finish stapler for cabinet backs

I'm considering getting a finish stapler like the Bostitch sb-150sx to fasten 1/4" ply cabinet backs to carcasses. I use the Bostitch as an example because I've been using their 16 and 18 gauge nailers and really like them a lot. Is stapling a good way to attach cabinet backs? I currently use screws but stapling would be faster (and more fun). Is the 7/32" crown staple reasonable, or is that too narrow? What length of staple would hold well? Are there other uses for this stapler (the wife asks)?
John S.
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On 6/4/2012 1:54 PM, John Shear wrote:

I have a similar stapler and bought it for one specific purpose to staple soffit vent trim around a storage shed. That was about 8 years ago. I have not used the gun since.
I don't want to staple any thing that I might have half a chance of needing to remove later.
I used to brad nail backs on cabinets but have switched to 1/2" self taping screws. Stronger, looks better, and easier to deal with should I decide to remove the backs for refinishing in the future.
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Well, I wouldn't think brad nails would hold thin material on too well. Do the self-tapping screws recess into the back panel so they don't interfere with mounting to a wall? What kind of head so they don't tear through the thin material?
Btw, I will be building a shed one day and might need to staple the soffit ;)
John S.
On 06/04/2012 02:02 PM, Leon wrote:

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On 6/4/2012 3:23 PM, John Shear wrote:

Shoot the brads in at an angle, do that from both sides, top and bottom and they oppose each other.
Do your cabinets actually flush up to the wall? I use washer head screws so they do not pull through, they are specifically made to mount drawer slides. Typically however if you recess the back 1/16" more than their thickneaa the heads will not show. If the backs are exposed on the edges screws won't make that look much worse.

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I bought a 1/4" crown stapler for limited use, I find that it is indispensable for many things, and gets used more than I imagined particularly for thin goods. I have even bought another that can use staples up to 1 1/2" long. Between the two, I have used them for installing plywood underlay, cabinet backs, even strapping on a ceiling (4 staples per joist equals 8 nails, to test it I hung my 225 lb. weight from one joist and they held me), the crown and double legs do not rip out of thin materials. Only screws would be better but much slower in installation and costlier.
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I should have added, consider the HF 18 gauge narrow crown stapler, often on sale for $20 or less. It's really a no-brainer at that price.
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Larry Wasserman - Baltimore Maryland - lwasserm(a)sdf. lonestar.org
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On Mon, 4 Jun 2012 23:06:35 +0000 (UTC), snipped-for-privacy@sdf.lNoOnSePsAtMar.org (Larry W) wrote:

And they're indestructable. I have nearly zero misfires at anything above 55psi pressures.
-- Shake off all the fears of servile prejudices, under which weak minds are servilely crouched. Fix reason firmly in her seat, and call on her tribunal for every fact, every opinion. Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason than that of blindfolded fear. -- Thomas Jefferson
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When I mail-order, I tend to stick with the established good brands. HF cheap stuff always concerns me because I can't see and touch it before ordering. But it's had a couple of good comments here. I have two Bostitch nailers and feel real good about those. I checked out the Bostitch stapler at the local home center and a google search turned up lots of good comments, so I'm leaning that way. For this kind of thing I'll probably watch Ebay and get a deal there. That's worked for me so far. Lots of great feedback here...
John Shear
On 06/04/2012 06:06 PM, Larry W wrote:

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John Shear wrote:

When I insulated the storage half of my shop I put up 1/2 " foil backed Styrofoam, foil side down, with all edges meeting on two by's. I tacked it up with staples (same gun as you mention). then I laid 2" Styrofoam on top between the joists. I finished it up using 1/4 x 2 inch strips to cover the joints and put this up with longer staples. Hasn't given any problems after 10 years.
My back yard fence is put up using screws, but then a neighbor with 3 kids moved in next door and their back yard came up behind my shop. I put in posts and horizontals with nails and put up dog-ear fencing with staples. The boards are on their side and it keeps them from climbing on the fence. I believe I used 1/4 crown staples on that. It went up very quickly.
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On 6/04/12 2:54 PM, John Shear wrote:

