Anti-kickback, Pro-slice-your-hands

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Forum topic by pendledad posted 01-15-2013 01:33 PM 2046 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View pendledad's profile


190 posts in 1996 days

01-15-2013 01:33 PM

Ok, so I’m almost done setting up my saw and I was working on the blade guard.

I didn’t realize how sharp the anti kickback pawls actually were until I had to dig them out of my palm. Not deep enough to bleed a lot, but definitely got my attention.

So my question is how many people actually use them? If they are sharp enough to end up in my skin, then they’re sharp enough to seriously mark up wood.

Even when you have them sitting up out of the way on the arresting spring, when you reach to release them you’re still grabbing the sharp sides.

I also found out what that plastic insert is for at the back of the saw table..sacrificial piece for those pawls!

22 replies so far

View mbs's profile


1637 posts in 2846 days

#1 posted 01-15-2013 02:41 PM

I use them most of the time. They are a bit of a pain when putting the throat plate in the saw but I don’t worry about kick-back at all when I’m using them. Got to be careful how you grab them, don’t you?

-- Sorry the reply is so long. I didn't have time to write a short reply.

View HorizontalMike's profile


7747 posts in 2820 days

#2 posted 01-15-2013 02:42 PM

I use these fence mounted Yellow Board Buddies. Yellow is for tablesaws, other colors for other equipment. These roll in ONE direction only. They function just like kickback pawls but are rubber/plastic coated wheels.

Woodstock W1104 Board Buddies, Yellow
by Woodstock
3.9 out of 5 stars See all reviews (21 customer reviews) | Like (1)
List Price: $59.60
Price: $48.89 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping. Details

Oh yeah, don’t forget the “track” that allows these to adjust fore and aft:

Woodstock W1108 24-Inch Track for Board Buddies
by Woodstock
4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (8 customer reviews) | Like (0)
Price: $26.83 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping. Details

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

View Marcus's profile


1163 posts in 1926 days

#3 posted 01-15-2013 02:54 PM

I do not use the kickback pawls on my 1023. As you noted, on some softer woods, they definitely leave a mark. I use the magswitch featherboard that pushes to the fence and down to the table and be as careful as I can and HOPE that when kickback happens, I’m not in the way.

View jap's profile


1251 posts in 1960 days

#4 posted 01-15-2013 03:27 PM

i use them when ripping construction lumber, when the marks don’t matter

-- Joel

View toolie's profile


2106 posts in 2534 days

#5 posted 01-15-2013 04:07 PM

i always use my splitter/blade guard with integrated anti-kickback pawls when ripping diimensional lumber. it’s probability of twisting or kerf closing on the post cut blade is much greater than with sheet goods. safety first, always. never had a problem with the sharpness of the pawls, unless i tried to pull the workpiece towards me once the blade stopped spinning. otherwise, they shouldn’t mar the workpiece anymore than the CI table would.

-- there's a solution to every just have to be willing to find it.

View lumberjoe's profile


2894 posts in 2154 days

#6 posted 01-15-2013 04:21 PM

Ripping always (unless I am within 1.5” of the blade, then there is no room). Cross cutting, never but I rarely use a miter gauge.

I always use the riving knife, even with a sled. I like the pawls. I’m not sure how effective they would be in the the event of an actual kickback, but it keeps thin off cuts from shooting back at me.


View DocSavage45's profile


8459 posts in 2748 days

#7 posted 01-15-2013 05:56 PM

” Once bitten, twice shy” can apply here? Just sold my old 10” craftsman I have been using for 20 years to an appreciative engineer. A 3hp 220 motor on the 1023 and your 1023R with riving knife is something we should and need to respect? I am cleaning up my new/old 1023 and I will be buying the aftermarket riving knive even though it’s pricy.

Like those extras Horizontal Mike was showing. Maybe a picture on his saw?

Be safe, go slow. walk away and come back. I know a local guy who had a board kickback into his shoulder. Now he works smarter? Oh yah it wasn’t me.

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View pendledad's profile


190 posts in 1996 days

#8 posted 01-15-2013 06:10 PM

Thanks for the comments. I was at Woodcraft this weekend and I saw those board buddies, I’ll keep an eye on them for a sale.

I did get a sweet deal on the grip-tite magentic featherboard ($10 out of pocket to me) at Rockler. I plan on using this and my guard/splitter/pawls for all ripping operations. I am going to make another push block that is larger so I can keep my hand at least 5-6” away from the blade at all times. My current push block is okay, but I made it a tad bit small for my hands.

Anyone recommend buying the zero clearance insert from Grizzly? Or did you just make your own?

View nwbusa's profile


1021 posts in 2192 days

#9 posted 01-15-2013 07:18 PM

I never use the pawls or the blade guard, but always use the riving knife. I’ve considered the board buddies but haven’t pulled the trigger yet.

-- John, BC, Canada

View HorizontalMike's profile


7747 posts in 2820 days

#10 posted 01-16-2013 12:24 AM

”...Like those extras Horizontal Mike was showing. Maybe a picture on his saw?...”

Here you go:

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

View DocSavage45's profile


8459 posts in 2748 days

#11 posted 01-16-2013 02:20 AM


-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View Manitario's profile


2605 posts in 2789 days

#12 posted 01-16-2013 03:49 AM

One of the first things I’ve done on the three different TS’s I’ve owned was pull the pawls off. I’ve found that they seemed to always be in the way, and I figure that as long as I’m using a riving knife my chance for kickback is small.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View Marcus's profile


1163 posts in 1926 days

#13 posted 01-16-2013 12:53 PM

I should add that I ALWAYS use the riving knife and would not use a saw without one. Just a cheap little chunk of metal that does so much.

So I suppose the same can be said about the pawls, but I still dont like ‘em =)

View helluvawreck's profile


30147 posts in 2773 days

#14 posted 01-16-2013 01:12 PM

I really do need to start using mine. When you have something like that there isn’t really a good reason not to use them.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View FeralVermonter's profile


100 posts in 1877 days

#15 posted 01-16-2013 02:02 PM

I was discussing this with an old-timer, since the only part my RAS is missing is the pawls. He surprised me with a simple idea: if you simply are not, ever, in the line of fire, then you can’t get hit by kickback. He doesn’t use pawls or guards or anything, thirty years, no injuries. He said, he used to have a friend who could work faster than he did, because he used all the safety stuff that was supposed to protect him. That buddy lost respect for the saw, and sure enough, one day it took two fingers and a thumb. Since then, my old-timer said, he’s caught up with his buddy. “Guess he didn’t save that much time after all…”

It’s pretty easy on my saw… might be a bit tougher on others… and I’m not sure that I’d only rely on that… but it is, undeniably, the best place to start when it comes to saw safety.

showing 1 through 15 of 22 replies

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