shop safety and bad luck

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Blog entry by joey bealis posted 04-09-2012 04:58 PM 8626 reads 0 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I don’t much like a lot of personal safety equipment. I always use safety glasses but that is usually about it. I feel like I am suffocating when using dust masks. Face shields are just large and bulky. I don’t like gloves because you can not feel what you are working with. These excuses may be idiotic and if I would use the equipment I would get used to it.
So the other day I was doing a hollow form on the lathe out of a piece of dried beech. I was using a swan neck scraper and it caught on the inside of the vessel. Well it started spinning in my hands and gave me some nice rub marks on my hands. The spinning tool made me let go of it and of course it flew out of my hands and hit me right under my safety glasses and gave my a nice black eye.
I went to my local building supply this morning and bought me a face shield. I just finished roughing out the beech vessel which is now a bowl and not a hollow form. I then proceeded to put a piece of cypress on the lathe to make another bowl and while roughing it out a large splinter came flying off piece and embedded itself about an inch into my chest. Needless to say I just ordered a turning apron and paid the extra for overnight shipping.
The next item will be a fresh air mask so I can use while I am sanding. So any suggestions on a good one that is comfortable will be appreciated.


5 comments so far

View reggiek's profile


2240 posts in 3783 days

#1 posted 04-09-2012 05:06 PM

I always turn with a face shield….I use a Trend Airshield…works great…not to bulky….and with the pressured air it does not fog up. I also recommend you use a apron or turning smock made of heavy leather or duck….

The fine dust from a lathe can be a killer…especially from irritant woods like cocobolo and rosewoods. Dust control can be paramont to keeping your health.

Lathes are inherently dangerous as the wood is turning at high speed. If something breaks loose…as you have seen…it can be hurled from the lathe with lethal force….the best defense is armor of some sort….thats why the apron and face shield….As far as I am concerned you cannot be safe enough….especially when considering that this is not my full time work….being injured can really make a dent on my livelyhood – not to mention the costs and the pain/suffering. No one is immune…but prevention is the key.

Soap box over…

-- Woodworking.....My small slice of heaven!

View MJCD's profile


598 posts in 2884 days

#2 posted 04-09-2012 06:39 PM


Recently, I’ve posted a short blog on upgrading my dust collection – about $400 invested (one Dust Deputy and one Super Dust Deputy; both from Oneida-Air) has taken me from an average shop to near HEPA MERV 15 standards (a technical way of saying I’m breathing normal in the shop, and I use a dust mask only when my Table Saw is throwing dust at me, or I’m working with MDF. If you’re behind on dust collection, while you still have your lungs, consider this investment. If you’re interested, check out my short blog (here).

View Nicky's profile


695 posts in 4605 days

#3 posted 04-09-2012 06:59 PM

Seems we all need to learn the hardway…glad you’re ok.

Check out , a few recommendations there

-- Nicky

View Bearpie's profile


2601 posts in 3531 days

#4 posted 04-09-2012 09:12 PM

I use a full face shield at all times, I have an air filter that circulates the air around the room in counter clockwise fashion with a fan or AC boosting the circulation, however I do need to get a Trend full face shield to better protect my lungs! That is on my next shopping list.

Glad your injury wasn’t any worse.

-- Erwin, Jacksonville, FL

View rodman40's profile


166 posts in 2840 days

#5 posted 04-12-2012 05:50 PM

I’m glad that people don’t mind sharing thier mis-fortunes so others can learn the need for safety in the shop, thanks.

-- Rodman

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