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Face shield

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This came up at a recent club meeting. One guy was insisting that wearing a face shield on very large turnings was not only ineffective but actually detrimental. Pretty much that if a chunk of wood came flying off and hit the face shield, the face shield would crack and the sharp edges cause more damage than the wood would have. He said that standing out of the line of fire was the best (and only) defense. He also said that a famous pro turner made this same point at the Symposium in Raleigh.

Now I am aware that most face shields do not fully protect you from a large chunk of wood. Lynne Yamaguchi's article in Am. Woodturner thoroughly discusses this. But I still was under the belief that even if it breaks, the face shield would be absorbing at least some of the impact energy. Plus I believe a face shield would be effective against glancing blows from larger chunks, and direct hits from smaller chunks.
I also know that the AAW requires all demonstrators to wear face shields.

What I really want to know is the best reasoning to use when arguing for or against the use of a face shield. 1. What is known based on physics and/or experiments and/or direct experience rather than just opinion. 2. Is the pro turner's opinion just an opinion or is it based on some experience. 3. Are there any statistics relevant to this?
 
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Michael Nathal, here's the direct experience.
My brothers face shield; bent, bloodied, scuffed, scratched and soon to be replaced. But not shattered, broken or even cracked. Unlike his nose, which was broken in two places. If the face shield hadn't deflected and absorbed most of the energy it would have been much worse.
I sent his a link to this forum, hopefully he'll provide a more personal account.

Bill Blasic, sometimes even when wearing a face shield, you get to have your head examined!
 

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Well I don’t know how it is detrimental. I won’t turn without it. You can say line of fire, but in reality the piece can go anywhere. I do try and stand out of the line of fire but, there are too many small pieces coming off that I don’t want hitting my face. I switched to the Sellstrom clear max as I can easily wear ear protection and a respirator under it and unlike others it doesn’t have the black rim obstructing my view.
 
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Sorry standing out of the line of fire doesn't always work, and my face shield has protected my face enough to know the value in wearing one. Anyone concerned over a large impacts might want to consider getting a riot face shield since these are rated for impact. Also, a thick leather apron (like those used for welding) can help protect your chest more than a thin shirt.
 
Joined
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I've seen some version of this argument made about a lot of things such as steel toe boots and even seat belts. Usually someone cooks up a perfect storm of events where the safety equipment made something worse and then the argument is applied to every everyday situation. Truth is 99.9% of the time you're better off with the safety gear. Being a new turner that still gets some catches it doesn't take me very long to remember why I wear a face shield.
 
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I will admit that I often did not wear a face mask for "smaller" or "safe" turnings...and I was lucky and never got hit.
I recently got a JSP Powercap ventilated mask. It is light weight and comfortable and does not fog up. I am wearing EVERY TIME I turn.

recently my son' boss got me a load of black walnut from his neighbor.
the day after thanksgiving my son and I went into the shop to make his boss a gift.

I put on the mask...and had my son put on a regular mask and said "you never know what is going to fly off a natural edge bowl"
Standing "out of the line of fire", I pulled the start button on my lathe and BAM...a big chuck of bark right to the forehead.

I will be wearing that mask EVERY TIME approach the lathe
 

Roger Wiegand

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You want to be sure you're using a face shield rated for high impact there are two basic types sold in the US now:
  • Mark Z87: Basic impact: Faceshields shall be capable of resisting impact from a 25.4 mm (1 in) diameter steel ball dropped from a height of 127 cm (50 in).
  • Mark Z87+: High impact: Faceshields shall be capable of resisting impact from a 6.35 mm (0.25 in) diameter steel ball traveling at a velocity of 91.4 m/s (300 ft/s).
    • ref. ANSI Z87.1
Look for the Z87+ designation. In addition, face shields are meant to be used in conjunction with safety glasses, not as standalone protection.

Having an injury that is made worse by a face shield could, conceivably, happen I suppose, but I'll bet dollars to doughnuts that it's on the order of one in 10 million impacts. About like the probability of sustaining worse damage from your parachute than from the fall without one.
 

john lucas

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Yea I agree. You never really know where a piece will fly when it comes off. Only in theory will it follow the line of fire. Once it hits something else, the tool rest, banjo, dust collector or anything else then it a guess as to where it will go. I also agree with Grant in that there is the small probablity the face shield will do some harm to your face if hit. However I cannot even remotely believe that it would be more damage than if the wood hit you without the face shield.
 

hockenbery

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I wear a face shield and stand out of the line of Fire as much as I can.