I have a bostitch brad/stapler combo, can't remember the model number, mainly use it for the brad nailer, but I did put some carpet down on the stairs to the basement with the staples, it did the job quite well.
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I use a 1/4" stapler for that. It's more secure than brads.
I wasn't sure if I would like it better than screws, and I do. I have been using it for a few years and for me it's the way to go.
On 6/4/2012 2:54 PM, John Shear wrote:

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On 6/4/2012 1:54 PM, John Shear wrote:

I almost always use 1/4"crown staples (1/2" length) for 1/4 ply cabinet backs ... at least twice the holding power per shot over brads.
I have a dual purpose Delta nailer that shoots both 18ga brads and crown staples, but I don't think it is made any longer.
Very similar to this:
(Amazon.com product link shortened)38843164&sr=1-6
As long as you're getting another tool, it is nice to have two tools in one at that price.
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On 6/4/2012 2:54 PM, John Shear wrote:

If you are looking for a good all around stapler, we bought a inexpensive Arrow Stapler many years ago. It takes 1/4, 3/8 and 1/2 inch standard staples. We use all three sizes. While it does not get used daily, when it does get used it gets heavy use.
I use it for routine stapling around the garage. I also use it to hold the mated side of picture frames and stretchers, To make the final precise cuts on the miters. Depending on the size of the sides I have used 1/4 and 1/2 in staples. The frames are usually made of fir, pine or any of the better quality of what is called White wood by the local big box store. I have also used it to attach the rubber liner to the sides of a pond.
My wife uses the staples for stretching canvas on the stretchers that I have made. This requires 1/2 inch staples to go through the layers of canvas.
It has never failed us, and as I said it is over 20 years old, maybe older.
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An Arrow stapler is a different animal to the ones discussed here. The Arrow is used for attaching cloth, screening, paper and ceiling tiles, basically very thin material, to wood, as the staples are 1/2" crown and no longer than 9/16". The 1/4" crown staples being discussed are heavier, and run in lengths from 1/2" up to 1 1/2" (possibly some at 2").
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Narrow crown staples like 7/32 or 1/4 inch are great (IMO) for attaching plywood cabinet backs. For 1/4" ply, a 3/4" staple length is plenty, especially if you are gluing too. I've found plenty of uses for my stapler, they hold much better than brads, and are handy for shop jigs or other uses where appearance doesn't matter. Get some galvanized staples and they are even good for attaching fence pickets to rails.
If your target is small, as for instance when attaching the plywood backs in a rabbet cut in 1x stock, so that (say) you must land the staple in a roughly 3/8" wide zone, I recommend you practice before taking the stapler to your workpiece. Poor aim can lead to missing the carcass and a staple poking through into the inside of the workpiece. Doesn't take long to get a feel for where to aim. DAMHIKT.
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wrote:

Good manufacturers (aka: NICE people) use screws. Cheaparse, penny pinching corporate types use staplers. ;)

Too narrow.

Probably 1/2" long.

Yes, like reupholstering your own furniture. I use my 1/2" crown stapler for that and small wood projects. http://tinyurl.com/d3b4v79 and http://tinyurl.com/6o4u9ts
Whatever you do, don't buy an electric stapler. They're all gutless, no matter how much you pay for them.
As I finish up this reply, I suddenly realize you were talking about furniture cabinet backs, not speaker cabinets. My only other thought about it is to glue them, too, and that most I've seen are probably 1/4" crown if they're not screwed, brad-nailed, or just glued.
-- Shake off all the fears of servile prejudices, under which weak minds are servilely crouched. Fix reason firmly in her seat, and call on her tribunal for every fact, every opinion. Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason than that of blindfolded fear. -- Thomas Jefferson
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Good manufacturers may use screws, but most don't. Cheaparse, penny pinching corporate types use staples for finish assembly on the front, and cardboard for the back held in place by a shot of hot melt glue -- yes, I have disassembled some by a "reputable" brand that was built that way.
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John Shear wrote:

Here's a combination stapler/brad nailer from HF for $20: http://www.harborfreight.com/18-gauge-2-in-1-nailerstapler-68019.html
Generally, you would use a stapler on material that cannot be reliably held by a (minimum) nail head. This would include, of course, cardboard, foil, and other thin, tearable stuff.
As for securing cabinet backs, a bead of glue in addition to the staple/screw/nail might be prudent.
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