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I also just recently purchased one of those saws and IMO the Owners Manual is one of the worst I've ever seen. The Japanese to English translation is very confusing at times and appears to me that whomever did it has little knowledge of English technical terms. It sounds to me like you're talking about the knob that is on the front of the saw, correct? If so then you not only need to push in on it to lock the table into place you also need to turn it counter clockwise. To release the table from the locked position you'll need to turn the knob again but this time in the clockwise direction.
 

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I went and played around with my saw but don't have the problem you described with mine. The only issue I had with mine, and I don't really think it is an issue, was that the latch lever was a little hard to release from the locked position. However, I think that was because the saw is new and that the lever will loosen up with time.

FWIW, this is my second LS1016L. The first one I bought had to be returned the next day because of a burr on the RH side fence assembly that prevented me from installing the RH fence. If something like that got by Quality Control than your issue could certainly be a defect also.
 

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Craftsman70, I'm curious as to whether you returned the Makita and went with the Ridgid? If you did, how do you compare the two? I also looked at the Ridgid slider but in my case I decided against taking the gamble on a brand new product vs the well received Makita. MY HD was running a special on the Makita so for me the difference in price was only $50 which was another reason I went with the Makita. If you bought the Ridgid how about a little review comparing the two saws to one another?
 
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