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  1. #1
    Senior Member Dr Oldz's Avatar
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    Some thoughts on the Flex PXE (PiXiE)

    So I have had this about a month and wanted to share some quick thoughts.

    So letís get the most popular question out of the way: Battery Life! Kit comes with two batteries. To date I HAVE NOT been able to use a full battery before the other charged FULLY! Which means you can use this continuously on only 2 batteries. Remember you typically stop to wipe product off or inspect your work.

    My first take was that the switch was a bit hard to use. There was a bit of a learning curve but now I appreciate its operation. Itís nice to be able to throttle the machine in certain instances.

    Secondly, it has a ton of power. Has no problem rotating the 12mm adaptor with a 3inch pad. With the rotary adapter and a one inch pad, you can NOT stop it even on speed 1.

    The one inch sticky disc with the 3mm throw is simply amazing for spot sanding scratches. While the 3mm is absolutely useless for polishing, it is intended for sanding. Personally I prefer to chase scratches by sanding rather than compounding. It is much easier on the clear and much cooler. After sanding, bang... use the quick connect, put the 12mm with a 3inch pad or the one inch rotary adapter on and polish to perfection. I love it for this reason alone.

    I find myself using this tool so much now. Bumpers, pillars, door jambs, glass and any tight space. I love it for headliners. I often use a DA with a MF pad and a dry foam on a slow speed to clean headliners. Not looking for pad rotation in this instance but rather a light agitation. Being cord free, compact and light really makes this process a dream for me.

    I did a classic that had a metal dash and glove box and this was the right tool to perform the polishing in that area!!

    Iím very happy with this machine and keep finding new uses for it. Glad I bought and would suggest it to anyone looking for such a machine.

    Now to get to the cons. There are no cons with the machine itself but rather the attachments. I would love to see a 2 and 3 inch backing plate for rotary mode. While the 12mm attachment provides plenty of power, sometimes I prefer the precision of a rotary without the ghosting footprint associated with a DA! This machine has the power to handle those easily.

    I would also like to see an extension for rotary mode.

    Hopefully Flex can supply those items in the future.

    Another thing that is confusing is mine is a 12 volt. I have seen 10.8 volt models. I think they are the same thing and just labeled to sound better but I would like to hear some clarification from Flex on this as some chargers are labeled for 10.8 and 18 volt usage with no mention of 12 volt.


    Thanks for reading and feel free to comment.

    Jim
    Jim

  2. #2
    Senior Member JWilliams.RadiantDetail's Avatar
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    Re: Some thoughts on the Flex PXE (PiXiE)

    I'm broke as a joke right now, but it's inevitable that when I have $$$ I'll buy one of these. Your review just made me really want to start saving today. The batteries work with their Scangrip light too, which is a nice touch. Solid review, you've definitely reignited my itch about this machine.

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  4. #3
    Senior Member Aaryn NZ's Avatar
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    Re: Some thoughts on the Flex PXE (PiXiE)

    Fantastic review Jim.

    You overlooked the BIGGEST Con though Jim - Aaryn doesnít have one yet!!! That in itself is a tragedy.

    Some interesting points in there mate. Hopefully those questions will be answered for us too. I will get one of these sweet little PiXiE machines no doubt, & I enjoy reading peopleís thoughts on them. Certainly from
    What Iíve read & having spent some time using Mikes one in the Show Car Garage - Flex have built the tool so many of us have been craving.

    Great review my friend, enjoyable & informative - thank you.


    Aaryn NZ.
    a DETAILS Blenheim New Zealand - IDA Member - C.Quartz Finest Authorized Installer

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  6. #4
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: Some thoughts on the Flex PXE (PiXiE)

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr Oldz View Post

    So I have had this about a month and wanted to share some quick thoughts.

    So letís get the most popular question out of the way: Battery Life! Kit comes with two batteries.

    To date I HAVE NOT been able to use a full battery before the other charged FULLY!

    Which means you can use this continuously on only 2 batteries. Remember you typically stop to wipe product off or inspect your work.

    My experience also for ALL FLEX cordless tools. In fact, each time FLEX introduced a new cordless tool, the first thing I did was push the battery/tool to it's limit to answer this question as like yourself, I understand that's the first question everyone asks.

    To me, I think between your testing and mine, battery life is a non-issue.



    Quote Originally Posted by Dr Oldz View Post

    My first take was that the switch was a bit hard to use. There was a bit of a learning curve but now I appreciate its operation.
    Same here. The first time I used this tool and tried to turn the rocker switch on I was clumsy with it. Now rolling it forward and letting it lock-in to the "ON" position is second nature.

