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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-22-2014, 06:06 PM Thread Starter
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Default Finish Nailer question

Been using pneumatic nailers for more years than I want to own up to. Air hoses and compressors have been a part of my life for a long time. But air hoses and compressors are not always convenient.

When Paslodes first came out came out, I looked into them and had decided that paying the extra expense for the Paslode fuel cell power cartridges just didn't fit with my profit margin, so I passed.

My local tool repair & fastener supply has an annual bar-b-que. He gives back to his customers, gives away door prizes... and few vendors who add to the prizes, get to demo some of their tools. While they are there, them usually discount whatever they bring. It's also a good time for tradesmen to meet and trade stories.

2 years ago, the regional Senco Rep was demoing some of his guns. One in particle-- impressed me and has stuck in the back of my mind... It was a Senco lithium battery powered finish nailer. No hoses and rechargeable power. It was quiet and drove nails like they needed to be (surprisingly not under-powered) It even had an adjustable depth setting. That is still in the back of my mind.

Have any of you had experience with one of these cordless, rechargeable types of nailers? If so, what did you think and did it do the job you needed it for? (Senco, Paslode, Bosche or Dewalt...)

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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-22-2014, 09:01 PM
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I have, Mike. I've had a DW608 and a DW616 18 volt straight 18ga and 16ga respectively for more than 6 years. They both work well although they're getting a little long in the tooth now. On the minus side they are heavy, and they won't drive as hard as a gas or pneumatic mailer. Typically the 16ga gun will baulk at doing much more than 50mm brads through oak skirting (baseboard) into plasterboard, but as it's the GripFill (construction adhesive) which will eventually hold the stuff it isn't a biggie. Performance on softwoods and MDF is a lot better. Only parts used to date are some return springs (actually rubber) which last 3 to 4 years each (2 per gun), and the driver pin which has sheared off twice on the 16ga because it's just hit too many pieces of concrete/rebar/metal over the years (and a gas gun or pneumatic would have failed in the same way). I've also replaced a switch cover after the gun was dropped 10ft off a scaffolding tower. The repairs were all undertaken in the field by myself, too. The rubbers are a few dollars a piece, the driver pin is under $20. The only other things to have gone are the batteries - the old ones lasted 5 years, so I shouldn't complain, really. I've trialled the 15ga Bosch gun, but it really is slow and lacking in punch in comparison to the equivalent DW 15ga gun. I've had a look at the Senco Fusion cordless as a potential replacement for the DWs, but they're not yet available in 18ga over here and as I've got to replace two guns I'd prefer to sick with a single battery technology for them both

The DW pair replaced a pair of older Paslode gas guns which were past their prime. Passlodes are smaller and lighter, but they got all sorts of issues; black corroded battery contacts, out of date or defective gas, failures in the igniter boards, etc and they do need to be stripped and cleaned thoroughly about twice a year (the DWs just need to be kept clean and the stock slides lightly oiled from time to time). probably worse for some parts of the USA is that gas guns are notoriously unrealaibel firers in extremely cold weather so you need to keep a spare gas cylinder and a charged battery permanently in your inside pocket when the temperature gets much under 5°C (8°F). I've also used the newer Paslodes, which are better than the older ones although they still have gas/battery/contact problems, as well as the Hitachi guns and Senco's 16ga gas nailer which has somewhat more power than the equivalent Passy in my opinion

In first fix guns my gun of choice is a Senco GT90CH cordless gas nailer - slightly larger than the Paslode but a lot more powerful - will drive 90mm ring annular nails into dry railway sleepers.

If you are wondering why no pneumatic - they aren't much favoured over here. Houses tend not to be timber framed (bricks or blockwork mainly) as well as smaller so jobs are much more mobile and of shorter duration. That means air lines have to be moved constantly. The safety checks required (e.g. receiver has to be pressure tested annually) as well as the increased insurance costs and additional trip hazard of all those air lines also helps keep them out of our job sites. I haven't seen anyone other than upholsterers using them for some years.

