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Are there any European Sliding Table Saws that you can "just buy"?

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Forum topic by lightnb1 posted 12-01-2021 11:48 PM 1217 views 0 times favorited 15 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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lightnb1

9 posts in 49 days


12-01-2021 11:48 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question table saw sliding table saw

I’m sold on the concept of a sliding table saw and I would like to order one.

Unfortunately, I’m extremely turned off by the companies (that I’ve found so far) that sell these saws. The way they want to go about selling (mystery pricing, salesmen that might have time for you next week, lack of information (“no, we won’t send you a user manual for the saw you’re interested in”), etc), is just not compatible with the way I want to buy a saw. I want to read the information, clearly see the price, clearly see the options and accessory costs, then click “buy now” when I’ve made a decision.

I’m interested in something like the minimax sc 4e or the K500S, but I don’t want to deal with the car dealership antics, especially remotely where you can’t even go to the “dealership”.

Are there any brands of European Sliding Table Saws that “get it”? Are there sliders where I can browse online, see the price, customize it on the website and add it to my cart and checkout, the same way I could “just buy” a SawStop or a PM2000, or a Grizzly or any other “American” (style) saw?

I would like to support a company that respects and values their potential customer’s time. And if it takes a week or more of trying just to get a price quote (which I still haven’t gotten), I certainly don’t want to deal with that kind of company when there’s a warranty issue, or I need a replacement part.

Are there sliders that I can get without the hassle? And if you own one of these sliders, where did you get it, and how much hassle did you have to go through with the quoting and ordering process?


15 replies so far

View HowardAppel's profile

HowardAppel

138 posts in 4364 days


#1 posted 12-02-2021 01:12 AM

I think part of the issue is that these types of saws were bought primarily by small (and medium and large) shops, can be configured in a gazillion different ways and the manufacturers/dealers were accustomed to treating their customers on a fairly individualized basis—they were not set up for hobbyists/start ups. I hope they get there soon.

One alternative is the Grizzly slider. I have no clue as to its quality, etc., but you can get a firm price online.

View xedos's profile

xedos

469 posts in 631 days


#2 posted 12-02-2021 01:33 AM

Contact Erik at Felder.

He’s a straight shooter and worked at SCMi ( MiniMax) for a decade or so before Felder. He knows these machines inside and out. Depending on where you live , he may have to refer you to another rep for the actual transaction ; but he’ll answer your questions.

Howard has hinted at part of the reason for your experience. These manuf. just aren’t in the “consumer retail” business. They sell plenty of machines to well heeled consumers , but they aren’t these firms bread an butter or focus. They do deliver and support there machines as opposed to an outfit like Laguna which is a consumer sales machine : brochures , best buddies before the sale , YT vids out the hinge yang, coupons, flyers , and specials every month. But, after the sale , you’ll be lucky to get a return call if you need something and even money that they stop supporting the tool the sold you all together.

https://www.linkedin.com/in/erik-loza-67b070b9

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Loren

11367 posts in 4978 days


#3 posted 12-02-2021 01:34 AM

Did you try Laguna tools?

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squazo

345 posts in 2976 days


#4 posted 12-02-2021 02:31 AM

i bought a cu410e from scmi a few months ago. they had it in stock and took 4 weeks to arrive. i must say however that it had some damage (from the factory not shipping) and their answer was “we dont think it will get any worse so go shead and use it as intended”. so you know. thats pretty lame.

i also happen to know felder has a kf700 in stock in their texas showroom. they wanted to give it to me for about 18k. after losing my sale you could probably get it for 15k. you could legit go pick that up tommorow.

View Jerroni's profile

Jerroni

30 posts in 1325 days


#5 posted 12-02-2021 03:44 AM

A used minimax slider in Wisconsin:

https://madison.craigslist.org/tls/d/new-glarus-minimax-12-sliding-table-saw/7414483449.html

looks like a good deal to me.

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mikeber

66 posts in 2190 days


#6 posted 12-02-2021 04:01 AM

Don’t know their current status, but once Martin had a dealer in SC.

As for the sales tactics, it’s crazy, like everything else these days. A total lack of transparency, incomplete info, delays and astronomical prices.

They make every possible effort to prevent the customer from comparing their product to their competitors.

On top of that, forget customer service as it was in the past.

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mdhills

78 posts in 3963 days


#7 posted 12-02-2021 04:27 AM

Hammer/Felder has a couple of showrooms you can visit and see the tools.
Hammer tool pricing is available online, although you should probably still contact a sales guy.

I bought a minimax bandsaw in 2014. This did require contacting a sales guy—I reached out to Erik Loza who was active on sawmill creek and was a good guy to interact with. Erik is now with Felder. Sam Blasco is another minimax sales guy who people seem to like.

