My wife has given me the go ahead to get a compressor and nailer. I have
looked them over at the stores (Lowes/Menards) and figured the people here
know a helluva lot more than the sales help there. As far as what I want
them for: weekend woodworker just making things on a whim. Startng with
compressors.......will a 2hp 6 gal. Porter Cable give me enough air?
Nailers.......looking at a PC 1 1/4 -2" 18 ga. or a Bostitch 16 ga. 1-2
1/2". Also what size do I need? I use mainly 3/4" pine for stuff like
birdhouses and squirrel feeders. By looking at the 18 ga. brads they seem
sort of puny to me. I am leaning towards the 16 ga. in the 1 1/2 range. I
would appreciate any help given to me.
Thank you ahead of time,
For birdhouses, etc there is no doubt you should buy the Harbor Freight 18ga
nailer. You should be able to get it for $20-30 depending on the sale the
hour you place your order. Most HF stuff is low quality, but the brad
nailer gets good marks by almost everyone that has one (including me). 18ga
is plenty for that work too.
Larry C in Auburn, WA
"Sherfey's" < firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote in message
I concur w/ Larry. HF's 18ga brad nailer that goes 1/2 - 2" is a great buy.
Got mine when on sale for $19 but I've only seen them as low as $25
as of late (still a good buy). I initially bought it until the SWMBO
would allow budgeting for a Porter Cable. Well, that was over a year ago
and I've never gotten the PC and don't see any reason to.
Now as far as air compressors go, sure, buy the PC.
Joey in Chesapeake, VA.
I bought the Porter Cable compressor (2hp 6 gal), and am satisfied with it.
I have nailed oak trim with no problems. Not to mention inflating the tires
on my cars. The PSI rating of the compressor matches that of most nailers.
I have a 15 gauge finish nailer and an 18 gauge brad nailer. They are Senco
brand. They work very well. The brad nailer only shoots nails up 1.25".
That's a little small. I'd like to upgrade to an 18 ga. that'll shoot 2".
The 15 ga. sure made putting down baseboards in my house faster and easier.
I'm on my second PC 2 hp compressor, They are oilless compressors and have a
somewhat limited life but they are Cheap and Lite. Also can be used on roofs
etc where the pitch can cause trouble with an oil lube compressor. For
hobbist use they will last awhile. I have a PC 15ga angle finish nailer
that does all i need it to do 1 1/2 - 2 1/2" I think. The angle nose is nice
for getting into tight places and the 15 ga nails really hold well.
Just my 2 cents
i bought the pc combo with the 16 ga brad nailer.... the price was right and
for the amount on nailing i do...it should last a long time.....
i got an 18 ga brad nailer for my b-day after i had gone out and picked up a HF
18 ga brad nailer on sale (for $14). truthfully i like the HF nailer better,
as i can actual see where i am putting the brad.... the only downside i have
with the HF nailer is that everytime i oil the thing... mind you only 1
drop.... i can't use the gun for about 2 days..... it doesn't catch to *fire*
the brad... go figure.... but if it breaks...i am not out much of any
outlay... in fact, i would get another one in a flash....
my next acquisition might be the 23 ga pin nailer..... now that is something i
could use on a regular basis for SWMBO's sewing projects.....
also i have found that if you can put the compressor in a closet and charge the
thing up...it is easier on the ears.... but i am sure there will be those who
will tell you to make a shroud out of insulated foam board....the closet works
Larry, after much thought I am going with the Bostitch(sp) 2hp 6 gal
compressor and 16 ga nailer combo. This will allow me to get the 18 ga HF
nailer and still be under $300. I looked up the 18's on HF's site, but
there were so many of them. Could you post the make and model of the one
that is all the rage now? Might just buy 2 at that price. Any thoughts on
the Bostitch? Really want the Porter, but I am thinking "bang for the
All of my friends who spent ~$200 on a pancake compressor wish they'd
have gotten my setup. I have a $60 used Crapsman 15 gal oil-lube "3hp"
compressor that I found in the paper here in Austin. It's 15 years
old, well used, and works perfectly.
I urge you to find a larger, used oil-lube compressor. You will save
money and end up with a better tool. Oil-lube with belt-drive
compressors last much longer and operate quieter than oil-less
The ONLY advantage to those pancake compressors is portability. Mine
still rolls around wheelbarrow style, so it's not like it's bolted to
As far as use goes, I brad-nailed a few clips of brads this weekend,
and the compressor didn't even start up. When I re-did our fence with
a (used) framing nailer, it would start up about once per 8-foot
section, which is about 200 shots. It would only take it about 20
seconds to repressurize.
Regarding nailers, I've used Porter Cable, Spot Nails, and Bostitch
framing and finish nailers. All these worked fine, so I think the PC
and Bostitch price tier is great for high-end home use. Spot Nails is
generally a little less expensive, and fewer bells and whistles.
Toolless depth adjustment is a useful feature. Being able to quickly
adjust depth will allow you to run your hose at full pressure since
the depth is mechanically limited. This means a quicker cycle for your
nailer between shots (the chamber refills faster). Without this
feature you'll likely adjust hose pressure rather than use wrenches to
adjust depth because it's easier, but then you have to deal with
longer cycle times. When I was putting up the fence, a short cycle
time was very valuable because of the rate I was shooting nails.
Good luck, and enjoy air tools :)
Thanks for all the feedback. Went ahead and got the Bostitch 2/6 with the
16g nailer. I have never used one before, but as soon as I sent that first
nail in I was in love. I am going to get the HF 18g nailer real soon.
Seems much better suited to my needs than the 16g, but having two ain't so
bad for the price. Hell, at around 20 bucks I shold get two, right? Any
feedback on how long one would last ? Maybe 100 brads a
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