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Tag Archives: DIY
  • What Type Of Nail Is Correct For My Application?

    At the end of 2013, we posted about the various components of a nail and offered some in-depth explanations as to the importance of these components. If you missed our previous posts on nail components, here is a quick refresher - with some added knowledge.

     
    Collated nails are offered in a variety of degrees, sizes and types. This article will take you step by step in determining the classification, range, type and finish required for your application. A popular choice, check out Nail Gun Depot's SureFit nails, if you are looking for a high quality fastener at a fraction of the cost. Another popular choice, Senco nails offer a wide variety of fasteners to choose from, with genuine, time-tested durability.
     

    The first step is to determine what collation angle your tool is designed to run. Some degrees include 20 °, 35 °, 28 ° and 15 °. The next step would be to classify what types of collation the tool handles. Collations include plastic, wire and paper - which can be used in place of plastic.

     

    When you have completed the nail classification, you will then determine the tool range. The length and diameter are known as the range. Length is the size of the nail, each tool will have a minimum and maximum length. Note: some nails are sized in pennies (symbol, D). Diameter is the thickness of the shank or wire gauge. The bigger the number, the thicker the nail.

     

    The type of nail can be broken into three categories; head, point and shank. Head types include duplex, headless, finish, drywall, clipped and full round which is the most common. The type of point determines how the nail will penetrate into your application and the splitting severity. The most common is chisel (diamond) point and the easiest to drive. It is ideal for soft wood applications. Blunt point allows minimal penetration resistance and is commonly used in pallet construction. Flat point, also known as chisel point, requires the most drive power and is frequently used with a screw shank nail.

     

    The nail shank is the part on the nail which does most of the holding. The shank is one of four types: smooth, spiral, ring or screw. Smooth shank nails have exactly that: a smooth appearance and has the least holding power. Spiral shank nails have either a threaded appearance, like a screw, or they can have a helical twist to them. Screw shank nails are used in hardwood applications. Ring shank nails have a series of rings punched into the surface of the shank and offers the most holding power.

     

    The nail finish can be bright, cement coated, electrogalvanized, hot dipped galvanized, flash-coated with zinc, hardened steel, stainless steel or aluminum. These different finishes, coatings or material of nails give different levels of protection of resistance to rusting or other special properties to certain applications.

     

    The factors mentioned above such as degree, collation type, nail size and shank diameter can all affect the compatibility of nails with any nail gun. Contact Nail Gun Depot Customer Service to confirm compatibility and determine the best nail for your application. You can also use Nail Gun Depot's Fastener Finder Tool to locate the right nail for your tool.

     
    ~ The Nail Gun Depot Team
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  • Nail Components (Pt 2)

    Welcome to the second part of our series on nail components. Last week, we talked about nail types, shank types and point types. If you missed part-one, you can check it out here. In the second half, we are going to look at finish types and the importance of angle.

    While the shape of the nail is pivotal to its use, you also want to pay careful attention to the finish. The finish of a nail can determine whether or not it can be used outside, the type of surface it works with and its durability.

     

    Nail Finishes

    Bright - This finish is used for your basic hardware nail. There is no coating, it is just plain steel. This finish offers no corrosion resistance, meaning it can not be used on any exterior applications where it will be exposed to precipitation.

    Electro-GalvanizedSimilar to the bright finish, electro-galvanized nails are coated with zinc via an electrical charge. These provide slightly more corrosion resistance than the bright finish, BUT should still not be used for exterior projects that are exposed to weather.

    Hot-Dipped GalvanizedThese nails are dipped in liquid zinc to provide good corrosion resistance. The resulting finish is composed of a clumpy, zinc exterior. These nails can be used for exterior applications.

    Stainless Steel - This finish offers resistance to corrosion for the lifetime of the nail. Stainless is able to be used for exterior projects and works particularly well with wood such as cedar and redwood. It is popular in markets that have a significant amount of moisture in the air.

    Aluminum - This metal offers less durability than stainless, but also boasts a corrosion-free lifespan. It is typically used for applications such as attaching aluminum trims or gutters.

