching it to their hoses. On the outside of the main sleeve is a sewn-on pocket that the Plug-It power cord rides in. You could probably slide the cord out quickly, but reattaching it will be a huge chore.
Should You Buy This?
Should you buy this? That’s something only you could answer. Will it save you time? Will it save you some frustration? Will it prevent you from damaging delicate work? Will using it save you money?
Will the same $250 be put to better use on other tools or accessories?
If you have to ask me, I’m going to tell you no. If I’m tasked with spending your money, I’m sure I could find other things for you to spend $250 on.
But if you’ve come to the point where you think this is something you want or need, I’m sure you could justify the purchase. Close your eyes, place an order, and never think of the price again. It’s really well made, and I think that the price is fit for the quality.
If you cannot justify the price tag, cross your fingers and wait for Festool to possibly come out with a separate hose and cord wrap accessory. Or wait for a 3rd party accessory maker to figure out a way to make something similar for a lower price.
Would I Buy This?
When I first saw this in a newsletter or one a Festool dealer’s websites, I ooh and aahed. And then I ughed at the price. I could definitely use this, but at $250? There are better ways for me to spend the money. But that’s just me. This is something I want, but not something that I need.
The next time I have $250 to spend, it’ll be on a Festool DTS 400 EQ orbital sander, which is $255 at Amazon. I already own an ETS 150/3 EQ random orbital sander, which I only briefly mentioned in last year’s Best Random Orbital Sander port. It’s fantastic, which is why I oohed and aahed at the new sleeved hose in the first place, and now I want a new sander for getting into corners and edges.
For me, right here and right now, $250 would be better spent on something else.
10 m Hose with Sleeve
As for the 10 m hose with sleeve, it looks like that’s a special new size. Looking at Festool’s product lineup, their 27 mm antistatic hose is available in 3.5 m and 5 m lengths, and their 36 mm hose is available in 3.5 m, 5 m, and 7 m lengths. So this 10 m is a new substantially longer hose length, and the same goes for their Plug-It power cord. The 10 m hose doesn’t come with a Systainer.
Other Hose-Protecting Options
Festool makes a hose and cord deflector that attaches to the end of a guide rail ($21 via Amazon), but that only helps when you’re cutting or routing along a guide rail.
They also make a boom arm bundle that attaches to your Festool CT dust collector and hangs your hose and power cord from above. The one that attaches to CT 26 and CT 36 extractors is pricey – $378 via Amazon.
Thanks for the in-depth analysis and your thoughts on the price. The pricing – while still a bit shocking – does make mode sense when you see what’s included. It might be a bit more palatable if they offer it as a bundled upgrade option with one of their dust extractors
What is the purpose of the anti-static property? I am familiar with the use for electronics, but not wood working
Fine wood sawdust + static sparks = fire hazard.
Sorry. I don’t drink the Festool Cool-Aid.. Even if they have the best products in the world I have a hard time paying twice what a comparable quality tool would cost.. Festool makes mostly decent stuff. yes.. but in the end is it worth it?? No, at least for me its not..
I’ve taken what I like to think is a more pragmatic approach to buying into the Festool lineup. We bought only a few of their tools.
We bought both of their track saws (55 and 75) when they were one of the first (if not the first) on the market. It did not take us long (in our opinion) to pay it back based on increased productivity on the job site. Sure we could have waited – and might well have bought one of the later less costly entrants to the market – but we might just a well have bought a more costly Mafell . Based on my good experience – when I retired I bought the newer TS55REQ for my home shop – mostly to handle sheet goods – prior to cutting on the table saw. I have no regrets – but did wince at the cost – especially about the $320 I paid for the 2700mm track.
