LumberJocks

How to get experience without hurting yourself ?

  • Advertise with us

« back to Power Tools, Hardware and Accessories forum

Forum topic by Karamba posted 01-01-2016 10:07 AM 1492 views 0 times favorited 50 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Karamba's profile

Karamba

116 posts in 401 days


01-01-2016 10:07 AM

I am very “experienced” table saw operator as I read countless manuals on what not to do with a table saw. Nevertheless today I was ripping a wet board (you know the one that HD sells for fencing). The splitter deflected to the side and I had to stop midcut and fix it. Then stupid me I restarted the saw without pulling the stock out first. The saw did not like it and hurled the board at me.
Sure I will remember not to do that next time, but I wander how many more underwater stones are there. Is dodging wood pieces a necessary experience to memorize all dangers of working with a table saw ?


50 replies so far

View b2rtch's profile

b2rtch

4822 posts in 2514 days


#1 posted 01-01-2016 11:32 AM

“Then stupid me I restarted the saw without pulling the stock out first.”
You said it , no me.

When using any tool especially power tools being very careful and paying attention goes along way.
I do not think that using power tolls will every be 100% safe but paying attention makes using them much safer.

I ma glad that you did not get hurt.
Happy and safe new year.

-- Bert

View Rich Simon's profile

Rich Simon

21 posts in 831 days


#2 posted 01-01-2016 11:47 AM

Honestly, we all make those mistakes at some point. For me, it comes down to one comment I heard years ago that I keep in my head every time I walk up to the saw:

“I am a table saw and I have one job: To kill you.”

View Ger21's profile

Ger21

1047 posts in 2596 days


#3 posted 01-01-2016 12:25 PM



I am very “experienced” table saw operator

No, you’re not. A very experienced table saw operator would never turn on the saw with a partially cut board around the blade, especially after he already had to stop the cut for whatever reason.

Unfortunately, experience is sometimes the only way to learn “what not to do” on a table saw. Hopefully you won’t get hurt.
Getting boards thrown at you by the saw is generally an indication of doing something very wrong.

You can read everything you can find, and you still won’t learn everything there is to learn.

-- Gerry, http://www.thecncwoodworker.com/index.html http://www.jointcam.com

View Redoak49's profile

Redoak49

1953 posts in 1454 days


#4 posted 01-01-2016 12:34 PM

Yes, it was not a smart thing to do and now you have gained experience.

Do not start a piece of equipment with a board engaged….not a saw, drill, or router.

View b2rtch's profile

b2rtch

4822 posts in 2514 days


#5 posted 01-01-2016 12:38 PM

“I am a table saw and I have one job: To kill you.”
I disagree with this statement.

If properly adjusted and properly used any table saw is safe, does not need to be a sawstop.
I have been using table saws for probably 40 years or more.
The very vast majority of any accident is due human error and stupidity.

-- Bert

View sawdustdad's profile

sawdustdad

131 posts in 350 days


#6 posted 01-01-2016 01:05 PM

Sounds like you are getting more “experienced” every day. We all make mistakes. One of the most important rules with most stationary power tools is to stand aside the work piece. Kickbacks are, eventually, inevitable. the idea is to avoid them as much as possible, and, when they occur, don’t be in the way. Some years ago, I had a two foot square piece of 1/4 plywood kick back and hit me in the stomach. Made a nice bruise. It wasn’t a straight-line kickback, it rose above the blade and pivoted off the rip fence so even though I was not in line with the blade, it hit me anyway. Another time, a longer board went sailing past me and hit the shop door, making a nice mark on the door. This is one reason many of us will go to the bandsaw to rip odd shaped, green or potentially reactive pieces of lumber. Much safer.

-- Murphy's Carpentry Corollary #3: Any board cut to length has a 50% probability of being too short.

View b2rtch's profile

b2rtch

4822 posts in 2514 days


#7 posted 01-01-2016 01:17 PM

” Kickbacks are, eventually, inevitable.”
I am not sure that this true.

Another important safety measure is to always hold very firmly the piece that you are cutting or working on as if you were expecting a kick back.

If you are expecting a kickback and if you are ready for it, most likely you will be able to control it.
I have a 3HP table saw and at time I could have had some serious problems with it but because I was ready , I was able to control the kick-backs and to safely shut the saw down.

In other words “pay attention to what you are doing”
Do not let anything distract you while you are using a power tool, any power tool.
A power tool is very much like a loaded gun,it is not a toy.
Know what you are doing, pay attention to your environment and handle it in safe manner at all time and you will be safe.

-- Bert

View Tennessee's profile

Tennessee

2410 posts in 1980 days


#8 posted 01-01-2016 01:52 PM

I have to agree with Bert. I literally cannot remember the last time I had a kickback on a table saw. But I tend to make sure the cut is always going to go the way I plan BEFORE I start the motor. Is the riving knife in place? Blade right height? Do I have a pushstick in my hand or very handy? Do I have room for support? Fence locked? There is more, but you get the picture. When I am as sure as I can be that I am safe, then I start. After a few years of this, these decisions only take a couple seconds, but I also still have all ten on my hands.

