One tool that has made the construction industry develop even faster is the framing nailer. It has helped construction workers from all around the world tremendously and shortens the time it takes to make a wooden construction immensely compared to the old hammer method. All type of nail guns are used on a daily basis nowadays, meaning workers will have to learn how to use to handle one almost certainly at a point of their career. The things you will need to think about when getting a nail gun are safety, maintenance, and how to properly use that framing nailer.
In this article we’ve covered the basics of using a nailer and have give you some of the best tips & tricks we have up our sleeves. So, let’s get started shall we?
Using A Framing Nailer
There are a few things that you need to cover when getting into the nailing field:
- Which firing method to use
- What nailing method should you use
- Which are the mandatory safety steps to take
Now, let’s get through each of these points one by one…
Framing Nailers Firing Methods
The first firing method you should work your way through is the trigger firing. That is basically firing a nail each time you pull the nailer trigger. It is a very precise method and you can control the speed with which nails are inserted into the wood.
The second firing method is known as the bump firing. It basically consists of you holding the trigger all the time during the nailing. Every time the nailer inserts a nail in the wood it bumps back and every time it falls again on the wooden surface it presses the trigger against your finger and fires again. It is a very tricky method and only more experienced workers should use it. The advantages here are obvious – you will get the job done quicker, especially if you have a lot of nails to put down.
Pro Tip: draw a line through the places you need to place nails when using the bump firing method. That way you will be able to track it with your hand and will be more accurate.
There are a few nailing methods used by professionals, such as:
- Toe nailing
- Through nailing
- Face nailing
Toenailing is when the nail is placed at an angle, 45-degrees to be exact, between the two pieces of wood. The trick here is to be able to line the nail up with the stud and plate so that the nail can go through both of them. The perfect toenailing requires a nail at each side.
Through nailing is a method that gives the strength in framing. Line the stud and shoot a nail in it from under the plate. Using two nails here is also mandatory.
After you’ve nailed the joints you want to be face nailing at a 90 degree angle. Hold the nail gun straightened and push the contact point to the board when nailing.
As with any other tool, there is a list of safety steps that you should always keep in mind and remember well. Knowing how to properly use a nail gun will keep you and the people around you safe from flying nails and harmful incidents. So, let’s go through some of the most important safety tips now:
- Safety glasses are a must here. Any other type of safety equipment is optional but very welcome. Helmets, gloves and anything else that protects your body from harm is something you shouldn’t ignore.
- Always make sure that any damaged parts of your nailer are removed and replaced before you start working with it.
- Always maintain your nailer properly and keep it inspected. If you have to stop mid-work to check something, do it. It is better to postpone work for a bit instead of having something break in your hands.
- Keep your hands and feet as far as possible from the nailing area.
- Keep any wood parts that can move when applying the nailer clamped or as sturdy as possible.
- While maintaining your nailer, always make sure it is disconnected from its air or power supply.
- Never use the nailer in an environment where a spark can ignite wood shavings, dust or other flammable substances.
Do you want to know what it takes to properly maintain your nailer? Check out this article on the topic that we have done where we discuss all the steps you need to go through in order to make your nailer work better and have a longer life.
Can I use a finish nailer for framing?
Yes and no. Finish nailers are used for trim work, as well as panelling, baseboards, and smaller crowns as well as interior mouldings. Those nailers use lighter and shorter nails which aren’t as lengthy as the ones used by framing nailers. Finish nailers can work with only up to 16 gauge nails (up to 2 and a half inches). For some specific jobs you can use a finish nailer for light framing but only temporarily as it won’t be as good for the job.
What’s A Framing Nailer?
Framing nailers are types of air guns that work with nails and are used by carpenters making their life much easier. Those tools basically eliminate the need of a hammer. Framing nailers are best for power-demanding projects, whereas smaller nail guns are used mostly for precision work and aren’t as potent.
If you want to learn more about framing nailers then head over to our ultimate Buyer’s Guide where we’ve covered this topic extensively and have also ranked some of the best nailer models of this year in a top 5 list for you to browse from!
From the firing method to the safety steps you need to take every time you nail, knowing how to use a framing nailer surely isn’t something that you can learn in a day but knowing the process well will improve your work quality and reduce the risk of work-related incidents. Everything else that you will implement in your woodwork job will come with experience and can only be taught through work and time spent on the construction site.