Table saws are used for straight sawing. Depending
on the blade, they cut either across (crosscut) or with (ripsaw) the grain
of the wood.
With the hand-fed saws, the operator adjusts the height
and angle of the blade. Then, holding the stock, the operator pushes it
into the blade. A guide is used to maintain a straight cut at the desired
width. At the end of the cutting stroke, the operator either changes
positions or pushes the stock past the blade. Self-feed or power table saws are equipped with rollers or a conveyor system to hold the lumber and
force-feed it into the saw blade.
Point of operation - Injuries can occur if an operator's hands slip as he or
she is feeding the stock into the saw or if the operator holds his or her
hands too close to the blades while cutting. The operator can also be injured
when removing scrap or finished pieces from the table.
Ripsaws and crosscut saws. Enclose the portion of the saw above the table with a self-adjusting guard
(Fig. 1). The guard must adjust to the thickness of the material being cut and remain in contact with it
[29 CFR 1910.213
(d)(1)]. Hinge the guard
so that the blades can be easily changed.
Attach a brake to the motor's arbor to stop the
saw from coasting after it has been cut off, or have
the operator remain at the saw station once the
motor is shut off until the blade stops turning.
Kickbacks (that is,
when the blade catches the stock and throws it back toward the operator)
are another major cause of injury. Kickbacks can result if the blade
height is not correct or if the blade is not properly maintained.
Kickbacks are more likely to occur when ripping, rather than crosscutting.
Kickbacks also can occur if safe-guards are not used or if poor-quality
lumber is cut.
For ripsaws, use a spreader to prevent material
from squeezing the saw or kicking back during
ripping [29 CFR 1910.213(c)(2)]. Use anti-kickback
fingers to hold the stock down in the event that the
saw kicks back the material [29 CFR 1910.213(c)(3)].
Use proper blade for cutting action (for example,
don't use crosscut blade for ripping).
Operate saw at speed specified by the