Sheet metal shears are equipped with blades strong enough to cut through steel, and can therefore be extremely dangerous if they are handled improperly. Whether you are using handheld shearing scissors, larger electric shearing machinery, or even a stationary benchtop shearing tool, it is important to be extremely alert and cautious when cutting sheet metal. Below are some shearing safety tips that can help you stay out of the hospital.
When you are handling sharp blades and edges, a tough pair of gloves can be the difference between keeping and losing a few fingers. And even if you don’t make contact with a blade, the sheet metal itself may have sharp edges that can cut you. Normal leather gloves won’t offer enough protection; you will need gloves that can withstand basic punctures and cuts. Kevlar-coated gloves are ideal for this type of shearing work.
This basic, but often-overlooked machinery safety tip is crucial to ensuring workshop safety. Metal shavings, clutter, and other tools can make shearing machines unstable. In the best case scenario, this could cause you to ruin your work; in the worst case scenario, it could cause a serious injury. The clutter could also accidentally get swept into the blades, jamming the shearing machine and possibly damaging it.
An obvious, but nevertheless essential, safety tip for working with sheet metal shears is to only hold the tool by the handles. Never carry shearing machines by the blades or by the power cord.
Make sure to work in an area with a lot of light so that you can oversee your work easily. Even if you’re used to working with sheet metal shears, it’s important to remember to work slowly and carefully. Don’t get so confident that you become careless. Remember that no matter how skilled or experienced you are with shearing machinery, it only takes a fraction of a second to cause a severe injury.
Over time, metal shavings and oil can get caught in your sheet metal shears and wear them down, impacting the tool’s effectiveness. At least once a week, you should make sure the tool is free of debris by wiping the blades with a Kevlar cloth (while wearing Kevlar gloves.)
If you are in the market for a new or used shearing machine in Apex NC, contact Active Machinery. We stock the best brands of new shearing machines in the industry, and our used shearing machines can give you a great performance for a fraction of the cost. Stop on by and see us today!