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I own a Makita oscillating multi-tool DTM51 but the question is valid for more Makita models.

The multi-tool is compatible with Starlock blades, it is shipped with a lot of these. But the mounting head is different from the Bosh and Fein ones.

So the question is, does Makita use the Starlock system? Or are Starlock blades just backwards compatible and therefore fit my Makita?

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No

Your multitool does not have a Starlock mount. But some Starlock blades are compatible nonetheless.

Starlock

Starlock has three types of blades: Starlock regular, Starlock Plus, and Starlock Max. The latter are more sturdy.

Starlock regular, Plus and Max

All Starlock blades are 3D-curved; they have a bulge. The three sub-types differ only in the cutouts.

Starlock bulge

DTM51 is not Starlock

Your Makita DTM51's mount is not curved, so it's not StarLock.

DTM51Z head

A 'real' Starlock mount has an inverse bulge like this:

StarLock mount

And Makita is starting to sell these too. See the new Starlock Max DTM52.

Makita DTM52

Compatibility

Your multitool can however accept some Starlock blades when these blades are backwards compatible with 'flat' heads.

For example, cutouts in the shape of Bosch OIS (Oscillating multitool Interface System) may be present.

Typically, Starlock Plus or Max blades will not have OIS cutouts because they support larger forces for which Starlock was developed.

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