SawStop is a series of table saws that feature a relatively unique safety mechanism.
How SawStop Works
- Sensors in the table saw actively monitor the conductive or capacitive properties of the materials in contact with the blade
- Sensors detect a shift from wood to flesh
- Power to the motor is turned off
- An aluminum brake is applied to the spinning saw blade
- Braking force drops the blade below the surface of the table
- User must purchase a $69 replacement brake cartridge and a new blade
Personally, I have mixed feelings about the SawStop. It does nothing to reduce kickback or potential injuries, and may even promote careless tool use. Take a look at the demo video below. Not only is there no safety guard, the blade height is improperly adjusted!
We’re going to be talking about the SawStop a bit more in coming days. Its inventor, Stephen Gass, has been heavily lobbying for government officials to force all other table saw manufacturers to license the technology for use in their own saws.