Sliding Table


I am shopping for a table saw, and have narrowed the choices down to the Unisaw and a couple others. I really like the sliding tables, and see that Delta has one too.
I would like some comments about the Delta sliding mitre table on a Unisaw, as to accuracy, smoothness, solidity, etc...
Also, any comments good or bad as to sliding tables in general, such as why I should avoid them, or why I would love one would be welcome. Any experience with other makers' tables, such as Jet and Grizzly?
Thanks so much, Scotty
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Scotty wrote:

Have you ever tried crosscut sleds?
If so, neeeevermind!
If not, some basic building info here: <http://www.bburke.com/wood/sleds.htm
In reality, a sled is simply an inexpensive sliding table that is task customizable and removable when not needed. I've seen shop made sleds as large as 4x8 feet and as small as 4x6 inches. A shop made sled also provides excellent zero clearance support for the stock.
Barry
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Some of the $10K multipurpose euro-machines have sliding tables that are integral to the machine rather than an accessory. These tables come right up to the blade (like 1/2" away). Expensive but very cool.
Sliding table accessories for a cabinet saw (such as the unisaw) replace the left wing which is 12 or so inches away from the blade.... That makes it basically impossible to use the sliding table for smaller pieces.
A sled rides over the table rather than next to it.
I'm with Barry, I think a sled (or several) is a much more sensible match for a cabinet saw.
-Steve

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http://www.dewalt.com/us/products/attachment_detail.asp?productID00
This may not apply since I have DeWalt TS. Anyway, I bought the sliding table at a WW show years ago (when I had the "money" for it). I like it a lot. Only thing would be the table should be closer to the blade (for smaller cuts).
http://woodpeck.com/miter5000.html
The Incra Miter5000 looks good. The only reason I didn't buy it (I almost did though) is because I would have to raise the blade higher (due to the thickness of the sliding table). However, the table is close to the blade, so that's good.
As some mention, you could easily make one, go get 1/2" Baltic Birch Ply and use flathead screws, etc... That is something I might do in the future.
Chuck

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Hi Scotty,
I put the Excalibur add-on sliding table on my Unisaw. I've had it for a long time and have been very happy with it. I have put it through a lot of use (and some pretty heavy abuse) and it's still accurate and reliable. In addition to cutting wood, I've used it to cut up aluminum extrusions for TS-Aligner parts. It's generally not difficult to hold tolerances of +/-0.005". At one time I used a crosscut sled to do this but the sliding table is far superior.
Let me know if you have any questions. You can find lots of places which sell them, do a google search on using the keywords: excalibur, sliding, table.
Ed Bennett snipped-for-privacy@ts-aligner.com
http://www.ts-aligner.com Home of the TS-Aligner
Scotty wrote:

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Assuming you have to rip an 8' piece of plywood. How easy/fast can you remove/move out of the way the sliding portion of the sliding table to permit such a cut? Do you find it's sometimes a pain to have to walk around the sliding table to grab what's been pushed through to an outfeed table.
Thanks
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The fence on the sliding table is pretty easily removed. What's left is a big broad flat surface which works well as a table extension. The sliding portion has a locking lever so that it stays in place.
I've never considered it to be a pain to walk around to the other side of the saw. It might be a consideration for the sedentary. Use a big outfeed table and it will wait for you to get there.
Ed Bennett snipped-for-privacy@ts-aligner.com
http://www.ts-aligner.com Home of the TS-Aligner
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Upscale wrote:

