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Thread: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

  1. #36
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    I'll keep my 1960 Unisaw. Sharp blades, a sturdy fence and magnetic featherboards along with a very healthy dose of respect.
    Main thing is never to be in a rush.
    Fight Entropy, build a wooden boat!

  2. #37
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    I once had a 12" high speed steel blade "come apart"...
    Some if it went through the wall into the shop next door, some of it stuck in the ceiling, and one tiny piece of it hit the Zippo lighter in my pants pocket. That left a mark, a zippo shaped blood blister, and ruined the lighter.

  3. #38
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Flying Orca View Post
    Oh Jeebus, yes. I have a friend who lost both arms to one of those.
    When I was younger I drove tractor for a cotton gin, pulling trailers, dragging the yard, etc.

    One day, during ginning season, someone was doing work on a seed auger that ran under the floor, and left the cover off for a few minutes.

    Some poor unfortunate, granted not paying careful attention, stepped into the open trench. They had to cut a segment of the auger out to release him.

    My eyes were always WIDE open at that place.

    Peace,
    Robert

  4. #39
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Yes, industrial accidents can be quite gruesome. My dad was a partner in a local plywood mill. Maybe 250 folks - one of whom was the graveyard shift 'millwright'. Always drunk - but that was tolerated far more back in those days. And he was a wizard with the equipment. Running thru the middle of the mill was a trough with a moving belt at the bottom. Which led to a spinning barrel-sized drum of sharp blades. All wood scrap got swept into the trough and the blades chopped it into 'hog fuel' - which powered the boiler to provide heat to dry the veneer. There was a metal detector which shut down the belt - to keep any stray bits of steel from getting into and ruining all those blades. One night it shut down. Not unusual. After a while - someone realized the millwright hadn't fished the metal out and turned the belt back on. Goes to look, and the millwright had fallen in. By the time the metal detector found his belt buckle... his lower legs were gone. He bled out, of course. Grim... but not my worst story of the days before OSHA.
    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    http://www.harborwoodworking.com/boat.html

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

  5. #40
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Quote Originally Posted by David G View Post
    Yes, industrial accidents can be quite gruesome. My dad was a partner in a local plywood mill. Maybe 250 folks - one of whom was the graveyard shift 'millwright'. Always drunk - but that was tolerated far more back in those days. And he was a wizard with the equipment. Running thru the middle of the mill was a trough with a moving belt at the bottom. Which led to a spinning barrel-sized drum of sharp blades. All wood scrap got swept into the trough and the blades chopped it into 'hog fuel' - which powered the boiler to provide heat to dry the veneer. There was a metal detector which shut down the belt - to keep any stray bits of steel from getting into and ruining all those blades. One night it shut down. Not unusual. After a while - someone realized the millwright hadn't fished the metal out and turned the belt back on. Goes to look, and the millwright had fallen in. By the time the metal detector found his belt buckle... his lower legs were gone. He bled out, of course. Grim... but not my worst story of the days before OSHA.
    Back in the seventies IIRC, I read virtually the same story in the Reader's Digest. The way I remember that one, the guy survived. He described being dragged into it because he had fallen on the conveyor and part of the steel binding at the joint got hooked on his belt, he struggled until his legs were mostly gone and bounced off onto the floor, conscious, and plugged his femoral arteries with his fingers tips until he was found and rescued.

    I know a guy woulda just put duct tape on it and gone back to finish the shift. Ex jarhead.


  6. #41
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    And what is our current administration's take on OSHA?
    Hey! Without OSHA we could reduce the payroll...

  7. #42
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Canoeyawl View Post
    And what is our current administration's take on OSHA?
    Hey! Without OSHA we could reduce the payroll...
    Like there's just buckets of nasty regs to toss out. If we just quit making all those job-creators pay fines and settlements and stuff, why just think of the shareholder value. But Hillary. Sad.


