October 4, 2023
Working on your projects can be addictive. While we focus on accurate cuts and intricate carving, we may not give proper attention to the rest of our bodies. Every 9 minutes, someone suffers from a table saw injury – resulting in up to 10 amputations every day.
No matter how much we try to be careful, we can still slip up. However conscious we are of where we put our fingers, we risk accidents every time we’re near our saws. Amputations are hardly reversible. Aside from the pain and trauma woodworkers suffer, they also lose income-earning abilities and a range of hobbies.
Table saws with safety stops can protect you. These table saws are equipped with safety systems that monitor the blade’s electrical signals. Skin contact activates the safety system. As a woodworker, you can save yourself from a lot of pain and loss!
Look into the two primary table saw brands we outline below. Safety systems are built-in and will protect you no matter what your woodworking project is at the time.
2 Major Table Saw Brands That Built-in With Safety Stop Features
SawStop comes with many safety features. Their automatic brake design is unique and will protect you! Once skin comes in contact with the blade, it instantly brakes, stops, and retracts. As you recover from the shock, the saw is safely hidden away.
The brake works with a spring. There’s an aluminum block waiting to block the blade, so once the brake activates, it kicked the aluminum springs into action. It simply waits by with a wire. The electric current melts the wire holding the block in place during the braking, sending it into the blade.
While the braking system is being activated, it can damage the blade after a lot of use. You want to keep this in mind. Be conscious of where your fingers are, still! Blades can be expensive to replace.
SAWSTOP 10-Inch Jobsite Saw Pro
No matter how demanding your workload is, the SawStop 10-inch Jobsite Saw Pro keeps up with everything. This model is an upgrade from the last, so you get to enjoy new, exclusive features. You have a deeper table for all your projects, for one. Next, you have a flexible fence, dust collection blade guard, and a large storage capacity. Any accessory you need will be within reach while you’re working! Reach for your riving knife and miter gauge without overthinking anything.
In addition to all its innovative features, you get to enjoy portability. A simple foot pedal can collapse the table for easy transport. Carry it into your home, out on the workshop, or into a construction site. Set it up with the foot pedal, too! Its wheels are large and built for multiple terrains.
2) Bosch’s REAXX Series
Instead of a braking system, Bosch’s REAXX series works with electric charges. Human contact is closely monitored. Once skin comes into contact, the electric charge goes onto the saw blade and alters its course. Well, the latter statement is a euphemism – the blade drops right away! Any injury that might happen is prevented from ever happening.
However, keep in mind that you’ve essentially fired a cartridge. To continue working – hopefully, this time with extra care – you have to reset the entire table saw. You have to wait for a minute. Take a drink of water and stroll around the house! There are two cartridges inside, so rotate the activated cartridge to make way for the inactive one.
Bosch GTS1041A-09 REAXX Flesh-Detecting Jobsite Table Saw
Let’s start with Bosch’s features first. This table saw has:
- a modular blade guard,
- adjustable riving knife,
- a barrier guard, and;
- anti-kickback pawls!
A table saw doesn’t get any more versatile than that. But the highlight of this table saw model is its safety system.
The Active Response Technology platform helps mitigate any severe injury. It will drop the saw blade as soon as it detects human flesh. Due to its speed, you’d have no doubts at all about your safety. Keep in mind that this quick safety system comes with some drawbacks: the 60-second reset, for one. It shouldn’t be much for those who are in no hurry, but some workers may be the impatient type!
The significant difference between the two table saws is the defense mechanism.
With Bosch REAXX, you have two rotating cartridges. Once you come into contact with the blade, the cartridge punches the blade, airbag style. The blade spins down and keeps your fingers safe!
With the SawStop models, you have an aluminum brake. It doesn’t work in the same way, but it still keeps you protected!
Upon user experimentation, both table saws are effective at preventing injuries. However, the SawStop mechanism is the safer option. It left hands with lesser damage compared to the REAXX model.
Essential Considerations Before Using a Safety Stop Table Saw
Almost all models contain a sensor plate running parallel to the blade. It sends signals upon contact, and sometimes, it may react even if it’s not human flesh. Keep an eye out for the sensor plate when you’re working with aluminum veneered plywood, metal, wet lumber, or metal-foil composites. It may cause the system to react!
You don’t have to deal with this sensitivity all the time. An electronics team will analyze the contact with diagnostics and algorithms.
A table saw with a safety stop is a must if you’re going to keep all ten fingers intact. We’re going to go ahead and assume each one of us wants that outcome!
It’s a good investment for all woodworkers. While this hobby can provide workers with a lot, it won’t replace a lost finger. Pick the defense mechanism that suits you best.
We hope we helped out in picking the best table saw with a safety stop. Enjoy working!
Jason is a 40-year-old woodworker, carpenter and author who have been involved in the woodworking and woodcraft industry with 17 years of experience. He is expertise in technical aspects, woodcraft and furniture building projects.