A face shield does not make you invincible. If you take a blow to the head from a heavy object moving at some speed you get a concussion. Any forces absorbed by the face shield will lesson the severity of the concussion. While you can get killed wearing a face shield you will also survive some blows that would be fatal without the face shield.

More common are ER trips from not wearing a face shield.
I witnessed a skilled turner get hit in the face with a small piece of wood 3x3x5.
The tailstock was not properly locked on a mini lathe. the piece being turned between centers came loose as the tailstock moved hit the tool rest and ricocheted into the turners face.
A trip to the ER- 12 stitches- teeth wired in - place black eyes.

had he been wearing a face shield he would have shook his head and laughed about not locking the tailstock.
 
Joined
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"Having an injury that is made worse by a face shield could, conceivably, happen I suppose, but I'll bet dollars to doughnuts that it's on the order of one in 10 million impacts. About like the probability of sustaining worse damage from your parachute than from the fall without one."

Have you checked the price of donuts lately? At best you are not giving long odds.
 
Joined
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I had a piece of wood fly off the lathe and, of the 180 degrees to travel, it bounced off the wall and hit my arm...right where I was standing out of the line of fire. Wouldn't think of turning without the face shield. I have heard of some turners who wear an umpire's chest protector.
 
Joined
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To be honest, my face shield has a lot of dust on it. Mainly because I've only been turning pens lately. But the last time it was worn, I was turning a bowl. I'd rather take the chance of a big piece of wood going thru my face shield to get to me than it having a straight shot to my face. Faceshields are like hardhats also, they are also designed to deflect.
 
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Once you take a good shot to the body or face, the light bulb turns on and the Safety PPE seems like a really good idea. Safety glasses can fog over whereas a face shield usually does not create that problem. You only have two eyes and one brain good idea to take care of those assets.
 
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I used to ride motorcycles. I was in the ATGATT group-- All The Gear All The Time. The OP's opening argument sounds familiar. I once had a friend who was seriously and permanently injured at an intersection while not wearing a helmet. Somehow others said that "Yeah, but his neck would have broken and he would have died if he'd a helmet on". Really?
 
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I used to ride motorcycles. I was in the ATGATT group-- All The Gear All The Time. The OP's opening argument sounds familiar. I once had a friend who was seriously and permanently injured at an intersection while not wearing a helmet. Somehow others said that "Yeah, but his neck would have broken and he would have died if he'd a helmet on". Really?
I still ride my Harleys. I don't wear a helmet. Back in 1978, Me and a friend were on a motorcycle. It was night and some horses were loose. The horses jumped over us on the bike and kicked both of us off the bike. She was wearing a helmet and I was not. I was told that if I had been wearing one, my neck would have been broken too. Not all scenarios are the same!
 
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More common are ER trips from not wearing a face shield.

I believe the above statement is true. But it would be so much more powerful if it was replaced by something like: " The AAW has records of over 2500 accidents at the lathe, spanning 20 years. Of these accidents, 475 involved projectiles hitting a person in the face or head. In 315 of these accidents, the turner was wearing a face shield. Only 15% of these accidents resulted in a trip to the ER. In 312 of these accidents, the turner stated that the damage was less than if no face shield was worn. Of the remaining 160 accidents (where no face shield was worn), over 50 % resulted in a trip to the ER."

I doubt we have such records but I suggest we (AAW) start such a database by surveying members.
 
Joined
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I wear a face shield while turning, and its protected my mug numerous times. I also wear a full face helmet, and armor, anytime I ride. I have had 2 impacts with deer that resulted in over an 1/8” of the front of the helmet being ground down by the pavement, instead of my face, not to mention all of the other impact zones on the helmets. I may not be pretty but its still original.
 
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You can see my personal woodturning explosion in the AAW Journal Vol 15.3:36-37

And Then Dave Lancaster's in Vol16.1:28-29

I came out of it fine, Dave went to the ER.
 
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I heard about an experienced turner getting killed who many suspect wasn't wearing a face shield at the time (possibly wearing safety glasses). Seriously doubt many turners, if any, were killed from an head impact while wearing a normal face shield. Does AAW keep a listing of serious woodturning injuries so people can possibly learn from those mishaps (like NTSB provides for all airplane accidents)?

For what it's worth, a demonstrator (might have been John K Jordan) at our club showed a Riot Helmet that he uses when there any possibility of head injury. EBay might be a good source to find one of these at a decent price.
 
