I HAVE seen lots of different styles of insulation – from the ‘stuff-it-in-andhope-for-the-best' method, through to the obsessively neat ‘no gaps at any cost’.
Obviously the nearer you get to the ‘no-gaps’ style, the better the insulation factor. The Festool ISC 240 is the tool to help you do it.
Two Blades for Different Insulation Types
If you think of a cordless jigsaw with much longer and specialised blades, then you have a basic grasp of the way in which the saw works – but this being a Festool, the simplicity is only skin deep.
For the most rigid types of insulation material like PU foams, the jigsaw type of toothed blade is required.
This blade is supported by a wide blade backing, which keeps the long blade straight for accurate cutting into insulation, that could be up to 25cm thick.
Longer blades are available - I am told.
For less rigid insulation materials like rockwool or woollen batts, a different blade formation is required.
This consists of two extremely sharp ‘wavey’ blades, one of which reciprocates up and down the other - creating a kind of scissor action cut, that shears through material which tends to give a bit.
And the extras…
To ensure users get a straight and accurate cut, Festool engineers have designed a couple of bases to go with each blade type. The first of these clicks on near the top of the blade.
The base has two channels on it, that can be fitted into the channel along the back of a standard Festool guiderail. These enable users to cut millimetre perfect straight lines in harder types of insulation.
Again, for softer insulation where accuracy may not be as critical, but is certainly desirable Festool engineers have designed a small-wheeled sled that runs in the grooves of a Festool guide rail.
This sled is attached to the bottom end of the sharp ‘wavey’ blades.
When cutting, the guide rail is slid underneath the insulation so the insulation rests on it, and then the saw is slid down the guide rail - where the small weight of the insulation helps to keep it down for easier cutting.
A word of warning though – the ‘wavey’ blades are so sharp - it is best to keep them covered with the supplied bladeguard when they are not in use.
While it looks a bit like and cuts like a cordless jigsaw, the insulation saw has several features that sets it apart. For example, most users would notice the fine mesh covering the motor ventilation holes – these replaceable filters are designed to keep out fine insulation particles that could spell an early death to an electric motor.
The on/off switch cannot be accidentally switched – a definite safety factor with extremely sharp blades in action. It needs two quick pushes to start.
Dust extraction is extremely good, via the port on top of the saw head – it needs to be slid back to allow blade changes.
And finally, Festool has included two of its latest Bluetooth batteries that allow remote switching of a compatible vacuum extractor. A truly good thing, as the last thing any user wants to do is inhale ne insulation particles.
There is much more to say about this insulation saw. Having used it, I am impressed with both the ease of use and the accuracy.
Add to that cordless convenience and Bluetooth switching, and you have a very user friendly tool.
Here’s to warmer houses, courtesy of the Festool Insulation saw.