Near Disaster Today!

I was cutting a 3.5" piece of glued up wenge into a turning block. The blade bound when I tried to cut to small a radius and suddenly cut real good; through the remaining wood and into my finger.
Doctor says it would have been hard to cut so badly while doing so little damage; to the bone, but in just the right spot. Three weeks good as new. Well maybe; hard to say how if I will lose some sensation in the tip, but I don't have much left anyhow.
I have odd luck like this. When I was 14 I cut my wrist straight across to the bone on a broken milk bottle. Doctor didn't think it was possible to miss the nerves, but I did.
Did I learn to stop using tools inappropriately? Only time will tell.
Odd thing is how easy it is to touch type short one finger; the ring finger just sorta automatically takes over for the middle finger.
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Toller wrote:

Gah! That sucks. Glad to hear that everything's still in one piece, though!
Was this on your band saw?
-Nathan
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Yes. It is starting to throb though. Thank God there is something to throb, right?
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Yeah, I had a router grab the other day when I was cutting a shallow mortise and run about an inch farther than I had wanted. No possibility of flesh damage in this case but it reminded me that I never like to have my hand in a position that could find its way into the cutting zone if the wood suddenly slipped or fed to fast. This is one of the first lessons I teach.
This includes pushing into the TS, I've seen this one happen. Pushing in a bandsaw when resawing, I've come close. Face planing on a jointer. I saw a guy with the heal of his hand hanging over the back of a board, just as I was going to say something the board slipped forward and he came so close to shaving his hand or worse that he sat down white as a ghost.
Whenever I am pushing, I try to see what path my hand will take if things go fast and really try to never have it traveling in the deadly path.
The (slightly trimmed) tip of my left pointing finger reminds me every day.In this case I was pulling a RAS for several hours cutting sticks of the exact same length, hundreds of them. The install crew comes back into the shop at the end of the day and I am listening in on their conversation, still working, boerd and absent mindedly slid the stock forward to the stop, leaving my left hand where it stopped, right on the path of the blade as I pulled the RAS forward. I was very lucky this was only a tip. It could have easily been the whole gang of didgits on the left hand and that would have changed my life significantly.
Now, I also ALWAYS watch the path of any cutter and make double sure i see no flesh in that zone. I know for a fact that I wasn't doing that at the RAS because i didn't see it happen.
BW
Toller wrote:

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I read some good advice here a while back: ask yourself where your hand would go if the wood suddenly disappeared.
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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wrote:

Yes, that is the obvious lesson, but sometimes (especially with a jointer or router table) there is no other way to hold it. I was putting a roundover yesterday and thought about just that idea. It would have been really clumsy not to have moved my hands over the bit. It is hard to see how the work piece could have disintigrated, but I have heard of pieces breaking up in the jointer.
None of this has any bearing on my accident. It would have been perfectly simple to have been steadying it with a block of wood rather than my left hand!
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Toller wrote:

There's always a way to hold an object without getting your hands near the blades. A commercial example would be:
http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?pageR96&filter5785
--
Jack Novak
Buffalo, NY - USA
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If you were in my club you'd be awarded a purple heart.... They are intended as good natured shots at those who have woodworking misadventures and as a reminder to all to be careful.
Glad it was a minor wound...
John ...no purple hearts.... knock wood!
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Wed, Nov 15, 2006, 8:24pm (EST+5) snipped-for-privacy@Yahoo.com (Toller) doth sayeth: I was cutting a 3.5" piece of glued up wenge into a turning block. The blade bound when I tried to cut to small a radius and suddenly cut real good; through the remaining wood and into my finger. <snip>
OK. I read what you were doing, and the results.
HOWEVER, you did NOT tell HOW you were doing it. So we don't know if it was a real accident, or you've been watching too much Junk Brothers.
Next time you might want to remember to keep you body parts out of line with the whirley parts. That's why pushsticks were invented - unless you were using a bandsaw - in that case you obviously shoulda made a jig or fixture to hold the piece, or at least not forced it, which seems to be what you did.
JOAT Democratic justice. One man, one rock.
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Yup. I'm living that life.
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