||September 30, 2011
This week's column: #776
| April 26, 2013 #775
| April 5, 2013 #774
| March 28,2013 #773
| March 9, 2013 #772
| February 22, 2013 #771
| February 8, 2013 #770
| January 25, 2013 #769
| January 11, 2013 #768
| December 21, 2012 #767
| December 7, 2012 #766
| November 23, 2012 #765
| November 9, 2012 #764
| October 26, 2012 #762
| October 12, 2012 #761
| September 28, 2012 #760
| September 13, 2012 #759
| August 31, 2012 #758
| August 10, 2012 #757
| July 20, 2012 #756
| July 6, 2012 #755
| June 22, 2012 #754
| June 8, 2012 #753
| May 25, 2012 #752
| May 11, 2012 #751
| April 28, 2012 #750
| April 14, 2012 #749
| March 30, 2012 #748
| March 16, 2012 #747
| March 2, 2012 #746
| February 17, 2012 #745
| February 3, 2012 #744
| January 20, 2012 #743
| January 6, 2012 #742
| December 23, 2011 #741
| December 9, 2011 #740
| November 25, 2011 #739
| November 11, 2011 #738
| October 28, 2011 #737
| October 14, 2011 #736
| September 30, 2011 #735
| September 16, 2011 #734
| August 12, 2011 #733
| July 29, 2011 #732
| July 15, 2011 #731
| July 1, 2011 #730
| June 17, 2011 #729
| June 3, 2011 #728
| May 20, 2011 #727
Well, it seems that
somebody has built a better mousetrap! There is it seems, competition to the
controversial SawStop. David Butler has invented a new table saw safety blade
guard that will stop the rotating saw blade in an ⅛th of a second without damaging the saw blade. Now, ⅛th of a second will certainly draw blood
and probably hurt like hell but I don’t think it will amputate a finger. Butler’s
invention doesn’t allow your fingers, hands or any other part of your body to get
even close to the spinning blade.
Butler calls his
invention the Whirlwind and like I
said above, it will not damage the saw blade when triggered. There are no cartridges to replace either. In fact, once activated you simply press a
reset button and continue your work.
The Whirlwind is not
a new saw, it is a blade guard that is adaptable to several brand name table
saws like Delta, Ridgid, Powermatic and more. The Whirlwind uses flesh sensing
technology as does Saw Stop. But, this is an aftermarket device that is
adaptable. The Whirlwind is a blade guard that raises and lowers with the saw
blade and activates when your hand or finger gets too close to the spinning
blade. Unlike the SawStop, blade contact is not required to set it off. The
blade guard is lit with I imagine, LED lights for visibility. There is also a
dust port in it to keep it clean.
In one of the product
videos on the Whirlwind web site David Butler throws down the gauntlet and,
using a 14” band saw (yes there is a prototype model for a band saw and even a
scroll saw) Butler approaches the blade with a hot dog. Bang! The saw blade
stops but, no damage to the dog, not even a scratch.
We have mentioned
many times here that the SawStop is only available on high priced table saws
and if available, would make the entry level bench-top table saws unavailable.
Whirlwind seems to have a model available for a Makita bench-top saw.
The cost of adding
the Whirlwind to your table, band or scroll saw is not discussed on their web
site but I’m sure that it will be competitive.
models are not yet available and are pending patent approval. David Butler and
his associates are waiting patiently while the US patent office scrutinizes
their applications. Stay tuned.
Power tool makers
don’t seem to be too content just making tools with power, they want to
diversify. Diversification is not a bad thing however especially when you take
a look at their lineup.
With the takeover of
Black & Decker and its subsidiary brands by Stanley, the king of hand
tools, it makes sense to brand hand tools with the DeWalt label.
likes the diversification idea as well so they have also jumped on the
bandwagon with their new hand tool lineup too.
We have not tested
any of the new tools as yet but I can assure you that any of the hand tools
with either of these labels will be top quality.
OUR SOMETIMES REGULAR
This week we have a
pair of books to review that will satisfy two very different forms of
woodworking, routing and carving. The router book has just about all you need
to know about routers and routing and for the carvers, carving a face is made
simple by the master of carving, Harold Enlow.
and Router Tables
you are new to woodworking you will want this book. If you are an experienced
woodworker you will want this book. If you are about to buy a new router you
will want this book.
this writer’s opinion there is only one expert at using the router and that is
Patrick Spielman and sadly Patrick is no longer with us. This book is the next
best thing. There are many woodworkers involved with the publishing of this
book and American Woodworker/Fox Chapel has chosen the best.
book starts with the basics like choosing a router like fixed or plunge base
tools and covers trim routers as well. This section looks into router lifts and
tables. Further on into the book you will find great plans and ideas for
building your own router table along with a router lift. Router bit storage is nicely
covered as is the proper selection of bits for plunge work. Raised panel work
is covered as is template routing. There are excellent tips to be found on page
130 and you will want to read about joining wood with the router on page 172.
book will be a constant reference for you in your woodshop!
Harold Enlow is a renowned wood carver and if he can’t teach you how to carve
wood, nobody can. Enlow has over a dozen books to his credit and has taught
carving for several decades. In this book he breaks down the anatomy of a face.
He shows you how to carve in various expressions just by tweaking the eyebrows.
The author shows you how to carve faces with life and expression like no other.
Everything from an Indian chief to a cowboy, Santa to a witch and a charming
female to a wood spirit, even an ‘ugly’ face is included.
this be your first attempt at facial carving the author will show just you how
easy it can be.
Brush Cutters have been recalled by Health Canada and the Consumer Product
Safety Council in the US due to a possible fire hazard. To see which models are
affected click here for the CPSC web site and the details of this recall.
Making Tools Work
We as woodworkers
sometimes forget that a cordless drill, impact driver, circular saw, and other
corded or cordless power tools need high quality bits, blades and sockets to
work efficiently. And that is why DeWalt produces an excellent range of these accessories.
released some new accessories such as the pictured ‘Impact Ready’ Screwdriver
Bits and hardened steel Sockets. What makes these accessories stand out are the
stubby (1”) double ended screw bits and a unique pivoting screw bit holder.
There are 38 pieces in all in this DW2169C kit. There is an ample
supply of the most common Robertson (square) drive bits and I can tell you here
and now, they will strip the screw head before the screw bit shows any wear.
Cut & Smooth
Also from DeWalt is a
series of accessories that will cut everything from steel to concrete and make
those cut ends shiny smooth. You will find diamond blades up to 14” in diameter
and buffing wheels and flap sanders as well. All accessories!
you enjoy the ShortCuts column, may we suggest that you subscribe to it?
This way you will be notified when our column is up. The subscription is
completely free and our mailing list is kept to ourselves. Nobody even gets a
To subscribe simply E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and
write “Subscribe” in the subject box. It’s that easy