I did have one or two major kickbacks on my radial arm back in the late 70’s early 80’s. You tend to remember a piece of wood penetrating through the wood wall of your garage/shop as you just try to get your hands out of the way. Luckily I always stood to one side when I cut on that RAS.

-- Paul, Tennessee, http://www.tsunamiguitars.com

View Nubsnstubs's profile

Nubsnstubs

826 posts in 1195 days


#9 posted 01-01-2016 02:29 PM



I am very “experienced” table saw operator as I read countless manuals on what not to do with a table saw.
- Karamba

You don’t get experience reading. It comes with using the equipment you are using…

The splitter deflected to the side and I had to stop midcut and fix it. Then stupid me I restarted the saw without pulling the stock out first. The saw did not like it and hurled the board at me.

- Karamba

Where are your dogs???? With the splitter properly set up and in place, they should have stopped the kick back.

With the adventure you just had, you gained valuable experience that hopefully will now be imprinted into your memory bank next time you turn on your saw. Work safely, otherwise your hands will look like mine….... Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson)

View mtenterprises's profile

mtenterprises

933 posts in 2158 days


#10 posted 01-01-2016 02:34 PM

Two points,
First, I have mentioned this on here before. When I was younger an old fellow worker once told me “Machinery, all machinery, is very very patient it will wait and wait and one day when you least expect it when your mind is wandering or something startles you IT WILL GET YOU.
So to this I add remember the chorus to this old song; – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u1cjaheraq8 -

“Keep your mind on your driving, keep your hands on the wheel, keep your snoopy eyes on the road ahead”

Oh yea also reading everything on a subject does not make you an expert only hands on experience can do that and experience includes making mistakes. Hopefully your mistakes will only be small ones.

And to b2rtch – I have been running a table saw since I was about 11 years old I’m now 64 and I too often bragged that I never had an accident with it citing that I always operated it safely. Well a few years back my patient table saw nipped the tip of my left thumb nothing major, no hospital no stitches, but they do wake up now and then just to wake you up and keep you honest.

MIKE

-- See pictures on Flickr - http://www.flickr.com/photos/44216106@N07/ And visit my Facebook page - facebook.com/MTEnterprises

View b2rtch's profile

b2rtch

4822 posts in 2514 days


#11 posted 01-01-2016 03:03 PM

” And to b2rtch – I have been running a table saw since I was about 11 years old I’m now 64 and I too often bragged that I never had an accident with it citing that I always operated it safely. Well a few years back my patient table saw nipped the tip of my left thumb nothing major, no hospital no stitches, but they do wake up now and then just to wake you up and keep you honest.”

On my left hand, I have two fingers missing at the first joint.
This is due to piece a steel embedded in the wood while I was using a big wood shaper.
At the time(about 50 years ago) I did not even knew about metal detectors.
Properly used by attentive and experienced operators , power tools are not dangerous, just like a car or like a gun.
We, the operators, take stupid risks and sometime we pay for them.

-- Bert

View mtenterprises's profile

mtenterprises

933 posts in 2158 days


#12 posted 01-01-2016 03:12 PM

b2rtch – So very true

Mike

-- See pictures on Flickr - http://www.flickr.com/photos/44216106@N07/ And visit my Facebook page - facebook.com/MTEnterprises

View Knothead62's profile

Knothead62

2581 posts in 2426 days


#13 posted 01-01-2016 03:17 PM

Guns themselves are not dangerous. They are inanimate objects made of metal, plastic, or wood. Guns, cars, motorcycles, bicycles, knives, chainsaws, etc., in the hands of irresponsible or careless people are dangerous. My observation of 68 years.
As for the tile of this thread, the best was to avoid accidents would be to read the forum about the experiences of others. Good info on what to do and what not to do. Thanks to all who have contributed to this thread and others like it.

View lepelerin's profile

lepelerin

478 posts in 1790 days


#14 posted 01-01-2016 04:18 PM

I am very “experienced” table saw operator you said and “Then stupid me I restarted the saw without pulling the stock out first.”. Total incongruence. You might be a “paper experienced saw user”, but real life is different. So today you learned from experience. If you were an experienced TS operator, you would not have left the piece in place. Lesson learned and glad you did not get hurt. Experience comes from practice not only from books.
Happy new safe year

View teejk02's profile

teejk02

424 posts in 590 days


#15 posted 01-01-2016 04:30 PM

Like many things in life we seem to learn best from our “near-misses”. Commit it to memory and don’t do it again. With time you’ll develop a keen internal alarm system as you approach any tool. If something seems “iffy”, stop and think about it including alternative ways to do it. As for the table saw’s mission to one day hurt you, probably not a bad philosophy to keep in mind. Complacency/comfort was a factor in many of my mishaps.

showing 1 through 15 of 50 replies

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com