Welcome to Woodworker’s Safety Week 2009 where we will start by taking a look at one of the most dangerous tools in the shop – the table saw. All saws come with two basic pieces of safety equipment – a splitter or riving knife which keeps the wood being cut from closing behind the blade or being accidentally pushed into the back of the blade should you make an error in feeding and pull the board away from the rip fence.
Manufacturers also include a blade guard, which helps to prevent your hand from hitting the spinning blade. The blade guard also deflects sawdust and wood chips away from you, and many models also feature a sawdust collection port which can be hooked up to a dust collector.
While the stock blade guards and splitters or riving knives are effective, there are many after market models out there which can offer even greater performance.
So, this week’s question – when you use your table saw for typical cuts (NOT dado or non-through cutting), what is the most frequently seen set up on your saw? Do you use stock equipment, after market stuff or nothing at all?