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Thread: Kickback Hurts! (WARNING! GORY PICTURES!!)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    882

    Kickback Hurts! (WARNING! GORY PICTURES!!)

    If you're not okay with blood, do not scroll down and look at the pictures below!!!!!!



    I'm posting this as a reminder to you guys not to do stupid things on the tablesaw. I know that probably goes without saying, but I hope the nasty pictures below remind you guys how important this is!!!!

    Like I said, I was doing something incredibly stupid. I deserve any ridicule you guys throw my way, so don't worry about hurting my feelings!

    I was cutting a small block (approx 3x3x2) of walnut on the tablesaw, trying to make a sanding block for a large cove molding I made (which I made using the diagonal cut method on the TS). I was making angled cuts to remove the bulk of the material before going over to my disk sander to refine the curves.

    I have Sawstop PCS cabinet saw, which is a left tilt saw. Obviously I'm a believer in the SS technology, but also obvious is that it doesn't do anything to prevent kickback, especially an extreme situation like this... The first cut I made with the fence to the right of the tilted blade (good). Long story short, based on the shape of the workpiece, I had to make the second cut on the left side of the blade. Obviously this is idiotic and I knew it. You never want to cut with the blade tilted toward the fence, and even worse, you don't want to do that with small workpiece that you can't hold down adequately as it passes through the blade. So it should be no surprise to any of us here that the work piece kicked back.

    And holy cow did it ever. It flew back and hit me square in the forehead. I literally did not see it coming. I saw a bright flash of white light and fell straight on my butt. It left a nasty, deep gash on my forehead, all the way down to the skull.

    I grabbed my forehead and it was immediately swollen up. The amount of blood was actually shocking. All I felt was the impact paint, not the pain from cut flesh.

    I used every bad word in the book, stumbled to my feet, turned off the saw and DC and began the 200 yard walk uphill to my parents' house (my shop is in an out-building on their property). Luckily my dad is a doctor and he was home. I was covered in blood and obviously his first thought was that something much worse happened. I'd take a shot to the forehead over amputation any day.

    Anyway, long story longer, he took me to the ER and they stitched me up. Like I said, the cut was all the way down to the skull. They did a cat scan and luckily I didn't fracture my skull. But the cut his huge. I might have to see a plastic surgeon at some point, but we're goign to see how it heals up.

    One of the nurse techs was "kind" enough to point out that it's in the shape of a large "L" ("L" for loser)... LOL, so now I'm really hoping it heals well.

    I'm leaving a bunch of space before the pics so that some of you don't have to look at them if you don't want to. The second pic is my skull. I hope this is the only time I ever see my own skull! lol

    Remember guys, if your instinct tells you that an operation isn't safe, that's because it isn't safe. Don't do it. Step back and think of a safer way to accomplish the operation. In my case, I would've just gone to the sander to remove the material. Slower, but much safer. I knew better but I was being impatient.































  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Spring Hill, TN
    Posts
    520
    Yeesh. It sounds like you knew better before you started. Glad you're ok. Could have been worse. Were you wearing eye protection?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Middle Earth MD
    Posts
    309
    I've been fairly lucky (so far) in only suffering bruises to the flesh and ego after that instant moment of astonishment in the shop.

    Glad to hear it's not too bad, cute "L" on the forehead too.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lewiston, Idaho
    Posts
    23,619
    Peter....glad you weren't more seriously hurt.

    I own a Ridgid TS3650 contractor's saw. I am one of those who always uses blade guard and this particular saw has a splitter on the blade guard. In the past few months, I have been amazed how many pieces of wood I have been ripping and watched the wood close onto the splitter. I have been amazed. If I hadn't been using the blade guard and splitter, I hate to think what could have happened. The only time I don't use it is when I am cutting dados with my dado blade.

    I'll bet your injury will be black and blue and sore later today!

    Glad there was no skull fracture or internal hemorrhaging!
    Ken

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Southern Md
    Posts
    960
    Holy Crap!!!!! Dude I'm glad your ok. I'm with Ken on the blade guards and splitter. Would have help you cause maybe you couldn't access the area. Whew I'm glad your ok. Start thinking of some amusing stories for the scar. You might as well have fun with it.

  6. #6
    If you were going to get it in the face I think that was the best spot. Softer tissue like lips, nose and ear shreds so poorly. Glad it wasn't worse and we can all ALWYAS use a reminder. Its always that one quick thing that'll get ya.
    “If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.” -- George Orwell


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    westchester cty, NY
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    796
    that is a nasty wound. you are extremely lucky that it wasn't much worse. good reminder to those of us that play with serious "toys" to be careful and sensible at all times.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Indianapolis
    Posts
    1,430
    Glad it wasn't worse. Wow! I'm also in that exclusive group of guard users. Splitters or riving knives--don't turn your saw on without one.
    ________
    Ron

    "Individual commitment to a group effort--that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work."
    Vince Lombardi

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Northern Kentucky
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    glad that it were not more serious, now you need a good story to explain the scar to strangers

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lewiston, Idaho
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    I could be wrong and if I am correct me.

    The guard I use has spring loaded pawls on it that most likely would have prevented this.

    Does the guard on the SS have those too......and a splitter?

    Pardon my ignorance.
    Ken

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Upland CA
    Posts
    2,484
    I don't think my Beis splitter would have worked on a workpiece that small. Glad you were not hurt worse. Good reminder for us all.

    I would tell people I got kicked by a horse at roundup time.

    Rick Potter

  12. #12
    Can't beleive you were not knocked out. You could have fell on the blade or worse. Thanks for the wake up call. L is for loser?? How about L is for Lived to talk about it.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Central WI
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    2,974
    I'm not sure there is anything to protect you when cutting that small a piece on a tablesaw. I'm still looking for ways to cut carved moldings that need to match in small pieces carefully. Thanks for being willing to shock us into being more careful period. We all do things that afterwards seem really dumb. Somedays I'm just in an impatient crappy mood but I have learned to shut off the power and watch TV that day. Dave

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Northern Colorado
    Posts
    1,884
    All I can think of is that old pilot's saying: any landing that you walk away from is a good landing.

    But ... yikes ... that looks pretty bad.

    Heal quickly, and get back to making dust.

    Note to self: yes, you recently ordered a SS, but it will NEVER take the place of every other safety precaution !

  15. #15
    Too bad you didn't accidentally put your forehead into the blade, then your SS would have saved you some stiches. But seriously, I would like to point out that getting hit in the forehead with a peice of lumber is not how 99.99% of table saw accidents occur and that your Sawstop probably would have saved you from 99% of blood drawing or maiming occurences.

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