A useful criterion for determining the degree of safety of anything you're
about to do in the shop is to ask yourself "If the wood suddenly disappeared,
where would my fingers go?"
I think Norm doesn't ask himself that question very often.
Or as my old woodshop teacher taught us, "What would happen if you slipped
or suddenly collapsed"? Then position yourself accordingly.
He would walk up behind people who were about to use a machine and just
hudge them a little (not dangerously) to make the point. If you started to
panic, you were not positioned properly.
The ideal was, if you suddenly died of a heart attack, there would be no
injury to the body.
Wasn't it the Hell's Angels who had the motto, Live fast, Die young, Leave a
Nick Romano in "Knock on any Door"
Novel by Willard Motley
Movie (1949) starred Humphrey Bogart, John Derek, George Mcready
Just happened to know that one...
I would be very impressed if you could cite a single instance where he
has done that. Episode is all I need. If he's done it, I'll find it,
come back and tell you, and give you three days to draw a crowd.
I've seen him run lots of stock on lots of machines, but any time he
has to venture near the blade/bit, he has a pushstick or jig. Always.
Too many people claim they've seen his hands near the blade and
whenever I go look at the episode what I see is a long shot with
telephoto from down low behind the blade. If you know anything about
photography at all you would know that his hands could be six feet
away from the blade but with the telephoto and low angle, they would
look like they were within inches of it.
I've not watched a lot of Norm (wrong time o' day/day o' week and I'm
not into taping, etc.) but I don't recall thinking he was doing anything
I'd be uncomfortable with in any episodes I have seen...the one that was
kinda' scary (and had the bandages to prove it) was Tom Silva on TOH but
he was my "favoritest" of all to watch for all that for his common sense
and skill set...I just don't follow his work habits all the time... :)
Norm's on several times a day/week on one of our PBS Digital Channels. The
network is called "Create" and they show several of the more popular how-to
Might be worth getting a digital converter box (or hooking up an old
friend, the rabbet ear antenna) if you can get that channel.
If you're quiet, your teeth never touch your ankles.
To email me directly, send a message to puckdropper (at) fastmail.fm
:) All we have is antenna, and a rabbit-ear version wouldn't quite make
a 70-mile closest reach transmitter tower I think...
I'm not sure the PBS translator will even be going to digital for sure
(although the networks are of course) since the PBS folks don't have
much for cash. I don't think they're doing anything like that, though,
of alternate channels.
Hell, I'm impressed already ... at both your superior, condescending "final
word" (albeit self appointed) knowledge of what Norm does and does not do;
AND from your ability to unilaterally determine, from a distance and without
being there, that someone does NOT occasionally cringe when watching Norm
use a dado stack.
AAMOF, I'd have to say that it's you who should be given 3 days to draw the
crowd for such an impressive talent.
I was talking out of my ass. Not only can I not cite such an
occurence, but I'll just cover up my ignorance with a lot of blather
about what a pompous ass you are and hope nobody notices I was talking
out of my ass.
Yep ... indeed you were:
"Hall Seat" epidose (DIY Channel) - 27:33/'rabbet in frame pieces':
Although Norm uses a push "stick" of sorts at the very _end of the cut_, it
is not before this section CLEARLY shows Norm's left hand holding down the
approximately 1 1/2" wide stock as it CROSSES OVER the dado stack!
This latter action is PRECISELY that upon which I was remarking in my
original post in which you took such condescending exception as
self-appointed arbiter of Norm as a paragon of safety.
Furtthermore, to argue, as you are doing, that Norm's actions, clearly shown
above, does NOT make one want to cringe/look the other way, once again, does
NOT fall within the realm of your possible knowlege, no matter your imagined
Nice try, though ... there's more where that came from. Perhaps you should
go ahead start drawing that crowd, eh?
Well, I just watched that three or four times, even went through it
frame by frame to try and find what you describled. In fact, the push
stick is clearly in use *before* his hand passes "over" the blade, so
BZZZT, that's one.
By the way, the fingers of his left hand are never directly over the
blade. The one thing I will concede, however, is the violation of the
"where will it go if it slips" principle.
Your original statement:
Gee, no push stick mentioned there. Kind of changes the whole
complexion of the statement when it turns out he did use one, doncha
think? BZZZT, that's two.
And what is a "push 'stick' of sorts?" It looks to me likes it's one
of the regulation, approved by the wreck push sticks he's been using
since day one. Does it have to be endorsed by swingman before it's
acceptable? BZZZT, that's three.
If the stock he used is 3/4" thick, then it clearly must be 2 or 2 1/4
wide. It's certainly more than twice as wide as thick. Moreover, the
rabbet is no more than 1/4" deep and maybe 3/4" wide. That's not a lot
of stock removal. Nevertheless, let's continue...
In fact, his left hand is clearly behind the insert (toward him) when
the cut starts. You can tell, not only by the shadow of his hand but
by the height adjustment screw in the insert. That's the telephoto
fore-shortening I mentioned in my post.
As the cut progresses his left hand does come forward just beyond the
adjustment screw. Then, when the cut is approximately 3/4 complete,
his left hand moves back behind the adjustment screw and the push
stick becomes visible. It's clear at this point that the push stick is
just now being employed, but that shouldn't be a problem as the stock
is on the order of 12-15" long.
Only in the last 3 or 4" of the cut does his left hand follow through
on the top (but not directly over the blade) and side of the stock as
his right hand pushes it with the push stick (not "of sorts" but a
real push stick, by any reasonable definition).
So, while it is true that his left hand passed over where the dado
blade would be if it was 4" wide, it was working under the stock. And,
it's clear that it was the only hand (not "or both"). It's also clear
that it was at the end of a very light cut (I wouldn't think a 1/4" by
1/2" cut ranks as a lot of material removal).
So, if it makes you happy, you got maybe 1/4 of it right in your
That's twice you've accused me of insinuating that you couldn't/didn't
cringe. I said nothing of the sort. Here's what I said:
:I would be very impressed if you could cite a single instance where he
:has done that. Episode is all I need. If he's done it, I'll find it,
:come back and tell you, and give you three days to draw a crowd.
:I've seen him run lots of stock on lots of machines, but any time he
:has to venture near the blade/bit, he has a pushstick or jig. Always.
:Too many people claim they've seen his hands near the blade and
:whenever I go look at the episode what I see is a long shot with
:telephoto from down low behind the blade. If you know anything about
:photography at all you would know that his hands could be six feet
:away from the blade but with the telephoto and low angle, they would
:look like they were within inches of it.
Clearly I didn't remotely come close to challenging what you felt.
What I challenged was the assertion that Norm engaged in a wildly,
unsafe, heretical practice...oops, you're not going to respond well to
a little hyperbole, I just know. Let's leave it that what you said
you saw doesn't come close to how it was actually done, and I couldn't
care less whether you cringed or not, nor did I remark on it.
You probably shouldn't read my posts. They really seem to work you up.
This isn't the first time. But it's my last on this thread.
Oh, was that condescending?
We'll see ...
Your loudly self proclaimed prowess as an arbiter of Norm's safety habits
(with which _you_ unilaterally began this unwelcome little pissing contest),
have been shattered with direct, visible evidence for anyone looking on to
see for themselves.
In addition, you have been reduced to the level of name calling, which, in
black and white, speaks for itself for all to see, and for which no further
argument on your part can change.
If you wish to continue blustering in the face of the very evidence you
requested, knock yourself out.
Without further participation in this pissing contest (which _you_
initiated), I'm perfectly happy to let those who take the time to look make
up their own minds.
Bluster on, Bubba ... and better luck next time.
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