11 Best Framing Nailers of 2020 | Buyer’s Guide and Reviews

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What’s so common between hammering nails by yourself and traveling through space? 

Time slows down drastically when we’re doing either of these tasks!

Let’s face it; it’s harder to find a task more boring than hammering nails by yourself than actually completing the job willingly. A few things are just better left to the machines, aren’t they?

This is where framing nailers come handy, as these tools are quite efficient at shooting nails quickly and accurately, making our jobs a lot easier. However, we all wish that finding an ideal framing nailer that satisfies our needs without crossing the budget was just as easy.

So if you’re one of those who still haven’t found a framing nailer that fits these criteria perfectly, we might just have what you need. We’ve handpicked some of the best-value and highest-rated products in the market right now, only for you.

Now without any further ado, let’s get straight down to business!

Best Framing Nailers

  1. Freeman PFR2190 Framing Nailer

Starting the list with our topmost best-value recommendation, the Freeman PFR2190 Framing Nailer makes an ideal tool for beginners with limited expectations. The USP of this surprisingly low-priced product is its anti-dry fire feature, which raises its efficiency by a great deal. Let’s dive deep into its core features.

Sale
Freeman PFR2190 Pneumatic 21 Degree 3-1/2" Full Round Head Framing...
  • Nailed it: This 21 degree Pneumatic framing nailer...
  • Versatile and powerful: the framing nailer...

Why did we like it?

Despite being the first product on our list, we wouldn’t claim that it is the most advanced tool we could find that offers a wide array of cutting-edge features. No, this product instead meets the basic requirements of an ideal framing nailer. Nonetheless, what’s attractive is how reasonably priced it is.

Now, what makes an ideal framing nailer? Unarguably the versatile types of nailhead, nail length, and nail head collation that it supports. On that note, this tool stands eligible to support the standard 21-degree collated nails that are between the length of 2-3.5 inches. So it’s safe to say that this tool doesn’t disappoint.

Nonetheless, we were surprised to find out that it comes equipped with an anti-dry fire technology and a flexible air exhaust. This enhances its value by a great deal and lessens its chances of being inflicted by damage. As a bonus, it also features an ergonomic grip that makes it easy to use for a longer time. 

What could have been better?

We’re a little upset that this product doesn’t come along with an actuation mode detector. Although its interchangeable trigger seems to be compensating for it a little, most of its key competitors are setting the bar high by enabling an actuation mode. So this product may somewhat fall behind when it comes to user convenience.

Pros
  • Exceptionally low-priced
  • Anti-dry fire mechanism included
  • Adjustable ventilation feature
  • Ergonomic grip
Cons
  • Lacks an actuation mode
  1. Paslode CF325Li Framing Nailer

Paslode Tools Inc. is the brand that can be blindly trusted when it comes to advanced innovations that make our jobs easier. We’ve recently tested the Paslode CF325Li Framing Nailer, and we’re delighted with how simple and convenient it is to use. Let’s have an inside scoop of what it has to offer.

Why did we like it?

Here’s a little trivia for the professionals- the CF325Li unit is an upgraded version of the classic Paslode 905600 framing nailer. And likewise, this tool brings a wide array of improved features along with it, which altogether provides a very satisfying user experience. Apart from an advanced fuel canister, it also offers a decent battery life that entirely saves us from the hassle of charging it frequently. 

Moreover, it takes around 90 minutes to be appropriately charged and can push up to a maximum of 9,000 nails without being drained out of battery. An advantage that it has over the Freeman unit is that it can support 30-degree angled collated nails, whereas the other supports 21-degree nails only. 

This product generally offers numerous advanced features such as a sturdy rafter hook, an advanced tool-free depth adjustment, and a compact and lightweight body. So if you’re a professional who can manage to cross their budget by a little to avail of high-end products, give this one a try.

What could have been better?

Despite its excellent features, this product comes with high operating costs. Moreover, as we had mentioned earlier, this product is already a tad expensive. This makes it a little less unconventional, as most of us are always looking for the best value under the lowest price.

Pros
  • Powerful and durable
  • Long-lasting battery life
  • Strong rafter hook
  • Comfortable grip
Cons
  • High operating costs
  1. Numax SFR2190 Framing Nailer

No other brand prioritizes user convenience better than Numax, and that’s the reason why it’s usually the first choice of professionals. The new Numax SFR2190 unit is one of the most ergonomically designed products we’ve tested by far, and we can’t wait to share our experience with you.

