Diversions – Introducing The Wood Lab

wl_iconFor those who have read previous posts, you can figure out that my field is IT.  I clearly like science and technology.

But we are (or should be!) more than what we do for our occupation.  What do you do as a diversion – your creative outlet?

I used my last post on SawStop as a sort of segue into this post.  One of my diversions as a creative outlet is woodworking.  Now note that I am a very novice woodworker, but I hope to take this this craft to the next level.  It’s nice, after a day or week of working with technology, to work with a natural material such as wood in the hopes of creating something that is funtional and pleasing to the eye at the same time.

So, to document my experiences with woodworking – my learning experiences and shortcomings – I have launched a new blog specifically to my hobby of woodworking:  The Wood Lab.

SawStop: Electrical current = Safety

ss_logoOne usually doesn’t think of standard tools in the shop as high on the list of “techy gadgets” but one tool is using a pretty neat technology to help improve safety.

SawStop has table saws on the market that if any part of the user’s body comes in contact with the blade, the saw instantly stops, and the blade retracts into the body of the saw.

How does it work?  There is a small electrical current that runs through the blade.  Inside there is an electical sensor that if it senses a change in the voltage (by a finger, or in the case of their demo, a hot dog), it triggers the brake which stops the blade.  The momentum of the spinning blade stopping in a fraction of a section pulls it down into the body of the saw.   Pretty cool stuff.  Check out the vids below.

Of course, they are not cheap.  I think last I saw about $1800 for the contractor model, and $3800 for the cabinet model to start.