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Phil

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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-23-2014, 12:05 AM
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That is all quite interesting Phil, the difference in locality. How about in the cabinet shops and wood shops,do they use more air nailers?
I use my brad nailers when I make jigs and sparingly on my projects where I use mostly glue,and once in awhile screws and glue.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-23-2014, 03:38 AM
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That is all quite interesting Phil, the difference in locality. How about in the cabinet shops and wood shops,do they use more air nailers?
I use my brad nailers when I make jigs and sparingly on my projects where I use mostly glue,and once in awhile screws and glue.
Herb,

The cabinet making shop I used to work used air lines everywhere. A lot of equipment used compressed air so hooking up a bradder was trivial. However all the carpenters I know use portable nailers.

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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-23-2014, 03:56 AM
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Hi Herb

In the UK the "shop scene" is similar to that in Oz mentioned by Darryl. Workshops tend to have compressors, air lines and pneumatic tools, although because most kitchen cabinet carcassing over here are actually manufactured from MFC (melamine faced chipboard, or melamine in US terms) you'd find a lot fewer air tools in a kitchen firm than in the average joinery shop. Out on site, where most of my work is done it's completely the opposite

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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-23-2014, 05:53 AM
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I have several; Senco Air Nailer's and bradders including my good old Framing gun the SN4, what a super impressive framing nail gun the SN4 is, Senco have discontinued some of the vital parts but they can still be bought as after-market seals, Goggle the part nr and you will find them, overall the Senco and Bostich air guns are very reliable and I would not be without any of the 11 air nailers that I have, I could never see the point in going gas. N
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-23-2014, 06:55 AM
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I have several; Senco Air Nailer's and bradders including my good old Framing gun the SN4, what a super impressive framing nail gun the SN4 is, Senco have discontinued some of the vital parts but they can still be bought as after-market seals, Goggle the part nr and you will find them, overall the Senco and Bostich air guns are very reliable and I would not be without any of the 11 air nailers that I have, I could never see the point in going gas. N
I thought I was the last one on the planet w/ a 20d canon (SN4)...
Don't forget the M2... SKS.. SP10...
Senco, Bostich, Paslode all from yesterdecades and Grex...

This would have been the week that I'd have finished chewing thru the restraints...
If only new layers hadn't been added....

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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-23-2014, 08:18 AM
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I thought I was the last one on the planet w/ a 20d canon (SN4)...
Don't forget the M2... SKS.. SP10...
Senco, Bostich, Paslode all from yesterdecades and Grex...
Don't feel bad, Stick. I too have a SN4 and a old Paslode trim nailer. When I had "tennis elbow" and couldn't even hold a 20 oz hammer let alone swing one, I broke down and bought the nailers, that was in the 80's! I haven't stop using them yet.

My God, you just made me realize that I have had those guns for 30 years! Since then I have bought brad, pin and crown staplers. I wouldn't do without any of them.

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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-23-2014, 10:51 AM
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We use lots of air nailers in housing for framing and trim . But the gas nailers in commercial where we are nailing metal studs to concrete,and screw guns for trim, some cases adhesive and air nailers for trim commercially too.
The cordless ones are new to me since I retired,maybe thats the way to go. Time marches on.
Herb

You young guys probably never used the 32 oz. Vaughn framing hammers like we did before airguns. and when airguns came out we used to have contests nailing against them, the original Paslodes and Sencos they were shooting 12d nails and we were slugging 16d nails with one whack. The hammers used to win. They even had the 40 oz framing hammers, they were custom made and had 30" handles on them. The guys running joist used those so they didn't have to bend over so far. That was before metal hangers and we had to use freeze blocking between joist and there was a lot of nailing going on.

Last edited by Herb Stoops; 12-23-2014 at 11:03 AM.
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-23-2014, 02:41 PM
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That was before metal hangers and we had to use freeze blocking between joist and there was a lot of nailing going on.
Herb,

You have me curious. As a non-tradie living in the sub-tropics, what is freeze blocking? Sounds like something you don't need where you never see snow or even frost.

Darryl

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