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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-11-2008, 06:08 AM Thread Starter
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Default Left Hand Tools

We've all heard those statistics about left handed people being more accident-prone and that they die earlier. I'm not sure if this is true of course but I wonder if lefties in the workshop has something to do with this statistics. More importantly with power tools designed for right handed people.

This may sound like a silly question and I don't mean to be paranoid but for lefties out there, is it dumb to be wary of your left handed friend using a right handed tool in the workshop?

I have no experience with these but any advice from anyone with of course is always welcome.
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-11-2008, 08:34 AM
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Hi Froix,

To be honest, I would be more wary of right handed people. Left handed people have to be more versatile than most right-handed people due to the fact that the world is naturally created for ease of use for right-handers.

That versatility and adaptability also allows for more out of the box type thinking for lefties. How do I know?

I'm one of those lefties and I'm definitely not accident prone, I'm also very athletic (though 58 yrs old) and can use right handed tools just as easily as anyone (unless of course they have more years of using that tool).

BTW, I know plenty of right-handers that will die early due to their accident-proneness....I think it has to do with the person, not the hand they most often use.

Hope that helps answer your question.

I don't mean to be paranoid but for lefties out there, is it dumb to be wary of your left handed friend using a right handed tool in the workshop?
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-11-2008, 09:13 AM
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Just my 2 cents

I love to work with lefties , I dig the way they can use a hammer/hand drills and write upside down and back-words

They say they use the right side and the left side of the brain more than right handed people,,,and are a bit sharper than the right hand people are...and I will agree on that...

It's true many tools are setup for the right handed people that's because there are more right handed people or to say there are more dumb people than smart in this world..like they say half of americans have the piles and the rest are just perfect... God must like dump people because he made so many of them..
If you look at most drill press equipment they are setup for the right handed and band saws as well not to say anything about router tables...

And yes I'm one of the right handed ones.. ,


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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-11-2008, 10:44 AM
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I think it goes beyond just left and right handedness. Since people come in so many shapes and sizes I think that whoever is using tools should seek out what fits them best, not just what is top rate in the magazines. What good is a high torque long life cordless drill if you can't get your hand around it? Or if you can't reach the power switch on your router without taking your hands off of it?

(We had an 1/4" reversable air drill at work that was actually too small for some of the guys to comfortably use, so it goes both ways.)

I know some manufacturers used to make left handed circular saws (I think PC still does) but it may cost a little more.

Lefty, righty, or both, find what fits you, and work deliberatly and safely.

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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-11-2008, 04:34 PM
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Hi All,

When I took a year long drafting course all the equipment was set up for right-handed. No problem, I was at the top of my class in spite of my 'handicap'.

I actually was drafting right-handed though I'm left-handed.

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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-27-2008, 07:08 AM
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STrarting life as a lefty, I gradually graduated to ambidexterity, as a result of coping in a right-handed world. As mentioned by karateed, this "lefty" has adapted and become quite versatile. Mind you, I have seen other lefties who are "hard core" lefty -- they cannot adapt.

It surprises people when they see me use a tool righthandedly then switch easily using the same tool lefthandedly. For example, placing a piece of electronics on my workbench, I proceed to take the screws out. Most people will rotate the unit to get at the screws on the left side. Me? I just switch hands and think nothing further of it.

People marvel at my ambidexterity, but life has taught me that it can be a curse. Playing badminton, I have no backhand swing. I two forehand swings -- one left and one right. I don't know how many games my partners and I have lost due to my partner wondering how I was covering the back court so well.

Studies say all sorts of things -- some good, some bad. Keep the bag of salt handy, as you'll need a lot of pinches of salt. With all the studies saying things like "lefthanders are more accident prone" and "lovers live loonger", I should be dead already. However, my heart still beats, my lungs still operate -- so, I presume I am still alive. And no, I am no more accident prone than righties.

My computer mice are all on the right side. My soldering irons are on the right sid. I use tools (hammers, screwdrivers, routers, etc) either handed. I gave up a little bit of ambidexterity by stopping my righthanded writing decades ago (my lefthanded writing improved since.)


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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-27-2008, 07:52 AM
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That is quite an interesting story and testimonial. Thanks for sharing it with us.

Now I need to think about trying to play left handed once in a while
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 07-27-2008, 07:34 PM
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Hi Bob:

Thanks for the kind words and thoughts. You're welcome also.

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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-21-2009, 01:15 PM
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SPs learn to do things backwards from birth even when their parents are SPs. LH products confuse both sides of the coin. My father is LH and plays guitar that way, when he tried teaching me we both got overly frustrated because I felt more comfortable righty, (friends were RH) and I messed around with them more than Dad.

The 1st framer I worked for asked me what hand I was, thumped his finger to my forehead and said "I see you holding a saw in your left hand I'll kick your ass!" His ass had removed the guards on his saws. Anybody ever see a saw walk across the floor? I use RH saws both hands but use my left to make smoother cuts.

The 1st time I used a worm drive I put it down and went for the righty.

I don't know if we're more adaptable, I took Judo through high school (helped big-time in wrestling) being LH and being taught by a righties I was constantly corrected for improper hand grabs for many throws. Your doing it all backwards, it looks like your attempting a different throw. I'd grab for a left hip but throw with the right hip and shoulder, (all bass ackwards) Thing was, everyone hated sparing with me expecting to go one way but ending up the other. I never got it right but won matches out of the confusion.
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-21-2009, 02:47 PM
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im a a lefty, most of the power tools have the locking switch on the right side, this has been a problem with my large makita drill where it has stayed on after i let go of the switch. rolled up a fifty meter lead in seconds. but after i get to 99 and i change hands.
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