Galvanized brads or stainless?

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Forum topic by kordwood posted 03-29-2009 03:17 AM 1269 views 0 times favorited 1 reply Add to Favorites Watch
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29 posts in 3169 days

03-29-2009 03:17 AM

Topic tags/keywords: fasteners nails brads brad nailer qswo quartersawn oak joining question

I’m putting the back on a double bookcase … it’s tongue and groove quartersawn oak. I’m going to use 18 gauge brads in my spiffy new brad nailer, but wondered if the galvanized nails will eventually cause a staining problem with the oak. Should I use stainless steel instead or does it matter?

-- David in sunny Cleveland, Oh

1 reply so far

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1228 posts in 2861 days

#1 posted 03-29-2009 06:13 AM

Steel or iron does cause staining in oak…it is the tannic acid. I’m not sure about zinc (galvanizing). If I were seriously concerned about staining I would use brass or at least brass coated nails or screws. If you use solid brass screws be sure to pre-drill the holes and lubricate them with paraffin or bees wax. Brass screw heads is easy to twist off when driving them into oak. Stainless steel would probably be OK. I’m not sure 18 gauge brads add enough structural strength if that is part of your construction needs unless you use a lot of them. Have you got a 15 or 16 gage nailer? I only use 18 gauge brads for holding trim and other pieces I can’t clamp together while the glue I put on them sets up. The small holes they leave are easy to hide.
You may have learned that Oak can move a lot especially in the direction the grain or length wise so if you have long pieces try to allow for it. This can be a problem in areas where the seasonal humidity varies a lot.

-- Les B, Oregon

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