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Using my head

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I always thought my first shop accident requiring medical attention would involve the business end of a power tool. Six stitches and one splitting (literally) headache later, I realize I was wrong.

If I had been using my head, it may not have happened. Ironically, it ended up that I did use my head after the fact with unfortunate results.

As part of my shop redo, I just completed a new outfeed/assembly table for my table saw. Made of solid poplar with a ¾” white laminate top also trimmed in poplar, it turned out pretty nice. At the moment the table is at “completed stage one - an open table. Down the road when I have more time, stage two will involve enclosing the lower portion and adding storage. I completed it Monday night, and my first order of business the next day was to rout a miter-slot extension into the top. I had the table marked for the slot and, kneeling on the floor to get a better look, was lining up the router (with the cord unplugged and still wrapped around it) on the table edge so I could clamp on a guide. Right about the time I had the guide positioned, I lost my grip on the router and it tumbled off the edge, the motor housing catching me squarely in the forehead.

I was sitting on the floor cradling my head, watching stars and tweety little birds circling in my vision, when I noticed my face and hands were sticky. Looking down, I could see that I was now wearing a red shirt. I thought I'd just been knocked for a loop, and hadn't realized I'd been cut till that very moment. Checking it out in the bathroom mirror, it was clear at first glance I needed to go to the emergency room.

On the down side my head still hurts, I got yet another blood stain on a project, lost most of a day of work, and I feel like an idiot. On the plus end of the equation there was no serious lasting damage to me or the project, I've learned a valuable lesson, and if I ever want to wear a Harry Potter costume the resulting scar is in just about the right spot on my forehead.

Till next time,


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