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Thread: 23 Gauge Air Pin Nailer - Harbor Freight Partial Review

  1. #1

    23 Gauge Air Pin Nailer - Harbor Freight Partial Review

    I had a project that required attaching molding that was 1/4 x 1/4 cove molding on the top and bottom edges of all for sides plus another build up molding.

    The Project:
    Hall Table.jpg

    The Nailer:
    Pin Nailer.jpg

    I decided this was a great project to try out a pin nailer, so I picked up the Harbor Freight model for $26.99 plus a box of 5/8" 23 Guage pins for $4.49. I figured for about $32.00 it was worth a try.

    Criteria used to select Pin Nailer. I let me estimated frequency of use dictate what I should look at.

    Price: $32.00 for Nailer and box of pins. About the cost of one clamp .

    Frequency of use: I do 1-3 projects a year of which, I can see myself using this product maybe a couple of times per year. I just could not justify buying a PC or name brand gun in this product category due to my projected low use. I have been doing projects for six years now and this is the first time that I had moldings that were too small for my brad nailer. This is really a specialty product.

    Results: I turned my pancake air compressor down to 90 psi and started nailing. The product performed as expected, it shot pins into the wood . I did not have any jams in the two loadings of pins that I used. Again this was a small project.

    Other: I could hear a very small amount of pressure leaking from the rear of the gun. The leak did not affect the operation nor did it effect my compressor which only kicked on once in the hour that I was using it between applying glue and fitting the pieces.

    Overall I am happy with the purchase and would recommend it to a home hobbyist to save time.

    Drawbacks: It will only shoot up to a max of 1" pins. I did a few test shots and found that it would leave a sleight dimple in softwood IE pine, so that should be considered, but I would think a small piece of bike inter-tub would take care of that should it become an issue for me in the future. This project was using oak molding.

    Thanks for reading and happy tool hunting.

    Product comes with a 1 year warranty. I have a local Harbor Freight so I was able to pickup it off off the shelf and did not have any shipping involved.

    Sam Brooks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Monroe, MI
    I was just using mine today to shoot some 5/8" pins into maple--worked great. I don't notice an air leak on mine. I'd check the fitting to see if either that is leaking or if it is leaking where the fitting threads into the gun. If its the latter you should be able to fix it with some pipe thread tape. Fitting leaks seem to be pretty common based on mine which come from a variety of sources.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Thurmont, MD
    I have the harbor freight 18 guage and I have put up molding in 3 rooms of our house with it. I think it was like $30 or $40 on sale. I have had one jam ever and I think that is because I nailed and hit a screw top which cause the nail to actually come back up the nail hole and make a "U" inside the tip.

    HF has a few things that really do an ok job. I have the $5 a set pipe clamps and use them all the time too.


  4. #4
    I just wanted to get the project done. Next time I pull it out, I will put some tape on the rear connector. I did use tape on the adapter.

    Thanks for the Comments.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    The Hartland of Michigan
    Air leaks? My 18 gauge HF gun leaks by the O-ring that's on the piston. I've found the O-rings to be cheaply made with ridges around the outside. Hence, not the best seal. I have yet to find the right replacement size anywhere. I ended up using 3 thinner O-rings stacked together.
    Other than that, it's not a bad gun.
    Never, under any circumstances, consume a laxative and sleeping pill, on the same night

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    I've been using my HF pin nailer for about 4 months now. Have shot about 1800 pins. This is my second try with one. I returned my first that clearly was badly damaged when I bought it. The second one has worked perfectly and cost $16 on sale.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Independence, MO, USA.

    You might list the model number of it. This thread may be found a couple years from now, and they currently have two models. One has a trigger safety, and the other has a bump safety (tends to leave more dents with the later).

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Stanwood, WA
    My experiences with HF pneumatics has been fabulous. Everything I have bought from them that uses air has been next to flawless (in some cases with a slight modification). For the price I find them hard to beat especially for folks who use them less frequently than professionals which includes a lot of Creekers!

    (2) 18 gauge brad nailers
    (1) pin nailer
    (1) die grinder

    "Everything is better with Inlay or Marquetry!"

  9. #9
    The 23 Gauge Air Pin is Model 97526

    On the outside of the box it shows 97526/95882. This does not have have the bump safety.


    Last edited by Samuel Brooks; 11-11-2008 at 6:18 AM. Reason: So the model# would show in the thread

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Thurmont, MD
    I'll post the model of my 18 Gauge nailer tomorrow when I get in the shop.

    *Bump Safety Denting Tip*
    Dip the tip into "tool handle dip" which forms a rubbery coating and prevents denting. I don't remember what it is called exactly, but it is cheap and can be found at the "Blue Borg" as I think you guys like to say. I haven't done this yet with mine, but it is really supposed to help.


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