Welcome Aboard Proxxon

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It’s been a while now since Bosch Australia pulled the pin and removed themselves and their subsidiary brands such as Dremel from the bulk of specialist tool stores in Australia. They aimed to focus on the big box outlets and while their corded and cordless tools were easy to find replacement brands to cover; the problem we’ve had, was to find a suitable replacement for the range of Dremel rotary tools that we had sold.

Part of my job in the store I work at is to source and evaluate new product lines to enhance and expand our range, so the demise of Dremel created quite a headache. I looked at some alternatives but found that on the whole, they were only offering a tool, with just a few accessories. While the tools on offer were adequate, I was looking for something better.

 My idea was to replace the Dremel range, which was a good DIY product, with a selection which was exceptional. 

A few months ago one of the sales reps that visit our store mentioned that his boss had the opportunity to secure the distribution rights to Proxxon in Australia, and wanted my opinion. While I hadn’t heard of the brand for years, I was familiar with it as I had a 12v Proxxon rotary tool back in my early woodworking days in the mid-’80s. I remember it was a robust little unit so my recommendation to him was to go for it. 

Proxxon began in the small German town of Nierbasch in 1977 and has grown to become one of the worlds leading manufacturers of precision power tools. Specialising in high-quality power tools for model builders, precision mechanics, mould makers, tool makers, opticians, goldsmiths, watch-makers and more; Proxxon is giving users high-performance power-tools in a size never offered before. The Proxxon  Micromot system offers tools ranging from benchtop table saws and thicknessers to small angle grinders and polishers, as well as an extensive range of rotary tools and bits.

If you have a delicate and detailed project, then Proxxon have the tools to help you make it happen.

After a month of negotiation, they managed to secure the rights and I was delighted when my boss gave me a catalogue and price list and told me to choose what I wanted, (sometimes I love my job!).  

For our initial offering, I decided on two rotary tools, the FBS 240E, and the IBS/E, the power carver, MSG, the awesome micro belt sander BS/E and the Long Neck angle grinder, LHW, as well as the full range of accessories for all these tools.

Given the extensive range offered I felt that this was a good beginning to our relationship and I’m certain the range will grow when I get more of a feel for what our customers require. 

In the following posts I’ll go into the more details of the features and accessories of the individual tool, so please watch this space.

Thanks for reading, and as usual, your questions and comments are appreciated.

Bryan

 

Calibrating The TS55R Blade

Five Minutes With Festool – The TS55

Let’s assume that we’ve just had a blade sharpened and we need to check the calibration between the cutting depth and the depth scale. Remember that when a  saw blade is sharpened, you invariably lose a small amount of the blade diameter. After one sharpen it may not be noticeable, but after two or three sharpens there can be a  variation in your cutting depth.

 This method can also be used to fine tune the cutting depth if you’re using the saw on a different brand of guide rail, (not that I’d recommend that), as there can be a variation in the standard 5mm thickness between brands. 

To calibrate the blade on a TS55R, place the base of the saw on a piece of paper (A4 copy paper is ideal), on a  flat, smooth surface and set the depth guide to zero. As we’re not on the guide rail make sure you use the unmarked indicator rather than the FS indicator.

Set To Zero
Depth Gauge set to zero. Note the blade calibration knob to the right of the FS mark.
plunged
Fully Plunged, note the plunge stop resting on the calibration knob.

Once set, gently plunge the saw down until it stops and look to see if the tips of the blade are touching the paper

Blade too high
Blade too high

Adjust by turning the calibration knob on the top of the saw until the tips of the blade just touch the piece of paper and you’re done.

Blade Set
Blade set correctly

 

 

A good habit to get into is to periodically check this to make sure that your TS55 is working at its best at all times. 

I hope you found this “Five minutes with Festool” useful and as always your questions and comments are appreciated.

Have fun and be safe,

Cheers

Bryan

Festool, technique, training, TS55R, cool tools, blades, woodwork, power tools,

Five minutes with Festool

Five minutes with Festool is the title of a new series of articles I’m working on which will give you an in depth view of a wide variety of Festool tools and accessories tied up in a bite sized package. With each article being about 500 words they’re intended to be a quick and informative read.

Being the lead salesperson in one of the busiest dealers in Melbourne I field a lot of questions about the whole range Festool products and this article, which covers the range of blades available for the Festool TS55 , will hopefully address some of the questions you may have about them

Please click on the link below to read the full article.

