Nail Gun Types & Features

Brad nailer vs Finish nailer

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Brad Nailer vs Finishing Nailer

The two nailers usually confuse buyers as they physically look similar and use the same size fasteners.  Here are a few things that can help you decide which is best suited for your project, Brad Nailer vs Finish Nailer.

Brad Nailer vs Finish Nailer

brad nail gun vs finish nail gun

When To Use A Brad Nailer

A finish nailer in most cases is somewhat larger than a brad nailer. The brad nailer does not have much holding power compared to the finish nailer. The main reason being it does not use standard nails. Instead they use brads, which are a smaller gauge of metal that doesn’t have a head on the end. Finish guns are usually used to attach lightweight trim or finish work. A benefit of using a brad nail gun is the hole it leaves after firing, which is much smaller than all other nail guns. Brads are convenient for attaching trim wood without problems associated with larger guns. Issues such as splitting wood and leaving large holes which need to be filled with wood filler are common with finish guns . They can be used for a variety of minor household projects, repairs and crafts.

When To Use A Finish Nailer

The finish nailer has more versatility than a brad nailer. Due to the type of nail it uses it does not perform as well on thin or delicate wood. Look at the materials you are using in the project and a make logical choice as to which gun will be a better fit for your project. The last thing you want is damaged wood, by firing to big of a fastener and having to replace the damaged piece.

A finish nail gun also has stronger holding power, which makes it ideal for attaching heavy trim and large pieces of wood together. In the case of baseboards, cabinetry, and wide crown molding this is a perfect tool. The brad is likely not to hold these type of heavier pieces in position for long. A finish nail gives a much stronger hold between larger piece of wood and the structure your nailing to. If your looking to learn more about using a finish nail gun than this will be perfect.

Using The Right Nail Gun

Most of the time staplers and brad nailers can be used on furniture, cabinets and crafts due to the smaller holes and less impact. Finish nailers work great on things like baseboard, crown moulding and similar trim. For many it’s just a preference, and they might use the guns differently. It’s better to use a stronger nail and have your project more secure (as long as it doesn’t split ). You dont want smaller, weaker nail to have come apart down the road. It’s just as important to use the right gun as it is to use the right brads and nails.

When first using a nail gun it’s better to learn on a smaller sized gun. When you get the hang of it than move up the line to the bigger and more powerful nail guns like framing guns. To learn more about these heavy duty nailers check out this extensive post on framing nail guns.

A brad nailer is a great first gun, a good gun to learn on and get the feel although just as dangerous. Safety is crucial when using these tools as one wrong move can be fatal. Hopefully this helps clear up any questions you may have had on these two types of nail guns. Rest assure, next time you have to decide, brad nailer vs finishing nailer you’ll make a confident choice.




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