I am clearly not the sharpest knife in the drawer, as a belated lesson today confirmed. I have long used the table saw to make bigger pieces of brass and aluminum into smaller pieces for specific projects.
I needed to make some small square pieces of brass from the bar stock inventory I keep on hand. In years past, and I mean many years, I would shroud myself in all kinds of protective gear from the waist up to diminish the discomfort of being blasted with tiny needle-like chips of metal being hurled my way at high speed. Heavy apron, work jacket, leather gloves, full face mask, the whole works.
Suddenly in a flash of inspiration I arrived at the same point probably all of you discovered eons ago.
How about sawing the brass using a completely different set-up, with a sacrificial scrap on top of the work piece, and the saw blade teeth raised enough to cut the brass on the table but not so much as to cut through the waste scrap?
I gave it a try. Perfect. No shrapnel. Zero.
That sound you heard around 4 o’clock was me smacking my forehead and berating myself in most graphic terms for being so obtuse all these years.
Of course part of the blame was y’all’s since none of you told me this before.