I've never heard anybody say, "Nah, I didn't really need that finger so badly. I hardly ever used it anyway!" Your fingers (as well as other body parts) are important and irreplaceable. No piece of wood work is worth losing parts of your body over. That's why power tool safety is important.
We all make a few nicks and cuts here and there, and it's usually no major tragedy. But, like they say, "It's all good and fun until somebody loses an eye." Practice the right power tool safety, and you won't have to be that somebody. Here are a few essential things you must have handy to ensure power tool safety.
Never Work Without A First Aid Kit
Now, if you're cutting away at something and not paying attention like you should be, the thought might occur to you, "Wait a minute - wood doesn't bleed." Nope, that's your blood my friend, and it's going to hurt in the morning. This is the time when you need a first aid kit.
The first aid kit is the number one thing you need to have. Before you start buying band saws, routers and drills, make sure you've got something to repair yourself with in case you need it. Every first aid kit should have bandages and gauze, ointments (like Neosporin), disinfectant wipes, first aid tape and scissors. These are the barest essentials. You can buy a first aid kit ready-made from the hardware store, or you can simply stock your own.
Eyes Are Nice, Too-Eye Protection
Fingers aren't all we need to worry about. Your eyes are your windows to the world. Put one out, and it can be pretty dark. If you're working with power tools, you might have sparks shooting off every which way. You'd better have some eye protection. Simple goggles from the hardware store will do just fine. You don't need anything expensive; just make sure your eyes are covered.
"What? Can You Repeat That!?"-Ear Protection
The garage can be a pretty noisy place when you're using power tools. The decibel level can range from standing right under a plane taking off level, all the way to Judas priest concert level. You don't want to end up a 35-year-old who screams at everyone, "What was that!? Say it again into my GOOD EAR!"
For just a couple of bucks you can buy foam earplugs. These will work for most power tool situations, and save you from buying hearing aids next year. They have nicer ones at the hardware store for $10 or so, and if things get really loud, you can go for the full earphones. These are the dealies that target shooters wear, and they can be bought at any hardware store for under $20.
It's always a good idea to have several levels of ear protection handy. The foam ones will usually do, but it's always nice to have the headphones as well. As a rule, if it sounds a little loud, upgrade to heavier ear protection. You will be exposed to the noise for a long period of time, and this can be seriously damaging to your hearing.
Don't Forget The Particle Mask
Get a particle mask to protect your nose and mouth. When you're cutting wood, there will be little shards and splinters going everywhere. You'll also be dealing with dust and other nasty stuff in the air. Particle masks are cheap and can be bought just about anywhere.
"Does It Smell Like Smoke In Here?"
Finally, make sure your smoke detectors work. You don't want to become a legend in your neighborhood, or a charity case for friends and family. Periodically check the batteries and make sure your smoke detectors are in good working order. One more bit of safety advice-Watch what you're doing, dummy. Quit looking at your swimsuit calendar when you should be watching the bandsaw! Don't let your fingers (or any other precious parts) be casualties of your carelessness!
Working with power tools can be dangerous if you don't take the right precautions. Always keep a first aid kit handy while using Makita power tools. To learn more on safety tips and buy power tools at reduced rates visit www.tylertool.com.