The only other Festool product I bought was the Domino XL machine. I had been tempted when they first introduced the DF50 – but I was concerned that the largest floating tenons it could handle were too small for some of my work. I’m glad I waited – since with various aftermarket adapters – I now use the larger machine to handle the whole range of tenon sizes. I can also say that the machine changed the way I work – and I’ve been able to spend less time in the shop making stuff for the family – and more time with them. With this machine -I believe that there is no comparable tool on the market – and I’ve tried handheld dual dowelling machines from Freud and Mafell – which like biscuit jointers have their place – but don’t replace the Domino machine.
So that was it for me – no Festool dust extractor – as my old Fein – works very well with the track saw and Domino – and most everything else I hook it up to including my other power tools (a combination of mostly Bosch, Makita, Milwaukee, and Porter Cable of various vintages)
haha look how much the reusable filter bag is.
well it wouldn’t be a huge chore to pull the cord back through, just make sure you tie a piece of string to the cord and pull it through . than when you want to pull the cord through just tie and pull.
Festool has done nothing but make me money. I picked up a job from having festool on site installing some cabs. Guy saw my tools and asked for my card because he believed people with those tools know what they are doing. Doing that job alone has payed for those tools much less the time I save not having to clean up piles of saw dust.
I don’t drink the cool-aid so much as to not be able to see they don’t make the best of everthing but they do make some useful tools. If you haven’t used one of their sanders you should demo one sometime.
I like the idea don’t think I’ll run to the store to buy one though. I’ll keep it in mind for a time when it might be worth the price.
I agree with your comment. If I see a contractor using Festool, it leads me to believe they aren’t a “fly by night” operation.
After watching some tool teardowns and seeing how everything these days is made to a price and how marketing and bean counters seem to develop products more than the engineers you might just wish you could have some ‘vintage’ tools.
I got a cheap tablesaw off craigslist a while back and I’ve been tuning it up. I’ve also been looking at both new and vintage tablesaws. The current production tools just simply do not compare to some of the older tools. They’re all full of shiney aluminum bits and rubber overmolds that look nice but don’t work.
I also recently purchased a ‘quality’ name brand band saw. I’ve already noticed several places on it where some bean counter ruined parts. Luckily, I know how to weld and machine so I can replace those parts with new ones that will last forever.
I’ve seen some teardown videos, and while some are informative, others are full of cynicism, hidden agendas, or simply lack proper context.
Here’s the problem – as much as everyone wants more better and more durable goods, this comes at a cost. I recently talked to someone complaining about the quality of a $39 circular saw. I asked them if they were willing to spend $89 or more on a saw. They responded with a “hell no.” They got what they paid for.
Several questions swirl around in my mind. Are we really willing to pay for extremely high build-quality that might equate to long life? How do we (and manufacturers) balance the need for longevity versus the thought that new innovations might (or will likely) make what we buy today obsolete? How and when does “new and innovative” translate into increased productivity, improved safety or other compelling advantages that influence our scrapping the old for the new? Is the cost of a new tool justified based on the work that it will facilitate, and the income – or in my retirement years – the enjoyment it will produce?
I am reminded that we are talking about tools – that are employed by us to make our work easier. What I expect from my tools is reasonable longevity, decent ergonomics, build-quality that does not raise concerns about safety and a cost that is consistent with what the tool contributes to my work. I still use vintage hand and power tools – some of which are the equal or better than anything currently manufactured. With power tools – some of the old “beasts” make up in build-quality what they lack in modern features. But others while still functional and well built – have become more nostalgia pieces than working tools – because I’ve purchased newer tools that have features (like battery-cordless motors, dust collection, electrically insulated bodies etc.) that I deem valuable. My old Porter Cable 503 sander still gets used – but rather infrequently – even though it has a much better build-quality than a more modern Bosch – that has better dust collection.
While not exactly about construction tools – to illustrate a point – my old Leica M4 (a 1968 college graduation gift) is way better built compared to the Canon SX700 that I now carry in my pocket on vacation. The Leica and 4 lenses I own for it all – work very well but it is not as convenient for me compared to a pocket digital camera. The SX700 replaced a SX260 which replaced a Lumix DMCZR3 both of which developed problems – not worth repairing. I expect that the Leica will still be working well long after the SX700 is gone and I move on to something new. Would I wish for a pocket digital camera built as well as my M4 – sure! – but I expect that the price would be prohibitive.
