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Thread: Circular saw safety

  1. #1
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    Circular saw safety

    Circular saws are made two ways, the blade can be on the left side or on the right side. If you run the saw with your right hand and hold the wood with your left hand you want the blade on the right side. Sometimes the saw jumps, you do not want the spinny part to jump onto your hand.

  2. #2
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    I have known a few old timers who had one of each. They often had the guards wired up. One would hang on a nail on each of two sawhorses. They were the lead guy and stayed on the ground. I think the tiredest I have ever been was from trying to keep up with these guys as they sent rafters up to us whippersnappers. There was very little talking or measuring, Just a tough old guy with a little book, a tape, a square, a right hand saw, and a lefthand saw.
    Best Regards, Maurice

  3. #3
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    My favorite 7-1/4" ones are the mirror image Porter Cable 347 and 743. I use either depending on the application. Right blade, and left blade of the same version. They also made the same ones with a blade brake. I have a right bladed one with the brake for the way I cut rafter tails in place. I liked those saws so much that I've bought like new ones off CL for backups.

    10-1/4" is a right blade, and 16-5/16" is a right blade, only because that is the only way those come.

    Worm drive circular saws typically have the blade on the left.

    Common sense allows anyone to use either version safely. Without such common sense, anything with whirly sharp things should not be used.

    I've never had a circular saw jump in my hands, and don't understand that comment. The user needs to be in control of it at all times.

  4. #4
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    I had skill worm drive and it was a lot ez'r to see the line. When the light weight Makita came out that became the go to saw. I still use the makita but wear a full face shield when looking over the top of it to see cutting osb....

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom M King View Post
    ...Common sense allows anyone to use either version safely. Without such common sense, anything with whirly sharp things should not be used.

    I've never had a circular saw jump in my hands, and don't understand that comment. The user needs to be in control of it at all times.
    This.

    I am right handed and prefer the blade be on the left.
    "Anything seems possible when you don't know what you're doing."

  6. #6
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    Anyone remember the Porter cable Sawboss.
    It was a great side winder thatís why they discontinued making it.
    Aj

  7. #7
    My favorite is the 5-1/2" Skilsaw.
    "Anything seems possible when you don't know what you're doing."

  8. #8
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    This was always my favorite for cutting down sheet goods:


    It has been a long time since I have pulled out any of my old circular saws since I bought a track saw. There is an occasional hole in a sub floor that needs cutting but not much on the woodworking side.

  9. #9
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    I have two of those Michael. One a Rockwell I bought new, and the other one a Porter Cable that was too good to pass up.

    Andy, are you talking about the old, all metal 5-1/2"?

    I've been meaning to line up my circular saws and take a picture, but without including the collection of old ones. I made a good living with a circular saw for several decades.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom M King View Post
    ...Andy, are you talking about the old, all metal 5-1/2"?...
    I have several of these, each setup with different carbide blades, one setup to cut just aluminum. These have long proven to be superior tools, and so handy in size.

    "Anything seems possible when you don't know what you're doing."

  11. #11
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    When I was a framer, we all used Skill Worm Drive saws, which only had the motor on the right and blade on the left. If you've ever lugged one of those monsters around for just a few minutes, you would realize that it would be physically impossible for that saw to jump anywhere except going straight. Indeed one of the attributes of that saw is that once you gotten going to the right of your waste line, that saw would cut straight as an arrow.
    Regards,

    Tom

  12. #12
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    One hand on the handle and operating the trigger, the other hand on the motor housing or front handle, if it has one. The wood should always be clamped down somehow. The guard should always be operational, but with a lever to allow lifting the guard slightly when making angled cuts where the guard gets in the way. It's very difficult to cut yourself with a circular saw if the guard works and you have both hands in use hanging onto the saw handles.

    Charley

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Charles Lent View Post
    One hand on the handle and operating the trigger, the other hand on the motor housing or front handle, if it has one. The wood should always be clamped down somehow...
    This simply does not work for such operations as framing.

    When doing precise work with the workpiece immobilized, I use my free hand to guide the left front edge of the base plate while simultaneously holding the blade guard lever open.
    "Anything seems possible when you don't know what you're doing."

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas McCurnin View Post
    When I was a framer, we all used Skill Worm Drive saws, which only had the motor on the right and blade on the left. If you've ever lugged one of those monsters around for just a few minutes, you would realize that it would be physically impossible for that saw to jump anywhere except going straight. Indeed one of the attributes of that saw is that once you gotten going to the right of your waste line, that saw would cut straight as an arrow.
    I have never been a framer... but by the time I get my Mag worm drive Skill saw from my shop to my house where I need it I am worn out and need a break before proceeding to use it! LOL!

  15. #15
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    When I suggest that the saw jumps it could be that the wood moves, the saw catches and jumps, the operator looses footing, a bee stings or any number of causes. It may only happen once in a lifetime but that can be enough. The safer saw is worth considering.

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