Hi all, I have a couple of questions about nail guns. Which nail type
is most common, is it the 22 degree ones or 30 degree. I want to get a
nailer that takes the most common angle of nail strips, so I don't have
to spend time searching for the right nails at Home Depot.
I recently bought a Dewalt D51844. I bought the thickest diamer nails
(.148") it could handle and tried it out. The nails didn't go in all
the way, about 1/8th to 3/16ths of the nail head remained above the
surace of the wood (douglas fur studs).
Above all, the nails did not feed smoothly into the chamber, and I had
to manually push each subsequent nail into the chamber by hand, by
pushing on the nail pusher at the end of the magazine. The nails are
held together by plastic fastners. Maybe this gun doesn't like that
style of faster? I think nails held together by paper fasters exist and
perhaps I should try them. In any case, I followed the instructions,
bought compatible nails, but the gun didn't work well. So I am not
impressed and will probably return it.
Could anyone recommend an alternative framing nailer that will do 3
1/2" nails flush with the wood, one that has a good reputation among
contractors. I want a reliable, powerful, no-nonsense gun. I have been
looking at porter cables and Hitachis seem to be popular. Any thoughts?
I bought a Paslode clipped head nail gun and I was not very happy. Took
it back and got the Milwaukee.
There are three types of collation done. Paper, plastic, and wire.
The paper collated nail is usually a clipped head style nail. Having said
that Paslode has nails called "Roundrive" that look like a round head nail
but work in a clipped head nailer as the head is offset.
The plastic collated nails can be a pain. I used my neighbors PorterCable
plasic collated framer and it jammed several times over a two day period.
Bits of fractured plastic would get caught in the mechanism. I considered
it enough of a PITA to not even consider a plastic collatted nailer.
Flyong bits of plastic is a safety issue. I was struck in the face more
than a couple of times and heard complaints from others that used the gun.
The wire collated nails are expensive but are a true round headed nail.
If you live in California, then you likely have to use a full round head
nail to meet code.
The Milwaukee is a nice nailer. It has yet to jam on me. It is not as
long or as heavy as the other nailers. It does not hold two full strips of
nails so be prepared to slide in a new strip more often. On the plus side
adding nails is quicker than the Paslode. Other features include tooless
depth of drive adjustment. Bump-n-go or single shot selectable with a turn
of a button. Plenty of power. Nice warranty and liberal return policy.
For me I like the Paslode Roundrive nails and the Milwaukee combo.
I do live in CA. I'm confused, however. The box of nails I bought just
says "round head", no mention of "full round head". Do these two terms
refer to the same thing, or are they different?
I have been looking for websites or books to explain all of this stuff.
But haven't found any. I have McGraw Hill's Carpentry and Construction
book, but it doesn't get too detailed about types of nails, and
staples, brads, let alone for use in nail guns.
Also, about oiling - How much oil is good enough? I put about 4 or 5
drops all around the inside of the threads on my Dewalt.
Also, the attachment coming out of the gun is a female end, and I have
to always screw on the male end of the hose coming from the compressor
using a wrench. This is time consuming. I'm sure there must be a quick
connection fitting for this, no?
No. I'm not a troll (i.e, somebody who asks questions to bother people
and laugh), I'm asking because I genuinely don't know, and would
appreciate a response. Are the answers to my questions that
Suggest that you review all the postings in this thread. I believe
that you will have the answers that you need.
Regarding air and oil. AFAIK only Senco is oilless. All others require
oil, maybe 5 drops twice per day of use.
Yes, you want quick disconnects. Male fitting on the tool, one female
+ one male on the hose, female on the compressor.
Sorry, guess I'm a little sensitive right now. We(especially me) sometimes
forget that we once had questions that now seem very simple. However, as
another poster says, read all the (other) responses in this thread and
you'll pretty much have your answers. The only thing I can add is your
question of naming the nails. I think your nails that say "round head" are
probably "full" round head, as any others would be called "clipped head".
Personally, I have a Craftsman clipped head framing nailer that looks like a
copy of a PC, has served me well. I've used both paper & wire collated in it
with very little problem.
Air connections; you can put the male end of a quick disconnect in the
nailer and connect the hose to it with the female portion of the connector
on the end of the hose. Many air tools recommend you use a "whip hose" about
2' long screwed directly into the nailer, with a male quick disconnect on
the end of the whip(yes, you can buy the male quick disconnect with a female
thread to go on the hose end). Doing this puts less strain on the connector
@ the nailer.
