Sawdust Addict

Why You Should NEVER Stand Behind a Tablesaw

Why You Should NEVER Stand Behind a Tablesaw

You should never stand behind a table saw blade when cutting wood. The reason: “kickback,” the term for when the ultra-fast-spinning blade grabs the wood, lifts it up and throws it back away from the saw.

Woodworker David Picciuto discovered the power of this effect firsthand during a trip to KenCraft woodworking supply store in Toledo, Ohio. A kickback incident there drove a flying board into a wall, where it dented the sheet metal on the other side. The wood remained in the wall as a warning during Picciuto’s visit.

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5 thoughts on “Why You Should NEVER Stand Behind a Tablesaw


    The same can be said of a Radial Arm saw! I split a finger by a kick-back. I thought I was being careful!

  2. Sawdust Addict Post author

    Thanks Thaddeus, appreciate the feedback. We would welcome any other experiences that can help us all to work safely.

  3. Jim Judge

    Have a nice dent in my garage door from kickback. From that point on, I’ve always made sure the blade and the fence are properly aligned, and I stand to the side when cutting.

  4. Sawdust Addict Post author

    This comment came in via email from Michael…

    I’m not trying to cause desention here. I’ve been a commercial cabinet
    maker for my entire life. The difference between woodworkers and full
    time cabinetmakers is that we work 8 hours a day 50 weeks a year as
    most woodworkers are weekend hobbyists. If we didn’t control our work
    on a table saw we would have a lot more kickbacks. How can you control
    your work piece if you stand to the right of your saw and hold it into
    the fence. You cant safely. i’ve seen this type of video over and over
    in showing someone how to use a table saw. I have trained many people
    in my 80 years and the one time an injury happened when the man kept
    wanting to do it the way the shop teacher showed him he lost his
    thumb. plus the fact most woodworkers like the shop teacher do not do
    this for a living. They wouldn’t be able to make a living. Besides a
    woodworker is a person who just likes to work with wood. A cabinet
    maker works with all kinds of medium and uses a table saw many times
    more for both woods and sheet goods and must be aware of all
    possibilities including kickback. If you want to make a living with a
    table saw get behind yor work and be safe. MRoe.

  5. Sawdust Addict Post author

    Bob Farris

    When my shop was in a basement with stone walls, I would intentionally set up a kick back and turn a 1×4 piece of pine into toothpicks to remind someone who was learning to use the saw of where to stand.