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Thread: Not nice, but necessary

  1. #36
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    Quote Originally Posted by willin woodworks View Post
    What has been the physical damage to fingers/hands that youve seen with the Sawstop activated? Ive seen the hot dog demosntration at a number of trade shows and have been wondering what the actual toll on human flesh is.

    Not only is the blade brake an attractive option; the add ons that Sawstop sells appear to be very well made and engineered. I can only imagine that Festool will to the quality of the product qnd unfortunately the price. BUT judging from Gibs injury its hard to justify NOT spending the money if youre looking for a new saw.
    Pretty similar to the hot dog test, really. You'd have to be pushing stock through the saw at a ferocious rate to do anything close to an injury requiring a hospital visit, IMO.

    We've had 6 cartridge engagements. Of that, one was a metal tapering jig that the student did not control well causing the jig to touch the blade, tripping the cartridge. For that one, no damage.

    For the other 5, we had one with no blood drawn at all. Another resulted from a kickback when using a poorly supported mitering setup that caused contact with the knuckles of the hand to the blade -that was the worst and required two band-aids. The most recent had a student who pushed the tip of his thumb into the blade using a mitering jig for making frames - purely inattention. A nick that was blade width wide, 1/4" long and maybe a 1/32" deep and a nick in the nail was all that happened. A wash with soap and water and a band aid is the usual result.

    Frankly, after the most recent incident, I probably shed more blood trying to change blade and cartridge than the student did. The distortion of the cartridge during an activation can make the cartridge and blade difficult to remove. Busted my knuckles on the edge of the saw table throat while taking the parts out.

    I sincerely hope that the Festool acquisition doesn't change SawStop in a negative way or with significantly increased pricing. I think that the Festool folks must see the handwriting on the wall and fell that they're going to make some good money licensing the technology/patent to other manufacturers in the near future. Particularly with the comment regarding the Bosch products.
    "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails."
    -William A. Ward



  2. #37
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    One of the things that appealed to me about the Sawstop was the fact that the trunnions and bearings were absolutely massive to support the loads of the brake without failing. Those make for one of the smoothest running spindles on the market.

  3. #38
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    Quote Originally Posted by Hugh MacD View Post
    One of the things that appealed to me about the Sawstop was the fact that the trunnions and bearings were absolutely massive to support the loads of the brake without failing. Those make for one of the smoothest running spindles on the market.
    +1! Quiet!
    "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails."
    -William A. Ward



  4. #39
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    After years of driving a Unisaw in my full time profession of furniture making, I was finally able to upgrade. A Sawstop was certainly on my short list but then I found this Minimax slider:

    IMG_0808.jpg

    It doesn't have the blade braking feature but certain other aspects make it safer than my old Unisaw: a real riving knife, sliding table, and I'm forced to stand to the side out of the kickback path. I can clamp stock to the carriage on difficult rips. Doing so takes time but leaves my hands and body well away from the blade. Crosscuts are ridiculously accurate, repeatable, and safe.

    This sort of saw isn't for everyone. It takes up a good amount of shop real estate for one thing. But it's a viable alternative and, I think, worth mentioning.

    It will be interesting to see how Festool develops the Sawstop. I am a firm believer in their tracksaw and other power tools. I wonder if they'll adapt the blade brake idea to handhelds?

    Jeff

  5. #40
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    Another issue that I was just reminded of, (its been rather cold up here) is when the older Sawstops gets cold soaked they will fail the self test, and you will not be able to start. It will indicate that you need to replace the cartridge. Tech support said that the newer models shouldn't have this issue. A solution is to either warm the cartridge or leave it on.

    Also you can't use full dado blades, you have to use something like these Dewalt 7670's, which are really nice BTW.
    Steve B
    TraditionalSmallCraft.com
    RIVUS 16' Melonseed
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    "If a man must be obsessed by something, I suppose a boat is as good as anything, perhaps a bit better than most." E. B. White

  6. #41
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    Quote Originally Posted by SBrookman View Post
    Another issue that I was just reminded of, (its been rather cold up here) is when the older Sawstops gets cold soaked they will fail the self test, and you will not be able to start. It will indicate that you need to replace the cartridge. Tech support said that the newer models shouldn't have this issue. A solution is to either warm the cartridge or leave it on.