    I see Americans complain about this type of switch once in a while, the same basic switch used on the RUPES Duetto and Mini, but what American's simply don't understand is FLEX is a GLOBAL tool manufacturer and in order to comply with European regulations, tools like this must use this type of power switch.


    Quote Originally Posted by Dr Oldz View Post


    Secondly, it has a ton of power. Has no problem rotating the 12mm adapter with a 3inch pad. With the rotary adapter and a one inch pad, you can NOT stop it even on speed 1.
    My experience too.

    Compared to the other tools in this compact size it's the winner when it comes to maintaining pad rotation in the 12mm free spin mode.



    Quote Originally Posted by Dr Oldz View Post

    The one inch sticky disc with the 3mm throw is simply amazing for spot sanding scratches. While the 3mm is absolutely useless for polishing, it is intended for sanding. Personally I prefer to chase scratches by sanding rather than compounding. It is much easier on the clear and much cooler. After sanding, bang... use the quick connect, put the 12mm with a 3inch pad or the one inch rotary adapter on and polish to perfection. I love it for this reason alone.
    Well said.

    The thing we need now is sanding discs like Trizact with a sticky backing and a little foam backing to make the sanding experience smoother while also maintaining 100% contact of the face of the sanding disc with the paint.

    OR

    A 1" backing plate with velcro on it to accept discs like Trizact, etc or a thin 1" foam interface pad.


    I haven't used the hard face 1" disc to leveling things like Dr. Color Touch-up paint but my experience with dry sanding and wet sanding tells me it would work very well and probably better than your finger. NOTE: You will always have to be careful when buffing a sanding repair like this that you don't pull/buff the touch-up paint off the car.


    Quote Originally Posted by Dr Oldz View Post

    Another thing that is confusing is mine is a 12 volt. I have seen 10.8 volt models. I think they are the same thing and just labeled to sound better but I would like to hear some clarification from Flex on this as some chargers are labeled for 10.8 and 18 volt usage with no mention of 12 volt.
    The voltage is a non-issue. I think I explained it from info from Chris elsewhere on this forum, if not, I can get the info from Chris and share it again. Whatever the difference is it's not a real difference, it's a labeling and packaging difference for U.S. markets and International markets.


    Quote Originally Posted by Dr Oldz View Post


    Thanks for reading and feel free to comment.

    Jim

    Nice review Jim.


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  8. #5
    Senior Member Dr Oldz's Avatar
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    Re: Some thoughts on the Flex PXE (PiXiE)

    Hey Mike... to add to your comments.

    3M makes 1.25 inch sanding disc (I also believe they make a 1 3/8 inch disc)that fit and attach perfectly to the sticky backing plate. I get them locally from a body shop supply store. Perhaps AG can start carrying those.
    Jim

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  10. #6
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    Re: Some thoughts on the Flex PXE (PiXiE)

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr Oldz View Post
    Hey Mike... to add to your comments.

    3M makes 1.25 inch sanding disc (I also believe they make a 1 3/8 inch disc)that fit and attach perfectly to the sticky backing plate. I get them locally from a body shop supply store. Perhaps AG can start carrying those.
    Sure it's a new powertool but say that you bought an extra 1" sanding attachement. And glued a velcro peice on it so you can use different kind of sanding discs. Then there are some nice stamping sets that you can make your own pads from bigger pads and sanding discs.

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  12. #7
    Senior Member Dr Oldz's Avatar
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    Re: Some thoughts on the Flex PXE (PiXiE)

    Quote Originally Posted by SWETM View Post
    Sure it's a new powertool but say that you bought an extra 1" sanding attachement. And glued a velcro peice on it so you can use different kind of sanding discs. Then there are some nice stamping sets that you can make your own pads from bigger pads and sanding discs.

    Fantastic idea buddy.
    Jim

  13. #8
    Senior Member Dr Oldz's Avatar
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    Re: Some thoughts on the Flex PXE (PiXiE)

    The 3inch backing plate is black. I have painted a white line on it so I can see pad rotation when using the 12mm attachment.
    Jim

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  15. #9
    Senior Member JustJesus's Avatar
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    Re: Some thoughts on the Flex PXE (PiXiE)

    Quote Originally Posted by Aaryn NZ View Post
    You overlooked the BIGGEST Con though Jim - Aaryn doesnít have one yet!!! That in itself is a tragedy.
    I don't know. That seems debatable. I was thinking the it's worse that Jesus doesn't have one yet! Might be a good long while, too. I'm steering my focus on track events. And speed costs money


    Great review, Dr. Oldz! Thank you for it.

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