Should You Wear Gloves When Using a Bandsaw?

A woodworker makes precise cuts with a bandsaw

Bandsaws are widely considered to be a safe tool to operate, provided you follow the instructions and operate it with care. Woodworkers are used to using gloves for a variety of tasks, and a common question is whether or not they should use them when operating bandsaws. 

Should You Wear Gloves When Using a Bandsaw?

Although it seems like a good idea to protect your hands, it’s actually more dangerous to wear gloves when using a band saw. The saw blade could grab the glove and pull your hand into the saw.

It is better to keep your work area clean and keep your hands and body at least 10-15 cm away from the blade. If you need to do close work, it’s safer to use a coping saw to make close cuts.

A woodworker makes precise cuts with a bandsaw

Staying Safe with a Band Saw

When it comes to the world of power saws, you'll find that the bandsaw is relatively safe. Accident data provided by the OSHA shows the bandsaw to be responsible for far less accidents than the table saw, which is known to be a much more dangerous power saw. 

However, all power tools present dangers, especially if you don't review the safety procedures for the particular saw. 

Are Band Saws Dangerous?

Band saws are not considered to be dangerous, especially when you take into consideration that they are a power saw.  However, bear in mind that all power tools are dangerous and capable of causing serious injuries.

Band Saw Safety Tips

Here are a few general safety tips for using your bandsaw:

  • Do not wear gloves or loose-fitting clothing. As mentioned, gloves and loose clothing has a higher chance of getting stuck in the blade.
  • Always wear eye protection when you use a band saw or any power tool. Bits of wood or saw blade could fly out and damage your eyesight.
  • Keep your work space clean and free of excessive sawdust. Dust and particles can build up in and around your saw blade and cause the material to slip or bind on the blade.
  • Wait for the motor to hit full speed before you make any cut.
  • Make sure to lay the stock flat on the feed table.
  • If you need to make an angled cut, use a miter gauge or rip fence to help with the cut. This is the safest and most accurate way to make cuts at specific angles.
  • Keep your hands a minimum of three inches clear of the blade at all times.
  • Use a push stick to ease the wood closer if the cut line is closer than three inches.

Proper Safety Equipment for Band Saws

Any loose clothing is dangerous when your operating a band saw. You should also avoid wearing rings, jewelry, watches, and ties when you are running a band saw or any power saw.

You should wear safety goggles or glasses, a dust mask, and hearing protection whenever you are using dangerous power tools, like band saws and circular saws.

Yellow corded drill

Should You Wear Gloves When Using a Drill?

You should not wear gloves when you use power tools with spinning parts, like a powerful drill, router, or drill press. The fabric of the glove could catch and get twisted up into the spinning mechanism and pull your fingers and hand into the drill or router bit, and cause serious injuries.

You should wear eye protection, though. Do not just settle for glasses, as these can shatter when a piece of material hits them. Get a pair that has shatter resistant or tempered glass

Should You Wear Gloves When Using a Circular Saw?

You should never wear gloves when you use a circular saw, the fabric of the glove can get caught in the blades of the saw and pull your hand into the saw blade. Any kind of loose fabric can get caught in the moving parts of a circular saw and cause serious injury.

However, it is a good idea to wear heavy gloves when you are changing the blade on your bandsaw or circular saw. If the machine is not running and you are handling sharp saw blades, then gloves can serve as protection from cuts and scrapes.

Conclusion

Be mindful of the safety considerations for your bandsaw, and make sure you operate according to the best safety practices to avoid injury. Whether operating a power saw or drill, you never want to wear gloves. They can catch in the blade and increase your risk for injury.