Another informal Survey - Blade Guards

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Forum topic by mcase posted 12-25-2011 05:21 PM 2559 views 0 times favorited 57 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View mcase's profile


446 posts in 2701 days

12-25-2011 05:21 PM

This is pretty straight forward. With all the talk on this forum about safety the old standby blade guard seems neglected. The simple question is – Do you use it? I confess I never did even before I had and SS. I have an SS and use the riving knife religiously, but the guard’s been gathering dust. I just reinstalled it. No big incident or near miss just that Live4ever’s survey on injuries got me thinking about it. They are a lot more user friendly than the old ones so I’m going to give it a try. Only Time will tell if its turns out to be too much trouble. Anyway, I thought we all might be interested in the general practices involving the use or neglect of the old safety standby – the blade guard. So, in the general LJ interest I ask that you take a moment and please indicate if you use a blade guard and if you have an SS or not.

57 replies so far

View Craftsman on the lake's profile

Craftsman on the lake

2609 posts in 3009 days

#1 posted 12-25-2011 05:51 PM

Admittedly, always removed. Sigh.. but it gets in the way.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View Jacob Lucas's profile

Jacob Lucas

100 posts in 2003 days

#2 posted 12-25-2011 05:53 PM

Always removed, same with a riving knife.

View syenefarmer's profile


445 posts in 2652 days

#3 posted 12-25-2011 05:58 PM

No disrespect intended but I’m not sure what this survey will accomplish. The obvious smart move would be to use one while the not as smart move would be not too.

View bhog's profile


2235 posts in 2262 days

#4 posted 12-25-2011 05:59 PM

Never installed guard or riving knife.I seem to get nervous with the guard on and dont like that feeling while using my table saw.No SS.

-- I don't drive a Prius.

View drfunk's profile


223 posts in 2248 days

#5 posted 12-25-2011 06:10 PM

After nearly puncturing a lung with some wicked kickback, I won’t use the table saw without it.

View HorizontalMike's profile


7349 posts in 2485 days

#6 posted 12-25-2011 07:22 PM

I use a Brand specific Riving Knife (for my Grizzly TS) PLUS a pair of Yellow Board Buddies as hold-down devices attached to the fence to prevent kick-back. No blade guard.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View Jim Finn's profile

Jim Finn

2469 posts in 2493 days

#7 posted 12-25-2011 07:28 PM

no sawstop no guard….....ten fingers left… far

-- "You may have your PHD but I have my GED and my DD 214"

View jmos's profile


760 posts in 1941 days

#8 posted 12-25-2011 08:02 PM

No sawstop, Jet. Always use blade guard w/ splitter when possible.

-- John

View TCCcabinetmaker's profile


930 posts in 1926 days

#9 posted 12-25-2011 08:12 PM

I personally do not like to obstruct the view of the blade, it is MORE dangerous in my opinion when you can’t see where the blade is, and I’ve had more potential misshaps because of blade guards obscuring the blade, catching up on the board and so on than without it.
Wear your safety glasses for sure though.

-- The mark of a good carpenter is not how few mistakes he makes, but rather how well he fixes them.

View doncutlip's profile


2832 posts in 3128 days

#10 posted 12-25-2011 08:51 PM

No SS (Grizzly TS) and I use guard and splitter on almost every cut.

-- Don, Royersford, PA

View Bagtown's profile


1738 posts in 3302 days

#11 posted 12-25-2011 09:06 PM

No SS here.
I still have that guard somewhere I think.
Felt dangerous cause I couldn’t really see what was going on.
Took it off as soon as I put it on.


-- Mike - In Fort McMurray Alberta

View ChuckV's profile


2929 posts in 3099 days

#12 posted 12-25-2011 09:20 PM

My guard takes five seconds to install or remove and is clear. I use it whenever possible.

Sometimes the guard itself will be in the way of a thin rip, but I still want the splitter and anti-kickback pawls in place. Then I will use a small clamp to hold the guard up and out of the way.

-- “Big man, pig man, ha ha, charade you are.” ― R. Waters

View Bill1225's profile


125 posts in 1971 days

#13 posted 12-25-2011 09:23 PM

powermatic 2000 no guard , non through cut riving knife, bosch 4100 same setup on job site

View bochmann's profile


18 posts in 2132 days

#14 posted 12-25-2011 09:38 PM

no guard here either, tried it and i was uncomfortable with it on there which seems more dangerous to me to be uncomfortable while using any tool. It just got in the way and blocked my view.

View fussy's profile


980 posts in 2622 days

#15 posted 12-25-2011 10:59 PM

As so many have said, I think they’re dangerous as they restrict my view of the blade. I have a Sears 9” bench saw I bought in 1973. I tried the guard and splitter with kick-back pawls that came with it when I first assembled it. It scared me more than the bare blade so I removed it and lost it. I have been using this saw for 38 years now, and other than a minor problem with thin warped plywood that nothing but abstinence would have prevented, have not had a problem or injury. I do work carefully.

However, I have cut myself on chisels, dropped one and laid open a leg when it bounced up and hit me, stepped on a corner of a board sticking out and got 17 stitches in a leg, and the beat goes on. The one tool that scares me to death when I use it is the jointer. I ALLWAYS USE THE GUARD OR FABRICATE ONE IF REQUIRED. That fear will help keep me safe. The same with the ts or any tool; respect it, use reasonable care, and you will be safe. Too much reliance on technology to keep us safe leads to carelessness and finding more creative ways to get hurt.


-- Steve in KY. 44 years so far with my lovely bride. Think I'll keep her.

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