Well, in the case of the bandsaw, not much has changed in the last 50 years or so except that the trunnions are now aluminum and puny. The fence, while a Beismeyer derivative, has rails that have been thinned to the point that clamping action of the fence deforms them over time. The motor mount has been thinned to the point that it bent itself.
Today I saw it’s ~24″ bigger bother and looking it over, it is clear that the bean counters had not tweaked this and that to the point that parts would wear out quickly with regular use but I still bet it was not made as well as it was maybe 35 years ago.
I got the cheap tablesaw knowing it was cheap and that it would wear out quickly and probably run horribly. But I also knew that it would probably take a few years to find a good vintage saw that would last me the rest of my life and run smoother and more accurately than anything made today. That said, it’s amazing what a difference it makes if you pull the arbor and turn the flange perfectly true even on a cheap saw.
My point is that there is a balance on products where they are well engineered, not costing a mint and without having too much glitter encrusted plastic.
I see FAR too many tool reviews today where it is clear that the reviewer has no opinion of their own and might as well just be reading company marketing material. I appreciate the tool tear downs and specification checking that AvE does because then I can compare the tools and make an informed decision on if I think a particular tool is worth what the manufacturer is asking.
In many ways, Festool reminds me of Apple.
Unfortunately, I’ve seen the same. “Everything is awesome” reviewers. You’ll see this in every industry. There are still some very good ones who I’ve learned to trust.
Hopefully you don’t consider ToolGuyd as one of the places where reviews and previews read like marketing material. I hope it’s evident how much effort I put into my posts.
Apple products command an enormous profit margin, and a lot of buyers treat them as status symbols. With Festool, I like to think that a product costs what it costs because it’s build exactly as the engineers intended.
A lot of people “drank the green Kool-Aid” and will passionately defend all Festool products. When you drop cash on a Festool product, you’re going to want to defend your purchase decision to everyone that’ll listen. I guess that Festool users are like Apple users in this way.
If I had to do it again, I would absolutely make the same Festool purchasing decisions all over again. But there are some other Festool tools that I just wouldn’t buy.
I think another issue is that even in-use reviews by their nature are merely a snapshot in time. I see a lot of reviews on the web – some by professional users – that really are only first impressions. These may help us steer away from junk that fails to perform soon after being put into use – or tell us something about QC – and variability in quality of one sample versus another. What we seldom learn is how the tool will likely continue to perform over the long haul. My 35 year old Unisaw is still at the center of my home shop – but I don’t know what I’d buy today if I were starting over. I’m reminded that my wife thought it ridiculously expensive (I recall about $1100) when I bought it – and wondered why a heavily advertised $100 contractors saw from Sears was not my choice (she had never heard of Delta or Powermatic – my other potential choice)
Long term testing of certain simply isn’t possible, at least for me. I wish I could test every tool every day for a year or two, but I can’t.
If a new cordless drill lands in my hands tomorrow, there is only so much I can test it before I hit diminishing returns. If I don’t see meaningful changes in performance or the user experience after 1 hour, 2 hours, 5 hours, or 10 hours of testing and natural use, how much use would it take until I potentially run into the same issue someone might encounter if they bought the same drill as their primary workhorse?
Most of the time, a couple of fully charged battery packs of use is enough, but I typically go for as much as I can manage.
Some tools I could definitely provide long-haul reviews for, and I do. Other times you’ll never hear about it. If one of my go-to tools works the same on Day 10, 100, and 1000 as it did on Day 1, perhaps only with some wear and tear, I’m probably not going to update a post or write a new post about it. I also can’t tell you how many tools I bought in the past few years that I’ve been using but haven’t reviewed yet. Some of the tools aren’t even available anymore. I’ll eventually catch up.
