Tablesaw safety switch - left or right?

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Forum topic by kmetzger posted 10-16-2013 06:38 PM 2209 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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157 posts in 1816 days

10-16-2013 06:38 PM

I’m thinking about making a safety switch for our school’s new Jet tablesaw along these lines:

The power switch is currently mounted on the left-hand side according to the instructions. My question is, do you prefer the switch on the left or on the right side of the tablesaw? I feel more comfortable with it on the right but would like to hear your opinions.

-- Kim, Ajijic, Mexico,

10 replies so far

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

4930 posts in 3959 days

#1 posted 10-16-2013 07:09 PM

Left side here ‘cause I’m feeding w/ the right hand. If I have a prob, I’d rather be able to shut down with the left hand or left knee.


View Joseph Jossem's profile

Joseph Jossem

492 posts in 2267 days

#2 posted 10-16-2013 07:10 PM

left side

View Don Niermann  's profile

Don Niermann

219 posts in 3971 days

#3 posted 10-16-2013 07:10 PM


-- WOOD/DON ( has the right to ones opinion but not the right to ones own facts...)

View Tedstor's profile


1643 posts in 2631 days

#4 posted 10-16-2013 07:12 PM

I concur- Left.

View Earlextech's profile


1161 posts in 2689 days

#5 posted 10-16-2013 07:20 PM


-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "Finished"!

View crank49's profile


4030 posts in 2970 days

#6 posted 10-16-2013 08:00 PM

Left as long as the fence is on the right of the blade.

Why not install both.
“Parallel” the start button contacts and “series” the stop button contacts.
Then either button starts it and either button stops it.

View unbob's profile


810 posts in 1902 days

#7 posted 10-16-2013 08:21 PM

Right side-Another perspective, big saws. One would be pretty daring to be any where in front of a board on a powerful table saw. any kick back would most likely kill you. Many things can happen, such as a board shattering “fancy grained hardwoods” and the usual unplanned events. I am hanging out just to the right of the fence, left leg slightly extended along the saws front, right knee bent a bit, keeping the body leaned away from the blade. In case anything happens wont tend to fall toward the blade. Never a bare hand on the wood, various push blocks, one in the left hand has a cleat. No Hero nonsense, no holding a board against a bind and hitting the stop button, if its going to fly out, out it goes. Really no hitting the stop button anyway, when bad things happen on big saws, they happen in a blink of the eye. Anyway, the stop button on a Northfield can be seen here, on the right. Most large saws are like that. I operate smaller saws the same, call me chicken.

View Mark E.'s profile

Mark E.

387 posts in 3741 days

#8 posted 10-16-2013 08:55 PM

Put it on either side and build a safety switch that extends along the entire front of the saw. Just tap the bar with your knee anywhere along the pipe to engage the stop button.

-- Mark

View teejk's profile


1215 posts in 2683 days

#9 posted 10-16-2013 11:07 PM

Guess I never thought about it! As a rightie with the fence to the right of the blade most of the time, I guess I feed with my right hand 99.9% of the time and probably concentrate the weight on my right foot leaving the left hand/foot available to hit the kill switch if needed.

View MT_Stringer's profile


3168 posts in 3230 days

#10 posted 10-16-2013 11:27 PM

My saw came with the switch mounted on the left. That is good for me. I also have the router table wing on the right so I mounted a Rockler Start/Stop switch on the right support leg for it.

Switch for the router.

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

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