I've also got an Excalibur sliding table (the 40 model) on a Unisaw.
The sliding table fence has two lock levers that when loosened let you slide it left to right. In a few seconds you can loosen it and slide it to the left and get 14" rip capacity to the left of the blade without taking it off the sliding table. As Ed said, taking the fence off completely doesn't take much longer.
It does take a couple of extra steps to get around, but until you mentioned it, I really hadn't noticed. I find the convenience and accuracy far offsets the extra steps. It really shines cutting panels. I don't have a RAS or SCMS, so I also use this for cutting to length. The scale for the flip stop is a pain to calibrate, but once you do (or often I use the saw's rip fence with a stop block to set cut off lengths), you get really easy, repeatable length cuts.
That said, like everything there are tradeoffs. It can't compete with a dedicated panel saw or one of those nice European sliding saws. OTOH, for smaller work a sled is a much more economical option. For what I do I wouldn't give up this saw/sliding table combination.
Tim
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I can't remember which one is the sliding miter table... the one that is permanently attached or the one that fits into the miter channel. Just to let you know the sliding tables(mountable type) do take up a great deal of room. I do have one for my unisaw(delta brand), but have removed it recently. Accuracy is achievable, but continuously questionable. There is a limit to the depth of cross cut. My table is slightly warped. I've also seen the miter type sliding tables and they are extremely heavy. They also have a method of making miter cuts by pivoting the fence. Most of my crosscuts are 90 deg and I find myself not trusting the 90 deg stop on this unit.
They both work, but I myself think that a home made one works the best.
Scotty wrote:

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And which sliding table do you have, made by Jet? Got a link to it?
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wrote in message

They make one for their supersaw (which is what I have). They also have a sliding table for the powermatic PM66. I've never seen it.
Here's the link for the Jet model with sliding table. The picture shows the sliding table with cross cut fence in place. The fence is held on with two large 3/8" threaded handles that screw into pre-drilled holes on the cast table. It takes about 30 seconds to remove or mount the fence and it always locks precisely into the same location every time.
http://www.wmhtoolgroup.com/index.cfm?area=shop&action tail&iid993
Bob
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Upscale wrote:

Don't bother with the Jet Sliding Table. Not worth it. I have one with my Jet supersaw and wished I hadn't purchased the sliding table. Love the saw but not thrilled with the sliding table. Better off with homemade sled. More versatile.
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If money is not an object (and it is seldom not an object), then look at the Laguna table saws. At least one model has a sliding table. They also sell the sliding table separate which will fit a Unisaw.
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Never Enough Money wrote:

LT has two types of sliders - one that rides on a pair of rails attached to the outside of the cabinet of the saw and the other a long extruded aluminum set of parts with internal ball bearings. The latter slides close to the blade. Either one comes in real handy if you're working with sheet goods.
I've got the LT distributed Robland X31 which has the two rail sliding table. The unit has a 3 hp shaper in the saw table so the sliding table can also be used with the shaper as well as the saw. Handy but a bitch to set up if the tracking alignment goes out.
charlie b
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I'm jealous!
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Never Enough Money wrote:

If your referring to the X-31 - I had to go to the factory in Brugge, Belgium, to watch them set up the X31 since the "manual" that comes with the unit is a parts list with exploded parts diagrams and the one provided by LT is - I'm being charitable - "deficient". The blade height adjustment is done with a lever with a twist to lock handle and involves the "nudge and bump" procedure when doing dadoes (the EU equivalent of OSHA doesn't allow "blind cuts" - can't see the blade - so table saws don't need fine blade height adjustment capabilities. Oddly enough, the US version of the X31 does allow for a dado blade
But it sure eats wood nice!
charlie b
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On Wed, 27 Apr 2005 11:45:42 -0600, Scotty wrote:
<snip>

Thanks so much to all of you who responded. I have decided to forego the sliding table, and spend the money on more saw.
I will use the saw mainly for low-volume furniture production, and of course some hobby use. I have used sleds in the past, but I was thinking that the smoothness of a good, and heavy sliding table would be really nice. What convinced me otherwise was the fact that most of them are quite far away away from the blade, and are expensive. I can buy a better saw or more necessary accessories for the amount of money I'd spend on a sliding table.
It was all of your comments here that got me really looking critically at them. Thanks again.
Scotty
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