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blade guard use

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  • blade guard use

    I know this gets some strong opinions. I have a ts2424 and I have hade a problem with my blade guard binding and putting me in a dangerous position. I know it is designed to avoid this. I find myself using featherboard and pushsticks only.Has anyone else had problems. I have considered removing the plastic blade guard and using a larger kerf blade. I worry about kickback but am curious what % of the time you guys use the factory blade guard.This was posted on Sunday but lets keep the preaching to a minimum please.

  • #2
    Let's go throught the set up for the guard in the maual again and see if that helps.
    Andy B.


    • #3
      there is an important step that many people over look in aligning the guard. Let me try to run you thru the short version of aligning the guard. 1. Assemble the guard unit to the cast alum blade guard support so that the edges of both align.
      2. Take a square and make sure the splitter part of the guard and the table are sq. to each other. If not loosen the 2 bolts holding the blade support that u just aligned and pivot the the assembly until the the table and splitter are at 90. This usually the forgotten step.
      3. Take a straight edge and align the splitter to the edge of the blade. The splitter is thinner then even a thin kerf blade. There is a set screw on the blade guard support piece to do this.
      They are just the basics. Look at your manual and read each step until you understand it.

      Glad to see you would at least keep the splitter part on. I have at times raised the plastic section high enough to lock it above the fence when doing narrow pieces. Be safe...I didn't always practic what i preach and paid the price.


      • #4
        I have used mine on literally all cuts with the exception of dados for the last two years and have yet to encounter any binding situations, I second the suggestion of getting out the manual and go through a realignment procedure.

        Good luck



        • #5
          Think we're missing a big piece of the story----are you using a thin kerf blade? Of course you can get binding from that, as well as if the spltter isn't aligned.

          If the guard isn't "floating", time to do a little housecleaning at it's pivot points.

          Just FYI----the design of the 2424 and similar Emerson-built saws has the best of the best in stock guards, at least as far as ease of removal/installation. Takes maybe 10 seconds to remove/install, though being the cautious type, I do a quick re-check of the splitter alignment before ripping.

          Let's just put it this way----the more you can work with the guard in place, the better your chances are of avoiding a serious injury. I've yet to hear of an amputation with the guard in place. Just saw an example of this on the news---sad story----3 teens in a car accident----one dead, one in critical condition in a hospital----the third----walking around at the first's funeral----he was the only one wearing a seatbelt.


          • #6
            I just assembled my 3650 and left it off. It looked like it was pretty flimsy anyway. I know that it is there to protect me but I have a ton of long boards to rip in the next few weeks and dont want to deal with it.


            • #7
              There is nothing flimsy about the 3650 blade guard and no acceptable reason not to use it. You don't want to deal with it? Do you want to deal with missing fingers or a kickback between the eyes? Think about it!
              I won't apologize if you think this is too strongly worded. What you are planning to do is dangerous and wrong and you know it!
              "Did you put the yellow key in the switch?" TOD 01/09/06


              • #8
                I have read all of your advice and have went back to the instruction manual(unamerican as that is)and went back through the steps. I think the splittter was not being tightened enough and when the blade guard was hitting the wood it was pulling it to one side causing it to miss the kerf.This seemed to happen more when the end of the board was not square. I have since started cutting one end of my board square whenever I have the chance now.I have removed the plastic blade guard but left the splitter and the anti-kickback prawls in place. I have also etched a line below the splitter to help check alignment. It seems to be helping. I know some will say that is very wrong but I found the guard distracting and in my previous condition whitch I hope I have now addressed somewhat dangerous. I am far more fearful of a kickback than the possibility of putting my hand on the blade.

                [ 07-31-2004, 09:08 PM: Message edited by: messmaker ]


                • #9
                  I had a little trouble aligning mine when I first put my 3650 together, but all of a sudden it seemed like it fit. I use it all the time unless I'm using a dado head, it even seems to help with the amount of sawdust that is blown on me. I have found that it can bind when the blade is tilted to extreme angles though. (Just because the weight of the guard is not supported.)