    Copper - Copper, being a more expensive material, is typically only used when fastening to other copper materials. It is used more for appearance than utility.

    Blue Oxidized - This finish is the result of de-greasing and heat cleaning, which leaves the nail with a blue coating. This finish is typically used with plaster.

    Vinyl Coating - Vinyl coated nails provide enhanced holding strength and are easier to drive. The downside to vinyl coating is that these nails are not useable for outdoor or exterior projects.

    Cement Coating - The cement (resin) coating is applied to the nail to improve holding strength and can make the nail easier to drive. It should not be used for applications that will be exposed to weather and precipitation, so exercise caution if using for exterior projects.

    Phosphate Coating - The use of a phosphate coating improves holding strength and provides an excellent surface – for use with paint or putty. The phosphate attracts paint and retains it better than most other nail finishes.

     

    Nail Angle

    The angle of a nail is based on the variation in degree that the nail sits from the vertical (base). The angle of nail required varies from nail gun to nail gun – but typically sits in a range between 15 and 34 degrees – if the nailer is angled. If a nail gun is angled, the manufacturer should list the degree of angle required in the nail gun’s specs.

    From nails to nailers, there are a plethora of choices to select from when choosing the right tools for your project. We hope that this two-part series on nail components will help you in determining which nail works best for your needs.

    We always appreciate feedback and comments. Feel free to reach out to us at sales@nailgundepot.com if you have an idea or request for a future blog post.

     

    Good Luck In Selecting Your Next Nail,

    ~ The Nail Gun Depot Team

     

    P.S. We will be taking a two-week break from blogging during Christmas and the New Year to observe the holidays and enjoy time with friends and family - Our store will remain open during regular business hours. Keep an eye out for our next post on January 7, 2014.

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  • Nail Components (Pt 1)

    We've talked a lot about using nail guns, but what about the nails that go in them? We get questions all of the time asking about the components of a nail. The type? The shank? Point and finish?

    The average person only knows about one type of nail; the simple flat head design with a smooth shank and blunt diamond point. This is the most common style for nails used in everyday construction, but what about other nail types? Let's take a look at some of the variations in nail design and function - but first, let's go over some basic terms that define the structure of a nail.

    A nail is composed of three parts: head (top), shank (body) and point (tip). Size and length will vary depending on the type of job you are working on - your nail gun will tell you which size nails it will work with. Finally, you have the finish of the nail, which represents the nail's exterior - and can come coated (resin), galvanized (dipped) or untreated.

    Now that we know some of the basic terms regarding the structure of a nail, it's time to look at the variations in their structure.

     

    Nail Head Types

    Flathead Nail - This is the most common type of head for a nail. Available in different forms such as full (regular), clipped (reduced head size) and off center (head sits to the side of base), this nail's larger head size offers stronger holding capability.

    Brad & Finish Nails - These nails are typically used for finishing work, such as attaching trim and molding. Having a smaller head means these nails do not have the holding strength of their flathead counterpart, but they are able to fit in tighter places and are less noticeable to the naked eye, after installation.

    Duplex Nail - The duplex nail is intended for temporary use, featuring a double head for easy removal. These nails resemble a push-pin, and are designed to work as a placeholder - before a permanent application has been made.

     

    Nail Shank Types

    Smooth Shank Nail - The smooth shank is the most common shank that can be found on nails. The easiest to produce, this type of shank also provides the least amount of holding strength.

    Ring Shank Nail - The ring design on a shank provides improved holding strength and can be recognized by the threaded rings that run along the body of the nail. Its appearance resembles a smooth body nail running through a spring.

    Screw Shank Nail - A screw design has a body similar to its screw counterpart, but is driven into wood without the traditional screw head. It features a spiral design that covers about 3/4 of the nail's body.

    Spiral Shank Nail - Similar to the screw, this shank spirals the entire body of the nail.

     

    Nail Point Types

    Blunt Point- This is the most common of nail points. It reduces splitting when being driven, which makes it an asset to anyone using a nailer.

