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About Slides

About Slides

Just in case you don't live and breathe slide products, the following information will help you gain a better understanding about the phrases we use when determining your ideal movement solution, how slides work, and their components.

Slide Terminology

Slide Terminology

Here are some common terms used to describe slide attributes. For more insight, watch the short videos by each term.


If you cut through a slide at a right angle to the direction of slide movement, you see a cross section of the slide components. Cross section illustrations include dimensions for the width and height of a product. These dimensions are important to planning drawer size and side space requirements.


A detent is a feature that uses friction or interference to hold a slide in a particular position. Most Accuride slides have a hold-in detent, to ensure drawers stay closed and do not drift back open. A hold-out detent keeps drawers in an extended position; extra force is required to overcome the detent to close the drawer.


Slides with a disconnect feature allow you to remove the drawer (or drawer member) for mounting and other purposes. There are four types of disconnects:

  • Lever disconnect: A lever on the drawer member releases it from the intermediate member. Disconnect is achieved by pulling the drawer firmly though the resistance of the ball retainer.
  • Rail disconnect: Rails are mounted to the drawer or moving element of the installation. There are two types of rail disconnects. The most common has a latch that is lifted to disengage the rail from the slide. The other style does not have a latch; the drawer is lifted off the slides.
  • Friction disconnect: No levers or latches are required to remove the drawer. Disconnect is achieved by pulling the drawer firmly through the resistance of the ball retainer.
  • Push-latch: A latch is pressed to release the drawer member. Disconnect is achieved by pulling the drawer firmly though the resistance of the ball retainer.
Extension or Travel

This refers to how far the drawer, tray, or shelf extends from the cabinet.

  • ¾-extension: Slide opens approximately 3/4 of the total slide length.
  • Full-extension: Slide opens the same distance as the slide length.
  • Over-travel: Slide opens a greater distance than the length of the slide.

Every slide produced by Accuride has a protective coating applied to ensure a longer life and smoother action. There are four types of finishes:

  • Clear Zinc
  • Black Electroplate
  • White Electrocoat
  • Weather-Resistant - This finish offers 8 times the resistance of regular zinc.

Slide length is measured as the longest dimension of a fully closed slide. As a rule, always use the maximum length allowable in the application. Most slides are sold in a range of lengths that vary by 2-inch increments.

Load Rating

Load rating refers to the amount of weight a slide will carry without failure. All Accuride products list a maximum weight capacity that is determined by testing performed via Accuride as well as outside agencies such as BHMA and WI.


Slide Components

Although the individual components may be intricate in form, ball bearing slide products are actually made up of just a few pieces.

Click here for a video about slide components.

Slide Members
Slide Members

Slides are made up of stationary and moving members. The stationary member is the cabinet (or outer) member. The moving members are the intermediate and drawer members. The drawer member may also be referred to as the inner member.

Ball Bearings
Ball Bearings

Ball bearings are made of steel, stainless steel, or polymer. Most slides have carburized steel or stainless steel ball bearings. Metal ball bearings give a slide more strength and a greater load capacity. Slides fitted with polymer bearings operate more quietly.

Ball Retainers
Ball Retainers

Slide movement is achieved through ball bearings held by a device known as a ball retainer, which is positioned between the slide members. Each ball bearing sits in an individual compartment of the ball retainer and moves back and forth in grooves on the slide members.


The grease used in Accuride slides is part of what makes our products move so well. In addition to the standard grease formulations, food-grade and high temperature grease options are available for special order or large-scale projects.