But other tools are harder to test long-term. For example, a busy welder or fabricator might use a grinder more in a day or two than I might in a month, quarter or even a year. I could go through a couple of cut-off wheels or a grinding wheel before I make up my mind about a tool.
I also leave comments sections open perpetually so that someone who bought a particular tool could always chime in with their own experiences, good or bad.
I really do think that this sleeved hose is awesome, and even more so after I learned more about it from Festool. But it’s still priced beyond what I’d be able to justify given my current needs and preferences.
You (I do) really have to thank Toolguyd (and I guess Festool too) for generating this much discussion – starting from a dust extraction accessory that few of us are likely to need and buy. What’s good about this is that Toolguyd – once again – introduces us to a new product and hopefully gets us to think about our needs and buying decisions. I sometimes find Stuarts comments to be insightful – but always thought provoking – as are many of the reader’s comments that follow. Stuart has been (IMO) always open and honest about his posts and whether what’s being presented is just a first look at a tool – or is based on his hands on testing. His recent comments about his testing rationale and the caveats that need be applied to his (and probably all other’s) testing – I believe to be spot on.
I’m almost tempted (just kidding) to buy a big fleet of Festool dust extractors equipped with these new hoses to give to my ex-compatriots for a their first impressions and then a long-term test to generate some bathtub-curve statistics about failure rates. But even if I did this – as Stuart points out – this would only be one set of user’s findings and opinions based on their needs and proclivities.
Thank you Fred for the kind words!
Festool users tend to be more vocal about their tools and purchases. Over the years, I’ve checked back and researched every tool purchase on the Festool Owners Group forum and some other places.
You generally don’t see anyone complaining about Festool tools failing or going out of whack. I recently read about a Festool saw wearing down, and how Festool repaired it and made it like new.
I’ve seen that Festool video before and the thing I took away from it is that I view Festool in a similar way to Dyson vacuums. Modern, sort of high brow, clean design appeal that sells itself on being over engineered when it really isn’t. If tools didn’t get stolen on job sites I wonder how many Festool’s you’d see on them anyhow?
Have you ever used Festool tools? Their dust extractor is leaps and bounds better than a shop vacuum, and I’m able to create quick and clean straight cuts with my tracksaw. I can do similar with a circular saw, but it takes me a lot longer, and with dust and chips spewing out the side.
Many if not most Festool tools aren’t designed for jobsites in the same way as other construction tools are. They’re supposedly designed for higher precision work, such as in a cabinetry workshop, but they should also work well for residential remodeling and things like that. Some tools are suitable for wherever you want to take them.
You wouldn’t use a Festool saw to frame a house, although they do have a new construction-focused cordless saw coming out soon – https://toolguyd.com/festool-hkc55-cordless-circular-saw/ .
Guess I’ll find out soon enough as I plan on getting either a Festool or Fein dust extractor as I can’t stand the decibel level of normal wet/dry vacs.
I suppose it’s the way the image of the brand and their tools comes across as more of a clean/professional feel over durability. How a tool holds up under hard, repeated use is an important trait I when it comes to my overall view of tools. Not really Festool’s fault but if they do start to branch more towards home construction or other hard use jobs with some of their tools then I’m sure I’ll start viewing them differently overall.
Festool is NOT the best. Their sister brand ‘ProTool’ competes in that slot. Or did, at least, since Festool is absorbing ProTool completely. Of course, by ‘best’ I mean American style. In Europe defining tool quality by referencing how many/how high roof top falls a tool absorbs is less common. Festool is in the advertising and customer service biz as much as they are in the tool sector. They are credited with all sorts of innovations which they just -copy- from Kress or Mafell or a number of other companies, even Bosch and Metabo. Don’t get me wrong, Festool does sell quality stuff, but a big part of their cost is for customer service, NOT best in world quality, in terms of durability. Tekton retails hand tools in the same manner, yet manages to set a slightly lower price point. Har har. I’m an American with a strong background in tools and materials science, and I think I’m pretty objective about this stuff, here’s my perception(as a USA based consumer)
Makita: most competitive. Sells tools in many markets, many trades. Typically good-to-very good engineering and durability. Best value among so-called pro brands, very few ‘lemons’. From compressors to rotary hammers to sanders to chainsaws to circular saw blades…Makita is solid build quality and competitively priced.
