I love my pin nailer a tool review

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Blog entry by dennis mitchell posted 12-18-2006 08:28 AM 10794 reads 0 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

My bread and butter comes from installing cabinetry for the construction industry. So when my buddy borrowed a pin nailer from the stair guy…I just had to have one. I beat him down to the local (now out of business) lumber yard. They catered to woodworkers so they actually had one in stock. Only one and I loved beating him to it! It was a Senco FinishPro. They came with an extra piston which ment trouble to me but what a great tool. They shoot a small 23 gauge “nail”. Which is practically invisiable. On Maple you can just see the hole but it is invisible on a wood like Oak or any heavy grain. It cuts down on the time filling holes, but more importain it really added alot to the quality of a job. Installing I spend alot of time putting 1/8” panels (skins) on the cabinets. I also use the gun for crown mould and small trim. The pins range from 1/2 to 1 inch in most models, but some brands go up to 1 3/8. The pins have no head so I use them to tack things together while the adhesive dries. They do not hold well. In my rustic work alot of the twigs are set with the pin nailer. In the first two years me and my buddy went through five guns and ten pistons! The gun was great but the Sencos just didn’t hold up the body cracked at the nose and the pistons gave out. Well Lowes and Home Depot put the small lumber yard out of business and I needed one to finish the job I was on. Nobody carried them in town anymore. As big as they are the big stores really don’t have a very good tool selection. I was screwed. I turned to the internet and changed to PortaCable. I’ve always had good luck with PortaCable tools and their pin nailer has been great! I’ve used this one for three years with the original piston and no problems. I do keep them oiled! In my mind it is more of a cosmetic tool but its one of those tools that add that extra special touch on a job.

5 comments so far

View Mark A. DeCou's profile

Mark A. DeCou

2008 posts in 3827 days

#1 posted 12-18-2006 11:34 PM

Thanks Dennis. I have a Porter Cable PN 100 18 guage nailer that I bought in 1997 and it has done great. My wife just bought me an early Christmas gift which was a Bostitch 18 guage model to replace the Porter Cable, which at the time was giving me some trouble. The new Bostitch does not shoot 2” nails in solid walnut, but the old P-C nailer does. Since it is a gift, I don’t really want to send it back, but I might trade it in on a 16 guage nailer sold by the same retailer my wife bought this one at.

Thanks for the note on the pin nailer. I was thinking it would work great to pin trim pieces while the glue was drying, and it sounds like it would from your description.

take care,

-- Mark DeCou - American Contemporary Craft Artisan -

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 3668 days

#2 posted 12-19-2006 04:59 AM

Mark, my wife just bought me the sixteen gauge Bostich gun and compressor kit for Christmas tonight. I’ll let you know how it works. I bought her carpet for the entranceway and I told her I needed a stapler. She said “you have 2 staplers”, I said ya but I need a big one that runs by a compressor. She said well lets go to Lowes. Heh, Heh, Heh. I’m evil. mike

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View scottb's profile


3648 posts in 3749 days

#3 posted 12-19-2006 06:31 AM

I also have a Porter Cable – handles 18 gauge brads up to 2” – I got the model that can run off a rechargable battery, or hook up to an external compressor. I’ve got to say the tool is a heavy bugger, especially when doing a whole room of trim. (Eventually dad went out and got a Bostitch kit, which is featherweight by comparison.)

There have been days when I’ve tapped out the battery on mine, and had to switch gears while waiting for the recharge, but I’ll admit it’s quite handy to have on hand when we only need it to trim a couple doors, or “clamp” on a piece of edge banding. I do think the batteries aren’t holding up so well, and hope I can find replacements (and a spare) as the tool has plenty of life left. The last time I had to get new batteries for a cordless drill I was forced to buy a new drill as they didn’t make the ones for my drill anymore… the ones I could find for similar models (a step up or down in voltage) cost more than the new drill (with a spare battery and flashlight too!)

-- I am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it. - Van Gogh -- --

View Royalwoodworker's profile


31 posts in 2400 days

#4 posted 04-19-2010 03:25 AM

Funny, because my PC jammed teh first shot out of the box. yes, i did have the nails in the right direction as well. I continue to have problems with my PC and am looking into a GREX or CADEX MODEL

View dennis mitchell's profile

dennis mitchell

3994 posts in 3736 days

#5 posted 04-20-2010 01:02 AM

I was a stout believer in PC tools till two air guns, a belt sander and a router died. All new tools. My old PC tools are still working after many years of daily use…the new ones just junk.

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