Both minimax and felder have online forums where you can get some info.
https://groups.io/g/felderownersgroup
https://groups.io/g/MinimaxOwnersGroup

Matt

View lightnb1's profile

lightnb1

9 posts in 49 days


#8 posted 12-02-2021 08:19 AM



Sam Blasco is another minimax sales guy who people seem to like.

I submitted a contact form through SCM’s site and did get an email back from Sam Blasco a few days later (it was over Thanksgiving so that’s understandable). He sent me a price sheet with all of the models that I might be interested in, including jointers, planers, band saws, etc, which I really appreciate, because then we don’t have to do a bunch of back and forth with “and how much for this one?”.


A used minimax slider in Wisconsin.

That’s one of the models that I’m interested in. That’s about 2k less than list. I’m not sure how much “haggling” SCM does, which is another reason why I feel uncomfortable with the “car dealership” model. I think hiding the price is supposed to make it feel like you’re getting a good deal, because a salesman says so, but you don’t know what anyone else paid, because pricing is “secret”. But I think, at least in my case, it has the reverse effect. I start to wonder if I’m supposed to haggle because there is already “haggle room” built into the list price. So I feel like it makes me less confident in making a purchase decision, because I don’t understand the “rules” of the purchasing method.


i also happen to know felder has a kf700 in stock in their texas showroom. they wanted to give it to me for about 18k. after losing my sale you could probably get it for 15k. you could legit go pick that up tommorow.

I saw that last week when they sent out a “black Friday” email. And I actually wrote to them about it almost two weeks ago. Their website had a “buy now” button on that “deal”, and it just opens up a contact form. I think they had it listed for $15k. I asked what the final price would be with shipping, gave my exact address, and asked a few questions ie “does it have a blade”, etc. Never got a quote. Eventually a sales guy wanted to setup a phone call a week later to talk shop. I really just wanted a final price in writing with the shipping, etc.

In the meantime, I also got several more automated emails from Felder telling me to “hurry!” and “act now!” on their Black Friday sales. There’s a complete disconnect between the people sending marketing emails, and how the salesmen respond to them.


I think part of the issue is that these types of saws were bought primarily by small (and medium and large) shops, can be configured in a gazillion different ways and the manufacturers/dealers were accustomed to treating their customers on a fairly individualized basis—they were not set up for hobbyists/start ups. I hope they get there soon.


Howard has hinted at part of the reason for your experience. These manuf. just aren’t in the “consumer retail” business. They sell plenty of machines to well heeled consumers , but they aren’t these firms bread an butter or focus.

I think a large part of the disconnect here is that, for someone that’s considering a $10k+ table saw, it’s one of the biggest purchases they will make in their life. A company like Felder, however, considers this to be a “low end” or “cheap” saw, sold to a one-time customer. They’ll take your money eventually, I presume, but they act like they’re doing you a favor. Which means that the buyer and the seller aren’t viewing the transaction in the same way. Not even close. Which leaves (potential) customers feeling marginalized.


i bought a cu410e from scmi a few months ago. they had it in stock and took 4 weeks to arrive. i must say however that it had some damage (from the factory not shipping) and their answer was “we dont think it will get any worse so go shead and use it as intended”. so you know. thats pretty lame.

I’ve read similar things a couple times on forums. Also for Felder. And I think that’s one of the big things that bothers me. I’m sure there are many people that get a great tool out of the box. But when someone gets something that doesn’t seem right, and they spent a huge amount of money because they thought they were buying quality, they don’t want to be ignored, or to get an answer like, “well, it’s in tolerance”, whatever that means.

I’m feeling like, at this point, the best strategy is to watch out for something used to show up close enough to where I live and at the right price. Sam said the lead time on the SCM models were about four months out. I’ve read, but have not personally confirmed, that Felder’s were much longer, because they outsource some of their parts. Maybe 6-8 months on back order, if I recall?

I also have some questions for owners of these tools:

Does anyone here own the “SC 4E” or the “SI 315ES”? Was the separate scoring motor and the extra 2 feet of slide distance worth $2k for your use?

If your saw has a shaper, have you found that a worthwhile upgrade? Or would that be better as a standalone tool? Obviously, space is the primary consideration, but space aside, is it useful to have the slider track mechanism on the shaper, rather than using the powered roller feeders on the standalone units?

If you own a slider with the aluminum parts, are they flat? Are you happy with the milling? Most guides for conventional table saws recommend cast iron tops, and say to avoid aluminum. So I was surprised that these high end sliding saws have cast iron bases, but aluminum surfaces on top. Is the non-sliding part of the table (rip fence side of the blade) also aluminum?

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squazo

345 posts in 2976 days


#9 posted 12-02-2021 02:47 PM

my damage to my minimax machine was a small crack in the aluminum casting on the sliding table, which i must admit does no affect function. I however perfom NDT inspecrion and weld repairs for a living. Ive never seen a crack in aluminum not propogate. The only aluminum parts is both the sliding table and the track it runs on, as well as the rip fence and the jointer fence. The actual table top is cast iron.