  8. #43
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Mahan View Post
    Back in the seventies IIRC, I read virtually the same story in the Reader's Digest. The way I remember that one, the guy survived. He described being dragged into it because he had fallen on the conveyor and part of the steel binding at the joint got hooked on his belt, he struggled until his legs were mostly gone and bounced off onto the floor, conscious, and plugged his femoral arteries with his fingers tips until he was found and rescued.

    I know a guy woulda just put duct tape on it and gone back to finish the shift. Ex jarhead.
    Well... at least your guy lived. Even if it was in a wheelchair for the balance of his life.

    Nowadays, all those old mechanisms are gone. As are most of the mills. But nowadays - there would be rails required along that trough, and there would be multiple metal detectors. And, of course, our millwright wouldn't have been allowed to work drunk.
    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    http://www.harborwoodworking.com/boat.html

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

  9. #44
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Although it's a completely inappropriate response to the serious nature of the injuries described in this thread, I can't help thinking of the pickle slicer joke!

    What are you doing about it?




  10. #45
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Here's another from that era --

    When plywood is first laid up, with all the layers of glued veneer, into a stack - a sheet that will finish at 3/4" is much fluffier than that. Maybe triple the thickness. So the next step is to take a stack of such sheets - via forklift - to the 'PrePress'. It's just a large hydraulic press than compresses the entire stack enough so that the individual sheets can be slid into slots in a large horizontal accordion press with heated platens - called the 'Hot Press'.

    In our mill, the presses were a bit of a bottleneck. So the crews that ran them ran at full tilt. They developed choreographed patterns, and didn't waste any seconds.

    So one evening, one of the graveyard shift press guys sees a chunk of something on top of the stack just before the PrePress was activated. Which would have ruined (or at least downgraded) that top sheet of plywood. He reckons he can reach in quickly and flick it away.

    Maybe he misjudged how quick he could be. Maybe his buddy hit the button just a shade sooner than normal.

    I heard the scream of his buddy. A sound I hope to never hear again. I wasn't the first one there, but I wasn't far behind. The press turned that fellow's head and one arm to jelly. His partner - the father of one of my high school friends - was never the same again. The gave him a pension and let him retire.

    Wanna hear my forklift story?
    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    http://www.harborwoodworking.com/boat.html

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

  11. #46
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Quote Originally Posted by David G View Post

    Wanna hear my forklift story?
    How about the young man, son of a prominent Architect, who graduated from high school and intended to spend a year or two on heavy construction sites as a prelude to following in his father's storied footsteps?

    First day on the job, first thing, he was told to report to Ol' Gooberhead up on the 27th floor, so he did.

    Turned out Ol' Gooberhead was an old-school, tyrannical hardass, who expected to put himself in a position to ridicule and berate the newbies by requiring more of them than they knew how to deliver.

    Heavy construction used to be heavily salted with that type.

    First day, first task, Ol' Gooberhead told our boy to get with the other newbie and move that piece of plywood from its place on the floor, and put it 'over there'.


    The two newbs grabbed the plywood, and our hero found himself to have the outrageous good fortune to have grabbed the end of that sheet that was closer to 'over there', so when his co-worker followed him toward 'over there', HE was the one who stepped off into a mechanical chase and ended his life 27 stories down.

    Greg left the construction industry in that moment, and started his schooling as an Architect immediately.
    Rattling the teacups.

  12. #47
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Ol' Gooberhead. I worked with him on MY first job. I think I'll start a thread to celebrate him and his cousins.
    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    http://www.harborwoodworking.com/boat.html

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

  13. #48
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Quote Originally Posted by David G View Post
    Ol' Gooberhead. I worked with him on MY first job. I think I'll start a thread to celebrate him and his cousins.
    So you both know, Old Gooberhead started construction when he left the Ranching business.

    I know. He was my first boss in both industries.

    Peace,
    Smarter And Tougher, Believe It Or Not

  14. #49
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    How long has the Saw Stop thing been around? No sign of it in the bar graph

  15. #50
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Quote Originally Posted by David W Pratt View Post
    How long has the Saw Stop thing been around? No sign of it in the bar graph
    I'm gonna say a dozen years or so.
    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    http://www.harborwoodworking.com/boat.html

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

  16. #51
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Sawstop production started in '04, but the price has come down a bit in recent years (data here). Most saws sold don't have it. A court ruled that the Bosch design (retracts the saw, doesn't stop the blade) violates some of the Sawstop patents.
    "For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations,
    for nature cannot be fooled."

