Ball Bearing - Carburized steel ball bearings which produce excellent resistance to wear and provide the best load carrying capability.
Ball Retainer - A thin steel or plastic member pierced and formed to keep the ball bearings in place while moving. Typical forms are strip (plastic), flat (metal) and bridged (metal).
Ball Retention - The length of a ball retainer captured in the stationary member when the slide is extended. This dimension directly affects load capacity of the slide.
Bottom Mount - A slide that is mounted horizontally completely underneath the chassis, usually to the bottom of the drawer. Some slides wrap around and mount to the underside. This significantly reduces the load bearing ability of the slide. Also known as an undermount.
Bracketry - Metal adapters that are fastened to the slides for mounting into an EIA type enclosure. Typically the front bracket is fixed and the rear bracket offers length adjustment.
Center of Gravity - The point between the slides at which the load could be balanced on a point. This is usually an important factor in determining the slide type and load capacity.
Chassis - a construction forming the sides, top, and bottom of a cabinet, showcase, or the like.
Cross Section - Illustrations showing what a completed slide would look like if cut open vertically. A typical description of the height and width of a slide.
Cycle - One full opening and closing of a slide. This is the measurement used to define the duty of the slide and also used for life cycle testing on slides' assembly.
Detent - A device that either holds the slide open or closed which can be overcome by increased force.
Disconnect - The ability to remove the chassis from the slides, either by means of a lift-off system or by detaching the inner member of the slide. In simpler terms, this feature allows one to take the drawer out of its cabinet. Rail disconnect is when a rail latch lets you raise the drawer off the slide. Friction disconnect is when there are no levers or latches and you just keep pulling the drawer until it moves through the resistance of the ball retainer.
Dynamic Load - The weight of the assembled unit being cycled in and out. Typically refers to the maximum weight a pair of slides will carry when cycled the prescribed amount of times.
Extension (full, ¾) - The length that the moving member or members protrudes from the stationary member. In simpler terms, refers to how far the slide will allow the drawer to extend from the cabinet. Full extension means that drawer can come fully out of the cabinet. Typically referred to as travel.
Friction Disconnect - Disconnect is achieved by pulling the drawer through the resistance of the bearings. No lever or latch mechanism is provided.
Length - Based upon the longest slide member dimension when the slide is fully closed.
Lever Disconnect - Drawer removal is achieved by releasing a lever and pulling the drawer away from the cabinet.
Load Rating - The dynamic load carrying capacity of a pair of extended slides. Or, the amount of weight that a set of drawer slides can support. The rating includes drawer and contents.
Locks - Mechanical device that holds the slide in the open or closed position. This differs from a detent in that a latch or lever must be activated to release the lock.
Member - This refers to the actual elements of the slide. The inner member is typically a “U” shaped channel inserted between the ball bearings. The outer member is typically a “C” shaped channel creating a raceway, surrounding the ball bearings. The intermediate member is found in full extension slides and connects the inner to the outer members.
Mounting Bracket - A bracket used to mount the slide to the back of the cabinet if the slides cannot be mounted to the side of the cabinet. Used when you have framed cabinets instead of frameless.
Over-travel - How far a full extension slide extends past the front of the cabinet.
Plating - A layer of metal electrically deposited onto another metal. For slides, this generally means zinc bonded electrically to the surface of the steel, covered with a clear or colored coating.
Profiles - Various profiles may be offered for a given application, in order to provide the most aesthetically pleasing installation.
Progressive movement - All slide members move simultaneously, resulting in a very smooth action.
Raceway - The track in which the ball bearings move.
Rail Disconnect - The drawer is raised off the slide using a rail latch. The disconnect permits easy drawer removal.
Roller Mechanism - This is what makes the slide "slide". Some drawers use a nylon roller while others use steel ball bearings.
Screw head clearance - Internal clearance of the slide, which defines the maximum fastener head height that can be accommodated without interfering with the moving ball retainers.
Sequencing mechanism - A device that holds the inner and intermediate members together until the inner member has reached full travel. This increases the load rating of the slide by keeping the center of gravity over the slides for a longer period of time during a cycle.
Set - A set of drawer slides is a left and right. One set will complete one drawer.
Side Clearance - The amount of space required on each side of the drawer in order to mount the drawer slides.
Side Mount - A slide that mounts to the side of the drawer and to the side of the cabinet or the cabinet face frame.
Slide Movement - Slides move in stages--telescoping--or progressive, with all parts moving at the same time. The progressive slide is the smoothest.
Static load - A given weight that the slides can support in the extended position. Static implies that the drawer need not be cycled with this load. Typically used to determine safety limits.
Stops - Formed ends on the inner or outer members, which prevent the slide from coming apart.
Telescoping slides - Refers to slide movement in stages, similar to a telescope. Typically the drawer member travels fully, followed by the intermediate member. Always a full extension type slide.
Travel - The distance a slide will extend from a cabinet. 3/4 extension permits partial drawer travel, approximately 75% of the slide length. Full extension is travel equal to the length of the slide. Over travel means the drawer will open more than the length of the slide. Also know as extension.
Under-travel - The distance over which the moving member travels which is less than the length of the slide.
Undermount - A slide that is mounted horizontally completely underneath the chassis, usually to the bottom of the drawer. Some slides wrap around and mount to the underside. This typically reduces the load carrying ability of the slide by significantly. Also known as a bottom mount.