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Sliding table saw attachment OR crosscut sled? Which do you prefer?

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Forum topic by tooldad posted 03-19-2010 04:36 AM 13635 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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tooldad

660 posts in 3179 days


03-19-2010 04:36 AM

I have 2 table saws at the school shop. One is setup for ripping with the standard blade and 50” rip fence, no surprises there. The other is set up most often with the 3/4” dado and I have a crosscut sled that has seen better days, but is still working.

Question is since I have 2 saws, do I rebuild/replace the sled or do I purchase the Grizzly add on sliding table?


13 replies so far

View Gary's profile

Gary

8968 posts in 2897 days


#1 posted 03-19-2010 04:52 AM

Personally, I can’t stand those sliding attachments. To each his own I guess

-- Gary, DeKalb Texas only 4 miles from the mill

View Michael Murphy's profile

Michael Murphy

452 posts in 2469 days


#2 posted 03-19-2010 04:16 PM

The sliding table is a must for squaring up larger panels. I have one, don’t use it much anymore because I don’t build alot of kitchens these days, but it works great when you need it and makes things nice and square.

-- Michael Murphy, Woodland, CA.

View Moron's profile

Moron

5032 posts in 3357 days


#3 posted 03-19-2010 04:43 PM

Once you get used to a slider attahment, its difficult to go back to a sled.

I vote for the slider attachment.

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2718 posts in 2750 days


#4 posted 03-19-2010 05:13 PM

I vote for both. In my door shop we use a Jet sliding table saw that I bought about 25 years a go. It is used extensively in production. I would not give it up. A sled would not be practical for what we use the saw for.
It is great for large panels and certain applications in a cabinet shop. We now use a vertical panel saw for some of the things we used to do on the slider.

On the other hand, I use a sled at my personal shop at home. I do things on it that are not really practical on the slider. I see a sled being very useful if you do a lot of different things, especially hobby type projects.

As with most woodworking tools, there is seldom a cut and dry answer as to which is better. There are usually multiple things to consider. How you work and the projects you do will determine what choice to make.

-- http://shepherdtoolandsupply.com/

View SCOTSMAN's profile

SCOTSMAN

5839 posts in 3049 days


#5 posted 03-19-2010 05:28 PM

I have a European saw with full sliding table I would never like to be without it even for smaller work it is great.A sliding sled you can keep sorry my 2 cents .Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

View Chris Wright's profile

Chris Wright

540 posts in 2945 days


#6 posted 03-19-2010 06:48 PM

The sliding table is nice if your cutting down full sheets of plywood, if you’ve got the room in front of the saw to allow that. I have an Excalibur slide on one of my saws and I don’t care for it. I don’t have the room in front of the saw to cross cut a sheet of ply, and no matter how much I tweek it, I can never get the thing square. I see the advantages of having one, but I don’t think I’d ever buy one if I had the choice. Just my opinion. Besides, you can make the sled a project for your students.

-- "At its best, life is completely unpredictable." - Christopher Walken

View rhett's profile

rhett

734 posts in 3131 days


#7 posted 03-19-2010 06:52 PM

I put an excalibur slider on my unisaw. I prefer it over a sled. Although I still use a sled for occassions where I am running a dado cutter and want the stock supported on both sides of the blade. There is no reason you can’t have both. The ever better option is what it seems Alistair has. A true slider where the table moves right up against the blade. If I ever upgrade I am going to get a Felder.

-- Doubt kills more dreams than failure.

View closetguy's profile

closetguy

744 posts in 3356 days


#8 posted 03-20-2010 12:30 AM

I use the Jessem mast-r-slide table. It doesn’t have the footprint of the Excalibur, but you can’t use it with full 4×8 sheets of plywood either. I could never use a table saw again without this attachment. It’s great for squaring panels and many other crosscut operations. However, there are many functions that a sled can perform that a sliding table cannot do, particularly when using jig attachments for repeating cuts on small parts. For this reason, I still use a sled on occasion. I agree with Moron, once you have slider, you can’t go back.

-- I don't make mistakes, only design changes....www.dgmwoodworks.com

View mikedddd's profile

mikedddd

146 posts in 2694 days


#9 posted 03-20-2010 12:52 AM

I had a slide attachment on my old table saw, I didn’t care for it and found I used crosscut sleds anyways, the one I had wasn’t that great. I think a European slider would be awesome if you worked with alot of sheet goods. For myself as a hobbyist I use crosscut sleds and a circular saw with a straight edge for any larger pieces I need to cut down. I personally don’t work with allot of sheet goods though, so you can take my advice for what its worth (nothing).

-- Mike

View Moron's profile

Moron

5032 posts in 3357 days


#10 posted 03-20-2010 01:11 AM

if I might clarify a point.

The excaliber sliding attachment works way better then any sled provided you dont have to “move” the saw. If you pack rat a shop where you are constantly moving tools on wheels then I might suggest you avoid it because to get the get the excaliber aparatus to work “perfect” is quite an ordeal. Once it, and the saw is leveled and caliibarted it makes woodworking a blessing instead of a chore…..we have to work with the opportunity that befronts us? Naysayers need not apply.

Bump it up a notch and buy a “real” slider, and like so many have said,........there is no going backwards, no matter what. Government tripple “A” grade stamped beef cooked to medium rare perfectly properly spiced is quite an experience, a “real” slider is like a “centerfold” with benifits that will do anything you ask of it. Wood becomes “butter”. Easily jointed, mitered, dadoed,...........pure joy. perfectly square, every single time, perfectly jointed every single time. There is no going backwards. Those who argue show how little they know.

Like I said, once leveled and calibrated it’s a joy, but if you move your TS…........unless you have way more time then me, ...........I wouldnt bother, and choose a sled. I also know for sure, that I would rather have any table saw then none at all. The real small ones can be made to do what some cant do with a slider.

After all, your only as good as the your tools ?

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View bigike's profile

bigike

4050 posts in 2752 days


#11 posted 03-20-2010 02:38 AM

i have to go with the sled to me it looks like it supports the work better, but i never used a sliding table attachment so i really can’t say. I do know you can make a sled any size yo want where as an attachment comes one size.

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop, http://www.icombadaniels@yahoo.com

View tooldad's profile

tooldad

660 posts in 3179 days


#12 posted 03-20-2010 03:14 AM

Well I’m stuck. I have only used one, and that is when I was student teaching 12 years ago for a couple of months. I really didn’t use it much, just the students, so don’t recall any feelings.

I took pics of the sled I have already and I am limited to 18” in width. The problem I have is that if the student pushes too far it pushes the sled off the table.

I was looking at the grizzly sled for about $300. Sounds like that is a cheap one and I would probably regret it in the long run.

View jplhomes's profile

jplhomes

12 posts in 2498 days


#13 posted 03-20-2010 08:51 AM

I have to go with the sled. Easy to make and i am sure you have the scrap arpund the shop to make one.I thhink everyone with a table saw should have one.

-- John

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