Thursday, July 13, 2017

Saw- 1; Finger- 0

We interrupt our regular scheduled post flow to bring you this breaking update to the score in the tense battle between man and machine. Saw- 1; Finger- 0.

Earlier this evening I was making progress with cutting down some Ailanthus logs into lumber (you will see a post on that in a couple of weeks). Everything was going fine, I was getting things done, and all the while you THINK you are being careful...

And then BAM!, you've cut halfway through your finger on the band saw!

OK, so I put this "after" picture up first, in case any of you are squeamish. So if you are, you can stop now. And so you don't need to read any further down to get the pertinent details, everything is fine, I didn't lose any part of my anatomy. I got five stitches and everything is expected to heal up fine.

Now, scroll down for the gory details...




.keep going...



a little more...



OK, good.

First, lets have a look at our adversary.

 This is my new Ridgid 14" band saw. I got it on Craigslist for $175 about two months ago. I have been using it to cut up logs, that I have also been finding on Craigslist, into usable lumber pieces (more on that in a future post). I was actually making good progress for once, I got a system down and had cut about four logs before the accident. And like I said, I thought I was being safe, but suddenly I felt the blade break through the wood and an odd friction on my little finger and alarm bells started going off in my head. I wasn't even sure what had gone wrong at first, but instinctively, I pulled back and clutched my hand. That's when I saw the blood. Not a lot. Actually, very little blood. Two drops on the workshop floor is all the mess that it made.
Seriously, that's it.
But there was some blood on my hand and I knew I had been cut. It didn't really hurt at first, thankfully. I was even tempted to just wrap it in electrical tape, like I usually do with small cuts, and call it taken care of, but I squeezed the finger tip a little and saw it open up a lot wider than I was comfortable with. It was way too deep to just leave go. I was going to have to get medical attention. Damn it.

So, I ran the finger under the cold tap in the workshop bathroom for a few seconds, and then I wrapped it in a piece of clean paper towel and some vinyl electrical tape, which is my normal bandaging technique.

Then I closed up the workshop, gathered up my car keys, changed my sweat drenched and sawdust covered shirt (because I figured I would be sitting in a waiting room for a while), called StatCare to see if they did stitches or if I would need to use the ER, and drove myself to StatCare. I avoided calling my mother to let her know about the accident until after it was all over, because I knew she would freak out. 

Ok, so now, time for the gruesome pics. The unwrapped, pre-stitches pics.

That wasn't so terrible, now was it. It certainly could have been a lot worse. I feel very lucky that the cut was so minor (though I'm sure I won't feel quite so lucky when the bill comes in). I could easily have lost the tip of my finger.

So here it is all stitched up, pre-bandage.

I didn't even get any pain meds for this little scrimmage. Though they did do an x-ray to make sure I didn't nick the bone.

OK, so the take away here is, be safe around power tools, kids!
It only takes one second to change your life forever.
 I was very fortunate that this accident was fairly minor.

Now, back to our regular programming.

1 comment:

  1. Argh! Can't look at the pictures.
    Glad it was not worse and I hope it will heal quick!