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Thread: Entry Level Sliding Table Saw....HELP?

  1. #46
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    Sliding attachments for cabinet saws are not really the same as a true slider...they are not right up to the blade which in essence makes them a very expensive miter bar that replaces one that rides in the miter slots. The are very good for squaring panels that are of reasonable size, however, so it depends on what one wants or needs to do.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  2. #47
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    Aug 2011
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Steffen View Post
    The tracksaw is awesome,
    but its slower and not acurrate for repeatable cuts unless i use some kind of parallel guide thing, but even that isnít super accurate.
    I own an SC2 but Iíve also made a few frameless kitchens with a track saw, MFT, large work table and parallel guides. The system is as accurate and repeatable as you set it up.

    Lots of aftermarket accessories if the Festool brand ones donít appeal to you.
    https://tsoproducts.com/tso-parallel-guide-system/
    https://www.senecawoodworking.com/pr...a-t-track-plus

  3. I bought my MiniMax SC4e with an 8.5' slider 16 months ago. The machine runs so smooth compared to my early 70s 12" Craftsman contractor table saw that I inherited from my Dad, and the Ryobi BT300 that I wore out the aluminum threads of the blade elevation housing before the Craftsman. The SC4e cuts very clean with an Amana blade, and the scoring blade eliminates almost 100 percent of tear-out. It also cuts a very nice dado with the 8" Freud blade. Nice for breaking down 4' x 8' plywood sheets, and for cutting small pieces with a Fritz and Franz jig. I've only moved my SC4e twice, with my pallet jack, once to give an extra 12" of space between the slider and a chop saw bench and once to increase the space another 30" to fit in a 12" Grizzly jointer/planer. Each time I make sure the SC4e is level. If I had to do it over again, I think might have bought a MiniMax combination slider/shaper/jointer/planer.

  4. #49
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    Now since you've all been so nice, i'm going to show you some eye candy and share a story. About 2-3 years ago a co-worker told me her great uncle was in his late 80s and had developed ocular degeneration, along with diabetes, bad back, ect. She said he had "some wood" he wanted to get rid of and I should go check it out. So I traveled the 20 miles to go see him.

    He was selling pine and oak he had a sawmill rough cut for him 30-40 years ago. He had been moving it from shed to lean-to to you name it for 30-40 years. He used a bunch of it for siding on a shed he built, but never got around to using the rest. I estimated it was about 6000-7000 board feet, and after I shot him a number and he countered I walked away paying around 30CENTS per board foot.

    Some was rotten, some was beautiful and most of it could be turned into something really nice.

    Well after 4-5 trips with my dad's 6x10 trailer and building a 18x20 car port type shelter for the wood with crushed granite base, my wife was about fed up with all the wood and all the time it was taking me to acquire it, so I sold about 25-30% of the whole stack, that remained at the great uncle's house for my cost about $700. I sold it to a local wood-worker that had built some live edge tables for our office. He was very nice and lent me a tool once, showed me his shop. He said I gave him such a great deal (obviously) that he wanted to make me a piece of furniture for passing the great deal onto him.

    My wife and I spent an afternoon spreading all the 1x boards onto the lawn to find the pretty ones. We moved those into the basement and I started making a pretty "barnwood like" accent wall in our tv room.
    20180601_150410.jpg20180601_150135_001.jpg20180601_150141.jpg20200705_101925.jpg

    I went out to the one remaining stack that's not under the shed, and YEP, the tarp is leaking and the top rows are soaked. =( I need to move them ASAP......also I forgot how long most of these are. I would say the majority are 10-12 Feet...........Making me entirely rethink the length of the sliding saw I "should" buy.

    I've laughed a bunch with another buddy of mine, "This CHEAP pile of old wood is becoming rather EXPENSIVE. Built a dedicated wood shed, considering a super expensive saw, need a 12-16" jointer.......lmao.

    Here are some photos of the wood shed and pretty boards in the basement.
    20200705_101511.jpg20200705_101534.jpg20200705_101537.jpg20200705_101821.jpg

  5. #50
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    Very nice acquiring such a beautiful inventory of material to work with!

