Festool Trion PSB300eq Jigsaw Review


The Festool Trion jig saw is available in both a barrel grip and D handle version, this review is of the D handle version but aside from the handle, the machines are identical. As one would expect, the Trion comes in a Systainer, (a stackable case). It also includes a dust collection adapter, splinter shield, and a couple of blades. The Trion also uses the Festool detachable (Plug-it) power cord and like all other corded Festools, the cord is long and sized to work with their line of vacuums.
Festool Trion Jigsaw
The Trion has a very sleek and smart appearance and a compact easy to maneuver feel to it. The 6 amp motor has plenty of power and is variable speed from 1000 to 2900 strokes per minute. A variable speed dial is located on the back of the grip near the cord. I was expecting speed changes to be inconvenient since you cannot adjust the speed (with one hand) while pressing the trigger. To date, this has not been an issue at all, evidently I don't change the speed after starting the tool.

In Use
The blades are bayonet types and Festool carries a wide assortment of them to fit the tool. To insert a blade, the spring loaded lever on the front is pulled out, the blade inserted, and then the lever is released. Blade changes are simply a dream compared to any other tool I own, the only way it could be any easier than this is if they were to change themselves. I anxiously await the day when router bits will be this easy to change.

Festool Trion Kit


I've only cut wood with the Trion but is seems to have all the power one would need. It is a very smooth running tool as well with the characteristically Festool lack of vibration. The speed control keeps the cutting speed constant and I believe that is part of the reason the saw feels so controlled during a cut.

Like any good jigsaw, the unit can be operated with the blade in one of several stroke modes. Festool calls this a "pendulum" action, most would probably know this as "orbit". The blade application chart lists what action would be best for each blade and material.
The Trion also has the ability to use zero clearance inserts (called a splinter guard) that can be installed at the front of the base. These are just little pieces of clear plastic with a pointer formed in their leading edge; they are cut by the blade when installed. These simple pieces of plastic really work and reduce tear-out on the pull stroke.  They can reduce visibility to the blade though, that's why they have a pointer built into them.

Special Features
One of the special features which accounts for the cutting performance are the blade guides. Many jigsaws have a guide or roller only on the back of the blade but this doesn't really stabilize the blade very much. A typical jigsaw blade tends to bend side to side during a cut, sometimes by quite a bit. If the material is very thick, this can lead to an easily observable angle on the cut. The blade guides are on small adjustable arms and support the blade very close to the bottom of the base. The guides themselves are small carbide blocks and in use they will put wear marks on the blades. I've found that these guides need to be adjusted a little differently depending on which pendulum mode is selected; a special wrench stored in the base is used for this.

Another special feature is the ability to plunge cut without a starter hole. You actually can do this (sort of) with a conventional jigsaw; the difference being that it will bounce around a lot and mar the work before it does cut a hole though; the Trion will not.   However, the base does have to be adjusted to a different position in order to make the cut. I would rather use a pilot hole but if you don't have a drill handy, this is a lot better than having to make a special trip to get one.

Dust Collection
Festool is well known for its dust collecting designs and the Trion falls right in line with this. The back of the base plate can be fitted with a hose adapter that keeps the hose in line with the cord.  Dust collection is made via a large-ish duct through the center of the base. A clear plastic shroud (called a chip guard) fits over the front of the saw; with this in place, dust collection is remarkable. This shield will obscure the blade somewhat but even when removed, the dust collection works quite well. The Plug-it cord design is also designed to make changeover from tool to tool easier since you only need to swap the DC hose and AC plug right at the tool.
Festool Trion Base
The Trion comes equipped with all the features one would expect of a high end quality tool and a few more as well.  Like all the other Festools the Trion comes with a three year warranty as well as a 30 day money back guarantee. The only way I would see anyone using the 30 day guarantee is if they found that they preferred the barrel grip over the D handle or vise versa.

I found the Trion to be a very accurate, ergonomic, and high performance tool that is a pleasure to use.  The performance of the Trion varies between "above average" to what I'll call "I don't believe that was cut with a jigsaw!".   The latter is typically found when cutting the more demanding materials like veneered plywood and the like.  Not unlike some other Festool products, the Trion has transformed my opinion of the jigsaw as useable for only rough work.

In the interest of full disclosure Festool provided this product to facilitate this review.