Sharp pointy things

The One of the things of which I am very conscious is shop safety around sharp pointy things. However, I stay safe in a different way as many. I’ll never be the first one to throw on a pair of gloves or safety glasses, but I am always very cognizant of the dangers of working with power tools. Therefore, I am always looking for the safest ways to use my tools

My shop awareness borders on a phobia when it comes to sharp pointy things or fast spinny things. I severely cut my left ring finger–severing both tendons and both nerves–at the age of 15. I will NEVER forget that day–the day I lost full use of that finger. There was very little pain when it occurred, but the blood traumatized me for years. When I pick up a power tool, I always ask: “how much will it hurt or damage be caused if I got a body part caught in it? Before I even press the trigger to a saw or drill, I make certain that the sharp pointy edges are well away from the path of my skin!

Why no safety gear?

“If I am so afraid of sharp pointy things, then why don’t I wear gloves or shop glasses?”, you ask. As an amateur woodworker, I haven’t progressed to the point that I can “feel” my work through my leather work gloves. I spend most days on a computer entering computer code–very finger intensive. Being able to feel my work is important,so I have never gotten comfortable with gloves. I also can’t see out of or find my shop glasses most of the time. (Typical problem in the Slanted Shed).

Where I fall short using safety gear, I make up for in safe practices. I always have cuts and scrapes on my hands, but I rarely if ever cut myself on sharp pointy things. As a Boy Scout, I was taught knife, ax and saw safety and still practice many of those lessons today. I know I should practice better shop safety but it’s hard to teach an old dog new tricks.

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