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Ramset single shot .22 caliber concrete nail gun is total junk

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Forum topic by PeteK posted 02-10-2017 02:49 AM 3055 views 0 times favorited 47 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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PeteK

27 posts in 481 days


02-10-2017 02:49 AM

Grrrr! Trying to build a built in shelf/pantry in my basement. It’s not a huge basement, more of a utility room. But this shelf will fill a 14’ wall. Anyways, 2 of the 3 walls it is attaching to are concrete. I don’t have a drill for concrete. So I was searching youtube for how people attach 2×4’s to concrete and I come across this Ramset concrete nail gun. It was cheaper than a hammer drill so I decided to try it out.

It says right on the package “Great for attaching 2×4’s to concrete”. I naively thought “hey, I’m attaching 2×4’s to concrete, this would be great!”. Plus it uses .22 caliber shells to propel the nail, which I thought was kind of cool and it’s the same one I saw Denzel Washington killing some dudes with in a movie lol!

Anyways, it’s junk. I tried 3” nails and they only went through the wood and maybe 1/2” into the concrete, leaving an inch of nail still sticking out. I thought maybe that was too much nail so I tried 2 1/2” and 2”. No luck with any of them and I’m already using the most powerful shell they sell for it. Also crumbled the crap out of the concrete behind it. I even properly did all the surface checks the manual said to do, and according to what it says, my surface was suitable for this tool. This will be one of the few times in my life I have been so disappointed with a product that I intend to return it and complain to Home Depot that they shouldn’t sell such a crappy tool.


47 replies so far

View bandit571's profile

bandit571

18643 posts in 2523 days


#1 posted 02-10-2017 02:52 AM

Get the one from Hilti….

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

View squazo's profile

squazo

51 posts in 1485 days


#2 posted 02-10-2017 03:00 AM

I actually went through the same problem not to long ago

I purchased the cobra by ramset which is a .27 not a .22. the strongest charge they sell at the BORG is yellow which is a level 4 but you can get level 5’s online, I though level five was the strongest but I was surprised to find that you can get level 6 which is purple. I was so excited I bought reds and purples.

They came in the mail, all to no avail even with a larger caliber than yours and a power level of 150% of the yellows I had the exact same experience. Though I am able to shoot a nail through an entire inch of steel (steel is technically softer than concrete) but this is useless because I have a welder and besides I am able to fairly easily remove said nail from the steel anyways so I know it does not hold well. I live in Louisiana which has some of the hardest concrete in the country maybe that is it. google aggregate map and see how hard your concrete is.

I did not return it because I feel maybe with a pilot hole it will work, and then I will be able to easily have a flush head fastener onto concrete instead of a wedge anchor. Also I hate tap-cons they are useless.

View William Shelley's profile

William Shelley

479 posts in 1309 days


#3 posted 02-10-2017 03:03 AM

Honestly you must be doing something wrong. I bought the second-cheapest ramset tool, the one with the trigger but you hold your palm against the oversized bulbous end. I used the yellow hi-power shells and managed to get a 3” nail with the washer to bury itself 1/2” into the 2×4 i was trying to nail into the concrete floor of my basement.

-- Woodworking from an engineer's perspective

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PeteK

27 posts in 481 days


#4 posted 02-10-2017 03:22 AM



Honestly you must be doing something wrong. I bought the second-cheapest ramset tool, the one with the trigger but you hold your palm against the oversized bulbous end. I used the yellow hi-power shells and managed to get a 3” nail with the washer to bury itself 1/2” into the 2×4 i was trying to nail into the concrete floor of my basement.

- William Shelley

That’s the same model I bought. I’m using the yellow shells as well. I think I just have super hard concrete. It’s a 1950’s house. Not sure if that makes a difference.

View bandit571's profile

bandit571

18643 posts in 2523 days


#5 posted 02-10-2017 03:25 AM

Use the reds, or the black ones…

We used to just drill a “pilot hole” and then use a 16 spike, and a length of form wire….and hammer the spike in.

