Remodeling Tips and Reviews

How to use a Finish Nail Gun

If you’re in the trade knowing how to use a nail comes second nature, but for the do it yourself home owner, learning how to use nail guns can be daunting. When you buy a nail gun, the first thing you need to do is attach the air supply nipple into the back of gun where there is a threaded hole. These should come with your nail gun and already have teflon on them. If they don’t you will need to get a 1/4″ nipple, make sure you get the right one, they also sell an automotive version that does not fit the standard couplings. Make sure it has Teflon tape on the threading and screw it onto the gun. Use a cresent wrench to tighten it.

Oil your Nail Gun

Make sure and add oil every time you use the gun. 4-5 drops for smaller nail guns and 10 drops for framing nail guns. This is critical. These guns use a large metal piston to operation and you don’t wont it to dry out and jam up.

Adding nails to a nail gun

There are only a few ways of adding nails to a nail gun. Small nail guns tend to have a lever that slides back a cover. The nails will be placed inside on the tracks, closest to the bottom of the nail gun. Then slide the cover back in place.

Larger Finish Nail guns tend to have a spring loaded lever on the top. You slide it back and it will lock into place, then you simply drop the nails in the top of the nail magazine. You will then release the lever and the spring will move it back to press the nails into place.

Framing Guns tend to load from the back side. The nails are pushed into the back of the magazine and then you pull a spring loaded lever back which will lock in place behind the nails.

Removing Jammed Nails in a Nail Gun

Small brad nailers almost never jam, probably because of the nail sizes. Large finishing guns will on occasion Jam in hard woods. These guns have a quick release lever on the front of them that releases the face and allows you to pull the nail out of the way. Make sure and always remove the air hose before working on a gun.

Larger framing guns usually don’t have an easy way to clean out the misfired nail, in which case you typically have to use pliers and on occasion a screw driver with a hammer to pound back down the piston shaft that is stuck behind the nail head.