I was in the Grand Rapids, Michigan, Woodcraft Store for a router class that I was teaching that afternoon. I intentionally arrived a few minutes early to look at their selection of 23 gauge pinners. I had read a post on www.woodweb.com about how the 23 gauge pinner was great for attaching trim. The woodweb post pointed out a few of the advantages that the 23 gauge headless nailers have over the 18 gauge nailer that is typically used to apply trim. I think the two main advantages are that splitting is almost non-existent and the holes left by the pins are easily hidden when strategically placed. Obviously, the 23 gauge will not have the holding power of the larger 18 gauge. As with any wood working tool it has it’s limitations.
I was building several raised panel doors with very narrow molding so I thought it would be a good time to purchase one.
I purchased a Freeman 23 Gauge , 1″ Micro Pinner, model PP123 for $59.99.
This model uses standard 23 gauge pins: 1/2”, 5/8”, ¾”, 7/8” and 1”. It is light weight and well built with a comfortable grip. I don’t see myself using it for hours on end but if I had to, user fatigue would not be an issue. It sets the pins very nicely and as advertised, leaves a very tiny hole.
I did find two items that could use improvement. It would be nice to have a protective soft tip. I used it on soft maple and marred the wood a few times by pressing to hard. The second item is, this gun does not have a safety contact tip to prevent accidental firing. There is a lock on the trigger to prevent inadvertent firing but you have to consciously rotate it to the locked position for it to work.
Overall a nice pinner that I know will get lots of use in my shop.
Great Customer Service:
As I was finishing up the last of the 15 doors that I had been using the pinner on, I noticed that the tiny little holes left by the pin were not so tiny. A closer inspection revealed that the pin was not being set but rather the last 1/8″ was bent over. I loaded some fresh pins and checked the air pressure. A few more tests and it was obvious that I was not going to be able diagnose the problem. I called Gary Foote, owner of the Grand Rapids, MI, Woodcraft Store, after a brief explanation, Gary said to bring it back for an exchange. I had no immediate plans to make the 65 mile trip to the store and also didn’t have a pressing need for the pinner. So, I set it aside knowing I can exchange it on my next trip to the Grand Rapids store.
A few weeks go by and I am getting closer to starting a project that would make good use of the pinner. I really did not want to make a trip to Grand Rapids, at this time, just to exchange the pinner, so I called the toll free number listed in the owner’s manual.
I spoke to a pleasant guy in the service department and explained my situation to him. He asked a few questions and said that I would need to send the pinner to him in Woodstock, Georgia. He said that he would send me a new pinner and a return shipper so that I could ship the pinner at no cost to me.
The next morning I received an e-mail from Amy stating that my new pinner had been shipped.
A few days later the new one arrived so I set out to put it through it’s paces. Six weeks have passed and I have found that I use it a lot more than I initially thought I would. After a few thousand pins, the gun has performed flawlessly and I am glad to have it my arsenal of tools.
-- Keith, Charlotte, MI www.julyswoodworks.com