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

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William Shelley

479 posts in 1309 days


#6 posted 02-10-2017 04:06 AM



That s the same model I bought. I m using the yellow shells as well. I think I just have super hard concrete. It s a 1950 s house. Not sure if that makes a difference.

- PeteK

Gotcha. Well, could be the concrete, yeah. My house was built in 1926 but I’m not sure if the concrete I’m nailing into is original or not. There’s a wide range of strengths of concrete available and theoretically it continues to cure indefinitely.

-- Woodworking from an engineer's perspective

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William Shelley

479 posts in 1309 days


#7 posted 02-10-2017 04:06 AM

I guess the other thing to ask, is are you putting a ton of weight behind the tool? It’s possible that if it’s not held with enough force, then a lot of energy is being lost in recoil.

-- Woodworking from an engineer's perspective

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PeteK

27 posts in 481 days


#8 posted 02-10-2017 05:47 AM

I was leaning into it pretty good. I don’t think much was lost to recoil

View robscastle's profile

robscastle

4545 posts in 2044 days


#9 posted 02-10-2017 07:56 AM

up the cartridge charge

-- Regards Robert

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TopamaxSurvivor

18093 posts in 3516 days


#10 posted 02-10-2017 07:57 AM

Powder actuated tools work best in new construction where the concrete is new. I never liked them. I used a rotor hammer most of my 45 years anchoring to concrete.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

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PeteK

27 posts in 481 days


#11 posted 02-10-2017 07:58 AM



up the cartridge charge

- robscastle

According to the manual, I’m using the strongest one already

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robscastle

4545 posts in 2044 days


#12 posted 02-10-2017 10:34 AM

OK I hear you,... havent used one for years.
In fact I would be surprised if you can actually buy one in Australia as you would need a firearms licence and then the hassle of buying the cartridges.

These days its a butane cartridge and a pieso trigger to operate it, from memory its a Pasode Brand

-- Regards Robert

View TungOil's profile

TungOil

748 posts in 335 days


#13 posted 02-10-2017 02:51 PM

Concrete hardness has a lot to do with how effective these powder actuated tools are. My current house has concrete block foundation walls and I can drive nails with my ramset all day without any issues. My last house had a poured concrete foundation and even with the heaviest charge I had a very hard time driving nails- they would either not set fully or would blow out the face of the concrete (or both). Sometimes coming behind the first charge with a second will drive it the rest of the way. I gave up on that tool for most work and bought a decent hammer drill and just use tap con’s now.

-- The optimist says "the glass is half full". The pessimist says "the glass is half empty". The engineer says "the glass is twice as big as it needs to be"

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JayT

5455 posts in 2051 days


#14 posted 02-10-2017 03:00 PM


Powder actuated tools work best in new construction where the concrete is new.

- TopamaxSurvivor


Concrete hardness has a lot to do with how effective these powder actuated tools are.

- TungOil

Totally agree with these two posts. A couple years ago, I spent several months working with Hilti to try and find a faster solution for a local carpet place nailing down tack strip to concrete. It was ultra high PSI concrete that had been poured in the 50’s for slab construction houses on what was then an air base. The Hi rep about drove himself nuts trying to prove that they had a good solution, but everything thrown at the concrete would just dimple it and not penetrate. There was not a single powder actuated tool or load Hilti made that would fully sink nails into the slabs.

The only solution for the carpet installers was a rotary hammer.

Sounds like the Ramset tool is working fine and you just have really hard concrete that needs a different solution.

-- In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock. Thomas Jefferson

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bigblockyeti

4698 posts in 1561 days


#15 posted 02-10-2017 03:06 PM

I have a Simpson strongtie gun that works pretty well, but it too has issues with older, really tough concrete. Working with concrete that’s not too old or firing into steel it can be a real time saver. Anything that’s achieved the kind of strength your concrete likely has is much easier to drill and use tapcons with.

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