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Talk To Me About Nailers...


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#1 Crofter

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 06:29 PM

One of the upsides of doing a self build is getting to splash out on some toys. However they will have to pay their way and money is pretty tight.
Given that I am constructing the house by myself from the ground up, I think I had better invest in a nailer, or two. The materials I will be working with are:
- framing in 6x2
- sheathing in 9mm osb (possibly will go thicker)
- sarking in 19mm boards
- cladding in c.20mm vertical boards (probably pressure treated softwood, but maybe larch, maybe even cedar if I can get the right price)

Obviously there are other jobs to be done but that gives a flavour of the range of nail sizes I'll be using. I believe that you need stainless for fixing cladding, which will no doubt add difficulties.
The framing, sheathing, sarking, and cladding will be where the most repetitive work will be found.

From what I've read up so far, I don't think I can manage all this with just one nailer- a framing nailer won't be able to do the c.25mm nails needed for the sheathing, for example. Hopefully, though, the lighter nailer can be something cheap and cheerful.

What would the panel suggest as a combination to meet these needs?

#2 tonyshouse

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 06:38 PM

I have run nail guns since the eighties, the last one was cheapie from online, never liked 25mm nails, shortest we used were 40mm.

One compressed air gun should do it all. Electric guns are OK but too slow.

#3 Crofter

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 07:08 PM

Thanks. Are you saying that short nails are a bit of a pain in general, or is it more that there's a problem trying to use shorter nails in a bigger gun?
I could presumably just do all my sheathing, sarking, and cladding with whatever is the smallest nail that fits the nailer that I will need to do the framing... job done...?

#4 wmacleod

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 07:25 PM

View PostCrofter, on 24 February 2015 - 06:29 PM, said:

a framing nailer won't be able to do the c.25mm nails needed for the sheathing, for example.

I think you might want to look at 50mm nails minimum for this. 25mm nails will lead to panels with very poor racking resistance.

#5 recoveringacademic

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 07:45 PM

View Postwmacleod, on 24 February 2015 - 07:25 PM, said:

panels with very poor racking resistance.

Wasat?

#6 TerryE

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 07:58 PM

(As in put on the rack) = resistance to shear forces. The shorter nails just tend to pull out.

Edited by TerryE, 24 February 2015 - 07:59 PM.


#7 wmacleod

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 08:02 PM

View Postrecoveringacademic, on 24 February 2015 - 07:45 PM, said:

Wasat?

It's only relevant to those in Scotland :)

Special fairies that come on windy nights and push against our timber sheds :D

Now I think about it, Crofter might need even longer nails to get the thickness required..... I prefer concrete so don't really understand this timber stuff myself.....

#8 oz07

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 08:03 PM

Galv rather than stainless fixings?



#9 Crofter

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 08:25 PM

Hmm, investigating racking strength is something on this week's to-do list. It seems 9mm osb sheathing is fine for a lot of people, and the osb people themselves suggest 2.5x this for the nails, hence I was thinking of 25mm nails... but I wouldn't be surprised if this is all too weedy for the exposure up here...

Anyway, veering back onto the topic, sort of, I have read that you need ss fittings for cladding because galv inevitably gets chipped/scraped when fixing, and it leads to horrible rust streaks down the boards. There are also considerations regarding the species of timber, some are more acidic than others, etc.

#10 Nickfromwales

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 08:32 PM

Coil nailer 25-57mm nails.
http://www.ebay.co.u...=item3f47490937

Framing nailer 50-90mm clipped head framing / first fix nails.
http://www.ebay.co.u...=item4ae4343375

16guage brad nailer 25-50mm pins.
http://www.ebay.co.u...=item19fc2e9cfa

And a tidy compressor to run them all.
http://www.ebay.co.u...=item565c5fa6d0

You won't get a full solution with gas nailers, simple. The coil nailer is the one you'll like the best as its the middle man of the brad and frame nailer. I sold my compressor and nail guns in search of the pot of gas nailer gold at the end of the rainbow. 50/50 if that was a good idea tbh.
Not having an air line is great, but dealing with temperamental gas nailers that don't want to fire in the cold, need cleaning and interim service / de-clogging etc also loses its lustre ( oh, and the service kits are around £40 each for Hitachi which are the cheaper gas nailers that I went for ;) ).
I'd recommend air for a novice, and for resale-ability. And don't forget that for 25-50mm general nailing where there is a need for a nail with a clipped head and ring shank ( battening, sarking, osb or ply affixing etc where a brad will be useless ) there is NO gas nailer ;)
The above setup will encompass all your needs with little to no maintenance, safe and controllable and will be easy to sell on to another like minded person with ease. That setup will also cost less than one Paslode first fix gun which will be useful for framing and roof batten type fixing and nowt else. If you fire one of those guns into feather edge fencing / similar cladding thickness wood, it'll smash the face of the wood for one, and send the nail best part of all the way through leaving next to no wood behind to form the fix.

