18 Gauge Or 16 Gauge Nailer ? - Tools - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

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Old 09-10-2009, 09:54 PM   #1
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18 gauge or 16 gauge nailer ?

I'm remodeling my M. I. L. 's kitchen and need a nail gun to install a maple valance board and cove molding between top of kitchen cabinets and ceiling. I'd like to buy a 16 gauge finishing nailer thinking it would hold better than 18 gauge nailer. The maple is very hard and I'm worred about cracking. Any ideas? I also don't want to spend more than $130.00, any recomendations? Thanks much!


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Old 09-11-2009, 11:26 AM   #2
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Blu, 18 gauge nails are plenty strong. For trim smaller than your maple, the pro's are starting to use 23 gauge.
Besides an 18 gauge nailer can be used to shoot brads all the way from 2" down to 1/2".

18 Gauge Nailers are frequently on sale at the Big Box stores. nailers less than $130 are pneumatic nailers that need an air compressor to operate. If you do not have a compressor, there are sales that include both the Gun and a small compressor.

18 gauge Nailers without the compressor can be found
in the $100 range and less e.g.



& Stay Safe
.....Bob Lavery

Last edited by PaliBob; 09-11-2009 at 11:27 AM. Reason: sp
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Old 09-11-2009, 05:39 PM   #3
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Mr. Tool Geek

Thanks for your reply, Bob. That decided it for me, and besides that will leave a very small..., well, you know all that. Thanks again!! Sincerely, Bluwolf
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Old 02-16-2015, 11:43 PM   #4
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16 gauge or 18 gauge nail gun

Dear Sir,
What is the difference of 16 gauge and 18 gauge bradder nails? I am looking for a general finish nail gun, but there are 15g, 16g and 18gauge nail gun.
both 16g and 18 gauge guns can shoot up to 50mm, Which nail is bigger? If I want to buy a general finish nail gun, then should I buy 16g or 18g?

Some finish gun can even shoot up to 63mm, and nail plywood panels. Or hand rail of stairs.

I need it for general use, from 10mm thin moulding to panels. I already have a Dewalt 20v battery framming nail gun, I am looking for a battery finish nail gun, Ryobi has 18g and 16g. Just wonder which one should I buy.

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Old 02-17-2015, 01:51 PM   #5
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the higher the number the lighter the gauge of the nail meaning it is thinner metal.

a 16 gauge or 15 gauge nailer is better suited for installing trim that requires more holding power such as hanging doors, baseboard, closet cleats. or for exterior trim that has to withstand seasonal movement of the wood. 18 gauge is better for door casings, crown, wainscotting, chair rail and 1/4 round

23 gauge nails are for micro moldings and cross nailing delicate mitres
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