No other work will be more enjoyable than woodworking; if only you follow some safety rules. Although most of the safety rules are more of common sense ideas, failing to follow them will definitely see you involved in various injuries. While in your wood shop, you need to be careful with how you handle your tools. Neither should you be optimistic nor do things in a hurry as this is likely to land you into injuries. But what should you do to avoid getting injured? The following are some of the simple safety rules that you should observe while in your wood shop.
1. Wear Appropriate Clothing
It’s important to wear tight-fitting clothing while working in your wood shop. Lose clothing will easily be trapped in a cutting head or saw blade, reducing the efficiency of your efforts. If possible, wear attires that will be comfortable with your working environment. Such clothes will protect you from wood chips, which could result from wood cutting. Most importantly, don’t forget to remove jewelry such as bracelets and neck chains before you start your wood work.
2. Avoid Alcohol and Drugs
It’s dangerous to mix to intoxicating drugs and woodworking. In case you are under the influence of any intoxicating substance, it is wise to stay out of your wood shop. In fact, the best practice is to refrain from drugs and alcohol till you are through with your woodworking. It’s advisable to be sober while working in a wood shop.
3 Wear Safety Equipment
Ensure that your body is protected from all types of injuries, including physical, sound and light accidents. For example, wear latex gloves while applying furnishes and hearing protection when working with noisy tools such as surface planers and routers. Wear safety glasses immediately you enter the shop and don’t remove them till it’s time to leave.
4. Disconnect Power Before you Change blades
The worst injury that can affect you while in your wood shop is that involving electric power. In case you need to change a bit or a blade on a power tool, be keen to disconnect or switch off power connection to the tool. I have met several woodworkers who have lost their fingers by just forgetting this simple rule!
5. Use One Extension Cord
If possible, use a heavy duty extension instead of one for each tool. In this manner, you will have to change the cord from tool to tool. Not a single time will you forget to plug and unplug the power source before shifting from tool to tool.
6.Use Sharp Bits and Blades
It might seem awkward, but a dull tool is one of the most dangerous cutting tools to use In case you use a dull saw blade, you will be forced to put more efforts to finish your tasks. Under such circumstances, the saw is likely to kick back or behind. A sharp cutting tool will create a fine and clean cut. Ensure that you keep your blades and bits clean and sharp for safety and best results.
7. Check for Metals Such as Nails and Screws
Check for any metals including staples, nails and screws before you start cutting any stock. Such metals will not only spin your saw blade, but also damage the stock and the cutting head. They can also cause the stock you are cutting to kick back resulting to injuries.
8. Work Against the Cutter
Woodworking tools made in an anticlockwise design that is; the wood and the power tool move in a direction opposite to that of the cutting head. Generally to say, a saw blade or router bit is designed to cut against the motion, while the cutter is supposed to cut through the stock but not with it.
9. Avoid Distractions
When working in your wood shop, you are likely to be distracted. This could happen while you are busy using a saw or a power tool. Before you deal with such distractions, be keen to finish the task; withdrawing your attention from the tools might result into an injury.
10. Don’t Reach Over a Blade to Remove Cut-offs
When using a cutting tool, be keen not to put your hands or fingers near its blade, especially when the blade is in motion. Instead, wait for the blade to stop after which, you can reach for the cut offs with your hands. Alternatively, you can use a push stick or a scrap piece to remove the cut offs From the blade.