    Also you can't use full dado blades, you have to use something like these Dewalt 7670's, which are really nice BTW.
    You CAN use dado blades in a SawStop machine but there are limitations. As you mention , they recommend 8" dado stacks and a maximum width of 13/16". The reason is the spacing between cartridge and blade which is required for the safety feature to work. You also require a different throat plate and a different "Dado" SawStop cartridge with the appropriate radius for an 8" dado set. Changing blades and cartridges takes a matter of a few minute if the cartridge has not been deployed.

    One thing I'm not enamored of is that I had a nice set-up for gang-sawing cedar strip that used two thin-kerf Freud 7-1/4" blades and a spacer to yield two strips at a whack that I cannot put in the Sawstop. I could do something similar, but it would require a zero clearance insert, dado cartridge, and the purchase of two Freud 8" thin kerf blades. When needed, I'll go that way.

    I've not heard of the cold-soak issue. I have heard of some of the control electronics in the switch box failing at startup and these have been replaced under warranty.
    "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails."
    -William A. Ward



  7. #42
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    Quote Originally Posted by jpatrick View Post
    After years of driving a Unisaw in my full time profession of furniture making, I was finally able to upgrade. A Sawstop was certainly on my short list but then I found this Minimax slider:

    IMG_0808.jpg

    It doesn't have the blade braking feature but certain other aspects make it safer than my old Unisaw: a real riving knife, sliding table, and I'm forced to stand to the side out of the kickback path. I can clamp stock to the carriage on difficult rips. Doing so takes time but leaves my hands and body well away from the blade. Crosscuts are ridiculously accurate, repeatable, and safe.

    This sort of saw isn't for everyone. It takes up a good amount of shop real estate for one thing. But it's a viable alternative and, I think, worth mentioning.

    It will be interesting to see how Festool develops the Sawstop. I am a firm believer in their tracksaw and other power tools. I wonder if they'll adapt the blade brake idea to handhelds?

    Jeff
    This is also standard here, not for cheap hobby machines, but for professional work.
    I would like to have the guard/dust collector above the blade be a bit more adjustable height-wise.

    /Mats
    My blog about my time as a boat building student, a rigger apprentice and Journeyman http://kaptenmohsart.blogspot.se/

  8. #43
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    Sawstop + Festool? What will happen to prices? They're both very high priced as it is. The industry needs more competition, not less.
    So very sorry about the mangled hand.
    I've got a scar (incredibly lucky only a scar) on my left thumb from a TS. I've no idea how my hand got in the way that day.
    Last edited by Tom Robb; 01-03-2018 at 05:24 PM.

  9. #44
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    Sorry for your injury and glad it was not worse. I keep meaning to go out and cut the power cord off my old beat to heck $100 Ryobi table saw.

  10. #45

    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Robb View Post
    Sawstop + Festool? What will happen to prices? They're both very high priced as it is. The industry needs more competition, not less.
    It looks like the patent runs out in 2021. So in 3 more years or so, I expect there will be some increased competition.

  11. #46
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Robb View Post
    Sawstop + Festool? What will happen to prices? They're both very high priced as it is. The industry needs more competition, not less.
    So very sorry about the mangled hand.
    I've got a scar (incredibly lucky only a scar) on my left thumb from a TS. I've no idea how my hand got in the way that day.
    Festool prices are on the steep side but for a stationary cabinet saw the Sawstop is comparable in price to Powermatic and others of similiar size and quality. I went on line yesterday and "Built" a new Sawstop on their website and Im surprised at how affordable it was even with a couple of add ons.

    My guess is that Festool wants a toe hold in the stationary tool market.

  12. #47
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    The only thing preventing me from buying one of these tools is the fact that I cut quite a bit of conductive material...both aluminum and carbon fiber. I know there is a bi-pass mode for cutting these materials, but do not know if any chips hanging around the table ( did I mention I'm a slob with ADD?) at e going to blow the trigger. I expect to trip the brake more often than anyone by making the conductive material mistake, and so will have to keep multiple replacement brakes and blades in stock and will eventually end up losing time because the store that sells this stuff closes.
    SHC

  13. #48
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    Ugh. I'm sorry to see that. For me, that accident would be devastating, as I'm a serious clarinet player. I should put my blade guard back on again. I took it off because it's a PITA, but...

