PM2000 sliding miter gauge

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Project by ToddTurner posted 01-15-2011 04:11 AM 7804 views 17 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I wanted a sliding table, the Jessem sliding table, but really didnt want to spend $500+ for it. I know its a fantastic piece, but I knew i could fabricate this myself. I used materials, 1×1 and 1×3 extruded aluminum and linear bearings, both from 8020 Inc. They make all kinds of extruded aluminum and call themselves the ‘industrial erector set’. In the last picture, this is the linear bearings. The only thing I had to fabricate was the brackets these bearings mount to. I have about 1 hour install time and less than $75 invested and let me tell you, it makes the PM2000 act like its on steroids. Thats one thing. The other is the tremendoud improvement in accuracy and repeatability. Basically I cut 5 different cuts and they all had about .002” difference/repeatability. I’ll take that all day on a 12 inch wide piece.
The actual miter gauge is the original Powermatic. If you want more information or have a suggestion or think I have lost my mind because i didnt think twice about drilling holes in a $3000 machine, please let me know. I love feedback from you guys.

Todd Turner

16 comments so far

View bigike's profile


4059 posts in 4739 days

#1 posted 01-15-2011 04:24 AM

nice work, i want a miter gauge from the same saw.

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop, http://[email protected]

View Tim Dahn's profile

Tim Dahn

1628 posts in 5015 days

#2 posted 01-15-2011 01:09 PM

Nice, I have had this idea kicking around for a while too. I’m wondering about the saw kerf, how did you cut it? what about cutting angles?

-- Good judgement comes from experience and experience comes from poor judgement.

View Schwieb's profile


1925 posts in 4912 days

#3 posted 01-15-2011 02:17 PM

I like this. Good work. Can you provide a little more info on the extrusions and bearings? I’ll try to google 8020 Inc. Thanks for posting this. Looks like a good add on for my Unisaw

You can bet that cutting the kerf or the aluminum in general is no problem for a carbide saw and won’t hurt it a bit. You’ll have a “zero clearance fence”

-- Dr. Ken, Florida - Durch harte arbeit werden Träume wahr.

View ToddTurner's profile


144 posts in 4774 days

#4 posted 01-15-2011 04:16 PM

Gents, thanks for looking and thanks for the compliments. The materials are 8020 Inc’s 1×1 (for the guide) and 1×3 (fence). These are both called 10 series. The bearings are simple flange bearings for 10 series pieces. And yes, an old retired 40 tooth carbide blade made an excellent zero clearance kerf. I am changing the side guide to a 36 inch instead of 24 inch because of not enough crosscut and will add a 3rd linear bearing for the same reason. Again the accuracy is more than I can describe. I will put up the pictures when the 2nd phase is done. Thanks and keep the comments coming.

View 489tad's profile


4153 posts in 4462 days

#5 posted 01-15-2011 04:33 PM

No, not crazy to drill into your machine. It is a great improvment. The wheels are now spinning. I like the idea. Are you able to slide the miter fence to the left if you want to make an angle cut? What I’m thinking about is removing a portion of the miterfence and installing flush a block of wood in the zero clearence area so the miter fence can be angled or the blade tilted to angle. Awsome job.

-- Dan, Naperville IL, I.G.N.

View Wolffarmer's profile


407 posts in 4688 days

#6 posted 01-15-2011 04:48 PM

Nice setup. No problem drilling your machine. Did you get the shakes starting the first hole?

I just looked at the 8020 sight. One could make a very nice router planner with their stuff. That was the first thing to pop to mind.


-- That was not wormy wood when I started working on it.

View Brad_Nailor's profile


2545 posts in 5408 days

#7 posted 01-15-2011 07:29 PM

Thats a nice piece. That would be a great addition to my Unisaw! Nice work…


View Mark Davisson's profile

Mark Davisson

598 posts in 4768 days

#8 posted 01-15-2011 08:52 PM

Todd: Excellent work!

You said the only things you had to fabricate were the brackets the bearings mount to. Did you mean the brackets that the 1X1 track mounts to? If so, would you explain what material you used for those brackets?

-- I'm selfless because it feels so good!

View ToddTurner's profile


144 posts in 4774 days

#9 posted 01-16-2011 02:31 AM

Yes Mark, the brackets im referring to are the ones that hold the 2 linear bearings. Look closely and you will see a piece of 2×2-1/2, 1/4 inch thick flat steel with 4 holes machined in that my machinist friend put for me. I slotted them, but with careful measuring, you could do it with a drill press, which i dont have. Good look. If you or anyone does a similar setup, let me know. SOunds like i turned everyone on to 8020! I deserve kickback, and NOT from my PM2000!

View Mark Davisson's profile

Mark Davisson

598 posts in 4768 days

#10 posted 01-16-2011 03:34 AM

Thanks, Todd – got it! :) I hadn’t read your original description or studied your pictures closely enough.

And, yes, 8020 is brain candy for the creative! And this site is LOADED with creative people!

-- I'm selfless because it feels so good!

View brtech's profile


1215 posts in 4373 days

#11 posted 01-17-2011 07:23 PM

I’m trying to understand what the linear bearing and track gets you that putting something in both miter slots would not. The 1030 makes a really nice extension to the basic gauge, and of course sliding on both the miter guage on the miter slot and the bearing/track makes a two parallel supports, which keeps the extension perpendicular to the blade. A sled uses the two miter slots, so we know that works also. Does the track and bearing have less slop or something?

View ToddTurner's profile


144 posts in 4774 days

#12 posted 01-19-2011 03:57 PM

Yes the linear bearing has 10 times more accuracy because there is zero slop. Infact they give shims with th bearings so it can be tightened up to your satisfaction. Another benefit is that when i made me sled, if you dont get the perpendicularity exact, you will never make a straight cut. I expect a perfectly straight cut. Also, most sleds dont pivot to make 45’s. This will. Also, doesnt the extruded aluminum look awesome? Im going to enhance it with some walnut strips soon. Very, very good question.


View engineerkid's profile


16 posts in 4128 days

#13 posted 01-31-2011 05:54 AM

Those aluminum T-Slot products are incredible. I would never have thought they could be so useful. I’m working on building a duplicate of Hutch’s fence system with the T-Slots, and I think I’m going to have to favorite this project as well for future reference. Great job on putting it all together, it looks great. And I bet you saved a ton of money in the process as well right?

View Albert's profile


565 posts in 5040 days

#14 posted 02-05-2011 03:56 PM

I like it!
Any concern about the bearings plugging up with sawdust?

View oldnovice's profile


7790 posts in 4818 days

#15 posted 11-08-2012 08:38 PM


Good looking and a smart use of these extrusions! Much more cost effective too!

Any reason you used 80/20 as opposed to the T slots? I used a lot of the T slots when I was working and the reason the company specified T slots versus 80/20 was never known to me. They are nearly interchangeable along with the Bosch Rexroth and some others. There are also some off brands that are much thinner.

A local manufacturer scrapped out some equipment and I grabbed as many extrusion that I could find.

I built a clamp rack as I posted some time ago.

I am planning to build a drop down out feed table for my TS.

-- "Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored." -- Aldous Huxley

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