Sale
NuMax SFR2190 Pneumatic 21 Degree 3-1/2" Full Round Head Framing...
  • Nailed It: This 21 degree pneumatic framing nailer...
  • Versatile and Powerful: The framing nailer...

Why did we like it?

Feature-wise, the Numax SFR2190 isn’t any less than our first recommendation, the Freeman PFR2190 framing nailer. Both of them are more or less similarly efficient and are even almost the same in size and weight. However, the most significant advantage here is that the Numax SFR2190 comes even cheaper than the PFR2190, so you can guess how affordable it is.

Now coming to the features, the Numax unit offers an ergonomic non-slip grip that prevents it from hurting the user by accident while it’s being used. Also, its tool-free depth adjustment and anti-dry fire mechanism enables it to offer us higher efficiency. It also provides a standard air ventilation mechanism and a no-mar tip that helps in extending its durability.

Similar to the Freeman unit, it supports 21-degree round collated nails that are around 2 inches to 3.5 inches long. So, overall, it’s one of those standard tools you can consider if both your budget and expectations are limited.

What could have been better?

The main reason why this unit is cheaper than its competitor Freeman PFR2190 unit is that it comes with a limited 1 year warranty period. On the other hand, the Freeman product comes with a 7 year warranty period. Moreover, it also lacks an actuation mode, which makes it a little less attractive.

Pros
  • Meager price range
  • Tool-free depth adjustment
  • Sturdy frame
  • Anti-dry fire mechanism
Cons
  • The warranty period is unsatisfactory
  • Lacks an actuation mode
  1. Hitachi NR90AES1 Pneumatic Framing Nailer

If you’ve had even the least experience in appliance-shopping, the chances are that you’re still familiar with the goodwill of the world-class brand Hitachi. We were too excited to test the Hitachi NR90AES1 unit personally, and we must say that its performance is second to none.

Tommaso Siena - Shimano Tourney Gravel Adventure Bike with Disc...
  • DURABLE & RELIABLE: Aluminum Compact Frame...
  • POWERFUL PEFORMANCE & SPEED: 3x7 Shimano Tourney...

Why did we like it?

Before we begin, this isn’t one of the meager-priced framing nailers that fulfill your basic requirements. No, this one is a little more expensive than that, but believe us, you won’t regret spending a single extra buck on this product. And that’s because it somewhat fulfills all the needs that the Freeman and Numax framing nailers have failed to address.

To begin with, this product features an advanced actuation mode, which makes it an instant favorite for the professionals. Thanks to this feature, switching from the sequential mode to the bump mode is 10x times simple with the Hitachi framing nailer. Moreover, unlike the Freeman unit, this product offers a tool-free jam clearing that raises its user convenience by a great deal.

The user-convenience and the high-powered performance of this product combine to reduce the average time consumed to shoot nails and frame an object. As a bonus, this product has the upper hand in comparison with the Numax SFR2190 unit, mainly because it comes with a 5-year warranty period.

What could have been better?

Nonetheless, there are a few grounds where both the Freeman PFR2190 and the Numax SFR2190 beat this unit. For instance, unlike the former products, this unit lacks an adjustable air exhaust, a no-mar tip, and an anti-dry feature mechanism, which was a little surprising and upsetting to find out.

Pros
  • Tool-free depth adjustment
  • Includes an actuation mode
  • Gets the job done quicker
  • 5 year warranty period
Cons
  • Lacks an anti-dry fire mechanism
  • No ventilation system
  1. Bostitch F21PL Framing Nailer

As we’re already 4 products deep into this list, it’s the right time to introduce you to something out of the box. Speaking of which, the Bostitch F21PL framing nailer is one of the best-looking and most versatile products we’ve tested till now. Let’s get down to its nitty-gritty and find out why we’re so excited about this product.

BOSTITCH Framing Nailer, Round Head, 1-1/2-Inch to 3-1/2-Inch (F21PL)
  • Compressor/Air Tool Features: Fastener...
  • 2 nailers in one: includes 2 quick change nose...

Why did we like it?

