TA, its not really whether you’re a production shop or not, I’m simply saying there are tasks where you either cannot use a guard, or a guard become an impediment to passing the wood through the cut. That’s why I don’t use them. If I’m dragging a guard out only for rio cuts wider than 2” that kind of limits them, what am I missing?I was the one who asked about why it is rare to see blade guards used on table saws, especially seasoned people and pros (and on PBS and YouTube).
One difference is that as an unpaid amateur woodworker, I can trade time for safety. The seasoned pros have to make a living, so they must find a reasonable balance where cost considerations come into play.
Proper use of push blocks and feather boards, and having a splitter are key. Honestly the rest is experience, just like driving a car, you learn to anticipate situations. Kickbacks are an often overlooked danger, No, it’s not losing a finger, but a bad kickback can be pretty awful. I’ve only ever had two in my life and they were both b/c of my stupidity. I’ve also had a couple loose knots fly by my head.
So the question becomes if its not on every time you pass a board over a blade….isn’t that kind of like of like wearing a seatbelt only part of time? Grooving boards and making dado cuts without a push block is just plan dumb IMO you make a mistake where the blade is going to emerge and it the ER.
To be clear, I’m not advocating not using a guard. I’m actually much more cognizant of where my hands are without a guard. Seeing that spinning blade is saying to me “danger Will Robinson”. And having A SawStop is the ultimate anyway.
My personal opinion is every table saw ought to come with a lock, and the buyer gets the key after taking and passing a safety course.