    Richard Feynman

  17. #52
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Quote Originally Posted by David G View Post
    I think I might disagree about 'unnecessary'. What's your reasoning?
    I have no definite information,but I would bet that about three quarters of them had removed guards that the saw maker had fitted and the rest were using saws that were made prior to guards being generally available.One or two will have been doing something unwise.

    With a saw like this example,how can you have an accident?



    If you need to cut coving or mouldings,there are better machines for the job than a circular saw.

  18. #53
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    I am crossing my fingers whilst I still have them.

  19. #54
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    I don't use the guard on my saw and there is no splitter. What I do do if ripping actual lumber, as opposed to sheet goods, is to put a small wedge into the kerf just after starting the cut which should do quite a bit to prevent kick back from the kerf closing up.

  20. #55
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    I consider myself lucky.... I stretched to reach around two different guards to get into the workings of a machine at the wrong time. Right place, though -- it was the only station that was spring-loaded -- otherwise, I'd have had a hole punched into my right hand where my pinky finger was supposed to be. I have about 30% mobility in that finger now. Downside: I can no longer play Debussy's Second Arabesque. I can still play his First Arabesque.

    But I learned something from the experience. I now have collected a half-dozen or so power tools that whir and spin mightily with sharp blades or tools. When my son saw the beginnings of my collection, he asked me when I was going to lose a finger: "on the third use, or the three hundredth use?" I tend to be somewhat OCD, so I have developed procedures for using my power tools which stem from this condition. "Always..." and step 1, step 2, step etc. And I have identified zones on each tool never to trespass. Plus I'm never afraid to use pushers whenever I'm in doubt.

    But some of my tools do really frighten me. My 12" compound miter saw. My 10" table saw. My band saws and my router. Oh, my router is dangerous. I think the key to my personal safety is to get into a mental state where my focus is totally on the task at hand. And I keep thinking about my son's question. Always.

    Bill
    "... the door was ajar, and the game was afoot." Lawrence Block

  21. #56
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Did somebody mention forklift?

    Fight Entropy, build a wooden boat!

  22. #57
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    It's all about thinking and focus on things that could hurt you. After a lifetime of working in manufacturing learned that even the "experienced" people are not exempt from these accidents, have seen too many accidents from the complacency of " have been doing it all my life."

  23. #58
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Quote Originally Posted by John Meachen View Post
    I have no definite information,but I would bet that about three quarters of them had removed guards that the saw maker had fitted and the rest were using saws that were made prior to guards being generally available.One or two will have been doing something unwise.

    With a saw like this example,how can you have an accident?



    If you need to cut coving or mouldings,there are better machines for the job than a circular saw.
    Unfortunately... it is the case with tablesaws that most guards created more danger than they alleviate. If our Libertairheads want to complain about government uselessness, that would be fertile ground. The government requires guards - but doesn't put any effort into making sure said guards are both effective and usable. None of the factory guards I've seen meet that standard. They provide more aggravation and distraction then protection - and sometimes inspire unsafe practices to accomodate their shortcomings. Even the best of the aftermarket guards MUST be removed for some cuts... and are better removed for others. Most guards are better tossed.

    This one is the best I ever found. And it may be the one you illustrate --

    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    http://www.harborwoodworking.com/boat.html

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

  24. #59
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    Quote Originally Posted by wizbang 13 View Post
    I would have thought bandsaws were more "amped up".
    Boom Boom!

  25. #60
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    Default Re: 10 Americans per day lose fingers on tablesaws

    About an 18 yo girl with ear buds in was texting in a car next to mine approaching the Walt Whitman Bridge earlier today at about 70. I'll take responsibility for my tablesaw. I don't need big brother mandating flesh sensing technology at $5,000 a pop.

    Reynard, so right, never be in a rush. My motto to.

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