Sunday, May 4, 2008

Safely Dealing with Big Cats

It’s safety week on The Woodwhisperer Network.

I covered the vast majority of my safety knowledge last year when I posted about the guy who has to remove a shoe if he wants to count into double digits.

However, I did come up with an important safety thought that I should share:

Differentiate between woodshop tools and toolshed items before someone gets killed and someone ends up in prison. (I know that doesn’t make sense, so I”ll explain.)

It starts with the dog. Our dog Peyton is obsessed with chewing lumber. He’s always grabbing rough sawn cut-offs from the shop and running off to gnaw on them. When he’s out in the back yard, he will jump up and tear the lowest limbs off of the trees. He’s an insane little pruner who leaves jagged limb spurs for any tree appendages he can reach.

Last week my lovely wife Gail decided to clean up some of the trees in the back yard that Peyton had roughed up, so she asked me for a saw. I suppose I should have paid closer attention to her, because Gail is a go getter. After giving me plenty of time to respond to her request for a saw, Gail grabbed one out of my woodshop and went to town on the trees in the backyard. She said that saw sure cut through those branches even though it was not a saw specifically designed for pruning trees. Can you guess what kind of saw she used?

Was it my dovetail saw? No.

Was it my Carcass Saw? No.

Was it my Tenon Saw? No.

Was it a DeWalt Reciprocating Saw? No.

Was it a Coping Saw? No.

Was it a Fret Saw? No.

Gail has style. When the dog jumps up and buggers up the lower limbs of the trees in our back yard, Gail cleans them up with a Panther Saw.

At first I was a little upset, but after hearing her describe how well it cut, I decided to try for myself. Wow…that Panther really does cut!!!!!

My safety advice is to pay attention when a loved one asks to borrow a tool. Gail and I got lucky. The borrowing of the Panther Saw worked out this time, but it could have easily had a disastrous outcome. A kinked blade or a dinged horn would have clearly led to a rumble in the backyard, and only one of us would have walked away.

Gail, you’ve been warned. Touch my Panther Saw again, and I’ll cut you!!!!


JasonB said...

I once found my nearly-new Purdy paintbrush with bristles that were "clean" at the tips; but, all splayed out due to the pint of paint driven up into the hosel and dried like cement. My wife, of course claimed that she had properly cleaned the brush and that I was over-reacting. Before the discussion was over with, she had convinced herself that she had found the brush like that to begin with. Now, all of my nice tools are in locked cabinets in my detached garage and workshop. My wife doesn't have a key. It probably never occured to her to ask for a key, and I'm not going to offer one anytime soon. She also has her own toolbox in the house with "banging", "turning" and "pinching" things. This seems to be working, so far.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

My wife and I have an understanding: the tools in one area of the garage are open season, and can be used for whatever. The others, not so much, unless we want the credit card to come back out, and half of us don't want that.

Not sure if you've heard of them, but they have this newfangled tool now called a lopper. It's the new craze, it's all the rage, everybody's doing it, and it works like a charm. Anyone? Save your blades? Can I get a witness?

But, seriously, here's the one that we have and it cuts like butta. And, since it has a "bypass" action, it avoids any heart problems brought on by excessive sawing or reacting to someone having used your nice tools.

Jeff Skiver said...


Gail is wondering if you know of any loppers with carved Panthers on the handles.... as I said in the post, she is heavily into style.

Anonymous said...

Man, Jeff. That's a tall order. Anyway, I did find a lopper who I understand is now a cougar.

Spencer said...

Ya know, I am reminded of the Golden Retriever I had as a kid. His favorite toy in the world was a length of two by four. And he could reduce it to splinters in less than an hour!