Boat Building Forum

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Tools: Trying to improve safety *PIC*

: . . . it has an extra large chip window opposite
: the grip and is perfectly proportioned so my thumb pops
: conveniently into the bit as I wrap my hand around it. Amazingly
: the thumb - which was somewhat shredded - looks fine now. I put
: some cream called "Scar Therapy" on it while it was
: healing and it actually worked. No scar, full feeling. It's just
: a bad design - I had an old Wen router for years which I
: actually wore out, I never had a problem. I wear a leather glove
: when I use it now.

The bit can go through leather as fast as it can go through thumbs. Can you epoxy a cone or tube over that chip window to shield it better? Maybe find a connector for a dust collection hose and glue that in place so you have a wide opening for the chips to go out, but a deep opening which it is hard to put the fingers in?

: Speaking of cutting strips on a table saw, a few months ago someone
: suggested cutting them on the left side of the blade, adjusting
: the fence each time, to avoid having them catching on or riding
: up the fence. I think it was on this forum but I thought I'd
: mention it again.

May have been me. There was a discussion about featherboards a few weeks ago. I keep seeing a jig (probably in Rockler flyers and catalogs) which stays a fixed distance to the outside of the blade. You set your board to touch the jig, move the fence up to the board and lock the fence in place. Rip one strip. Set our board next to the jig again, move the fence again, rip another strip. And so on.

The benefits they cite are: The featherboards on the table which press the board against the fence don't need to be adjusted for each cut. The featherboards on the fence which hold the wood down don't have to be adjusted--no difference here with any other method. You can use the standard kerf splitter and blade guard to keep the strip from wiggling into the back edge of the blade and getting thinned, or kicking back. Nice safety feature there.

The downside is the time it takes to readjust the fence for each cut, and the possibility of getting strips of uneven thickness if the board you are cutting is not perfectly square. However, that can be cleaned up on a planer.

If you want to make a gauge something like what I've been seeing, try something like what I've illustrated below. This slips snuggly into the miter track on your table saw. You set your wood to touch it, bring the fence into place, then REMOVE the gauge before you turn on the saw. A trial cut or two establishes how far back from the blade the gauge should be. Once it is set, mark a line on it, or glue it into a permanent position, and get rid of the adjusting bolts. Make it short enough and you can set up your featherboards and still be able to slip this between them, and remove it easily, without needing to adjust the featherboards.