First things first, this product gives us the best of both worlds. Apart from being one of the highest-rated framing nailers, this product also makes a great positive placement nailer. Talk about providing the best values under a fair price; no other brand matches the versatility that Bostitch is offering us via the F21PL unit.

Thanks to the positive placement nailing feature, this product comes very handy for the professionals whose regular jobs involve nailing metal connectors. This product can quickly nail the connectors under a shorter time, as the positive placement tip reaches the connector holes with precision. 

Similar to the Freeman PFR2190 unit, this product also comes with an extended 7-year warranty period, which itself speaks for the value this brand offers. Last but not least, it also comes packed with all the good stuff, by which we mean an adjustable rafter hook, a tool-free jam clearing and depth selection. 

What could have been better?

Similar to the Numax SFR2190 unit, this product also does not feature an actuation mode. This way, it becomes a little challenging to switch between the sequential and bump modes. Moreover, the manufacturers should try including an anti-dry fire mechanism to enhance the performance of this product.

Pros
  • Positive placement nailer
  • Advanced rafter hook
  • 7-year warranty period
  • Tool-free depth selection included
Cons
  • Doesn’t feature an actuation mode
  • Lacks an anti-dry fire tech
  1. Dewalt DCN692B Framing Nailer

While talking about brands that manufacture exceptional professional tools, we cannot afford to miss out on Dewalt Tools Co. Its all-new DCN692B framing nailer is one of the most powerful tools we’ve tested by far. This groundbreaking 20V Max framing nailer is something to look out for if you’re searching for tools that guarantee high accuracy. 

DEWALT DCN692B 20V Max Cordless 30° Paper Collated Framing Nailer
  • Brushless motor and engine design provides the...
  • Sequential or bump operating modes

Why did we like it?

This product initially gains an advantage over its competitors with its one-of-a-kind brushless motor, which is nonetheless Dewalt’s trademark motor setting. This way, this tool offers us higher accuracy and efficiency that helps in driving nails smoothly. This tool also comes with 11 favorable clicking positions to enhance its flexibility, which is one of the most convenient driving depth adjustment settings we’ve come across by far.

This framing nailer supports nails that are around 2-3.5 inches in length, and we feel that it’s quite similar to the capabilities of its main competitor Freeman PFR2190. Nevertheless, the Dewalt framing nailer comes with a more advanced jam clearing setting that gives it the upper hand. Moreover, we’re quite impressed with the battery life that allows us to shoot an average of 500 nails within a single charge.

Not to forget, this product also offers the additional standard features such as a swiveling rafter hook that enhances its durability by a great deal. Also, it comes with a trailblazing trigger lock that ensures the safety of this tool when it isn’t being used. 

What could have been better?

Although this product sets the bar higher for user convenience, we’re not entirely satisfied with its speed. Compared to the PFR2190, the bump mode of this product consumes longer time to get the job done. Also, while using the sequential mode, we’ve found out the motor consumes a fair amount of time to increase the thrust of the flywheel before every single shot. 

Pros
  • Trademarked brushless motor
  • Impressive battery life
  • Highly convenient for users
  • Trigger lock for safety
Cons
  • Unsatisfactory speed
  1. Bostitch MCN-150 Strapshot Metal Connector Nailer

Globally-acclaimed tools brand Bostitch returns in our list with another addition to its framing nailer range, the MCN-150 Strapshot unit. After testing this product personally, we can say that it features one of the most efficient anti-jamming settings that makes it extremely user-friendly and convenient. Let’s check out what more this tool has to offer.

BOSTITCH Metal Connector Nailer, 1-1/2-Inch (MCN150)
  • Exposed nail tip places fastener point directly...
  • Drives 1 1/2 inch straps hot fasteners as well as...

Why did we like it?

First things first, the goodwill of Bostitch itself speaks for the quality of this tool. Likewise, the MCN-150 Strapshot unit sets higher standards for framing nails in tight areas. Similar to its predecessor Bostitch F21PL unit, this product allows us to operate it on metal connectors. Here, this product gets an instant advantage over most of its competitors, such as the Dewalt DCN692B unit.

We have to mention how compact and lightweight it is, but not even for a moment should anyone underestimate its efficiency for its size. This tool comes equipped with a 35-degree magazine that enables it to reach tight and hard-to-reach areas with precision. Moreover, the Bostitch MCN-150 supports paper collated nails, which isn’t the case with its competitor, the Freeman PFR2190 unit.

