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Love the 23 but, mine is just a starter from Harbor freight at $16 was worth a try but never sets the pin below flush. So I just file and forget them. 18 gauge is best for true fastening tho as they can go to 2". The big dif is that #23 mostly has no holes to fill, they just disappear. #18 or 16 or 15 ALL have to be filled. Some even have to be nail set as some don't drive in just right, then try to set a #18 in with a #1 nail set, it veers off and you get a hole the size of a #15 nail anyway! High end #23 nailers are BIG bucks but are worth it if you do delicate work, either way glue is the true fastening here, the pin just locates & clamps until the glue sets up. I have used the 23 to "pin" delicate thin trim to projects & purposely held the gun off the work about 1/4" so the pin was proud of the wood enough to pull it out once the glue had set. Sand in with stain & gone are the pin holes!
 

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I worked at a cabinet shop where we installed finished crown on finished cabinets with a pin nailer. With glued joints it was very sturdy. The gun we had shot 2" pins, think it was a cadex. No filling nail holes. Good tool for cabinet moulding. Home trim might be pushing it, but with caulked seems and joints, it probably would work. I like a nice 2 1/2" 16 gauge into the studs for trim work.
 

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Take alook at Grip-Rite 23 ga. pinner. Fires a wide range of lengths and got good reviews. For around $129.00 it is a good deal. Headless and fires up to 1 3/16 pins. The best part though is the price. Compared to some of the other pinners, you can buy 2 and have money left for pins. LOL
 

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For wall/ceiling trim? I guess it depends on the size. Are you nailing wood trim into wood or drywall? I'm no trim carpenter but have done my share. I wouldn't trust it for much more than cove molding or in combination with construction adhesive. If you're using it for 5" trim I wouldn't expect it to stay put for very long. I use a 16 ga nailer when I can and 18 ga brad nailer for smaller trim.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'll be doing so small base molding around the floor with 1/2" rock over the studs. The crown will go directly to wood cabinet or backing. Sounds like 23 ga is more for eliminating clamps on small jobs than installing :))
 

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I am a professional trim carpenter and I like to use a brad nailer for installing crown on cabinets, and I use a 16 gauge on baseboard. The 23 gauge is perfect for returning the end of trim where anything else would crack the wood, and for pinning the corners of crown together.
 

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A good rule of thumb is 16g for wall crown, even with a backer. 18g is fine on base. Avoiding glue on your sheetrock is always a good idea since someone might want to remove the crown/base at some point in the future. Also if your house is anything but brand new you'll have slightly wavy walls.

23g works great for outside corners and like you realized for cabinets where you'll be gluing the molding in place.
 

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I like the pinner for holding for the glue to dry. Where the pins would go into drywall at the ceiling, I wouldn't do it. If it was wood and you had enough penentration It might be wortk a try.

If it fails you could go back and put in 18 GA nails.
 

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I've used 23 ga on crown but my gun shoots 2 1/4" nails and it holds better I would suggest 18ga and some colored putty to file the hole if the crowns already finished
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I saw the rave review of the Harbor Freight 23 ga pinner. I thought for <$20, why bother patching up all those holes??? Oh well, may as do it like I always have. I won't be gluing the trim. I'm putting back after reflooring and need to finich off the kitchen cabinets.
 

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I think 23 gauge is too light for those applications, especially for the base. I use my 15 gauge Senco for that,
although I love my 18 and 23 Gauge nailers for many other things.
 
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