Smart Siding Cut Table
The Van Mark Trim-A-Table TAT60 works with both right- and left-hand saws and does not require the saw to be attached to a special plate that slides in the rail guides.
Over the last 25 years I have used various siding cut tables. I recently upgraded to the Van Mark Trim-A-Table TAT60 panel and siding saw, and having used it on several jobs now, I’ve definitely formed an opinion as to how it compares.
Out of the box, the TAT60 is easy and straightforward to set up. The saw “boom”/rail is designed to accommodate a 7-1⁄4-in. sidewinder circular saw (not included), which is the way I initially set it up, but I soon switched to my 7-1⁄4-in. cordless saw. Unlike other cut tables I’ve used, this one works with both right- and left-hand saws and does not require the saw to be attached to a special plate that slides in the rail guides. I own a Minnesota remodeling company, and my equipment has to stand up to daily work-related abuse as well as temperatures that range from 100°F to –30°F. Both of my saws lock into the rails securely and slide smoothly in high-heat and low-temperature environments. When changing angles, the saw track is easily adjusted even when I’m wearing gloves, and it has positive stops so I can lock in the track for precisely duplicating angle cuts.
With both extension wings fully extended, the table provides 18 ft. of support, and the long 72-in. saw rail can cut an angle on a 9-1⁄4-in. piece of siding that will fit a gable with a pitch as shallow as 2:12. The wing supports are helpful when cutting wider material like 16-in. soffits or 18-in. shake panels. The positive stop on the fence is simple to adjust and allows me to cut a bunch of pieces the same size accurately and efficiently.
When the table is ready for transport, all I have to do is loosen and remove the rail and fold up the legs. In one trip I can load the table into a truck or trailer for the next job. When collapsed, the table fits into an 8-ft. truck bed. The only improvement I wish Van Mark would make is to the folding legs; it would be nice if they were height-adjustable. The legs that come with this saw are a fixed length, so I often have to prop them up to create a level work surface when using the saw on a slope or uneven ground.
Overall, this American-made table is built to perform quality cuts for decades, and its design and engineering is far better than that of the other cut tables I’ve tried. You can buy the Trim-A-Table TAT60 for under $1500 at specialty tool retailers. If you can’t find one near you, visit van-mark.com and they will point you in the right direction.
– Chris Lange, a remodeler in West Concord, Minn.
Photos: Josh Risberg
From Fine Homebuilding #320