    Long Point - This point is mostly used in drywall installation, as it has a long, sharp, needle-like tip that can be driven deep.

    Chisel Point - This type of point is mostly used for heavy duty projects, such as pallet-building and industrial assembly. The chisel tip also helps to avoid splitting.

    Flat point - This point does not have a sharp or jagged edge. It features a smooth point.

    Clinch Point - This point is off center, but is sharp like the chisel. One side of this point is shorter than the other.

    Check back next week for the second half of this two-part series on nail components!

     

    Best Of Luck On Your Next Project,

    ~ The Nail Gun Depot Team

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  • Getting Ready For The Holidays

    The holiday season is now in full-swing, so what are you doing to make merry this year? Depending on where you live, it's probably too cold to work outdoors (unless absolutely necessary) - which means it's the perfect time to get projects done around the house, in preparation for visiting friends and family. You might not have time to renovate the entire bathroom or put in a new kitchen, but consider these simple weekend projects that can spruce up your home - and even add value.

    Add a chair rail in the dining room:

    The dining room is one of the busiest rooms in many households during the holidays. Between family dinners and holiday parties, it's certain to see a lot of traffic from your guests.

    Installing a chair rail can serve more than one purpose in your home - it not only adds detail to the room, it also helps to protect your walls from scrapes and scratches. Using a Brad Nail Gun can help you complete this project with ease. Depending on the size of your dining room, installation can be completed in a relatively short amount of time, leaving your room with an added detail that improves its form and function.

    Tip: Make sure the rail is level before attaching. This is a simple step that is often overlooked, but can save time and money in the long run. If your home has crown molding, try to match the color and style of the rail for continuity.

    Redecorate with reupholstered furniture:

    Whether you're sick of that beat up coffee table, or just need more pizzazz in your home, creating an upholstered ottoman, from a salvaged pallet, is an easy weekend project. It's a little bit carpentry and a little bit upholstery. The biggest benefit in creating your own upholstered coffee table (or dog lounger) is that it's custom - you choose the fabric and the details. Inspiration can come from a photo. It can be as simple as that.

    For step by step instruction, Shelly Leer of ModHomeEc (soon to be Home Room) breaks it down from start to finish in her guest post: "How To Build & Upholster Your Own Salvage Pallet Ottoman". Be sure to pay careful attention to the way she uses her BeA 71/16-436LN long nose upholstery stapler.

    Build a new mantel for the fireplace:

    This might be a bit harder for the average DIYer, but can add tons of character to your home if completed properly. If you don't have a fireplace, you can improvise by building shelving to display decorations and other knickknacks.

    Design the mantel to fit your style and character - there are a lot of sites online that can fuel your inspiration. Once you have selected the perfect design for your home, plan to invest at least five to ten hours (or more) into this project.

    A finish nailer, such as the Bostitch N62FNK-2 will most likely be your tool of choice when assembling the big parts - although you might also consider a Pin Nailer, such as the Grex P650L 23ga. Pinner, if attaching smaller, more intricate details - such as trim.

    Tip: Some people prefer to paint their mantel rather than stain it; keep this in mind as you visualize what the finished project will look like. Depending on the design you choose, you might have to paint or stain the materials prior to assembling.

    Good Luck & Happy Holidays,
    ~ The Nail Gun Depot Team

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  • Nail Gun Basics

    Don't let using a nail gun be an intimidating experience. After all, everyone's got to start somewhere. Learn the basics right here at Nail Gun Network.

    Step 1: Choose a Nail Gun

    What type of project are you working on? It will impact your choice or nail gun—also known as a pneumatic nail gun or "nailer". Choose from: a framing nailer; brad nailer for light trim and molding, which uses small nails that won’t split wood; or a trim nailer, for slightly thicker nails than brad nails. Choose the nail gun that's best suited for your application. For most home DIY projects, such as decking and framing, you'll want a framing nail gun. 