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I am pretty sure the response from AAW office will go something like this:
1. Funding is a problem
2. There is no requirement to report such accidents and so how would that info be gathered
3. Statistical evidence shows usage of safety materials to be beneficial ( stats from other industries)
or at least something like that. But yes It would be nice to see that. And then add in improper clothing, Unrestrained hair , No sturdy footwear and maybe a half dozen other factors.
 
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Ultimately every turner needs to make this decision on his own. Looking at the available evidence is one thing, using common sense is another; both seem to indicate there’s good reason for putting it on.
In the real world expedience always wins. Its why insurance rates seldom if ever go down. There’s always a few idiots for whom the best advice never applies. If you doubt, spend a little time on YouTube...
 
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<There’s always a few idiots for whom the best advice never applies. If you doubt, spend a little time on YouTube...>

Note the Darwin Awards, usually given after the person removes him/herself from the gene pool by doing something really really stupid.

I recently had a 7" dia log come out and bounce around and the hit a glancing blow to my face shield. I remounted the log and made a nice bowl as I did not get hurt.

We could do a small sample on line here to report accidents and saves but those who are injured may not be able or want to report the accident and conditions prior to the incident.

Stu
 

Roger Wiegand

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I got klonked by a good size chunk of tree one time and was happy to have had my old Airmate with the hard hat on. It was an exciting non-event as the log bounced off the hard hat. But for every memorable incident like that there have been hundreds where smaller chunks have bounced harmlessly off my face shield, any one of which might have gotten under my safety glasses and cost me a serious eye injury.

It seems clear that additional data will not change the behavior of those who choose to believe that either they will not be harmed by either flying objects or impact with the highway or that it won't happen to them. In my decades of having ultimate responsibility for lab safety I never discovered a cure for this kind of magical thinking, even among allegedly data-driven scientists.

Those who would contribute to and read a log of accidents and near-misses are probably already using PPE.
 
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What Rodger just said about people is true. But where this gets to be a problem for the community at large is when contrary "advice" is given at demonstrations.

AAW has a policy that turners should wear face protection. It doesn't really do a service to the organization or it's members for a name brand turner to tell an audience that the policy is bunk. I am not denying someone's free speech, but with that right comes responsibility. It is an unfortunate fact that few people understand that
Not everything said from behind the podium or the lathe should be taken as "the one truth".

As to the original question, perhaps OSHA would have some specific data.
 
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...I switched to the Sellstrom clear max as I can easily wear ear protection and a respirator under it and unlike others it doesn’t have the black rim obstructing my view.

William, does the Sellstrom face shield work with the over the ear hearing protection like the 3M/Peltor earmuffs? I've been convinced through personal experience of the value of wearing a face shield. I use the UVEX Bionic model all the time. But it doesn't work well with earmuffs...the earmuffs interfere with putting the shield all the way down (the side rim of the faceshield hits the earmuffs.)

Is this the model you use (Sellstron Maxlight S38410)? https://www.amazon.com/Sellstrom-S3...I4TG/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_product_top?ie=UTF8&th=1

Thanks,
Dave
 
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Like having seat belts in a car and not using them. Firm believer in seat belts- AMHIK. Wouldn't think of turning on the lathe without ear plugs, face shield and turning smock (to keep the chips out of my pockets plus it makes me look professional).
 
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For what it's worth, a demonstrator (might have been John K Jordan) at our club showed a Riot Helmet that he uses when there any possibility of head injury.

I went through a series of possible face protection equipment.....the riot shield being one of them. I adapted the shield to a regular faceshield headgear. I don't use it much, but do very occasionally. It's heavy as hell......is my best comment about it! For that reason, I resist using it. It does offer great protection, though:
IMG_1078.JPG
I also have a modified ladies softball fielder's mask that I use more often.......I brazed some extra cross bars to increase the protection it offers. Now, this is an option I do use once in awhile. The faceshield fits nicely over it.
IMG_0627.JPG
The dumbest thing I ever tried was a hockey helmet......I think I ended up getting mad at it, and throwing it in the trash many years ago!
IMG_0408.JPG
99% of the time, I just use my regular faceshield, and (mostly) stay out of the line of fire. There is some element of risk......just like most things in life. If you do everything possible to reduce the risk, you'll end up overdoing it......and frustrated! There has to be some middle ground between overdoing it, and being a complete idiot! :rolleyes:

-----odie-----
 

Timothy Allen

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My regular faceshield has a tendency to fog up (or maybe I should say, I have a tendency to fog up my faceshield), so more and more I am wearing my chainsaw helmet with wire-mesh face screen and ear muffs....

