PorterCable Compressor and Nailers

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Forum topic by cFurnitureGuy posted 09-17-2009 06:27 PM 1438 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View cFurnitureGuy's profile


145 posts in 3201 days

09-17-2009 06:27 PM

Topic tags/keywords: compressor nail refurb brad nailer air question nail gun refurbishing

i have been looking around for a brad nailer and compressor for my shop and was wondering if anyone has any experience with the pancake compressor from porter cable? currently home depot has 2 kits available: 1:) compressor and 3 nail guns for 275.00 or 2:) compressor and 1 brad nailer for 239.00
my local WoodCraft store has the same kit as home depot with the 1 brad nailer for 139.00 , but its a factory refurb with a 1 year warranty! which i have heard that factory refurbs can actually be better than the product off the regular production line because each one is tested and approved before they are shipped. whereas they production units are just boxed and shipped! so i guess i am wondering if anyone has had any bad experiences with the Porter Cable compressor or brad guns? Is the Compressor quiet?

also has anyone had any experience with the cordless guns? expensive! i know but then i wouldnt need the compressor and it could make it more mobile!

thanks for any feedback!

-- Justin, Savannah,Ga

11 replies so far

View Tim Dahn's profile

Tim Dahn

1567 posts in 3590 days

#1 posted 09-17-2009 06:41 PM

cFguy, I have the pancake compressor, Framing nailer, finish nailer and a staple gun. The compressor runs them all no problem. I have had all of the tools for 5 plus years, sporadic use and have encountered no problems with any of them. The compressor is LOUD so I built a cart for it, check it out .Click for details

-- Good judgement comes from experience and experience comes from poor judgement.

View Brad_Nailor's profile


2539 posts in 3982 days

#2 posted 09-17-2009 07:14 PM

I have the Porter Cable 150 PSI pancake compressor and the brad and finish nailor, narrow crown stapler, and full round head framer. After owning them for around two years with light to medium use, I had to have the compressor repaired due to the fact that it wouldn’t stop running when it reached the pressure cut off point. It cost me $100 to fix it, but they basically rebuilt the entire unit like new. As far as the guns are concerned, they have worked flawlwessly…never a problem, and I have recently driven over 2000 nails with my framing gun without a single jam or misfire.


View cFurnitureGuy's profile


145 posts in 3201 days

#3 posted 09-17-2009 07:54 PM

thanks for the info! Timbo thats a good idea to build a cabinet for it! i will check into that if it comes to it! i have a 80 gal compressor now but it runs on 230volts and its way too big for my garage and way too loud! so i have it at a friends barn/shop where i have my sandblast cabinet and do all my painting and welding.

so i guess its kinda 50/50 on the reliability? sometime you get a good one sometime you dont?

-- Justin, Savannah,Ga

View Bret's profile


166 posts in 3519 days

#4 posted 09-17-2009 08:14 PM

I’ve got a PC compressor and 5 PC nailers (brad, pin, narrow crown, finish, and framing) and haven’t had a day’s complaint about any of it. It’s less than a year old and gets light-to-medium use, including inflating tires on the kids’ bikes, blowing up back yard balls, and blowing off dust. A lot.

It is loud, but I keep earplugs around my neck in the shop. It was only a real problem when installing a hardwood floor indoors. Kept scaring the kids & cats. Powered my Grizzly flooring stapler without complaint.

Bought mine at HD for a couple hundred on a holiday sale. The biggest change I’m going to make soon is to toss the hose it came with and get something more flexible.

If I were buying new, I’d take a hard look at the new Bosch nailers; haven’t used one or seen one in person, but they sure look nice on paper.

-- Woodworking is easy as 3.14159265358979323846264338327950288419716939937510...

View kerflesss's profile


182 posts in 3393 days

#5 posted 09-18-2009 05:01 AM

Hi cFurnitureGuy
I’ve owned one for 8 years with no problems. As far as capability, as long as you aren’t gang running it will it keep up with even a framing nailer. My pancake goes out to job sites with me and it is loud. But I will say that the life of all compressors depends on maintenance and care of both guns and tank. While they now selling oil-less guns, older guns need regular lubrication. If you casually use your guns a drop of oil in them before use will keep them in good order. An air filter in line, will keep your guns supply clean and dry. With regard to your tank draining after use and cleaning your air filter will prolong its life. I still own my 35 year old oil compressor changing out the head gasket, oil, and changing/cleaning the air filter. It is also quiet compared to oilless versions. Hope my experience helps you with your decision. Good luck.

View WhittleMeThis's profile


125 posts in 3398 days

#6 posted 09-18-2009 05:24 AM

If you are using the PC for light duty it should serve you very well, I have one with several nail guns that I use for on site installations, for med – heavy duty work the tank is to small and will constantly cycle, I use a much larger unit in the shop. I have recently bought 2 Dewalt cordless nail guns a 16 and 18ga and they are heavier but a lot less hassle than my air powered tools, i prefer the cordless tools much more.

View davidpettinger's profile


661 posts in 3225 days

#7 posted 09-18-2009 06:17 AM

Hi cFurnitureGuy, Try Tyler Tool. I got mine , a Porter Cable outfit for under 200 new. No Complaints. Plus, they have great deals on factory reconditioned tools. Got myself a Dewalt 12” CMS Slider for under 500. They have great deals. Just depends on what you need.

-- Methods are many,Principles are few.Methods change often,Principles never do.

View Richforever's profile


757 posts in 3745 days

#8 posted 09-18-2009 06:36 AM

I was trying to decide on tools like this when I saw reviews on the new line of pneumatic tools by Bosch. After comparing features, I bought the Bosch. They are 20% smaller, 10% lighter, and 10% more powerful. For the compressor, I got the little Senco 1 gallon, 1/2 hp because it is the quietest and easiest to carry (only 20 lbs). It won’t handle framing nailers; but for the finishing and brad nailing it’s great.

Some of the reviews from the woodworking shows said that the design of the Bosch nailers will make obsolete all other brands.

Hope this helps.

-- Rich, Seattle, WA

View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 3799 days

#9 posted 09-18-2009 12:32 PM

Hi Justin

I work at Lowe’s a few days a week and we sell a lot of these Porter Cable units. The guys that buy them really seem to like them and I have never seen one come back yet. It is a little loud but a good way to get everything you need to get started. I have a Makita compressor and cannot say enough good about it. I did a tool review on it if you care to look. If you want a quite unit, this is the one to have. You have to buy the guns seperate. I prefer senco guns over Porter cable.Thanks for asking.

God Bless

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View Craftsman on the lake's profile

Craftsman on the lake

2794 posts in 3462 days

#10 posted 09-18-2009 12:50 PM

I’ve got the nail guns.. Framing/finsih/brad nailers. No issues with any. The framing nailer has been through hell and back. No problems. And, PC sells a refub kit which is actually a bunch of o-rings and misc parts to rebuild the nailer when it wears out. They all wear out eventually so the refurb kit is a nice touch.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View cFurnitureGuy's profile


145 posts in 3201 days

#11 posted 09-18-2009 06:22 PM

thanks again for all the advice! i will have to look into some of the different suggestions and see what i can workout and afford!
i really like the idea of the cordless guns but i like having the option of air for other things around the shop as well… ie cleaning dust !

-- Justin, Savannah,Ga

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