I see it this way
I'll keep it at full height or 3/4" above the work when ripping. It will cut more efficiently, run cooler and pull the work into the table as the blade enters the work..
When crosscutting I use a 40T or more blade, and then have the gullets exposed.
As far as blade exposure for safety reasons, yeah the higher the blade the more potential for a severe injury, HOWEVER, your hand and fingers should not be inline with the blade,the work should have been previously surfaced flat and only a straight edge against the fence. Anything else is asking for trouble.
So, it's efficiency vs safety and if safety can be managed by push sticks hold downs, splitters, then I go with efficiency.
The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
Last edited by woodnthings; 04-02-2013 at 02:52 PM.
Reason: added when ripping and when crossscuting