The use of power tools carries a risk of injury, for a number of reasons. When it comes to saws in particular, the user should take measures to stay safe at all times. The folks at Devour Tools (visit their website here), the makers of high-performance power tools, recommend users of any type of tool that uses metal blades to familiarize themselves with how it works before use to ensure they know how to operate it safely.
Before Using Your Saw
As you will already know, a saw contains a metal blade with teeth and comes as either a handsaw or a power saw that uses electricity or a battery. Before you start cutting any material, you should make sure you are fully protected. This means wearing safety goggles or a face shield. If the material you will be cutting is likely to spread dust or fine particles about, a respirator is recommended as well. This will help to prevent you inhaling harmful fibers or flakes.
You should also protect your ears, particularly if you use noisy power tools on a regular basis. Prolonged exposure to loud noises can damage the ears, so it is advisable to wear ear plugs or defenders. When cutting materials with a power saw, make sure that you are wearing non-flammable clothing that offers a snug fit. Power saws can get very hot during use and if you are cutting metal there is a risk of sparks that could cause clothing to ignite. This can be avoided with non- or low-flammable clothing. Avoid wearing loose fitting clothing that could become trapped in the saw. As well as this, make sure you wear steel-capped shoes with a non-slip sole.
While Operating Your Saw
It is essential that you read the manufacturer’s guidelines before using your saw and that you follow these guidelines, paying particular attention to the material being cut. You should always inspect your saw for damage before you begin as well as the material you will be cutting.
Make sure that the blade is correctly mounted on the blade shaft and that it is secured tightly. Check the fluid levels and that all belts are correctly tensioned. Ensure the power lead is out of the way to avoid getting caught in the blade or causing a trip hazard. Be sure also that the blade’s direction arrow is aligned with the arrow on the spindle of the saw.
Wet cutting is best when possible as this minimizes dust and debris and will help to keep the machine cool. When wet cutting, be sure to have a continuous flow of water that will keep the blade cool. If you are dry cutting, it is recommended that you do this outdoors and that you allow the blade to cool off every few minutes by spinning it in the air.
Never apply force to the saw. It should not be pushed too hard. If you feel you need to use force, it may be that you are using an incorrect blade. There are different recommendations in terms of blade for wet and dry cutting, so make sure you know which blade to use. You should never cut dry with a blade designed for wet cutting, and vice versa.
When using a saw of any kind, safety is paramount. It is important to read the manufacturer’s guidelines for the correct operation of any power tool, particularly those that contain metal blades. Full safety gear should be worn at all times to protect against injury, and you should always make sure you are using the right blade for the material to be cut.