Table Saw
The most common way to lose a finger in the woodshop – the Table Saw.  These can be so dangerous.  The table saw blade sits mostly down inside the table, and protrudes at an adjustable height above the tabletop.  This allows supporting the wood on the tabletop as you can slide it through the blade.
One day I went with Scott to the woodstore.  On the TV was a commercial for a brand of table saw, “Saw Stop.”  All I had to do was watch that commercial and I knew.  We had to have this brand.  The saw blade can sense skin.  When it does – a brake comes up and stops the blade from spinning.  Ya, you have to buy a new blade /brake system whenever it goes off.  So far, we’ve only had to buy 1 extra.  They are $80 a pop, but well worth the salvaged finger.  And for the record – Scott’s hand wasn’t in the blade, a nail was in the board he was cutting.  The saw stop senses skin or anything that can conduct electricity…

Circular Saw
Technically, any circle blade saw is a circular saw.  I’m talking about what most of us call a “skil saw” – a portable circular saw.  The original version was made by ‘skil’, thus it’s commonly known name.  Great portable solution for cutting any type of wood.  Often used when one doesn’t own a table saw as it can cut long lengths.

Band Saw
Probably my favorite saw.  It is similar to a handheld jigsaw (which is more common, and cheaper).  The band saw is used whenever you want to cut a curve, or a slightly bent line.  The blade is one continuous circle.  Therefore, the wood doesn’t chip out like it does with the handheld jigsaw.

Another in the ‘circular saw’ catergory.  The chop saw is stationary.  Its limitation is it can only cut as wide as the blade.  No sliding back and forth like the Compound Miter Saw (below).  But, it’s a great saw for quickly removing ends of boards.

Compound Miter Sawcompound_miter_mancaveinvaded
Similar to the chop saw above, only this one slides forward and backwards.  This allows you to cut wider boards without having to use a skil saw or flip the board over in the chop saw.  I prefer to use this over the traditional chop saw.


Fun little tool.  This is used for cutting curves or shapes into wood.  It is handheld and very portable.  Often one would drill a hole into wood the get access for the jigsaw to then cut out a hole.  They are inexpensive and a great solution for anyone who doesn’t have a lot of space for tools.


Reciprocating Saw
reciprocating_saw_mancaveinvadedThis is the get ‘er done saw.  Something needs cutting?  If it’s not about asthetics, this is the saw to use.  Can cut through metal, plastic, wood and I am sure a load of plenty of other stuff.  I even use it out in the yard occasionally.

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