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  • #16
    Re: Power tool safety

    I think I got my first pair of clamp on "sidewalk" skates when I was about seven or eight. We lived in the city at the time and they were sort of the rage (nobody ever used that term though for anything) at the time. I remember every kid seemed to have them. They were sort of clumsey things though and you had to have shoes with actual sewn-on souls (so there's a ridge), instead of sneakers. I remember I had those "KEDS" sneakers, with the ankle-high tops... the skates didn't work well with those. But on regular shoes they were okay. But no long glides with those skates, because you'd have to continually be hopping over the cracks in the side walks. Always sort of funny, because everybody seemed to be dancing this funny jig down the street, more than just rolling. And man, what noise they'd make.

    I got my first bike when I turned nine. Became the family tradition for my three younger siblings... "Not until you're NINE" Funny how things are with kids nowadays. My two grandsons both have bikes, but neither know how to ride, and they don't care! For us back then, the bike wasn't just a toy, it was in fact "transportation"... you wanted to go somewhere, you took your bike. Mom used to have me pick up stuff at the store, and it was a necessary method of travel if you ever wanted to get to park on time for the game, or just hang out with friends.

    We moved out to the country when I was ten and there we lived on a rather steep hill. Still, the bike was the way to get around and pumping up those hills really built up your leg muscles. The nearest store was a mile away, and it was all downhill... but what a ride returning home, usually with a loaf of bread or something.

    Funny how life as changed so much since those times. We played outside almost every day, except when it was really raining hard. Temperature never seemed to matter and certainly heavy snow was a really big reason to be out there and not stay inside. I remember I got my first BB gun when I was 12 and at 14 my first 22 rifle. No instructions, warnings, lectures or any of that stuff. Just think my Dad knew it was time and of course I knew that my Dad had "expectations"... so you certainly did NOT want to disappoint him in any way.

    The same was true with tools and building stuff. He used to get upset (read that as quite angry), should I leave stuff scatttered in his teeny little shop, or not put the paint away and things like that. But, I had a hammer and a handsaw probably when I was nine or so. We'd build carts to roll down the hill (race) and tree forts, and just stuff! Dad might have offered advice with those, but I really don't remember that. You'd bank a finger, get a sliver, get your head cut open in a crash or twist something falling out of a tree... but unless you were unconscious and bleeding, it wasn't a particularly big deal.

    I remember (with great fondness), going out into the woods at night in the winters. It was the greatest of adventures. Just me on an old pair of skiis, no poles, with my 22 strapped on my back... I'd go back into the hills a mile or two at night, and on weekends sometimes several miles, exploring places that I hadn't been before or had found to be favorite for one reason or another. I don't recall my Dad and Mom ever lectuing me, or asking specifics as to where exactly I was going and would be back.... I'd just go! Looking back, it's made me wonder about that... and what would they have done if I had fallen or gotten injured or something? (Probably waited a day or two and then rented out my room ). As a parent myself, I would have NEVER allowed our son to do that... and I've wondered about that too.

    Life can be dangerous, but there are things we all should learn, and I'm thankful for those experiences so long ago. I look around today, and I see adventurous kids... but they're involved in things that seem a lot less healthy and a helluva lot more dangerous than anything I ever confronted out in the wilds.

    CWS

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    • #17
      Re: Power tool safety





      NO! You'll put your eye out...

      ~~

      ... it was plumbed by Ray Charles and his helper Stevie Wonder

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      • #18
        Re: Power tool safety


        Sadly, the union protected him, or so I was told.
        If that happens I don't know how they get away with it. It is ridiculous. Any one who would sign a contract with a group that would protect someone for willfully committing such actions deserves what they get (I'm talking management here). For a union to have such a clause in a contract I can't believe either. It sounds more like something has been taken out of context once or twice and not a precedent is set and over the years without referring to the original intent it has morphed into something crazy like defending someone for not using PPE. It probably started out as something like the employer had to provide any required PPE and if not available the worker could not be faulted or disciplined for not having or using it. Over the years its turned into something totally different.

        There is no legal standing for the position (in state law or OSHA regulations) and its makes no sense.
        ---------------
        Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
        ---------------
        “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
        ---------
        "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
        ---------
        sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

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        • #19
          Re: Power tool safety

          Reading CWS' post demonstrates how times and people have changed. Moms/wives give their husbands a tough time nowadays when it comes to raising children. Society has it's nose in our business as well. If you are at all tough or asking your child to be somewhat responsible for their actions you are mean! Give your child a little bit too much room to grow and you are neglectful. Dads these days are having to negotiate very difficult terrain if they want to be involved and have a say in their child's developement. I have battled my wife many times over the years, and not that I always won but I at least made my point and was heard. I think many guys take the easy way out and simply throw in the towel, not good for the child in my opinion. There are good single moms raising great kids, I think the changing dynamics of marriage have blurred the lines when it comes to parenting. You don't hear "Listen to your father" as much as "He's just being mean". I have seen this in many families and sometimes it is part of why couples divorce. I watched a few episodes of the "Housewives of the O.C." Very wealthy couples, spoiled kids getting into all sorts of trouble, etc. One of these spoiled boys was in and out of trouble and when his father tried to be tough with him and lay down the law, the mother rather than back her husband, made him out to be the bad guy. They divorced.

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          • #20
            Re: Power tool safety


            I watched a few episodes of the "Housewives of the O.C." Very wealthy
            couples, spoiled kids getting into all sorts of trouble, etc. One of these
            spoiled boys was in and out of trouble and when his father tried to be tough
            with him and lay down the law, the mother rather than back her husband, made him
            out to be the bad guy. They divorced.
            Don't believe too much of any of these type shows Frank. So much is put on for the camera its not funny.

