I was the lucky recipient of a Senco 3-piece finishing kit for Christmas.
This consists of a 15-gauge angled finish nailer, and 18-gauge brad nailer
and an 18-gauge narrow stapler. This is in addition to a 16-gauge finish
nailer (Porter-Cable) and 23-gauge pin nailer (Senco) that I already had.
I'd say other than possibly a framing nailer (not something I really
anticipate needing, honestly) I should be all set as far as nailers go.
The question I have, however, is are there generally good rules of thumb or
individual preferences of yours as to when to use which tool? Personally,
since I only had a 16-gauge and 23-gauge nailer in the past, I used the
larger nails for things like attaching case backs, nailing drawer backs in
place to the drawer bottom, shelf edging, etc. Usually only in paint grade
pieces, other than the pieces that wouldn't be seen. For small and/or thin
pieces of molding or trim I would use the pin nailer. I find the holes from
this almost undetectable, so I have no problem using this even on naturally
finished or stained pieces, as well as painted ones.
Now that I have such a diverse arsenal, can you all offer me advice for
specific jobs that each one would be best for? The 15-gauge angled nailer
is pretty big, but I'm a little unsure why it would be any better than the
16-gauge one. I'm really happy to get the 18-gauge brad nailer, as that is
the one I have most often felt I needed for things like larger moldings or
shelf edging, etc. The stapler I'm not sure about - maybe for case backs
and similar jobs it probably would hold better. I've seen staples used a
lot for attaching subfloor materials or underlayment and similar things. I
would guess staples have better holding power than brads, but I'm not really
Thanks for the advice.