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

  1. #1

    Best place to stand when using a table saw?

    If you have a kickback where is the board going to go typically? Directly behind the blade or off to the side a bit?

  2. #2
    It's best to stand where you can comfortably and firmly control the cut. I tend to stand centerer directly behind the blade. It allows me to have my arms and hands on either side of the cut without reaching over the blade. I'm more likely to be maimed by absent mindedly putting my hand into the blade than by being hit by kickback.

  3. #3
    I never really gave it a thought until about a week ago when I stalled my saw and couldn't reach for the off switch. I'm thinking of staying towards the left now.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Suffolk, Va.
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    102
    Only one time have I ever had a kick back that hit me with such force that I thought maybe I could get injured from it. It hurt but no apparent injury. I do stand to the side of the blade a little opposite side from the fence. Not so much for concern of kick back it's just where it seems most comfortable and gives me the best visibility.
    Michael Dilday
    Suffolk, Va.

  5. #5
    Dabbled in a few kick backs and even invented some new ways. Most important table saw safety device is an athletic cup.

  6. #6
    Why not take a 1/2" piece of plywood and cut it so it covers your stomach area, then string it around your neck😊 Basically making a shield.

  7. #7
    Or buy a bullet proof vest.

  8. #8
    For a while I wore a suit of armor, I found it kind of restrictive then my tool belt kept slipping down and it was just too hot in the summer. I might try goaly equipment next.

    I did talk to a cop about a vest once for the shaper (using Serrated knives) and think at the time we decided it didnt go low enough.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona
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    568
    Quote Originally Posted by michael dilday View Post
    I do stand to the side of the blade a little opposite side from the fence. Not so much for concern of kick back it's just where it seems most comfortable and gives me the best visibility.
    +1 on that!
    David

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    1.5 hrs north of San Francisco, CA
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    Since most kickbacks (with unprotected blades and no splitter) occur when something causes the board to lift, get caught by the top of the blade, and send spinning Frisbee-style back and somewhat away from the fence, that's the location I avoid -- happened to me once, and I don't want it to happen again!. I tend to stand almost behind the blade with my left knee directly in front of my giant Power-OFF switch. I can't quite make my body control the wood as needed if I'm on the opposite (safe) side of the fence. I've only had straight-back kickbacks occur with very narrow pieces, and my push blocks are generally pretty solid for those.

    By the way, I love this Reitech Easy-Off power switch. They come in several flavors for simple on-off, control of magnetic switches, and with magnetic switch relay built in. It also has hardware for a variety of mounting positions -- mine sits only slightly behind the front rail on my table saw -- 6 or so inches proud of the front face of the saw cabinet -- using their hardware.


  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona
    Posts
    568
    I always use a splitter or riving knife with the blade protected on my table saws for ripping and cross cuts. I've never experienced a kickback, but I did have a 1/2 sheet of plywood pinch the blade once. I hit the Off switch right away.
    David

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Suffolk, Va.
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    102
    Quote Originally Posted by Wayne Cannon View Post
    Since most kickbacks (with unprotected blades and no splitter) occur when something causes the board to lift, get caught by the top of the blade, and send spinning Frisbee-style back and somewhat away from the fence, that's the location I avoid -- happened to me once, and I don't want it to happen again!.

    Sounds like keeping the wood flat on the TS table is very important to avoid the wood getting on top of the blade.
    Michael Dilday
    Suffolk, Va.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2018
    Location
    Lancaster, Ohio
    Posts
    149
    One thing I really appreciate on the ICS SawStop is the position of the off switch.
    I have trained myself to turn it off with my leg.
    Don't let anyone tell you you can't drag the 5hp motor down when ripping and the wood decides to twist, that leg operated switch was very automatic and handy that time.
    2? tooth sharp Forrest blade full height in 5/4 x 7"+ popular on edge resawing for width

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Modesto, CA, USA
    Posts
    3,442
    I stand to the blade side of the fence so my hands can come down unobstructed to the wood for most cuts. If I stood on the fence side of the blade my hands would have to come over the fence and then down in what may be a awkward manner with less control of the wood.
    No reason not to add more off switches to a tool. I have an off switch on the back end my planner. On my tablesaw I extended the stop/start station about 10" forward so it is easy to turn off with my knee. It also moved it far enough out that I can see the switch when standing in front of the saw.
    Bill D

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Modesto, CA, USA
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    3,442
    Quote Originally Posted by Travis Conner View Post
    I never really gave it a thought until about a week ago when I stalled my saw and couldn't reach for the off switch. I'm thinking of staying towards the left now.

    Where is your switch and right or left handed?
    Bil lD

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