The air powered nailers, like the gas nailers, will kill you as good as look at you if you don't respect them accordingly. They're more manageable than gas IMO so therefore, as I stated above, a bit safer for a novice. The framing gun is more likely to hurt someone else than you, with the common injury being where someone is standing behind a stud wall that is being boarded by the operator and they stray off the stud. The nail fires with no resistance from the stud to stop it and it goes straight through the boarding and out the other side striking the unlucky person the other side.
There need to be some home grown safety disciplines when using this gear, and they need to be adhered to. I still won't fire my gun against stud work if I think someone is the other side. That's the number one rule. As the nail fires away from you, your the least likely to be hurt so remember that as effectively your holding a gun.
Last but not least, you can buy cheap brads for general pinning work like fixing skirting and architraves etc, but don't buy cheap framing nails. There are lines on the heads of good framing nails that help the hammer that strikes the nail to grip and not slip forward and off the nail during driving it home. I bought some B&Q nails and they had clean heads and were constantly left proud or just plain sticking out altogether. FirmaHold and Paslode are the kiddies, but I'm sure they can be sourced on t'internet with the same quality for less.
Rawl seem to do their own thing so I'd avoid them from my experience. ;).
Regards, nick.

#11 ProDave

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 08:38 PM

View PostCrofter, on 24 February 2015 - 08:25 PM, said:

Hmm, investigating racking strength is something on this week's to-do list. It seems 9mm osb sheathing is fine for a lot of people, and the osb people themselves suggest 2.5x this for the nails, hence I was thinking of 25mm nails... but I wouldn't be surprised if this is all too weedy for the exposure up here...


After proposing some complicated proprietary racking frame in each corner, my structural engineer has backed down and agreed OSB sheeting both sides of the frame is sufficient for racking strength, BUT he has specified two layers of OSB on the outside of the gable ends with staggered joints.

And we are in a sheltered glen.

#12 Nickfromwales

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 08:40 PM

View PostProDave, on 24 February 2015 - 08:38 PM, said:



After proposing some complicated proprietary racking frame in each corner, my structural engineer has backed down and agreed OSB sheeting both sides of the frame is sufficient for racking strength, BUT he has specified two layers of OSB on the outside of the gable ends with staggered joints.

And we are in a sheltered glen.
Nowt wrong with belt and braces, and the osb is cheap ;). Couldn't you have got away with one thicker sheet maybe?
Regards,nick.

#13 ProDave

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 08:44 PM

View PostNickfromwales, on 24 February 2015 - 08:40 PM, said:

Nowt wrong with belt and braces, and the osb is cheap ;). Couldn't you have got away with one thicker sheet maybe?
Regards,nick.
I don't know. He's specified 2 layers of 9mm. go figure.

#14 wmacleod

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 08:49 PM

View PostCrofter, on 24 February 2015 - 08:25 PM, said:

Hmm, investigating racking strength is something on this week's to-do list. It seems 9mm osb sheathing is fine for a lot of people, and the osb people themselves suggest 2.5x this for the nails, hence I was thinking of 25mm nails... but I wouldn't be surprised if this is all too weedy for the exposure up here...

Norboard I see say minimum 3.1mm diameter 50mm long nails for 9mm - table 18 http://www.bbacerts....8/3857PS1i1.pdf

#15 wmacleod

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 08:50 PM

View PostProDave, on 24 February 2015 - 08:44 PM, said:

I don't know. He's specified 2 layers of 9mm. go figure.

2nd layer goes over the panels after they are stood up covering the joints?

#16 Nickfromwales

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 08:59 PM

Oh, to add to the nail thing, I use annular ( ring shanked ) nails for everything. They just don't pull out like a bright ( clear shanked ) nail can. The coloured coating on most nails is a heat reactive glue which becomes molten with the friction heat of the nail passing through the timber at high speed / compression. I've had some where I have wanted to pull the nail out afterwards and the heads have snapped of because the shank is so well adhered :).
Just remember to start off clamping all your work with kwik clamps / similar before firing the nail as when you nail something in the wrong place its a real PITA to undo that work. Your friend here will be a recip saw with a long metal cutting blade which will get between the two mated timbers and cut through the nails freeing things up. You'll see all the good TF guys with these on every job.
Regards, nick.

#17 Nickfromwales

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 09:02 PM

View Postwmacleod, on 24 February 2015 - 08:50 PM, said:



2nd layer goes over the panels after they are stood up covering the joints?
What's the benefit if its breathable anyway? No different if using 18mm and laying the joints over the noggin / batten ?
Strange request :huh:

#18 wmacleod

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 09:18 PM

Structural engineers have not a care in the world about breathability of buildings, they just want them not to fall down! With 18mm board on each timber frame panel (from the "factory" as it were) then it will perform very differently when you push it at funny angles than a 9mm board (from the factory) on each panel and a 9mm board (added onsite) staggered which is covering multiple panels. I'm sure Dave will update his blog with plenty of pics to show us how the engineer has designed it in due course!

#19 ProDave

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 09:21 PM

Well I certainly get fred drift award. Can we get back to Nailers for Crofters sake?

He says he's going to discuss racking so we can talk about it then......

#20 Crofter

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 09:33 PM

Yup racking is a bit down the road in terms of things I currently have to deal with! But interesting nonetheless.

The only nailer I've ever used was a Paslode, and that was kind of intimidating. Had I used it for longer I might have got used to it. Nothing wrong with a bit of apprehension and an awareness that you are holding a potential lethal weapon :D

Looks like I will be leaning toward a compressor and then two different nailers, possibly used, as most of my tools seem to be.

By the way, this topic is surfacing this early in the build because I want to build some jigs for making up a proof-of-concept timber I-beam soon, and I thought it would be sensible to avoid lots of tedious hand nailing. But the I-beam is yet another topic...