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How to Practice Woodworking Safely

Learn about woodworking safety from Makeville Studio in this Howcast woodworking video.


There's some general rules about working in a shop regarding health and safety that everyone should follow, whether you're working in a garage or a full shop like this one.

Most of these have to do with your own health and safety. Ear protection, for example. Many of these machines operate at high decibels. Even dust collection machines can sometimes be doing damage to your ears over a prolonged period.

So, it's good to get a good set of ear protection. Have that on hand.

Eye protection, of course. Many of the saws, routers, other tools can project pieces of wood at your face faster than you can get out of the way. So, eye protection is always good for those tools as well.

The last health issue, I think, in a shop is, sort of, a silent killer. Dust. And, most woodworkers and people working around particles will try to get away with wearing one of these. Vented masks.

These are okay, if you really pinch them down to your nose and they're really tightly wrapped around your face. But, in general, these don't collect all the fine particles that escape, even from dust collection, that are out in the air in your shop.

So, wearing a full face mask, respirator, like this is a great idea if you spend long hours in a shop. Or, even if it's just regular hours, but it's short. Maybe you're in a shop every weekend. It's well worth it to purchase one of these and have it.

So, other than that, when you're on the machines, probably the number one safety rule I always tell students is to not do anything that you don't feel comfortable with.

Most of us have a sixth sense when it comes to safety on machines where, if you don't feel comfortable doing something, there's probably a reason for that. And, you shouldn't do it.

Ask for help. Take a break. Pause before you continue on with your work.

Same thing goes for fatigue. If you're tired and you're working long hours, you definitely don't want to be working on woodworking machines. They take your full attention and focus to do it properly and safely.

So, working tired is never a good idea.

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