Table Saw History Repeated?

IMG_0469I was walking around a small strip shopping center on Sunday when I stumbled upon this arrangement outside a store that was being renovated. If you’ve been around woodworking for a few years or more, the photo should remind you of an event that was important to woodworking.  I mean, of course, the Carlos Osorio vs. One World Technologies lawsuit – if you don’t recall this event, I’m sure a quick Internet search will bring you up to date.

I’ve often wondered how much progress we have made since those days. Admittedly, I continually hear woodworkers who are setting up shops talk about and purchase SawStop as their table saw of choice. Plus, that company has introduced a jobsite saw with the same technology, but I’m not hearing nearly as much discussion about that saw. And, as far as I know, the only other company with a similar product is Bosch, and its saw with Active Response Technology™ (GTS1041A-09) is not yet in stores.

I do have to gives this crew some props for having the splitter in place and the fence close by. I did not get to see anyone use the saw, but I’d like to think they were responsible. I guess that’s progress.

Have you switched to a “Safety” table saw yet? Would you choose a Jobsite or Worksite saw over a standard table saw to stay within your budget and get the new technology?

— Glen D. Huey


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2 thoughts on “Table Saw History Repeated?

  1. I have watched, read and listened to all the debate, over the years, with regards to Saw Stop. No, I don’t own one and wouldn’t at this point. Nothing wrong with the Saw Stop, but my Unisaw with it’s beisemeyer splitter has worked as it should and does what it should. My only regret, if you can call it that, is that it doesn’t have the riving knife like the newer versions. I should also add there is a reason the makers of cabinet saws paint those inserts RED and ultimately, safety is up to me. People are no more intelligent now, than they were then and will always find new innovative ways to undermine a safety feature.
    I could tell you stories about framing carpenters who set their air nailers to bump mode. Only to promptly bump their leg sending a 16 penny nail into their femur/ upper leg bone, or hand. Or shoot the nail off towards another. Hand tools are no different. Just not as severe, fortunately. Perhaps we should only allow new woodworkers/ carpenters, etc. to use hand tools and develop those skills, until they can pass a test on the power tools and understand their limitations. Both practical and written.
    It really comes down to teachings, or lack there of, and the willingness of a user of a given tool to learn something about it. BEFORE THEY FLIP THE SWITCH. Safety comes first.

  2. I definitely need a new saw but have to wait until I can afford one.
    That new technology is really cool, but will never replace common sense.
    If I get one, it’ll probably be the contractor model to cut down on costs and space in the shop.

    Good post Glen.

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