Shopping for a Sliding Table Saw

      Cabinetmakers recommend top-grade equipment with large-panel cutting capacity. February 13, 2009

We are looking to purchase a sliding table saw for our shop. We are most likely looking at a 5 '-6' model - a Felder or an SCN. Does anyone have any suggestions?

Forum Responses
(Cabinetmaking Forum)
From contributor R:
The local shop I work with has an Altendorf with digital, powered, rip fence and crosscut stops. Whatever you buy, spend the extra and get the powered fence and stop. The accuracy and repeatability rival that of their CNC machine.

From contributor E:
Get an eight foot or larger so you cut panels and straight-line lumber. I like my Minimax 315s.

From contributor CD:
Do not get a 5 or 6' table. It is a waste of money unless you are a novice or serious hobbyist. I have a Felder 6' slider and am constantly irritated by not being able to cut an 8' sheet without removing the slider fence.

I too am used to the Altendorf with digital capability. It is awesome and worth the 30k easily. I worked in Germany as a cabinet maker and have spoken with many other cabinet makers and the consensus is Altendorf is a bit better than Martin due to the zero maintenance required.

From contributor J:
I second what contributor C said. Get the longest slider you can squeeze in the space. You'll never regret the extra length, but you'll kick yourself everyday if you don't have it. Our Felder can't crosscut a sheet of plywood unless the fence is in the position it is least found.

From contributor Y:
I just bought a hammer winner with scoring and a 6 foot slider for $5,600.00. I like it a lot for that price except it does not have an 8 foot slider.

From contributor J:
The maintenance on our Martin slider is involved. We pump the oiler twice a month and check for square every six months. If the scoring saw needs adjusted that takes less than five minutes.

From contributor E:
My vote is for the Martin also. Ive been running one for over a year and the cross-cut fence has never needed adjustment. A pump of oil once a month in the central lubrication system is all it takes.

From contributor Z:
Ive got a 10 foot Casolin with a tiger rip fence. Ive had the saw for four years without an adjustment.

From contributor N:
I have a Minimax and have a mixed opinion on it. I have posted here several times with issues. I admit a lot were related to user error and after a lot of trial and error I do believe it is a good product but obviously the Altendorf and Martin are the best so take your pick. For high production I don't know if I would choose the Minimax.

From contributor U:
You have to get a slider at least as long as the sheets you buy. Otherwise you rely on the factory edge of the board which at very least, partially destroys the purpose of the sliding table. I've got a 5' Minimax and I use 8' boards; believe me it's not good! You can make a table which slides in the groove of the slider to give you more capacity, but it's a mistake best avoided.

From contributor J:
Buy at least a 10' slider. As mentioned before it comes in handy when your strait lining lumber and plywood. I had a chance in the 80's to buy a funky Aldendorf F90 with a 8' long slider, that and it had a 5 hp main motor. I'm glad I didn't buy it as the 8' bed would have been a problem being too short. I bought an EMA ks3000 with a 9 hp motor. It's still going strong. I clean and oil the ball bearing guideways often and have never had to adjust anything at all in almost 20 years of hard use. I replaced the mag. Starter and one main bearing for the arbor. I call it a poor mans Martin (same type of slider setup). You also need the big motor, it comes in handy when ripping hardwoods like hickory, maple and etc.

If and when I win the lottery I'll buy a Martin with all the extras, and become a hobby guy and only make stuff for my family and friends, and never deal with a builder or customer as long as I live!

From contributor I:
I had an SCMI 10' slider for twelve plus years, bought new and was very satisfied with the saw. I see these on the used market for a good price and would take a look at these saws, very well built. I moved to a smaller shop and got a vertical saw which works better for me for what I am doing now and takes up less room.

Would you like to add information to this article?
Interested in writing or submitting an article?
Have a question about this article?

Have you reviewed the related Knowledge Base areas below?
  • KnowledgeBase: Knowledge Base

  • KnowledgeBase: Cabinetmaking

  • KnowledgeBase: Cabinetmaking: General

  • KnowledgeBase: Panel Processing

  • KnowledgeBase: Panel Processing: Machine Setup and Maintenance

    Would you like to add information to this article? ... Click Here

    If you have a question regarding a Knowledge Base article, your best chance at uncovering an answer is to search the entire Knowledge Base for related articles or to post your question at the appropriate WOODWEB Forum. Before posting your message, be sure to
    review our Forum Guidelines.

    Questions entered in the Knowledge Base Article comment form will not generate responses! A list of WOODWEB Forums can be found at WOODWEB's Site Map.

    When you post your question at the Forum, be sure to include references to the Knowledge Base article that inspired your question. The more information you provide with your question, the better your chances are of receiving responses.

    Return to beginning of article.

    Refer a Friend || Read This Important Information || Site Map || Privacy Policy || Site User Agreement

    Letters, questions or comments? E-Mail us and let us know what you think. Be sure to review our Frequently Asked Questions page.

    Contact us to discuss advertising or to report problems with this site.

    To report a problem, send an e-mail to our Webmaster

    Copyright © 1996-2016 - WOODWEB ® Inc.
    All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any manner without permission of the Editor.
    Review WOODWEB's Copyright Policy.

    The editors, writers, and staff at WOODWEB try to promote safe practices. What is safe for one woodworker under certain conditions may not be safe for others in different circumstances. Readers should undertake the use of materials and methods discussed at WOODWEB after considerate evaluation, and at their own risk.

    WOODWEB, Inc.
    335 Bedell Road
    Montrose, PA 18801

    Contact WOODWEB

  • WOODWEB - the leading resource for professional woodworkers

      Home » Knowledge Base » Knowledge Base Article