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Choosing a Finish Nail Gun

trexk's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 20

02-22-12, 04:58 PM   #1  
Choosing a Finish Nail Gun

Could some of you trim guys tell me which is better, a 15 gauge nail gun or a 16 gauge nail gun? I have some baseboard molding and some crown molding to put up and was just wondering if one was better than the other for that job. Thanks for any input.

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stickshift's Avatar
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02-22-12, 05:03 PM   #2  
15 is a longer, stronger nail than a 16 but it makes a bigger hole.

I think 16 would be fine for what you're proposing but the crown could put you into 15 territory.

Hang tight and one of the pros will be by with a more qualified opinion.

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02-22-12, 05:18 PM   #3  
An angled finish gun is probably what you want, and they are 15 gauge. Straight finish guns (straight, meaning the magazine is straight) are usually 16 gauge. An exception would be Paslode's cordless 16 ga angled finish nailer.

Some guys don't mind using a straight finish nailer cuz they are used to holding them sideways when they shoot, but I like the angled finish guns because the magazine isn't ever going to accidentally scrape the wall when you don't want it to. Angled nailers can also get into corners a little better. Having only owned an angled finish gun, I do NOT like to use the straight ones. Too clunky.

There isn't a ton of difference in holding power, (15 and 16 ga nails are both available in the exact same lengths) but mitch is right, the 15 ga does make a little bigger hole. Not really a big deal, IMO. They all get filled anyway.

Senco's 15 ga angled nailer is one of the best. Hitachi is very similar.

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02-22-12, 05:21 PM   #4  
Ditto on all points XSleeper made....

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02-23-12, 03:27 AM   #5  
Likewise, I use a Senco SFN40 with 15 gauge angle nails. For where there is no power, or for small jobs where I don't want to get the compressor and hoses out, I use a Dewalt angle nailer using 18v XRP batteries.

trexk's Avatar

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02-25-12, 09:00 PM   #6  
Thanks for the help. I went with the Hitachi angle finish nailer. Any suggestions on a compressor. I intend to purchase a roofing nailer soon so would like a compressor that would run it as well.

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02-26-12, 04:19 AM   #7  
Nail guns don't require a lot of cfm so most any air compressor should do ok. Air sanders and paint guns require the most cfm. Check the cfm requirements of any tool you expect to own and size the compressor accordingly.

Also the oiless air compressors are extra noisy so I'd shy away from them.

retired painter/contractor avid DIYer

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