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Best budget nailer 15ga or 16ga

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Forum topic by Sanderguy777 posted 12-29-2021 09:04 PM 680 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Sanderguy777

283 posts in 2654 days


12-29-2021 09:04 PM

Topic tags/keywords: nailer stapler 16ga nailer 15ga nailer

I’m in the market for a finish nailer. I have 18ga nailers, a narrow crown and wide crown (t50) staplers, and stuff, but the 18ga nailer o ly allows up to 1 ¼” brads.
I’m looking to get a little bigger gun so I can use it on full on 2x stock and other things. Pneumatic only, no battery or electric. Would just getting a longer 18ga capable nailer be better? Mainly use it for ⅝ or 1” nails, but occasionally did for 2” on the ridgid 18v 18ga nailer I have, though they never worked that well or held firmly enough imo.

What is a good one? I know porter cable used to be really good (my 18ga one is PC actually), but they seem to have cheapened everything over the years.

Is there a relatively cheap nailer that is decent? The PC I have will drive a nail every time, perfectly, unless i don’t give it enough pressure (that’s on me). The little Arrow brand t50 stapler I have does well too, but it slightly less reliable, but I think the set depth is more due to the cheap staple design and manufacturing, and the hardness of the wood.
Is there something cheap that foes better than the worthless 18ga ridgid 18v one I have (literally can’t drive 2 nails all the way in, one after the other)?

Mainly just want something reliable that drives consistently, I could care less about brand or oil-less features for their own sakes. If there is a genuine difference, then it might be worth looking at.

-- Marc Spagnuolo (standing in front of clamp wall): I think I need a few more . Me (owner of at least 8 clamps):.....?


14 replies so far

View Loren's profile

Loren

11499 posts in 5100 days


#1 posted 12-29-2021 10:46 PM

I’ve read that Harbor Freight nailers are good but the price I looked up was $109, the same as a comparable Metabo 15 ga. nailer. I have a Hitachi (now Metabo) and no complaints about it.

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Sanderguy777

283 posts in 2654 days


#2 posted 12-29-2021 11:08 PM


I ve read that Harbor Freight nailers are good but the price I looked up was $109, the same as a comparable Metabo 15 ga. nailer. I have a Hitachi (now Metabo) and no complaints about it.

- Loren

wow! Here I thought their other stuff had gone up in price! I see a 16ga for $70, but that’s as much as Ridgid is on sale!

I’ll check out Lowes though too.

-- Marc Spagnuolo (standing in front of clamp wall): I think I need a few more . Me (owner of at least 8 clamps):.....?

View pottz's profile

pottz

25647 posts in 2436 days


#3 posted 12-30-2021 12:43 AM

i have a bostich 18ga. and it takes up to 2” ? ive used bostich for the last 30 years,no complaints.

-- working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

View ColoradoJake's profile

ColoradoJake

39 posts in 1099 days


#4 posted 12-30-2021 12:55 AM

I have the Porter Cable set the BORG sells every year around black friday. 6 years and all going strong, only replaced the hose. So I will say Porter Cable seems solid. I installed trim for one year with the set also.

View squazo's profile

squazo

393 posts in 3097 days


#5 posted 12-30-2021 11:35 AM

my griprite is good, i think it does up to 2 1/2. its 15 gauge. it was like 80 bucks about 8 years ago. trimmed a whole house with it. still going strong.

View bigJohninvegas's profile

bigJohninvegas

1197 posts in 2914 days


#6 posted 12-30-2021 12:41 PM

I have all PC nailers, 16, 18, and a 23. And they are all a bit over 5 years old.
So I am in the same spot with the 18, So any time I need 1.5” or better I step up to the 16.
Never an issue with any of them.

-- John

View Lazyman's profile

Lazyman

9564 posts in 2839 days


#7 posted 12-30-2021 01:01 PM

My brad and finish nailers are Numax. They are inexpensive and have worked flawlessly since I bought them almost 8 years ago. I would not hesitate to buy a finish nailer if I needed a new one. I have a Porter Cable finish nailer that I bought over 20 years ago but have only used it a couple of times.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

View kajunframer's profile

kajunframer

22 posts in 353 days


#8 posted 12-30-2021 01:57 PM

Cheap nailers aren’t worth it. Almost all of mine are Max. If you can afford one, I suggest spending the extra dollars. That being said, Hitachi/Metabo makes the best budget nailers, hands down.

View JIMMIEM's profile

JIMMIEM

259 posts in 2293 days


#9 posted 12-30-2021 02:16 PM

For 2X stock you’d probably be better off with the 15 gauge nailer I have a Porter Cable that I bought from the CPO outlet. 15 gauge also fine for 1X stuff.

View waho6o9's profile

waho6o9

9193 posts in 4029 days


#10 posted 12-30-2021 03:39 PM

View Sanderguy777's profile

Sanderguy777

283 posts in 2654 days


#11 posted 01-07-2022 04:20 PM

Thanks all! I’ll definitely look at CPO outlets, and if not then I’ll take a look at old PC guns.

-- Marc Spagnuolo (standing in front of clamp wall): I think I need a few more . Me (owner of at least 8 clamps):.....?

View Knockonit's profile

Knockonit

1227 posts in 1654 days


#12 posted 01-07-2022 04:30 PM



Cheap nailers aren t worth it. Almost all of mine are Max. If you can afford one, I suggest spending the extra dollars. That being said, Hitachi/Metabo makes the best budget nailers, hands down.

- kajunframer

best comment every .sometimes budgets need to be thrown out with the dishwater, if its a tool you hope to use till end of days, purchase once, and live that dream, nothing worse than in middle of project having to go spend an additional time and money to grab a new tool, now don’t get me wrong, i’m a fan of new tools, but don’t like buying more than one.
best of luck
rj in az

-- Living the dream

View TechTeacher04's profile

TechTeacher04

495 posts in 2983 days


#13 posted 01-07-2022 07:53 PM

My 16 and 15 gauge nailers max out at 2-1/2” nails. Are you trying to frame with it? I use the 15 and 16 for heavy base trim and an 18 gauge for lighter work. If you are looking to use 2x stock you should be looking into a framing gun. Can you elaborate on the projects or materials to give better advice?

View BamaCummins's profile

BamaCummins

131 posts in 5028 days


#14 posted 01-10-2022 02:13 AM

I bought a Rigid from home depot and am pleased with it.

-- "I don't know, we haven't played Alabama yet." -- Vince Lombardi after being asked what it felt like to be the greatest football team in the world just after winning the '66 championship game.

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