The only road to success is always under construction.
First, the nail not setting completely is more likely a result of your
compressor than the gun or nails. What are you using for air and how
is it set-up? What is the pressure at the gun?
Second, the type of gun...coil or stick....angle or
staight...etc...should be based on what you needs are - what you are
I am a stair builder and I usually require that I do my own framing. I
use a Bostitch Stick Framer....20' I think.
Lastly, Fir is probably the toughest framing lumber. Spruce or hemlock
will take a nail better than fir.
If you have specific questions post them here. I think there are a few
framers who post in here.
The framing crews who work for me use Hitachi's exclusively. I rarely see
another nailer onsite these days. The guys who visit sites with supplies,
and also repair nail guns out of the backs of their vans, say the same
Nailer brand preferences are regional. Some places are Hitachi-favored
while others are Paslode-favored. I have one of each. Roundrive nails
address the full-head issue.
If you are in Hitachi country, I recommend that you get one, since
fasteners and repair parts will be more available. Hitachi makes a
clipped-head nailer colored green. Very light.
There are 3 framing nail collation angles:
20-22 degree, typically round head and plastic collated
28 degree, typically round head and wire collated
30-34 degree, typically clipped head OR Roundrive and paper collated
Most framing nailers are designed to handle ONE of these collation
angles. Many will drive a 3.5" nail, but not all of them.
I currently use the Paslode F350S most frequently with 3" nails. The
older Hitachi won't feed longer than 3.25" nails.
Final comment - minimum air pressure. If your compressor does not
restart until the pressure drops to 100 psi, then nails and lumber
which require 110 or 120 to set the nail flush will sometimes fail to
set it full depth.
You amy want to look else where for you nails. HD tends to be expensive on
Same brand nails as the gun? I always but the same brand nails as my gun.
More expensice but no hassles.
Hitachi over PC. I look at DeWalt and PC as more of a home owner quality
brand when it comes to nailers.
Other good brands would be Paslode and Senco. More expensive but you
generally get what you pay for.
All the framers I see here in Arizona are using Hitachi's. I have a Senco
and have been pleased with it. When I was in the market for my framing
nailer I went to a shop that repairs all makes of guns and they said to stay
away from Dewalt. They favored Hitachi and Senco.
Having said that.....Most of my small brad nailers which I use the most
often are from Harbor Freight and we have very few problems with them.
There are 3 nail head configurations:
Round head, AKA full round head, FRH
Clipped head, AKA CH
Roundrive head, works in a CH nailer but the nail shank is off-center
From there, there are varieties of -
shank treatment (smooth, ring, screw)
coating (brite, brite with glue, electrogalvanize, hot-dip galvanize)
material (steel, stainless steel)
There are even ballistic fasteners for subflooring - screws that are
installed with a nailer but have screw threads and a square-drive slot
in the head.
The fancy fasteners go up quickly in price - 8-10 cents each. However,
hot-dip galvanized nails are cheaper than stainless for ACQ
This question is confined to stick framing nailers typically available
at home centers.
If you expand the search to commercial framing contractor suppliers,
here are the benefits:
1. You will learn which nailguns are preferred by those who earn a
living using them. Which are easier to repair and have parts available.
Which are better used for trotline weights.
2. If you use enough nails to make cost a difference, the price per box
is lower than at a home center.
3. Need your nailgun or air compressor repaired? The supplier will fix
your tool as quickly as possible because you will buy more nails that
way. Nails are where the money is.
4. Want to buy a used nailer (other than from eBay)? The supplier will
typically have a few for sale.
5. Need a specific nail for a job? They will be there if the job is
done in the area.
6. You will also find coil framing nailers (not found at home centers)
used to nail off large areas of decking or subfloor. They are heavier,
but they hold about 300 nails rather than 75 nails at one time.
7. Need a fastener specific to the trade or tool? You can't find them
at home centers due to low demand, but there will be cases of them at
- fence picket nails - 9000 per case - only available at the supplier
- medium-crown staples - 10000 per box - only available at the supplier
- coil framing nails and nailers - only at the supplier
8. Need a question answered about your nailer or compressor? The clerks
at the home center won't have a clue. They can check the price but
that's about it.
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