Sunday, August 14, 2011

Staple diet

To secret nail a floor you need a nail gun specifically designed for that type of work.  In fact, it’s not a nail gun at all, but an air powered stapler (that must be why they call it a nail gun?) that fires a 45mm staple into hardwood at a 45 degree angle.  You hook the device up to a compressor and whack a white button on the top of the tool with a rubber mallet – pulling the boards together and firing off the staple at 100psi.  In fact, these tools are so good there's little need to clamp the boards, the sheer impact of the staple closes most gaps.

Floor nailer in action

So, the big question – whether to buy, hire or borrow a nail gun that does one thing and one thing only.  In case you’re wondering, no, they will not fire any other type of nail at any other angle – they just “do” staples at 45 degrees.
It would seem that the tool of choice is a Paslode – at around $600 – a big hit for one floor.  Option two was to hire, at around $290 for a week – but what if I didn’t get it done in one week?  Further, I’d have to hire it in Canberra as the local hire shop doesn’t have any on their books.

The third option was to buy a cheap one, which appear on EBay and the like for under $200.  I emailed a couple of EBay vendors asking about warranty and the like but had no reply.  So that cruelled that option for me.

Then I came across a forth alternative – buy a fully reconditioned unit from MS Tools for under $300.  With a 12 month, trade use warranty, Sydney support and friendly, responsive service I figured I had little to loose and went ahead.

So, how did it perform….well I’m glad you asked.  I fired around 2,000 45mm staples into hardwood flooring over 6 days.  During that time there were two hiccoughs.  The first was when I missed the tool with the mallet and hit my shin, dropped the hammer and nearly fell through the floor (2 weeks later I still have the bruise).  The second was when the nailer fired two staples instead of one.  This was easily rectified by tightening a couple of bolts around the frog – no drama, just routine maintenance.

So, with 20 square metres to go I’m glad I purchased the MS Tools nail gun.  I’m not sure what I’ll do with it when I’m finished – perhaps sell it and recoup some of the money (let me know if you’re interested J)

No comments:

Post a Comment