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Thread: Best place to stand when using a table saw?

  1. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Modesto, CA, USA
    Posts
    3,434
    When doing little cutoff pieces of small stuff, that may even get blown by the blades wind, I put a short 6x6 in front of the blade to catch anything.
    Bil lD

  2. #17
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    East Virginia
    Posts
    806
    Far enough to the left of the blade that you don't get a "liver shish-kebob" when that narrow strip comes back at you like a 180mph atlatl.

    If it'll go through a pickup truck tailgate, I figure my liver is no match...
    Last edited by Jacob Reverb; 02-14-2020 at 12:08 PM.

  3. #18
    Switch is on the left and I'm left handed. I think the switch needs to be moved to the right so I can hit it with my knee when I'm cutting smaller pieces with a push stick. This saw is 5hp so it's probably best just to let go and get out of the way vs trying to hold it if it decides to bind up or something.

  4. #19
    As Beyonce says, "To the left, to the left..."

    Erik
    Felder USA Territory Representative: Central & South Texas

  5. #20
    I cut my finger years ago and it took months to heal, so I typically just avoid small cuts that require a push stick. If I need to cut a small piece I'll cut a small piece off a bigger board if I need to cut a small piece.

  6. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Conner View Post
    I cut my finger years ago and it took months to heal, so I typically just avoid small cuts that require a push stick. If I need to cut a small piece I'll cut a small piece off a bigger board if I need to cut a small piece.
    Travis, have you used a Gripper before?...

    https://www.microjig.com/products/grr-ripper
    Felder USA Territory Representative: Central & South Texas

  7. #22
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    5,539
    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Conner View Post
    Switch is on the left and I'm left handed. I think the switch needs to be moved to the right so I can hit it with my knee when I'm cutting smaller pieces with a push stick. This saw is 5hp so it's probably best just to let go and get out of the way vs trying to hold it if it decides to bind up or something.
    Probably dont habe much of a chance to get out of the way if a 5 HP saw is going to kickback a workpiece.

  8. #23
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Location
    Denver
    Posts
    115
    Travis,

    In my experience, kickback occurs the way Wayne described it above - The workpiece is sent back and slightly away (to the left) from the fence.

    I don't have a hard and fast rule abut where to stand. That's because it depends on the operation being performed. If I am ripping a smaller piece that may be prone to kickback, I'll stand to the right of blade in order to stay out of the path.

    However there are many operations that are much less prone to generating kickback (crosscut with a miter gauge or sled where the fence doesn't bind the work, breaking down sheet goods, dados, etc). For these operations, I stand where it's most comfortable and I can balance my body to keep the workpiece where it needs to be.

    I recently added an aftermarket splitter back to my Unisaw (I unfortunately pitched the OEM splitter). I now use the splitter and blade guard whenever possible.

    The best advise is preparation and prevention before starting the cut. Take as long as you need to think about what might happen before every cut. Use a splitter or riving knife for through cuts. Use a push stick long enough to keep your fingers clear/Or a Gripper. Think about investing in the Jessem clear cut stock guide (pricey, but should give you cleaner cuts and add safety). Keep your blades sharp. Wear a full face shield. I keep my face shield hanging at the saw and put in on for every cut. I had a piece come back once and hit the face shield right between my eyes. I've also had a skinny piece that I thought dropped into the saw come out and hit me in the chest. Don't work when you're tired. Keep the floor clean so that you don't slip on accumulated sawdust.

    Cheers,
    Mark

  9. #24
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Clayton , North Carolina
    Posts
    118
    I'm left handed and stand to the right of the blade on my General contractor style saw. I installed a paddle type off switch on the right side just about where my knee is located.

  10. #25
    It depends on what you are cutting and the cut you are making. But in general I stand left of the blade. I have had kick back hit me in the gut. It hurt, big bruise, but nothing too serious. It did scare the hell out of and remind me to be safe.

  11. #26
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Location
    Sacramento, CA
    Posts
    46
    I experienced a kick back below the belt that actually caused a hernia.
    Not to happy about that.

  12. #27
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Toronto Ontario
    Posts
    9,687
    Quote Originally Posted by michael dilday View Post
    Sounds like keeping the wood flat on the TS table is very important to avoid the wood getting on top of the blade.
    Yes it is, even more important is keeping the blade guard on the saw to prevent the work from touching the top of the blade........Rod.

  13. #28
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Cedar Park, TX (NW Austin)
    Posts
    347
    Being left handed I stand to the right. This thread makes me think I should move the switch to be closer instead of on the left.

    The only kickback I remember was a short 2x4 sized piece to the forehead. Not sure what I did wrong but it certainly was above my usual level of stupidity. I worked for about three more minutes and decided it was not a good day for shop time. Not long after that a saw with a riving knife appeared in my garage.

  14. #29
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Boston, MA
    Posts
    871
    To the left of the blade so I can push the wood forward and against the fence at the same time. This also allows me to shutoff the saw with my hip.

  15. #30
    Stand where you need to be able to guide the piece through properly aligned to the fence. For most right handers, that means to the left of the blade for thin rip cuts.

    However, for ripping plywood, more than 12", I have to stand to the right of the blade.

    If the piece has a substantial enough off cut, then I might have to stand in front of the blade to able to guide it through with two hands.

    For cross cuts, I almost always stand to the left, on the same side where my miter gauge is. Occasionally I have an odd bevel that requires me to cross cut from the right slot.

    I would think in terms of maximizing control and support.

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