Sawing flesh-not good

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Blog entry by steved posted 12-06-2007 08:36 PM 1158 reads 0 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I made the big mistake of cutting my fingers on my table saw. Won’t go into details, except to say that I made most mistakes you can make in doing so (tired, dark area, saw blade up, etc.).
I’ve been an avid woodworker for about a year now, with the idea of making custom furniture. With that being said, I’m taking this “opportunity” to organize my shop appropriately, and to a large degree with safety in mind. I’ve roughed out my space with SketchUp, and will add some pictures as I solidify the design. I have a good friend who is an electrician, so he’s going to help do that work, while the rest I will do myself, as the rough parts only need a little work here and there.

16 comments so far

View Betsy's profile


3391 posts in 3858 days

#1 posted 12-06-2007 08:39 PM

Steve – I’m sorry you go hurt. Lesson learned for all of us. Hope you heal fast and back to woodworking soon.

-- "Our past judges our present." JFK - 1962; American Heritage Magazine

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4123 days

#2 posted 12-06-2007 08:55 PM

when Rick was helping renovate a house he was using the contractor’s table saw. The man had asked if Rick knew how to use it… yes… and when Rick was done, he lowered the blade… the guy said, “what are you doing?” ... “just lowering the blade for safety.. habit”. The guy said, “huh.. never thought of that.. good idea”.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View Damian Penney's profile

Damian Penney

1141 posts in 3954 days

#3 posted 12-06-2007 09:22 PM


-- I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

View Dominic Vanacora's profile

Dominic Vanacora

508 posts in 3832 days

#4 posted 12-06-2007 09:25 PM

Sorry to hear you hurt yourself. I will make sure I am careful because of you warning us in our hobby, of woodworking.

-- Dominic, Trinity, Florida...Lets be safe out there.

View Russel's profile


2199 posts in 3901 days

#5 posted 12-06-2007 09:29 PM

I feel your pain Steve. I did the same thing back in March and I’m told I’ll get most of the use back in my left index finger. Sometime we do things we know just aren’t right.

-- Working at Woodworking

View Mike Lingenfelter's profile

Mike Lingenfelter

503 posts in 4076 days

#6 posted 12-06-2007 09:32 PM

One of the reasons they came out with the Sawstop. I know a lot people debate if it’s worth it not, but I’m sure you will say it is. I hope you heal quickly.

View steved's profile


5 posts in 3884 days

#7 posted 12-06-2007 10:25 PM

Thanks all for the kind words.
Russel, the doc told me most people do this to their off hand, as I cut my left fingers as well. You don’t pay as much attention those is the theory..
The sawstop is really cool, and definitely more appealing now.

View mot's profile


4911 posts in 3999 days

#8 posted 12-06-2007 10:31 PM

Sorry about your hand. You don’t need the sawstop anymore. You’ve been pre-disastered. Now you’ll just be careful. I’m glad you’re okay.

-- You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation. (Plato)

View Russel's profile


2199 posts in 3901 days

#9 posted 12-06-2007 10:40 PM

Tom, I think you’re right. Since my argument with my table saw I have become even more respectful of it. I pay a lot more attention now than I did before, and I thought I was being careful then.

-- Working at Woodworking

View rpmurphy509's profile


288 posts in 3817 days

#10 posted 12-06-2007 10:41 PM

Sorry to hear that you’ve been injured on your saw. Most dangerous tool in the shop for sure.
I’ve never lowered the blade when not in use, but am in the habit of lowering it
when making adjustments on the tennoning jig or removing/installing the blade guard
(knicked or cut myself one too many times on a stationary blade).

Hope you heal up quickly, and well.

- Ray

-- Still learning everything

View TreeBones's profile


1827 posts in 3986 days

#11 posted 12-06-2007 11:49 PM

I hope you heal up quickly and it sounds like your already back in the saddle. My table saw never fails to scare me more than any of my other tools, maybe thats a good thing for my fingers.

-- Ron, Twain Harte, Ca. Portable on site Sawmill Service

View Karson's profile


35111 posts in 4363 days

#12 posted 12-06-2007 11:50 PM

Sorry for your misfortune. Good luck on the reorganization

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

View sublime4life40's profile


32 posts in 3801 days

#13 posted 12-07-2007 04:41 AM

Hope everything heals up good as new.Ive made a mistake when I first started woodworking.I was making a lap joint for a project.making multipule cuts you know,remove alittle and little more til you get what you need.My pinky finger was hanging down just a little .The blade just breezed the fingertip enough to take a layer of skin.That was too close for me.

-- Rick,Neoga,IL.

View JasonH's profile


136 posts in 3790 days

#14 posted 12-07-2007 04:49 AM

Safety, safety, safety. Glad to hear that your fingers will heal, and it doesn’t seem as though your injuries have affected your typing! The table saw still scares the #*!@ out of me, so it gets the most respect in my shop.

-- Living on the square...

View tooldork's profile


4 posts in 3779 days

#15 posted 12-14-2007 07:11 PM

I feel your pain…..I nipped my right middle finger. When the ER nurse asked how wide my cut was I remarked, “The width of a table saw blade.”

As many others have noted: once bitten, twice shy. I view my experience as one in safety and respect. Now, I hardly ever operate without push sticks, feather boards, etc. to minimize the risk associated with cutting. Also, I have taken additional measures when using other power tools.

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