Festool Blades 

 As always your questions and comments are appreciated and I’ll endeavour to answer as many as I can. 

See you next week for the next instalment.

Cheers

Bryan

 

  

 

 

    

  

I’m back in the saddle…..

Well, I’ll admit that it’s been a long time between posts and a hell of a lot had gone on in the last few years. The most significant change, which has shocked most of you who know me personally, is the fact that I’ve gone from a weight of 178 kg down to a meagre 74kg. I had some quite severe medical problems which resulted in 7 hours of surgery and me losing 75% of my stomach.

That was back in Dec 2016, and while the body healed a while ago, it’s been a challenging 18 months dealing with all the changes to my body and working on getting my head in the right place so that I can focus on writing again. A big thanks to those of you whose words of support have helped me move forward and I must admit that It would have been a damn sight harder to get through this without the love and support of my wife Sharon and children.  Love you all guys.

Cheers,

Bryan

It’s Back!!!

After an absence of nearly two years the Festool SSU 200 is back on the shelf. With 200 mm depth of cut and running on a standard Festool rail this bad boy is the ideal problem solver for lvl's, timber slabs or sleepers.

Street Photography

Now, I’m not afraid to say that I’m new at this style of photography.   When I was in my late teens to early twenties my primary camera was firstly an Agfa Billy, then an Olympus OM2 and I burned through a lot of my  weekly pay check  on film to support  my hobby. I remember picking up the two to three rolls of processed film from the photo kiosk in my local shopping centre, rushing home to check them out and and and proudly showing my parents, friends, and whoever else would look, endless shots of trees, cars, our cats and whatever else I thought would make a good image.

Eventually, I suppose, I got tired of shooting the same style of image and my attention drifted to other interests.

Now, some 20 years later with amazing developments in technology, I’ve armed myself with an iPhone 6+ and have jumped  in feet first and have rekindled my passion for photography. After all these years I’m now shooting work that I’m proud of and am fortunate to have found a market for.  I’m back to shooting a lot of images and love having the ability to post process on my phone and to be able to consign my duds to the trash bin.

This series of work represents my first real foray into street photography, an area I thought I’d explore after reading an article on  Eyeem  about the noted street photographer Saul Leiter

Processed with VSCOcam with k3 preset
Pedestrian Study 1, Carlton Victoria
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Urban Transportation 2016, Melbourne, Vic
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Pedestrian Study 2, Street corner group
File_001 copy 9
“Joy” Cyclist, Collingwood Vic
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Pedestrian Study 3, Crossing the Road, Carlton Vic

Hoped you like them

Cheers

Bryan

Routed Septafoil Frame

The first of 6 coats of Gesso goes down.

Due to the current humidity, I’ll give it 48 hrs before giving it light sand then the next coat.

Still undecided between a lacquer or gold leaf finish.

Be safe and have fun

Cheers
Bryan

 

The General Digital Sliding T-Bevel.

Hi All,

One of the projects that I’ve been putting a lot of time into recently is a book on pushing  the boundaries on router trammel work so you can create pieces such as the Septafoil frame shown below.

(Please keep in mind the frame in the photo is a draft piece cut out  of a 25mm thick MDF sheet and was created to test the process i’ve developed. The next one will be in hardwood)

Septafoil Blog

The frame is trammel routed using the Festool MFS routing template long with my trusty Festool OF1010 router.

Frames like this are an exercise in geometry and begin as a design on my sketchpad which is where I create the form, and work out the angles and measurements so I can transfer them to my full size panel.

A couple of months ago I discovered the General Digital sliding T bevel and since then my design work has moved forward in leaps and bounds.

I use the general to set angles in sketches, to assess how a variation in angle changes the structure I’m developing and when I’m happy with a design, to quickly and accurately transfer the design onto a panel.

Please take the time to watch the video here which shows more applications for this awesome tool.

The General has four buttons next to the digital display which you use to operate the tool.

They are;

Power, the red one.

Zero, to zero the tool for use

Hold Flip, which either lock the current measurement on the display or flips the display so you don’t have to look at it upside down.

Reverse, Which changes the display from an reflex angle , (between 180 and 360 degrees) to a an acute angle.

 

General 2_edited-1

All in all this is one of the most  useful tools I’ve come across recently and I am certain you’ll find it a worth addition to your toolbox.

Want one – Click here

As always, your questions and comments are appreciated.

Be safe and have fun.

Cheers

Bryan

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