Safety equipment for band saw including a respirator, over-ear hearing protection and eye glasses

Like most woodworking machines, especially those that cut wood, proper safety procedures are important when using the band saw.

Here are some important safety tips:

  • Always use the blade guard and keep your fingers away from the blade by using a push stick or push block when needed.
  • Dress properly — no loose clothes, gloves or uncontrolled long hair. You don't want anything getting tangled in the saw blade.
  • When spending time in the woodshop, it's important to stay safe and act with an eye to the future. Keeping dust from your lungs and protecting your ears from loud machine noise protects you both in the short term and the long term. Protecting your eyes will let you see what you are doing and keep you from harm.
  • Check the blade tension before you start the saw, and clear off objects from the table. Don't start the saw if wood is engaged with the blade, and always unplug the saw when changing saw blades.
  • Do not force a cut. If you need to push extra hard, there is likely something wrong. Turn off the saw and figure out what the problem is. Along with that, don’t do something that you feel is unsafe. Stop and figure out a way to make a safer cut.

Additionally, the band saw is great for cutting tapered rip cuts, although the tapered edge is not as clean as what a table saw would leave. Most band saw tables will tilt for making bevel cuts — whether they are curves or straight edges. The former feat would be impossible on a table saw.