  14. #49
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    This got me to searching around for better blade guards, as I can't afford a $1600 saw, and I came across this..

    http://lumberjocks.com/projects/46742

    I think I'm going to make one of these.

  15. #50
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    Quote Originally Posted by Gib Etheridge View Post
    I was doing nothing wrong or foolish, running a 2x4 through removing 1/8" if I remember right, using a push stick even though there was no need, hadn't had a drink in days if not weeks, radio was off, brightly lit, not at all distracted. I think I just under estimated the height of the blade, which was just high enough to cut through the 1 1/2" material, when I reached across to flick the scrap out of the way to avoid it being pushed back towards me after making the rip.

    Just a plain old accident. The only thing to be learned here is that if you keep doing the same thing for 45 years you are likely to experience an error in judgement, and in this case it was only an eighth of an inch, just enough for those big carbide teeth to grab and pull my fingers down, and the best way to avoid that would have been to use a saw stop.

    That's what I'm trying to drive home. If I had been using a sawstop I would have already removed the band aid and forgotten about it. Believe me, it would have been worth the price difference, and many times over.
    Really sorry to see your injury and your advice of getting a saw stop is right on the money. However there are no plain old accidents. Every accident requires someone to take an unnecessary risk. It's a risk versus reward situation. People take great risk for minuscule rewards and never give consideration to the potential cost. "if you keep doing the same thing for 45 years you are likely to experience" complacency.

  16. #51
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    You guys ever hear of power feeds, few hundred bucks and no hands near the blade.

  17. #52
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    I've used power feed and love it, and yes, it's much safer. There must be drawbacks, but I haven't used them enough to be aware of them.

  18. #53
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    Power feeds are good but shouldn't be considered a panacea for all applications. Particularly on gang saws and other industrial equipment. Kick backs can still occur. Don't be in the line of fire.

  19. #54
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    There is no substitute for employing proper safety practices. I mentioned my father's advice to me in another similar thread to never get complacent around your tools. I respectfully submit that by his own admission, Gib was being far too complacent, suggesting a 2x4 needs no push stick, and that he reached across to clear the offcut. Neither of these qualifies for safe work habits in my shop. I know he said he was using a push stick, but his suggestion that it was not really necessary betrays his complacency.
    Since many thousands of us have never had, and will never have, a SawStop, I think it's important to emphasize safe work habits.
    regards
    pvg

  20. #55
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    Gib, sorry to hear and I hope you heal well and quickly. I've been twice. Once on the jointer and once with the table saw. They were both because I tried to do something I knew then that I shouldn't have done. I recently worked as an aide in a high school shop that had 2 Saw stop units. In this environment they were pretty much mandatory. They were costly and high maintenance machines but truly necessary. However, I would not buy one to use in my own shop. The non-dust collection style blade guard design is quite poor and rarely moves up without an assist. The blade lift frequently gets jammed with debris which then limits movement. Cutting wet/green wood is an issue. There are many other reasons that make this a poor saw choice for my daily needs.

  21. #56
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    Default Re: Not nice, but necessary

    Heres hoping that Gib's fingers are healing well and quickly.
    I was in the shop all weekend and I have to say I was hyper aware of that spinning meat grinder on the table saw. I like to think that I work as safe as the next guy, maybe even a little safer and its been a long time since Ive had any mishap big or small but the photo of Gib's fingers was on my mind all weekend.
    As unfortunate as his accident was I appreciate the wake up call....

    On a lighter note and in the spirit of working safer and safely; I bought one of those dust separators that attaches to a shop vac. My shop doesnt have central dust control. I have two shop vacs that connect to the table saw, planer etc. With switches that turn the vac on when the tools goes on.
    Cleaning the filters can be a drag so I dropped 90 bucks on a dust separator and hooked it up Saturday morning. It works a treat. Sunday afternoon the filters were clean, maybe a little bit of dust but nothing like two days worth of clog. Worth every penny.

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