            But I agree that it is tough to give your kids meaningful parenting sometimes without incurring the wrath of Social Services or some other agency sticking their nose in. They may mean well but in the end the kid is not learning lifes' lessons at a young age and ends up learning them later in life when the price is much higher, and sometimes not just for them.
            ---------------
            Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
            ---------------
            “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
            ---------
            "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
            ---------
            sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

            Comment


            • #21
              Re: Power tool safety

              The whole power tool safety thing is an argument sometimes, and I don't know why it should be that way. We see posts from veteran members who clearly know what they are doing and who use all the safety features and cautions, but still on those rare and frightful occasions have "blinked" in some way and have hurt themselves. Accidents do happen and we all know that! Yet, there are still the occasional posts or news from people who just deny or see no need to use safety guards and they are often defiant in that!
              I'm a long-time RAS user and man, the proper usage there has been an argument for decades.

              At the place that I spent most of my life (1973 - 2003 and was a sub-contractor from 1966 to 1973), we had a very large machine shop with welding, cutting, box and fabricating shops in shipping, and simply a myriad of other machine practices going on. At one time, this was the largest compressor factory in the world. When I first started there as a regular employee (a year after the terrible "Agnes" flood") they were scrambling for workers of every type. I think "the shops" were very loose with the rules and hence that one-eyed fellow I mentioned in my previous post on this subject. During that same time and in the same shipping area (Engine Parts Operations) they had an RAS and since I had just bought my Craftsman RAS, I considered myself to be somewhat of a new expert. That shop was using the tool all wrong, pulling the carriage forward while running, and then using the left hand to push/pull the rough stock forward from left to right behind the blade... and then they'd push the carriage back to make the cut. I reported it to the operator, to his foreman, to their manager, to the safety director and even to the Chief Engineer. All I got was a reputation! A year later the guy got a serious cut on his forearm. They threw the saw out!

              I think it was in 74' that we hired a Safety Director. He ended up living next to me in one of the "company houses". The guy was a retired Air Force NCO who had worked with the crash-investigations unit based in Hawaii. Good enough guy, but in my opinion rather lazy. But he often complained that the company simply wouldn't let him do anything. His office was on the first floor of a building that I had to visit a few times every week and often when I went past his office, he'd be in there "nodded off". They finally made him keep his office door closed and in 82' they finally let him go... but never replaced him. It was then the "Reagan Years" and not much was being done by OSHA at the time. But, the guy's duties were distributed to other people in the operations section and I don't recall us ever having a "Safety Director" after that.

              Over the thirty years that I was there, we've had a lot of minor accidents, but only a couple of really serious one's that I recall. One was an electrician that was electrocuted and just a year or so before I left, we had a long-haired young lady machinist who got pulled into her machine. Like so many things, she had been warned a few times, but never dealt with.... and that long hair got her quite messed up. She wasn't a bad looking woman either as I recall, but the accident was on the third shift and when she didn't show up for the break, one of her friends found her. She survived, but spent a long time in the hospital and as far as I know, she never did return to work. The most prevalent result of that accident was that radio's were banned from the shops (nobody had heard her screams.) and they of course issued a bunch of warning bulletins.

              These were the kind of things that I always found disturbing and still do... people just don't get dealt with or heed all the things that people tell them, until it's much too late.

              For me, I saw my father loose two and a half fingers to a table saw when I was fourteen. I still can see and hear that in my memories. For that reason, I didn't buy my first table saw until 2005, though I had an RAS back in 73'. I won't go near a power tool if I have a headache or am tired or simple having one of those, all too often, out-of-sorts days. I don't use power tools when somebody else is there either and I don't play the radio or mess with anything else. Every time I approach either my table saw, RAS, drill press, or even the router table... I'm quite apprehensive, I just can't help it. I go through my mental check list: Make sure the blade will rotate without interference, that nothing is in the way, that the floor and my work path is clear, that mountings and guards are secure and that the blade path is clear. I even go through steps like making sure my push stick is where it should be, that my safety switch is at hand, that lights are properly positioned as well as any infeed and outfeed supports and that I've got my safety glasses on, as well as my ear protection, etc. And, then I plug in the saw!

              My wife jokes that it takes me twice as long to set up for work, then it takes me to do the work! I'd never make it in the trades, I'm sure of that. But, I pretty much lay all of my shop work out with the computer. So I know the cuts, and various operations and what needs to come first and next and what gets me the maximum product out of a piece of stock. I consider that part of safe practices, as it makes little sense to me to be distracted by "should I or shouldn't I" kinds of things. All that kind of stuff needs to be ironed out before I start cutting and I know that once I've set my job's up, the production of multiple parts is fast and safe and repeatable.

              So in spite of the laughs, all that planning and prep leaves me with very little scrap and ALL of my fingers. But still, I know there will be that single moment of confusion or inattention, where I'll pay the price... I've had them in the past, but so far no losses except for that occasional wood sliver or sharp blade cut from a chisel or X-acto knife.

              CWS
              Last edited by CWSmith; 02-27-2013, 08:57 PM.

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              • #22
                Re: Power tool safety

                There should not be a big difference between personal safety at work and at home but it happens. New York Tel was very big on talking safety but at times it was just talk and if we the workers pushed for saftey management got upset. Having a strong Union helped me stay safe many times when management was pushing for shortcuts. I was confident enough to put a truck out of service if it was unsafe but there are many places where that does not happen for fear of losing your job. The problem is certainly not all management, there are more than enough lazy, stupid or otherwise impaired coworkers to prove that point. There is no one else to blame when you get hurt during off hours around the house or helping someone else.

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