Harbor Freight Brad Nailer and Brads

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PeteStaehling

Pete
Senior User
I just wanted to weigh in on the HF brad nailer and brads. The HF brads are terrible and the gun jams every 3-10 brads when using them. This seemed to be true for all the various lengths of brads. After switching to Hitachi brads the gun has been perfect, not a single jam. So, buy the gun especially for the low volume shop, but skip the HF brads and buy decent ones.
 

sawman101

Bruce Swanson
Corporate Member
I have Bostitch brad nailers, but I'm looking for an opinion on HF pin nailers, having never had any HF air tools.
 

Jim M.

Woody
Corporate Member
Can't speak on the pin nailers, but I have two of their 11 gauge coil roofing nail guns, they work great. I keep them oiled up and only once is a blue moon do they jam. I use name brand coil nails, learned years ago HF nails are junk, bought some for my PC brad nailer and seems every other one would jam.

Had to laugh, my BIL and I were doing a roof for his mom, he used one of my HF guns all day without a hitch, just before we finished it jammed, he shook his head and called it junk! Go figure.
 

ntboardman

New User
Nick
I have Bostitch brad nailers, but I'm looking for an opinion on HF pin nailers, having never had any HF air tools.
I just recently purchased a HF pin nailer and its not bad. Its like handling a loaded gun since it doesn't have any safety mechanism like a better brand would but it gets the job done nicely!
 

tdukes

New User
Eddie
I have the HF pin nailer and the brad nailer/stapler. The pin nailer works well, but the brad nailer leaves marks. I'm guessing because its also a stapler. I went with a Bostitch for brad nailing.

I also bought their framing nailer when it was on sale + a 20% off coupon. No more than I'll ever use it, it will last me.
 

junquecol

Bruce
User
I own one of the purple pin nailers, along with newer one. Also own 6 n1 framing nailer, which is HEAVY. Built a handicap ramp a few years back for local church. Went thru three boxes of nails (not HF brand) with only two jams. My brad nailer / staple gun has shot down a bunch of 1/4" plywood for vinyl floors, without a problem.
 

PeteStaehling

Pete
Senior User
I have the HF pin nailer and the brad nailer/stapler. The pin nailer works well, but the brad nailer leaves marks. I'm guessing because its also a stapler. I went with a Bostitch for brad nailing.
They sell a brad nailer and a combination brad nailer stapler. To be clear mine isn't the one that is also a stapler. It does not leave the marks that you mention.

They are cheap enough that I recommend that anyone shopping for them buy a separate brad nailer and stapler.
 

njohnston924

Nate
User
Ditto for Eddie's comment. I have both the pin nailer and brad/staple gun. The pin nailer works well for pine and other soft woods, but tried it on some red oak and the pins bent out of whack easily.

I haven't tried HF nails or staples, I still have a couple packs of bostitch nails and Hitachi staples and never had an issue. It does leave marks pretty bad though. I mainly use it for stapling on back panels.
 

farmerbw

Brian
Corporate Member
I've had the pin nailer for several years as well and it's done everything I've asked it to using non-HF pins. I also bought the stapler to attach carpet to a cat tree I built instead of my manual one. It was a time and effort saver and definitely worth the price. I never had any issues with both so I got my moneys worth out of them even if they never work again.

B.
 

JimD

Jim
Senior User
I have a HF framing nailer, flooring nailer/stapler, 15 gauge finish nailer, upholstrey stapler and two narrow crown staplers. The first narrow crown would never drive 1.5 inch staples well but did fine with 3/4. I built a lot of plantation shutters with it. The newer one does fine with the longer staples. The 15 gauge really likes to be oiled but I do not find the HF pneumatics to be worse than my Bostitch and PC pneumatics. They work fine and are great for the money. I occasionally get nails at HF too but usually I do not. I don't find their price for nails to be nearly as good as the tools. DeWalt or other bigger brand fasteners are usually as cheap and a safer bet. My next task will be to put down some prefinished flooring, however. The 2 inch nails I have on hand for the 15 gauge are from HF and have worked well so far so that is what I will use around the edges. I have some cleats, don't remember from where, when I can use the flooring nailer and also some DeWalt staples.

I don't think HF fasteners are consistently bad, at least not in my limited experience, but I usually get other brands because the price difference is not great enough to take the chance.
 
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