|Review by RexMcKinnon||posted 07-12-2011 10:54 PM||3179 views||0 times favorited||12 comments|
I bought this product because I thought it would improve the look of the pool deck I am building and although I am not finished yet I think it has. The whole purpose of the jig is too allow the user to screw down decking without showing the screw and that’s exactly what it did.
My decking is made from 5/4 pressure treated boards. There are 10 joists each spaced 16 on centers and there are 2 screws per joist which gives 20 screws per board. To boards feel as if the are held down well. I was not happy with many of my decking boards and many were twisted and cupped. It made keeping even spacing hard. You can actually see in the picture under my dogs left paw that there is one board which has almost no gap on the left the a huge gap on the right. I am going to change that board before I am finished. It was perfectly strait for 10’ then had a huge twist in the last 2’. This was the part that made me nervous. Having the boards screwed from the sides I was worried that when I forced a board into place I would get cracking and screw heads popping out but luckly I did not. I should have returned some boards but the distance to the store and the fact the wood was delivered… by the time I paid for delivery for 3 or 4 boards it is the same price and buying new boards myself.
I think it made a great finish and I am totally happy with the result. Why not 5 stars then, because it is slow. If you are thinking about taking contracts with this tool… don’t. I could have finished my decking in 1/3 the time by just driving the screws through the top. If you are a contractor and time is money and you want to secure the decking so the screws don’t show then do something else. There are expensive nail guns that do this and there are other systems which are probably faster. The money spent on the expensive tool will be made back in time saved shortly.
This is a project I am doing for me and my family so the fact that it takes a bit longer does not bother me as long as the result is good. I am curious to see if long term I will have issues but I guess I will have to wait for that.
Here is the procedure to use the jig. This was repeated 20 times per board in my case. It is an 8’x12’ deck with a curved section near the pool. I think you will understand why I say it is slow.
1. Place your decking board. (Have to do this no matter what method you use)
2. Place jig. Align joist with 1 of 3 preset drill guide holes.
3. Use 1st drill to pre-drill hole. (2 drills are a must to use this system)
4. Drop screw in guide hole.
5. Use second drill to drive screw.
The slow part of this method is changing drills all the time. I think if you were to drive the screws directly into the board without predrilling you would split the boards. I guess I could have clamped my decking down, pre-drilled all my holes then came back and drove all the screws thus changing drills only one time per board but then there is a longer setup per board and you have to realign the jig with the holes so I don’t think this would save any time.
In the end I am very happy with the product but if you have a rush job you need done.. you have been warned.
-- If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail!