View Full Version : Flooring Nailer ?????

Mike Cutler
08-02-2008, 6:54 PM
Hey folks.

I'm starting to close in on the house restoration project I've been working on.
Long story short, a very slow leaking toilet flange eventually resulted in me gutting the back 1/4 of our first floor to the studs and joists, to remodel the bathroom and the back porch entry way.

Now it's time to put down the floor. I will be installing BellaWood, Brazilian ebony flooring. Jankra hardness 3 times that of oak and 192% stronger than oak.

BellaWood installation instructions call for nails, not staples. So, I'm looking for recommendations on a pneumatic floor nailer. Tips, tricks and advice most welcome.

Thanks in advance


Tim Morton
08-02-2008, 7:22 PM
are you sure they aren't referring to a staple when they say nailing?

Brian Weick
08-02-2008, 7:34 PM
Bostitch~ expensive, but well worth every dollar , you would have had to have used it to understand what I am saying~ "your work is only as good as the tools you use , results that show up in the end verify that.

Mike Cutler
08-02-2008, 8:02 PM
are you sure they aren't referring to a staple when they say nailing?

Their website states to fasten with "nails". Could be that staples would work also, and they were using "Nail" as a general term.
That's what led me to looking at pneumatic floor nailers. I'll try to give them a call monday.


I'll look at the Bostich lineup. Any particular model, or feature you prefer?

Brian Weick
08-02-2008, 8:15 PM
MIII ~ comes with the adjustable shims for different floor thickness, and the roller field plate gives you a smooth running application for fastening your flooring , flawlessly, you glide the roller down the flooring with your foot which will result in "no" bad but in dents from the head on the nailer from moving from impact point to impact point~ simply the best flooring nailer on the market in my opinion~ 2 thumbs up, and then some.

Craig Summers
08-03-2008, 1:06 AM
are you buying or renting the nailer?

I'm about to put down the bruce plywood gunstock, and i'll rent a nailer. Unless i'm getting into the business, or am going to do a floor in bits & pieces, it might be better to rent. On the other hand, if SWMBO says to buy one......

Matt Meiser
08-03-2008, 8:45 AM
Home Depot rents Bostitch, but the stapler I needed to do my engineered floor is $30/day, and you can't reserve it. I figure it will take me 2 days, plus I'd probably have to pick it up a day early to make sure I got it.

I just bought one on Ebay. My plan is to use it for this job, then resell it. I should pretty easily come out better off than paying what it would have cost to rent and since I've got a 25% Buy It Now Cashback rebate coming, I might even end up with no net cost or a small profit.

Pat Germain
08-03-2008, 9:40 AM
Last month I installed about 400 sq feet of Bellawood mesquite flooring. I used staples. Based on everything I read, the holding power of staples is superior to nails for flooring. When the LL web site says "nails", they are not specifying that you shouldn't use staples. They just use two terms; nails and glue.

I bought a Grizzly flooring stapler which was reasonably priced and worked very well. It's pretty much a Bostich clone. While a Bostich seems to be the industry standard, it's over $700 at the big box stores and I couldn't find one cheaper online.

As Matt pointed out, you can rent a Bostich at Home Depot for about $30 a day. Since I had never installed flooring before, it took me a very long time to install it. I expected this and didn't think renting was a good option. Also, if you rent, be sure to check out the tools ahead of time. I checked at my local rental center and their stapler was beat almost beyond recognition.

Do you have a brad nailer or finish nailer? You will need one of these also for flooring along the walls and in tight areas. You can't use the stapler until you have at least two rows of flooring already in place. You can also glue it along the walls.

When buying staples, I recommend sucking it up and buying the more expensive Bostich fasteners. I did a lot of reading online and found multiple complaints of cheap staples bending and jamming in the stapler. Unfortunately, I could find Bostich staples only in a very large box. I went ahead and bought it. I used only a small percentage of that box, but I also have some other areas of the house where I'll install more flooring. Having the stapler and the Bostich staples readily available will be very handy.

*Helpful hint: Put painter's tape on the sole of the stapler. This will make sure you don't get any scratches on your flooring from the shoe.

Mike Cutler
08-03-2008, 8:08 PM
Thanks for the info folks. I'll try to answer some of the questions. I spent most of today removing and installing more sheetrock, when removing the wall paper was a less than positive experience.

My intent is to purchase one. I have this floor to do, and some others over time. I can rent one, but I like to work at a "controlled pace", and renting one would force me to adopt a schedule. I also expect a learning curve will be included.

I have a finish nailer available to me, so hopefully I'm covered in that respect. If worse comes to worse, I'll set the first few planks by hand.

I'm not really sure I like the "This Old House" phase I'm in. Condo fees are starting to look attractive. ;)

Tom Godley
08-03-2008, 9:20 PM
I had a large bedroom done with with 5" wide Brazilian Cherry - That stuff was hard!

My contractor had problems getting the nails to set in some board because of the hardness.

I would think that a nailer would be able to go through hard wood better than a stapler -- Am I correct on this??

Maybe it would be best to ask to see if you can find someone who has worked with the product. I do not remember what type of gun he was using but he was surprised a the problems he had.

Pat Germain
08-03-2008, 10:26 PM
I would think that a nailer would be able to go through hard wood better than a stapler -- Am I correct on this??

I'm no expert. I can tell you I had to dial my compressor way down for the Grizzly flooring stapler. I first tested it stapling some small pieces to scrap, 3/4" birch plywood. At first, the staples were going right through the mesquite and almost almost all the way through the ply!

Thus, I would say staples are capable of going through anything flooring nails can go through. It's actually pretty amazing. I don't know about the nails, but flooring staples have a resin on them. When punched out of the stapler and into the wood at high speed, the resin gets hot, then sticks like a glue for better holding power.