Felder told me lead times of up to a year, unless I got that floor model they had. Which quite frankly is a stellar deal. I did not chose felder because I felt the customer service would be better with minimax which is proving to not be true.

minimax said similar things of up to a year except for a the cu410e as thats one is popular a d they sell alot of them. Maybe they keep others in stock too. I dont know, but if you chose them I would inspect the aluminum componets closely before purchase. They warehouse them in Georgia I think, it would be worth a trip.

That felder has a blade on it that they told me would come with it. it was a 12 inch (just eyeballed it) and it was coarse looked like a rip blade. I personally went to see it, so if you have any questions ask away.

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Planeman40

1560 posts in 4091 days


#10 posted 12-02-2021 06:29 PM

I can recommend a Hammer (Felder) K-3 sliding table saw. I have had one for years and love it. I won it years ago in a drawing!

-- Always remember: It is a mathematical certainty that half the people in this country are below average in intelligence!

View JPCruising's profile

JPCruising

29 posts in 1676 days


#11 posted 12-02-2021 08:52 PM

As a hobbyist woodworker I went through this process a couple of years ago and yes at first it is a hassle. I knew I wanted a sliding table saw but had never used one much less seen one in person and couldn’t find a lot of information online. Ultimately I ending up buying a Felder K500P, I absolutely loved using a sliding table saw and it opened my eyes to a whole new way of cutting wood and I would never want to go back to a traditional tablesaw. After having the K500P and using it for awhile I realized I made a mistake in configuring the saw by going with too short of a slider (80”) I should have gone with a 9’ or 10’ slider so that I could rip a full length sheet of plywood. Rather than live with it and regret it, I decided to sell my K500P and upgraded to a much higher end Felder with a 9’ slider and went all digital on it. Yes it is expensive but I am not getting any younger and wanted my forever saw. The 9’ slider has been super and allows me to rip a full 8’ sheet of plywood using Airtight pneumatic clamps. My favorite accessory that I bought for my K500P was a set of pneumatic clamps from Airtight Clamps, took awhile before I was able to pony up and buy them as they aren’t cheap but what a pleasure they are to use. Looking back on this, buying a slider is hard especially if you aren’t familiar with them, my first purchase was huge to me and my second even more so but I have no regrets. The Felder representatives are extremely busy people and yes it may take a day or two for them to get back to you. Erik is a great resource but has a limited coverage area in Texas. The Felder User group previously mentioned another great resource very helpful owners. If you would like to talk with me I am more than happy to share and answer questions.

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JackDuren

1772 posts in 2290 days


#12 posted 12-02-2021 09:32 PM

They just had a auction at the furniture plant I worked for. An Altendorf EP8 was sold…

View lightnb1's profile

lightnb1

9 posts in 49 days


#13 posted 12-16-2021 02:36 PM

Any idea what an Altendorf “F45 ELMO CE” made in 2002 would be worth? There’s a used one for sale about two hours away, I have no idea what they go for new, and the features might be different today. For example, this one doesn’t seem to have the touchscreen that is in the “elmo” product videos, but there is some kind of computer controls on an arm, but it looks much older. It’s kind of frustrating when they name every saw for twenty years with the same model number, and they all look different. How are parts availability from Altendorf for twenty-year old stuff?

The used F45 is about the list price of a new minimax SI 315ES (with tax and shipping), if I paid what they’re asking. The F45 would require a phase convertor. The minimax would come with a 1PH motor. I’m not sure if I need the computer controls, or if they are outdated (do they work with desktop software that might be obsolete)?

What do you think? Is a twenty-year old Altendorf F45 better than a new minimax SI 315ES?

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Loren

11367 posts in 4978 days


#14 posted 12-16-2021 05:42 PM

Altendorfs used to have a reputation for the phenolic ways wearing out and then you’re stuck with a saw that can’t be repaired. To some extent all sliders are prone to wear that can affect accuracy. If a long slider is used for short cuts mostly for years and years it can develop some slop in that area of the slide range or a “tick” somewhere along the slide range. This tick is something you can feel and maybe hear. A full length test cut may be useful though a slider can still produce a banana shaped cut so you might want to do two test cuts and put them together to see. They may selling it because they went to CNC which would be good for you since it may have plenty enough life in it for a liftetime of your use.

I think Altendorf in the states is distributed by Stiles machinery so you might give them a call to see about parts and servicing. You may need a tech to set up the saw if you buy it since moving them can knock them out of whack.

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Phil32

1631 posts in 1234 days


#15 posted 12-16-2021 09:51 PM

Could it be that a European table saw you could “just buy” would be built to european standards such as 50 cycle, 220V electrical circuits?

-- You know, this site doesn't require woodworking skills, but you should know how to write.

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