Bosch: slow and steady. Bosch makes some excellent tools, but doesn’t market particularly well in the USA. Not a trend following company, but a trend setting brand. Their SDS drills, table saws/stands, miter saws, worm-drive saws, track saws, routers, and jigsaws are hard to top(at their price points) ALSO: Bosch accessories are VERY good. Bits, blades, etc can’t go wrong with Bosch(or Freud/Diablo etc)
DeWALT: default. Giant company with a giant product lineup/history. With DeWALT you get what you pay for, hopefully. Good prices sometimes for the careful shopper. Lot’s of gimmicks and Father’s Day specials, compared to Makita and Bosch, at least.
Milwaukee: decent tools, better marketing. Seems to be making decent 18v stuff. Not surprising since this is their third or fourth 18v platform launch. Durability and quality a bit overrated, sailing on Milwaukee tools reputation from the past to a large extent. Their high end Fuel line is good, but priced similarly to Metabo, which is simply a better tool.
Metabo: great tools. Excellent grinders, excellent drills. Their new LiHD batteries are current leaders of the pack, Panasonic grade for sure. Weak-ass presence in USA though. Awesome 10.8v drill/driver line in EU. Their jig and reciprocating saws are superb, as are their work lights. If you work your tools hard, consider Metabo.
Hilti: if your power tools often have combustion motors, go Hilti. Hilti sells strong tools at even stronger prices. All of the above brands are usually a better value for most people than Hilti…but if you work concrete, and concrete only, Hilti starts to make sense. Reciprocating saws better than Milwaukee.
Mafell: if you want to see the ‘best’ jigsaw or tracksaw check out Mafell. Great dust extractor also. Mafell markets a track saw that includes a track that rolls up and fits in a systainer case. Talk about portability. Plus Mafell motors are just awesome. Their jigsaw has no competitor. Of course it’s like $800 or something. Mafell makes tools that are at least as durable as stuff from the Rockwell/Porter Cable era, before plastic everything. Just superb quality all round, no shortcuts, no BS.
Festool: a few gems at gem market prices, like the Domino. Great sanders, but prob not as great as Mirka or Dynabrade. Saws can’t even compete with Mafell. Much of the Festool lineup is a bootleg Kress idea. But if you build kitchens for rich people or renovate high end homes only, and don’t mind lots of plastic on your tools…Festool is for you. Festools DO make a great system, once you’re about $10, 000 in. And they do have very good dust collection. But the thing that Festool manufactures the best is marketing and BS. Which makes me mad, cuz I’m an American and bullshit is OUR realm, and we still haven’t been dethroned.
Something a friend told me comes to mind. He said that the woodworking ‘culture’ is very different in Europe than it is here. Wood and plywood are scarce commodities there. I also got the impression that large home workshops are much less common as well. So a tool MUST have excellent dust collection and it MUST be precise to not waste material. I’m sure there are other conclusions that can be drawn as well but if you look at european tools under this lens they can make more sense. My friend’s main point was that european combination machines make very little sense in an American shop and just don’t work very well.
It seems to come down to, how you will be using a tool and what you can afford. And sometimes it is just , we have to have what we believe,or other people believe is the best.
If you ever walk into a store that is a Festool dealer, you’ll realize
the reason behind the seemingly exhorborant prices + resale price management.
They don’t just stock every available consumable, they also have every available accessory along with every commonly lost part (dust shields, little screw thingies).
The store is going to need quite an incentive to offer up that much space and to invest into that much inventory.
That said, the vac already comes with a hose,and the tools already come with power cords. I do believe it’s priced with the mindset that it will take up space on a store shelf (technically on a stack of systainers) for a long time.