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Safety Tip: Knowing When to Quit

My tip is not so much about safety as about knowing when to quit. It's a carryover from my younger days when I was a skier. The old adage was that you always get hurt on the last run of the day. (Given that you can get hurt on any run and that will be your last run.)

When I first got seriously interested in woodworking, I did the smart thing, for me, and enrolled in instructional classes. I went to these classes after a full work day. As I progressed, I observed that most of my mistakes were occurring in the last hour (of four) of class. I decided that there were other things that I could do in that last hour that would avoid costly, or dumb mistakes. I would sand pieces, dry assemble parts, clean up my work space, go over my design, or plan of procedure to refine my process. I would absolutely not cut any parts to design dimensions in that last hour. The frequency of my mistakes took a big drop.

I apply the basic principle of quitting while you're ahead even now when working at home.

Ralph Lombardo

Do you have a safety tip you always keep in mind when you are in the shop?
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