Like an idiot, I was tired after doing a contracting job all day and wasn't totally attentive while making multiple rips. I reached across the saw to grab an offcut and slieed and mangled the edge of my thumb.
A guard/splitter assembly probably could have prevented this accident but I removed mine from my saw when I first got it two years ago. I'm not going to use the saw again until I reinstall the guard.
For all woodworkers, the bottom line should be: use the guard/splitter assembly to safeguard you from your own stupidity. Don't get hurt like 1 did.
Matt Prusik Morgan, NY
Tluinks, Matt, for sharing your story and your g(xxi advice.
Re: "Buyer s Guide to Cordless Drills" (aw ~35). According to Porter-Cable, if cordless drills sec heavy service it is good practice to use a voltage/ohm meter about twice a month to measure available voltage on the battery after a full charge. Should the voltage output fall below the rated capacity (i.e. 11 volts for a 12-volt battery) that likely means one or more cells have gone bad.
The battery may be usable for some time but the charge will not last as long, there will be more strain on the drill, and the possibility exists that you might damage the charger.
A. Craig I:vans Bethlehem, PA
The disposal of cordless products containing nickel cadmium or small lead acid batteries is a subject under legislative consideration in manv states
Best Letter Wins a Blade
Got something to say about aw or the world of woodworking in general? Well, say it now and you just might win a prize. We're giving away one of Freud's new quiet blades to the writer who submits the most interesting letter for our next issue. To qualify to win the 10-in.t 80-tooth, ATB blade, send your letter, by February 28, to "Editor," American Woodworker, 33 E. Minor St., Emmaus, PA 18098, or telephone your message to us at 610-967-7776, FAX: (610) 967-8956.
and possibly at the federal level. Ryobi cautions consumers that rechargeable batteries should have proper disposal and are not considered household garbage. Consumers should contact the recycling authority in their area for proper disposal of these types of battery products.
Wayne Hill Ryobi American Corp.
Re: "Tool Box" (aw *36). I got a great charge out of the photo of the left-hand thread "unscrew" on page 84. I suppose that being in the eastern hemisphere, the company's screws go backwards from ours, in much the same way that whirlpools in the southern hemisphere are the reverse.
Michael Dresdner Easton, PA
Good guess. Michael. In fact we understand these screws are popular in Washington, D.C., where there's never a shortage of people looking for a way to unscrew screw-ups.
Hats off to American Woodworker for showcasing the work of student furniture designers in your latest Excellence in Craftsmanship Contest (aw #36). Talented students like the ones you featured need that kind of exposure and encouragement if we want our craft to thrive in the 21st century. How about starting a regular feature on designs by student furniture makers?
Misha Arnett Summer Haven. AZ
Setting Up a Shop
Can you run an article on shop setup—location of machines and tools, pros and cons of a basement shop, power location, etc.?
Peter Marchioni Crown Point, NY We're glad to oblige, Peter. Look for our special seventh-issue Buyer's Guide (on the stands in October) for tips on setting up a shop and what tools to buy. In the meantime, you can check out page 53 "i this issue for information on designing a dust collection system.
Re: "Tuning Tips Disputed'' ("letters," aw «36). Jerry Glaser states, "any physics book will tell you that friction is independent of (contact| area." This is true, but the resistance between a plane and a freshly planed board is not caused by pure friction. Two smooth materials in intimate contact will be held together by a molecular force called adhesion. Adhesion is proportional to contact area, so Toshio Odate's suggestion to reduce the area when a plane contacts the wood will indeed reduce the effort required to smooth a board.
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Have you ever wanted to begin woodworking at home? Woodworking can be a fun, yet dangerous experience if not performed properly. In The Art of Woodworking Beginners Guide, we will show you how to choose everything from saws to hand tools and how to use them properly to avoid ending up in the ER.