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Thread: Speaking of saws....................

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Bedford, NH

    Speaking of saws....................

    • How many of you remove the safety guard from your table saw?
    • How many leave it on?
    • How many use a dust collector of any kind on a table saw?
    • How effective is any dust collection device/system on a table saw?
    Thoughts entering one's mind need not exit one's mouth!
    As I age my memory fades .... and that's a load off my mind!

    "We Live In The Land Of The Free, Only Because Of The Brave"
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  2. #2
    I'm a bad example. I have a 9" Delta contractor saw. I accompanied my dad when he bought it new in the summer of 1964. It came without a guard of any kind, and I have never put one on it. There is no way to install a splitter. I've seen a pic of a dust collector for it, but I haven't made one. Actually, in 50+ years I've never used a saw that had a guard of any kind. Before I retire I'm getting a SawStop. My reflexes aren't getting any quicker.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    S E Washington State
    How many of you remove the safety guard from your table saw? Me

    How many leave it on? See above

    How many use a dust collector of any kind on a table saw? Me

    How effective is any dust collection device/system on a table saw? Helps but doesn't get it all by any means
    "We the People ......"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Kansas City, Missouri
    I've never opened the box on my safety guard, so technically it was never removed.

    I do use dust collection now. I could use some improvements to the closing up the saw and making it more efficient, but it does very well, mostly larger chips thrown from the top side. I will be eventually adding an overhead collection and the chips should be very, very minimal at that point..

    I also plan to add a riffing knife at some point.

    To a small child, the perfect granddad is unafraid of big dogs and fierce storms but absolutely terrified of the word “boo.” – Robert Brault

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Syracuse, Nebraska
    No guard . Gravity fed dust collector.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    ABQ NM
    I mounted my blade guard once just to see what it looked like. For me - and the way I use a table saw - the blade guard causes more safety issues than it solves. It's in the way and it doesn't let me see exactly where the blade is at all times. I do use a Microjig splitter and Grr-ripper when I'm making rip cuts, but neither of them are compatible with the blade guard that came with the saw.

    For dust collection on my TS3650, I removed the original blade shroud and enclosed the bottom with plywood, then installed a 4" DC port there. I also sealed (to the extent possible) the open back of the saw with magnetic vinyl sign material. It works OK, but doesn't catch everything.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    new york city burbs
    the blade/dust guard on the sawstop works excellent. I built my own piping connected to the 4 inch port at the bottom of the saw.

    I only take off the guard when Im running dados.
    Human Test Dummy

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    N.E. Arkansas
    I do not use a guard on my saws and never will. I have 2 unisaws, one for ripping that has a power feeder attached so that serves as a guard. One is set up for using dado with no guard. My saw stop is where I do most of my close work and I didn't ever install the guard that came with it but I do use the riving knife and like it a lot. I use dust collection on all of my saws with great success however never even near 100% collection. I still have to sit down in the floor and clean the cabinets out once in a while even with the sawstop.
    I once heard that cats and women will do darn well what they please and that men and dogs would do well to accept it and just go on.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    No, not all of SoCal is Los Angeles!
    Any of those responding that they do not use the stock plastic guard should clarify that statement.

    We ALL KNOW to:
    - Use a guard whenever possible.
    - Use a splitter whenever possible
    - Use good quality, well designed push blocks whenever possible

    To do otherwise is to invite injury. To respond to someone asking about the importance of safety devices in any way that belittles their importance is irresponsible. We're not a bunch of ignorant, slack-jawed, knuckle-draggin troglodytes around here you know . . . . well OK, . . . maybe I am . . . . But, the rest of you aren't.

    The fact is that many commercial splitter/guard combinations that come on contractor class saws (and larger, more expensive machines in many cases) can add danger rather than protect you from it due to poor design. This results in a blanket distrust or nay-saying when asked about their use. Many current maker's splitter/guard offerings are very usable but, it is very easy to get stuck on stupid and not use the good ones just because the bad ones were bad. Don't be that guy.

    If the blade, belt or fence that came on your saw was poor, you would upgrade it. If the guard that comes with your saw is poor, upgrade it. Since we all make our own zero clearance inserts anyway, I settled on the MJ-Splitter for a splitter (use a splitter for EVERY cut that you can use one with). I had closed in the under table area for dust collection and added an overarm guard / collector. I used the guard on every cut that I could.

    Some things to remember:

    You don't need to see the blade. The blade is right where it always is; it doesn't move except to spin. Seeing the blade while making a cut does nothing to help you. Your material cannot be adjusted "on the fly", that's one of the primary ways that kickback is born. Your material is moved in a straight line via your miter gauge, your sled, fence, tenon jig, etc. If the material isn't flat and cannot be controlled along a straight line for the cut, go to the bandsaw. Your hand never come within more than a few inches of the blade so, you do not need to see the blade during a cut IMHO.

    Counting that cut you are about to make without a splitter as "just this once" becomes much harder with less fingers. Always use a splitter for any through cut. Always use a guard whenever you can. The internet is full of pictures and stories of people who ignored basic safety practices "just this once". I will now relenquish the soapbox to the next speaker .
    Last edited by glenn bradley; 04-18-2013 at 10:31 PM.
    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C. Clarke

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    RETIRED(!) in Austintown, Ohio
    •How many of you remove the safety guard from your table saw? I removed the OEM guard, and added a Delta Uniguard, with Biesemeier splitter. Much better!

    •How many leave it on? See above...

    •How many use a dust collector of any kind on a table saw? I have a DC connected, but it's not very effective.

    •How effective is any dust collection device/system on a table saw? You've really gotta work at it - lotsa suction under the table, and some sort of suction in the guard, too. Even then,it won't be that great.
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

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