    As to your slider decision...keep in mind that there's no rule that says you have to rip really long boards. My work method is to rough cut to component length and it's rare that a project I make would require a board that's even longer than 6'. Chalk is my friend for this. Sometime's I'll skim something rough on my J/P to be sure I can see the grain and color for matching before I cut down to length, but again, it's rare that I need to work a really long board. The only recent project for that was a Twin-XL over Queen bunkbed project where the side stretchers were in that 7' range because of standard bed sizing. My slider has an 8'6" wagon. Most of the time, I use a fraction of that.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  6. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker View Post
    As to your slider decision...keep in mind that there's no rule that says you have to rip really long boards.
    lol, funny you should mention that, i was wondering yesterday, "is there any reason why you can't cross cut plywood before ripping it?"
    If i'm going to cut up a 4x8 sheet into 6 equal pieces for the sides of cabinets for example, any issue with cutting it into 3-48"x32" (minus kerf) pieces then ripping that down to 6-24"x32" (minus kerf both sides) pieces?

  7. #52
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    Whatever gets you the parts with the veneer figure facing in the correct orientation is just fine. There's no "requirement" to rip a sheet first...just like there's no "requirement" to use the rip fence on a slider to rip solid boards. That said, optimization of sheets can come into play sometimes and you may want/need to do a particular cut or cuts before some others to make that happen.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  8. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker View Post
    Whatever gets you the parts with the veneer figure facing in the correct orientation is just fine. There's no "requirement" to rip a sheet first...just like there's no "requirement" to use the rip fence on a slider to rip solid boards. That said, optimization of sheets can come into play sometimes and you may want/need to do a particular cut or cuts before some others to make that happen.
    okay, good. I assumed that was the case, but my father once told me a saying, "to assume makes an ASS out of U and ME", . its stuck with me i guess.

  9. #54
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    Unless you're using MDO, even if you're painting the cabinets, keeping the veneer grain running in the same direction will yield the best result unless you're going to take the time tot do some major grain filling. When you can cross cut first, I find the material handling is a little easier...sheets are heavy and with cross cutting it's (at least for me) a little easier getting a full sheet up on the outrigger/wagon than maneuvering the sheet in the "less supported" ripping orientation. If I had a larger shop, I'd have some kind of lift table or other "thing" to help with material movement, but I can't use or fit anything like that in my current shop. Fortunately, I mostly work with solid stock.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  10. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker View Post
    Unless you're using MDO, even if you're painting the cabinets, keeping the veneer grain running in the same direction will yield the best result unless you're going to take the time tot do some major grain filling.
    You're saying aesthetically, keep the grain of whatever paneling youre using consistent? So if one vertical panel has the grain lengthwise, it would be smart to continue all vertical panels to have the grain lengthwise as well?

  11. #56
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    I did several huge acquisitions of "cheap" lumber like you, and each time i ask myself, "why did i do this!?!?". The labor involved with moving that much wood by hand is always awful. Like your experience, i ended up with 'free lumber' and some profit for my time. The one time was very much worth it, maybe 2,000 bdft of exotics--ipe, teak, cumaru, bubinga, wenge--with another 4-5,000 feet of domestics like QS oak, walnut etc. That was an incredible pain, but enough leftover to pay for my used Felder. My last time was a significant amount of labor and time to part out. I think that was my lesson not to buy large lumber lots again unless they are very valuable species. Trying to sell flat sawn 4/4 oak etc. is a waste of time.

    I lean towards a higher quality used saw instead of raising your budget a lot, but realize that isnt for everybody. I also encouraged the longer slider, because 8-9' should cover your ripping needs 90% of the time. When you want to rip something longer than your sliding table, you usually cant do it clamped to the sliding table(there are some jigs to overcome this), and you typically need to remove the crosscut fence/outrigger to make the rip cut. This is if your offcut will be wider than 1/2"-1" depending on the saw. This isnt too too awful, but depending on the build quality of the saw, now you might be forced to re-calibrate the crosscut fence to your blade when you re-attach the outrigger and fence. If you have to do that for every project, then that is an enormous PITA, in my opinion. Finally, a longer capacity just makes it easier to do smaller jobs. For example, i found it easier/better to plane or joint an 11" board on a 12" jointer or planer, than a 12" wide board on a 12" wide machine. I dont have a 48-49" sliding table, but i imagine crosscutting a sheet of plywood is a little cramped. Not as much room for clamps or a FF jig. What you describe with breaking up the sheet into smaller pieces will get you to the same end result, but you will make many more cuts to get there. With a 9' stroke, you can true up one length of the sheet. After that is trued, you use that as your reference edge for crosscutting. What you describe with breaking the sheet into 4 smaller pieces before taking to your saw means each smaller piece will need to have one edge trued before crosscutting to length. Otherwise, you are trusting factory edges etc, which sorta defeats the purpose of owning a quality sliding saw.