                  • #10
                    I'm mixed on the blade guard. I never used on my old saw because I bought it used and it didn't have it so I got used to not having it. When I setup my TS3650 I thought that I would be a good boy and use it. At first I really liked using it because of the splitter at the end, that really comes in handy when ripping grained wood that wants to warp when cut. The kickback prawls work good, in fact they work too good at times. I've gotten used to cross cutting and pulling the piece sideways at the end, rather than letting it fall on the ground, or reaching way over the saw (and blade/guard to grab the piece before it falls. With the prawls it does not let you easily pull the piece sideways, kind of have to push at an angle to get it to release. Now, I feel that leaning way over the saw is fairly dangerous, even though I'm 6'2, I feel it is a farther reach than I would like, and that piece of plastic between my chest and the blade is not very comforting. I've worked for years without the guard and still have all of my extremities, but you never know.

                    I will try and use the guard more often and get used to it, but it may get put on the shelf if I round the corner on another piece of wook that I've tried to pulled out incorrectly. I've actually felt that I've been more at risk with the blade guard on at times because of old habits.


                    Quote: "I've been smoking 15 years, my lung feels great!" [img]smile.gif[/img]
                    Is this your homework Larry?


                    • #11
                      my blade guard is still in the small cardboard box it came in, sealed, somewhere in the basement!

                      my personal opinion is that the blade guard on a tablesaw is more of a nusience than a safety feature. i like a clear view of the blade so i can see exactly what i am doing at all times. i use push sticks and feather boards when i rip, and of course the miter gague when i crosscut.

                      as far as kickback goes, yes it is a possibility. in fact, it happened to me about 2 weeks ago with a piece of rough sawn oak. a little bind and the saw kicked, shooting it back toward me. simple way to keep safe here, use the proper tools and stand to the side of the board when ripping. safety is paramount when i am working in my shop, and one can be safe without the guard!
                      \"A SHIP OF WAR IS THE BEST AMBASSADOR\"<br /><br />OLIVER CROMWELL


                      • #12
                        I do really love these discussions. It boils down to prudent people vs. risk takers. It's as simple as that.

                        Yes, the stock guards are pretty poor, but they still provide a degree of protection. Pawls will assist in preventing kickback (though there are other methods you can add to improve safety), keeps dust (and maybe a larger broken piece of wood out of your face/eyes--even when wearing safety glasses) and keeps your hands away from the blade----even a piece of plastic between your hand and the blade--no matter how cheap the plastic, is better than nothing.

                        I've read of many instances of hand injury, but yet to find one that occurred when the guard was in place.

                        What is really pathetic is to hear the same old arguements on the Ridgid forum----Ridgid has had one of the best guards of the OEM models---because it's so darned easy to remove and replace---eliminating the excuse "oh, it's such a PITA to remove"

                        Simply put, there is no right answer that says to remove the guard and leave it off----only those who chose not to use it---but should think better of promoting a risky behavior.


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by daveferg:
                          I do really love these discussions. It boils down to prudent people vs. risk takers. It's as simple as that.


                          I fully agree with you. But I would change your quote just a little to read ... "It boils down to prudent people vs. lazy people. It's as simple as that."

                          I think that it is the same kind of laziness that results in people not capitalizing letters when writing forum messages.

                          You are right --- there is no excuse for not using the blade guard.



                          • #14
                            I am far from being LAZY or a RISK TAKER . I do not run a blade gaurd. I do use a Biesemeyer Splitter and also use Board Buddies and feather boards. I had two accidents on the TS in the past. Both were caused by the OEM gaurd on my Craftsman. I will in the future add an over head gaurd with DC.

                            Bet if you took a poll of all the home shop folks across the country you'd find that a very large % of them do not use them.
                            Support Our Troops!


                            • #15
                              I actualy am the most prudent person I know in all aspects of my business and life. I also have confidence in myself and my common sense.
                              After 25 years of using a radial arm saw to rip Having 1/32 of an inch of blade exposed on a table saw seems like a lessor threat.
                              I got so used to seeing and working around the blade on the radial that using the gurd seems like shaving without a mirror.
                              I notice Norm Abrams doesnt use a blade guard on Yankee Workshop and he seems to have all ten fingers left.