As to accident reporting and analysis, the mountaineering community might be an example to look at. A regular column in the journals of clubs like the Appalachian Mountain Club, or the American Alpine Club, is reports of recent accidents with analysis and "lessons to be learned." From what I gather, it takes a dedicated editor to compile these.
 
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William, does the Sellstrom face shield work with the over the ear hearing protection like the 3M/Peltor earmuffs? I've been convinced through personal experience of the value of wearing a face shield. I use the UVEX Bionic model all the time. But it doesn't work well with earmuffs...the earmuffs interfere with putting the shield all the way down (the side rim of the faceshield hits the earmuffs.)

Is this the model you use (Sellstron Maxlight S38410)? https://www.amazon.com/Sellstrom-S3...I4TG/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_product_top?ie=UTF8&th=1

Thanks,
Dave

That is the face shield I use. I have the Honeywell behind the ear ear muffs and works great. I like this one as it has chin protection and great visibility.
 
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I went through a series of possible face protection equipment.....the riot shield being one of them. I adapted the shield to a regular faceshield headgear. I don't use it much, but do very occasionally. It's heavy as hell......is my best comment about it! For that reason, I resist using it. It does offer great protection, though:
View attachment 31249
I also have a modified ladies softball fielder's mask that I use more often.......I brazed some extra cross bars to increase the protection it offers. Now, this is an option I do use once in awhile. The faceshield fits nicely over it.
View attachment 31248
The dumbest thing I ever tried was a hockey helmet......I think I ended up getting mad at it, and throwing it in the trash many years ago!
View attachment 31247
99% of the time, I just use my regular faceshield, and (mostly) stay out of the line of fire. There is some element of risk......just like most things in life. If you do everything possible to reduce the risk, you'll end up overdoing it......and frustrated! There has to be some middle ground between overdoing it, and being a complete idiot! :rolleyes:

-----odie-----

What was your frustration with the hockey helmet? I see you have the wiremesh guard on the helmet in your photo... would a face shield which had the clear visor type shield have made a difference? It certainly made my hockey helmet much more useful.

R
 
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What was your frustration with the hockey helmet? I see you have the wiremesh guard on the helmet in your photo... would a face shield which had the clear visor type shield have made a difference? It certainly made my hockey helmet much more useful.

R

Hello Ronald......:D

It's possible that a clear shield might have made a difference. As I recall, there were problems with fit, and allowing clearance around the Resp-o-rator......besides, the wire guard was no barrier to dust and flying shavings. :eek:

-----odie-----
 

Emiliano Achaval

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I went through a series of possible face protection equipment.....the riot shield being one of them. I adapted the shield to a regular faceshield headgear. I don't use it much, but do very occasionally. It's heavy as hell......is my best comment about it! For that reason, I resist using it. It does offer great protection, though:
View attachment 31249
I also have a modified ladies softball fielder's mask that I use more often.......I brazed some extra cross bars to increase the protection it offers. Now, this is an option I do use once in awhile. The faceshield fits nicely over it.
View attachment 31248
The dumbest thing I ever tried was a hockey helmet......I think I ended up getting mad at it, and throwing it in the trash many years ago!
View attachment 31247
99% of the time, I just use my regular faceshield, and (mostly) stay out of the line of fire. There is some element of risk......just like most things in life. If you do everything possible to reduce the risk, you'll end up overdoing it......and frustrated! There has to be some middle ground between overdoing it, and being a complete idiot! :rolleyes:

-----odie-----
I actually like the hockey helmet idea...
 
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I actually like the hockey helmet idea...

Turns out, the lady's softball fielder's face guard was the best option for me, although the ice hockey helmet does offer some great protection. I can see how it might be a pretty good option for a few other turners.

If you go this route, Emiliano, take Ron's advice, and get one with a clear shield for the reasons I mentioned above. If you have a "Play it Again Sports" store there in Hawaii, you might be able to find one cheap......but, I wouldn't imagine ice hockey is all that popular there.....:rolleyes:

-----odie-----
 
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I have a hockey mask but the problem is that the clear shield does not cover the mouth area so you get lots of chips in that area. When I affixed a plastic to cover that area the shape of the helmet lent itself to fogging. It now hangs on the wall with the riot helmet with the 1/4" thick Lexan polycarbonate mask (too heavy).
 
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