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Gloves and machine tools - my stupidity.

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Robin Graham01/01/2021 01:35:29
788 forum posts
199 photos

I've been doing a lot of brass polishing lately. If ever you've tried to get a really shiny scratch-free surface on brass you'll know that it's necessary to be almost obsessively hygienic, even to the point of washing hands between grits. Otherwise you get up to 1200 say, then a speck of 240 which has been lurking beneath a fingernail drops down and makes a scratch which looks like a canyon. It's dispiriting when that happens. So I bought some cotton gloves. Worked well for hand polishing and I still had one on my hand when went to the lathe to polish some 3/16" rod,. I know that you're not meant to wear gloves when machining, but what could go wrong, hand well away from the chuck and I know what I'm doing - not.


Luckily the glove pulled off my hand. It all happened so quickly! Put the wind up me proper. That could have been my hand with stouter stock.

Don't wear gloves when machining folks!


Pete Rimmer01/01/2021 01:43:20
911 forum posts
55 photos

Back in 1998 I was working in a tunnel invert, a guy was moving through a crawl-space with a large hilti drill. The low ceiling meant he was holding the drill - still plugged in - by the handle and the 16mm drill bit as he crawled commando-style. He inadvertantly squeezed the trigger, the drill wound his glove in and dislocated all of his fingers.

peak401/01/2021 02:23:21
1353 forum posts
151 photos

Glad you're OK, but it's good to publicise these things occasionally.

My last manager, before I retired, let it be known that the would formally discipline anyone he caught using power tools WITHOUT gloves; he was after all the H&S lead for our division.

Sometimes I wonder.............sad


Michael Gilligan01/01/2021 05:49:56
17279 forum posts
778 photos

Thanks for sharing the photo, Robin

Good to know that no digits were harmed !


Paul Lousick01/01/2021 05:55:55
1688 forum posts
624 photos

NOT wearing gloves, loose clothing, long hair, etc is one of the first safety warnings in the workshop that I was taught. Loose clothing can easily get caught in mills, lathes, drills, grinders, etc. I'm amazed at how many people post videos and they are wearing gloves.

You were lucky that you only lost a glove and not your hand or arm. It's a good lesson for others.


jimmy b01/01/2021 06:53:34
700 forum posts
41 photos


These are for use with machinery.


David George 101/01/2021 07:38:27
1475 forum posts
463 photos

At a company I worked for we used to make dies for Wadingtons for punching out cards for games. They were hand stoned round the radius corners for perfection and the toolmaker wore a chain mail glove. One person thought that he would wear it whilst drilling some thin plate and whilst drilling tried to flick some swarf from the drill whilst spinning. The glove caught up the drill and spun round de-gloving his index finger and drilling into the back of his hand between two fingers.


John MC01/01/2021 08:06:25
334 forum posts
38 photos

Occasionally I visit various engineering workshops and note that wearing of gloves is quite commonplace. As far as I can tell an appropriate glove is selected for the task.

In my own workshop I wear latex gloves for most tasks. Some 30 years ago my skin started to react against oil, so a necessity. It took some getting used to but now its become second nature. I wear heavy leather gloves for welding and even heavier leather gloves when polishing on the buffing machine.

The bonus of wearing the appropriate glove is that (really) dirty hands is a thing of the past. No need to use aggressive hand cleaners that may have been a contributed to my skin problems.


Howard Lewis01/01/2021 09:10:41
4397 forum posts
4 photos

As an Apprentice, we were forbidden to wear rings. The instruction was reinforced by pictures of someone who had slipped down a ladder whilst wearing gloves, and lost a finger.

We all need to be careful. Even a 350 watt pistol drill could try to take charge, I found, so no hope against a geared down 1.5 hp 3 phase motor on a lathe or mill..

Have a Happy and Safe Year


jimmy b01/01/2021 09:27:55
700 forum posts
41 photos

I've had to wear nitrile gloves at work and at home for 25 years, after I got dermatitis. It took 5 months to clear up and has left me with hypersensitivity to oils!

I will say its nice to have clean hands!


Tony Pratt 101/01/2021 09:46:42
1403 forum posts
6 photos

I personally knew a man who lost a digit when he jumped off some metal cages & left his finger plus wedding ring behind, since retiring I wear my ring all the time but take it off in the workshop. As an apprentice we were treated to pictures of fingers complete with tenons which had been ripped off by gloves catching in rotating machinery, think on boys & girls.frown


Steve Neighbour01/01/2021 09:52:17
82 forum posts
1 photos

Ditto . . Wearing gloves with anything that goes 'round & round' is a a big no no.

Since my engineering apprenticeship I have always used a barrier cream before and a good hand cleaner such as Swafega after, then a spot of good hand conditioner cream after.

Ady101/01/2021 10:52:01
4220 forum posts
591 photos

Can't really do without them once it's below 5 degrees but if you need to touch anywhere close to a whirly bit you need to take them off

A lot of accidents seem to happen around drilling machine chucks because people try to take short cuts

Sam Longley 101/01/2021 10:52:57
832 forum posts
30 photos

There was a TV  film about some Japanese students versus some elderly engineers in a competition to design & build a spinning top. The idea was to see who could make one spin for the longest period. The older men won.

An interesting point I noticed was that during the complete turning and manufacture, the engineers wore very clean white gloves.

Edited By Sam Longley 1 on 01/01/2021 11:02:41

ega01/01/2021 11:00:28
1979 forum posts
165 photos

The Honda F1 mechanics used to wear white gloves.

Emgee01/01/2021 11:04:05
1909 forum posts
243 photos

I admit to wearing leather palmed gloves when using my cnc mill if there are any tool changes to be done, handling sharp milling cutters is not pleasant without protection. There is almost no chance of the spindle starting when the program is in a toolchange line and additional safety is provided by the chip guard limit switch halting the program with the door open.


Ady101/01/2021 11:07:54
4220 forum posts
591 photos
Posted by ega on 01/01/2021 11:00:28:

The Honda F1 mechanics used to wear white gloves.

It's a kind of tradition thing in Japan. Even taxi drivers sometimes wear them.

Edited By Ady1 on 01/01/2021 11:11:11

martin perman01/01/2021 11:39:01
1936 forum posts
81 photos

In my last job before retirement I used to spend a lot of time on building sites installing industrial washing machines, we installed the machines and the builders constructed the buildings around them, if you were caught without gloves on you had a formal warning, if you were caught doing it again your company was requested you were removed from site, you try wiring up control panels with gloves on its bordering on impossible.

Martin P

Thomas Cooksley01/01/2021 11:48:51
50 forum posts

Hi everyone,

Robin I am so glad it was only your glove that got mangled and not your hand. I only takes a moment's inattention for an accident to happen and we have all been gulty of that at sometime. Tom.

Bill Phinn01/01/2021 14:21:02
438 forum posts
73 photos

Glad you're OK, Robin.

Sad to see that the Health and Safety "experts" themselves still don't understand the dangers of wearing gloves near rotating machinery.

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