Wednesday, December 05, 2012

I Got Into A Fight With A Power Tool

I'm back!

Well... Kind of...

Warning: if you're slightly squeamish, close this now.

Over the Thanksgiving break Jessi & I decided to refinish our cabinets. Progress was going well. Then, our sander started acting weird. I took the machine apart and figured out the problem: the main bearing had worn out (this is the part that allows the sanding pad to spin freely). As a result the screw holding everything together had wiggled loose. This caused, not too surprisingly, the machine to (1) make a weird sound, (2) wobble uncontrollably and (3) soon stop working.

I figured out a way to stick the screw in, and keep it really tight. Unfortunately, the side effect was the pad no long spun freely - instead it spun at the same speed as the motor (aka. really fast!). Of course, the other side effect was it really took the paint off. What was taking a hour to do, suddenly only took 10 minutes.

I used the modified sander for a while and completely finished the first pass on the inside. Then I moved on to get the doors. At this point, we were ahead of schedule, usually a fantasy when it comes to projects.

And then I slipped up.

At 4:15pm, I used my right hand to rotate one of the doors while still sanding with the other hand. I lost control of the sander and in flash the sander bit my right hand. I dropped the sander, and tore off my glove. I instantly knew it wasn't good. I then realized the sander was still spinning like crazy on the ground. I managed to turn it off while not further hurting myself. Then headed indoors to get help from Jessi.

Since she's a teacher, she's a trained first responder. It still didn't stop her from slightly freaking out when I surprised her with a bloody hand. :)

We went to the doctor's office and they cleaned out the wound. I guess there was a ton of dirt, rock, and dried paint in there. I could also see my tendon moving around when I wiggled my finger. The one thing I did right was wear gloves. Had I not done that, it would have hit my tendon and I would put me into surgery with a much longer recovery period.

Enough writing. Onto the pictures.

While driving to the doctor's office. See the dirt?

 Washing it. The danger is that the wound is right next to a joint. If it's not cleaned out, it could cause major problems.

Here it is. It's not huge, but pretty deep, and in a bad place.

Thanks Doc! There are 4 other stitches inside that's connecting the muscle together.

Healing up

Looking better, but still really swollen.

Top 4 stitches are out. Now the bottom 4 stitches will disintegrate in a few weeks.

I took this today. There's still a ways to go, but at least I can do computer work again.

So, I've gained enough strength that I can type again. But, I still can't make a fist or grab objects. Plus, at the end of the day my whole right hand is sore. It'll probably be until the start of 2013 until I have full use of my hand back.

1 comment:

  1. looks like a good what not to do, been there, done that

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