Nailers - brad v. finish


Old 06-16-04, 02:01 PM
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Nailers - brad v. finish

I've got both a brad and a finish nailer. My question is when do I use which? I've got several projects on the burners, including installing doors, building closet shelves, installing trim, and other miscellaneous. Is there a rule of thumb for when to use the brad v. nailer?
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Old 06-24-04, 10:42 AM
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You would use the brad nailer where you want a smaller nail head as in fine finishing. A finish nailer would give you a stronger nail but a bigger nail head.
Old 06-24-04, 01:39 PM
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Since you're talking trim work and not structural work, perhaps more important is nail length. The generally accepted rule of thumb is 2-1/2 times the thickness of the wood you are nailing through. So, for 1/2" thick trim, you would use at least a 1-1/4" nail or brad. However, if you are nailing trim over 1/2" drywall into framing lumber, you'd want to add that length to the nail or brad resulting in using at least a 1-3/4" nail or brad for this situation. I prefer to use an 18 gauge, 2" brad in this situation and a few more of them than using a 16 gauge 2" or 2-1/2" brad. Just my personal preference.

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