Yikes! Thanks for the explanation.
Doing really narrow pieces on my TS makes me cautious as hell. I define "really narrow" as anything so narrow I have to remove the guard, anti-kickback and riving knife assembly to have room enough to use my push shoe.
If it's too small even for the push shoe I'd hook two or three of my fingers over the fence so my hand couldn't slide toward the blade. Don't know how that's going to work with the new, beefier fence. I think a new, thinner push shoe is will be in order.
I must have close to 10 push shoes
of various widths and lengths and materials. There is NO one push shoe that works under all situations. If I need to saw through the lip end of the shoe, that's OK I can make more new ones. I make 3 at a time anyway. I also have a few thin push sticks
for those "rare" situations they work better, but not very often.
The job of the push shoe is:
First to to feed the workpiece into the blade.
The second is to maintain downward pressure towards the table.
Finally, it keeps pressure towards the fence to prevent a kickback.
A ordinary push "stick" can not do all these vital things.
The job of the splitter is:
To maintain the workpiece against the left side of the fence which prevents a "rotational" type of kickback, spinning up and over the top of the blade and coming back at the operator.
Second, to prevent the newly created saw kerf from closing on the blade and either stalling the saw OR sending the workpiece up and over back at the operator.
By using both the push shoe and a splitter, you are virtually assured against kickbacks, at least that's my experience in my shop. For the "rare" times I need to remove the splitter, I am extremely cautious to maintain downward and "left to right lateral pressure" against the fence.
On my older Craftsman 12" tablesaws, there are no anti-kickback pawls on my splitters, I removed them. There is no OEM or factory clear plastic blade cover on my splitters, I removed them. All I use is a simple steel plate that was designed to attach the blade cover and pawls, and this has evolved over about 40 years of experimenting with all sorts of devices.
My newer Craftsman 10" 22124 hybrid has a quick detach blade cover which I can install or remove within less than a minute depending on the type of operation, like a "stopped" cut or kerf where a tall splitter plate would interfere, like this: