Woodworking Machines – Table Saws

What should I do when using a table saw?

The Best Table Saw For The Money can be dangerous if it is not used correctly.

  • Read the user manual carefully.

  • Be sure to understand the instructions before using any tool or machine.

  • Know the uses and limitations of tools and machines before using them.

  • See the OSH Answers fact sheet Woodworking Machines – General Safety Tips for additional general safety guidelines.

What safety precautions should I take when using a table saw?

  • Wear safety glasses with side shields or goggles, or a face shield (with goggles or goggles).

  • Wear hearing protection appropriate for the level and frequency of noise you are exposed to in the woodworking shop.

  • Wear protective shoes if necessary.

  • Wear respiratory protection when necessary.

  • Pay particular attention to the manufacturer’s instructions on how to reduce the risk of kickback (the sudden kickback of a piece of wood towards the operator from the impact of a sawtooth).

  • Choose the blades appropriate for the type of work to be done.

  • Make sure the blades are clean, sharp and securely set, so that they cut freely without the need to force the workpiece against the blade.

  • Use the guards supplied with the saw or those designed for use with the saw. Leave them in place and keep them in good condition.

  • Use a blade guard high enough to cover the part of the blade that rises above the workpiece. The guard should be wide enough to cover the blade when it is tilted. The height of the blade should be adjusted so that it does not protrude more than about 3 mm (1/8 in.) From the top of the workpiece.

  • Make sure the fence is locked in place after adjusting it to the desired width.

  • grip the workpiece on the table and against the fence while working the workpiece.

  • Make sure there is adequate support to hold a piece of wood; use chainring extensions or track rollers on the side of large workpieces. If an assistant is at the rear end of the saw, a table extension should be in place (toward the output side) so that the rear edge is approximately 1.2 meters (4 feet) from the saw blade . The helper should wait for the workpiece to reach the edge of the table extension and not move towards the saw blade.

  • Push the workpiece so that the blade sinks into it, against the direction of blade rotation.

  • Move the rip fence out of the way when making cross cuts. Never use it as a cutting gauge.

  • Use a pusher when sawing a narrow or short workpiece with the grain of the wood (e.g. when the fence is set within about 15 cm (6 in) of the blade, when the workpiece is less than 30 cm (12 “) long or when cutting the last 30 cm (12”) of a longer piece. See ripping applications found in the manufacturer’s instruction manual. The OSH Answers information titled Woodworking Machines – Push Rods for further information on push rod design.

  • Use a pusher to remove the cut piece that is between the fence and the blade.

  • Make sure your hands are never in front of the blade.

  • Use a protective device with a splitting knife and anti-kickback fingers for rip cuts or cross cuts.

  • Keep body and face on one side of the saw blade, out of line where there may be recoil.

  • Provide adequate support to the back and sides of a table saw for a wide and long workpiece.

  • Use caution when waxing, cleaning, or maintaining the table saw.

  • Turn off the power and unplug (or lockout) the saw before doing any other work on the saw.

  • Keep the area clear. Use machines in a well-lit, unobstructed area.

  • Use the proper sawdust disposal systems as required by the operation of the saw.

What things I should not do when using a table saw?

You should not perform a cutting operation without having a good grip on the part. Always press the piece of wood firmly against the tilt fence or rip fence when cutting and steering the fence.

  • Do not grab an object by skirting the moving blades, from the side or from above.

  • Do not advance the piece of wood faster than the maximum speed of the saw.

  • Do not lift the guard or the workpiece near the blade while it is rotating.

  • Do not cut any parts with loose knots, ribs, defects or foreign objects (eg metal, stone).

  • Do not remove sawdust or cutting residue around the knives by hand or with compressed air. Use a stick or brush.

  • Do not leave a saw running unattended. Turn off the power and make sure the machine has stopped working before leaving the area.

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