  12. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Steffen View Post
    You're saying aesthetically, keep the grain of whatever paneling youre using consistent? So if one vertical panel has the grain lengthwise, it would be smart to continue all vertical panels to have the grain lengthwise as well?
    Yes, I'm saying that...it just plain looks better, even under paint. For shop fixtures, I might deviate just to be efficient, but for cabinetry that will go in my own or someone else's house...consistency is important. And you actually can by veneer sheet goods with the grain direction rotated 90ļ if necessary for a given project to maximize material utilization. You can't always get it in every species, but a good commercial supplier will have options.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  13. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Kane View Post
    I did several huge acquisitions of "cheap" lumber like you, and each time i ask myself, "why did i do this!?!?". The labor involved with moving that much wood by hand is always awful. Like your experience, i ended up with 'free lumber' and some profit for my time. The one time was very much worth it, maybe 2,000 bdft of exotics--ipe, teak, cumaru, bubinga, wenge--with another 4-5,000 feet of domestics like QS oak, walnut etc. That was an incredible pain, but enough leftover to pay for my used Felder. My last time was a significant amount of labor and time to part out. I think that was my lesson not to buy large lumber lots again unless they are very valuable species. Trying to sell flat sawn 4/4 oak etc. is a waste of time.

    I lean towards a higher quality used saw instead of raising your budget a lot, but realize that isnt for everybody. I also encouraged the longer slider, because 8-9' should cover your ripping needs 90% of the time. When you want to rip something longer than your sliding table, you usually cant do it clamped to the sliding table(there are some jigs to overcome this), and you typically need to remove the crosscut fence/outrigger to make the rip cut. This is if your offcut will be wider than 1/2"-1" depending on the saw. This isnt too too awful, but depending on the build quality of the saw, now you might be forced to re-calibrate the crosscut fence to your blade when you re-attach the outrigger and fence. If you have to do that for every project, then that is an enormous PITA, in my opinion. Finally, a longer capacity just makes it easier to do smaller jobs. For example, i found it easier/better to plane or joint an 11" board on a 12" jointer or planer, than a 12" wide board on a 12" wide machine. I dont have a 48-49" sliding table, but i imagine crosscutting a sheet of plywood is a little cramped. Not as much room for clamps or a FF jig. What you describe with breaking up the sheet into smaller pieces will get you to the same end result, but you will make many more cuts to get there. With a 9' stroke, you can true up one length of the sheet. After that is trued, you use that as your reference edge for crosscutting. What you describe with breaking the sheet into 4 smaller pieces before taking to your saw means each smaller piece will need to have one edge trued before crosscutting to length. Otherwise, you are trusting factory edges etc, which sorta defeats the purpose of owning a quality sliding saw.
    Did I do this correctly, if every side of every panel should be cut because you can't trust the factory, i count 11 cuts if you rip first and 13 cuts if you cross cut first.
    rip vs cross cut.jpg

  14. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker View Post
    Yes, I'm saying that...it just plain looks better, even under paint. For shop fixtures, I might deviate just to be efficient, but for cabinetry that will go in my own or someone else's house...consistency is important. And you actually can by veneer sheet goods with the grain direction rotated 90ļ if necessary for a given project to maximize material utilization. You can't always get it in every species, but a good commercial supplier will have options.
    Okay, i'm on the same page. I didn't know you can get grain rotated 90 on some panels. That's good to know.

  15. #60
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    If you get a program like CutListPlus, you can play with the optimization that also keeps in mind grain direction. Obviously, component size matters...as does sheet size. We often think of sheet goods in terms of 4'x8', but the "good stuff" is often slightly larger which helps for accounting for kerf width. Most of the veneer plywood I get from Industrial Plywood is about 48.5" wide and 96.5" long, give or take (plywood is made in metric size) for example. You also need to account for thickness when dimensioning parts if your exterior cabinet dimension needs to be something exact...plywood thickness is also metric but also slightly variable. Measure with a caliper in multiple locations if a finished case dimension is critical.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

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