Review by: yellad
This Festool compact corner sander lives up to its billing.
I have wanted the Festool detail sander DTS 400 for some time now. Once I got my hands on this detail sander I couldn’t wait to get a review posted.
The Festool detail sander DTS 400 comes in a Systainer 2 T-Loc with power cord and dust bag. The abrasives are extra and Festool now has a Granat Delta abrasives set w/ systainer available that fits the ETS and DTS models. I personally have never used the portable dust bag and chute because it’s important to use a dust collection system whenever possible, it will give you way better results and your abrasives will last much longer as well.
Considering this is a Festool detail sander and finishing sander, you’d want to avoid swirl marks so IMO it must be used in conjunction with the vacuum/dust extractor. The “Plug-It” power cord is interchangeable with cords from their other tools as well, so I just keep one plugged into the vac with the hose at all times and just unplug from the tool.
Festool detail sander DTS 400 – Ease of Use is a Plus
The hook and loop style abrasives are fast and easy to use with the “Stickfix” pad which is of medium density. The on/off switch is easily reachable with your forefinger, however the infinitely variable speed switch is in back of the Festool detail sander, so you need to use your other hand to change speeds or change speeds when it’s off. The sander weighs 2.4 lbs so it’s quite light and balanced with the handle grip directly on top and all the action taking place directly underneath. It’s 2mm stroke makes it a great detail sander, but powerful enough to be used for spot sanding as well.
When I use the corners of the delta to get into the hard to reach places, the pad bounces back into form immediately and the abrasives don’t lose their “grit” (which is a testament to the Granat line) even though they are a little thinner and more flexible than my generic pads for my old Mastercraft sander. The difference between these two machines is night and day both in usefulness and enjoyment level. The Festool RO90 sander has a delta pad attachment you can add on, but with the added weight vs the Festool detail sander DTS 400, the DTS 400 is the one you’d reach for every time.
Festool Detail Sander DTS 400 in Action
In this video, I’m using it to clean up the epoxy on top of my walnut slab. I just wanted to demonstrate it’s power, balance, minimal vibration, and overall ease of use. I went through grits 80,120,150,180,220 but it only took the length of the video sand down the mound of dried epoxy . Around the 2:40 mark is a good demonstration of how Festool Detail Sander DTS 400 2mm stroke vibrations can be easily controlled with tool speed and Dc suction controls to get the perfect finish on any surface.
This video shows how lightweight and nimble the Festool Detail Sander DTS 400 can be. The amount of holes dedicated for dust collection help it suck up the debris even when not all the holes are on the surface. While sanding down more epoxy residue, I was surprised by how well it did in that regard compare to what I’ve been used to.
I’m working the live edge of here, getting into the crevices and removing the “husk” parts after the bark is gone. Again I went through the grits and the whole process tool less than 10 min.
Festool Detail Sander DTS 400 Final Impressions
Overall, this little sander does a lot for me in very little time and effort. The fact it comes in a systainer gives it even more value at its $335 CAD price point. This is not an EC Brushless tool, not sure if/when they would make a brushless version of this, but I hope they don’t push people towards the RO90+ attachments because this tool can stand by itself in any tool box.