    MAX-Users-Edit

    Step 2: Choose a Nail

    Strip or coil? This decision refers to the way the nails are attached to one another or collated, and subsequently, how they're loaded into the tool's magazine. Strip nails come in a paper or plastic strip, while coil nails (example, below) are attached by a wire coil weld. Coil nailers allow for less reloading, as they typically hold more nails. If you're doing a big job or are a contractor, this is the way to go. Most DIYers choose a strip nailer.

    Clipped head or full head? Clipped head nails are just what they sound like, part of the head has been removed. This allows the nails to be collated closer together, which means more nails in the strip and less reloading. The holding power doesn't differ much, however, some coastal states still require full head nails for certain projects. Always check local building codes when building structures.

    WireCoilFramingNails

    Galvanized or not? Galvanized nails are coated to resist rust and corrosion, so if you're completing an outdoor project or something that will be exposed to moisture, galvanized nails offer greater weather resistance. If money isn't an object (but superior corrosion-resistance is, opt for stainless steel nails).

    Step 3: Decide How to Power Your Nail Gun

    Nail guns can be powered by air, electricity, fuel or batteries. When you buy your nail gun you will need to know how it receives power. Most choose an air powered nail gun for its reasonable price point and ample power. However, air powered tools require an air compressor. Your nail gun will be attached to the compressor by a hose and will be either gas powered or electric. 

    Some manufacturers offer air compressor and nailer kits, such as the Bostitch 3-Tool Finish and Trim Kit, below. The nice thing about power tool/compressor combo kits is that they take the confusion out of choosing a nailer, hose and compressor—plus you can get a little more bang for your buck.

    Bostitch Kit

    Step 4: Ready, Load..

    Load your gun according to the instructions. The strip nail guns are similar to loading a stapler. Pull back the magazine, insert the nail strip, and release the magazine to allow tension on the nail strip. To load a coil nail gun, open the magazine (inside there will be an adjustable nail tray). Set the tray for the length of nail that you are using. Insert the nail coil into the magazine. Toward the nose of the tool, you will find a “feed pawl” which guides the nails into the chamber. Be sure the wire and nail heads are aligned with the proper grooves.

    Step 5: Fire!

    Most nail guns require the nose to be pressed against a surface to fire. This is a safety feature so that the gun is not accidentally shot. There are usually two choices for operation: bump fire and sequential. Sequential requires you to pull the trigger each time you want to shoot a nail. Bump fire eliminates the trigger and fires each time the nail gun is pressed up against a surface

    Beyond this, always read the tool manual, do some tests fires into scrap wood, and wear proper safety gear. Now you're on your way to hassle-free nailing!

     
    ~ The Nail Gun Depot Team
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  • How To Maintain A Paslode Cordless Framing Nailer

    Maintaining and cleaning a cordless nailer takes about 15 minutes, once every 6 months or 50,000 nails—that’s all. To keep a Paslode cordless framing nailer in prime condition, watch the step-by-step Paslode video.

     

    You'll Need the following:

    A lint-free rag is important to keep particles form entering the tool. Always practice safety when cleaning your cordless finish nailer. 

    Be sure to remove battery, fuel, and nails from the tool prior to cleaning. 

    PaslodeCorldessFramingNailerVideo

    Maintenance Steps

    Clean - Grab your tool cleaner. Begin removing dirt and residue from the filter, cylinder head assembly and combustion chamber.

    Oil - Oil your motor assembly sleeve, seal rings and combustion chamber.

    Reassemble - Make sure that all screws are tight. Loose screws can result in personal injury or malfunction. For example, a loose nose could cause your nailer to fire multiple nails.

    Test - Make sure everything is in working order. It's normal for the tool to release a small amount of smoke. If something's malfunctioning, however, consult the product manual or contact Paslode Tech Support.

    CordlessFramingNailerVideoPic

    Pro Tips:

    • Don’t forget to check the expiration date on the fuel cells. An expired fuel cell can affect cordless nailer performance.
    • These steps and video are for Paslode cordless framing nailers, specifically the CF325-Li (replaced by thCF325XP Cordless Framing Nailer). Always consult your tool's specific manual.

     

    ~ The Nail Gun Depot Team

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