Now coming to its additional features, this product features an adjustable air exhaust that helps in safeguarding the motor from overheating issues. It also comes with an anti-jam clearing feature, similar to the Dewalt DCN692B unit. Again, similar to the Freeman PFR2190 unit, this product comes along with an extended 7-year warranty period. However, the cream of the crop here is that the Bostitch MCN-150 unit offers these features at a comparatively low price, which makes it a tool that you must look out for.

What could have been better?

While testing this product, we encountered a significant problem, i.e., the magazine isn’t capable of holding more than 29 nails, which gives it a considerable disadvantage against its key competitors. Plus, this product comes along with an anti-jam feature, which unfortunately locks the device at less than 5 nails. 

Pros
  • Compact and lightweight
  • Supports paper-collated nails
  • Air exhaust feature
  • Meager price
Cons
  • The magazine can only hold 29 nails
  1. PowRyte 18 Gauge AIr Brad Framing Nailer

We came across the PowRyte 18B Gauge Air Brad unit while searching for low-priced tools that can satisfy our basic requirements. We must say that it’s an absolute best-value framing nailer that can be a deal-breaker for the bargain hunters out there. Although it isn’t the most efficient framing nailer we’ve come across, it still offers decent performance.

PowRyte 18 Gauge Air Brad Nailer with Tool-Free Jam Release Mechanism...
  • Only 2.1 lbs, lightweight and well-balanced making...
  • Tool-free jam release mechanism for easy nail...

Why did we like it?

Initially, this tool appears to be one of those standard pneumatic nailers you’ll find in the market. However, it features an impressive operating pressure of 60-110 PSI, making it quite a powerful device at this price range. On top of that, it is one of the most ergonomically designed tools we’ve tested, which makes it an ideal choice for beginners and buyers who are exploring tools for personal use.

Now, the dimensions and weight of the tool are fundamental, when it comes to determining the efficiency of an ideal framing nailer. On that note, this product features a very compact frame and a lightweight body, making it very easy to carry around and use for a long time. It also comes with a non-slip handle that safeguards the user from being injured while working.

We have to mention that unlike its competitor, the Bostitch MCN-150 unit, its wide magazine has the capacity to hold up to 100 nails at one time, that too, angled at 45 degrees. We’ve also found its anti-jam clearing feature to be smoother than the MCN-150, which unarguably gives it the upper hand.

What could have been better?

Unfortunately, accuracy is a big issue with the PowRyte 18B Gauge Air Brad unit. Simply put, we’ve noticed that the tool sometimes misfires, which can be a potential safety hazard. Apart from that, we’re also upset about its incapability of functioning well with long nails. This way, the usability of this tool becomes quite limited.

Pros
  • Compact and lightweight body
  • 360-degree air exhaust feature
  • Can hold up to 100 nails at a time
  • Very low-priced
Cons
  • Chances of misfiring
  • Incapable of shooting long nails properly
  1. Senco FramePro 602 Clipped Head Nailer

Although Senco is considerably a new entrant in the power tools market, this brand has been making waves with its trailblazing innovations. The Senco FramePro 602 Clipped Head Nailer comes with an exceptional dual trigger mode, making it one of the best value-for-money tools in the market currently. Let’s check out its core features!

Senco FramePro 602 Full Round Head Sequential Nailer
  • Drives 2- to 3-1/2-inch smooth shank nails...
  • Sawtooth safety that digs in for precision...

Why did we like it?

Speaking of dimensions, neither is this tool too big or too small, which is good enough for us. Plus, it weighs somewhat 9 pounds and delivers the performance level one can expect from a heavy-duty nailer. Due to this, we feel that it can give fierce competition to big names such as Dewalt and Bostitch. 

This product supports nails that are up to 3.5 inches long and angled at 34 degrees, which is quite common amongst heavy-duty nailers. However, this tool offers an operating power of 70-120 PSI, which is a little higher than the PowRyte 18 Gauge unit.

Nonetheless, as we mentioned earlier, the USP of this product is its dual trigger mode, making it more convenient than the PFR2190. To break it down, the dual trigger mode enables the users to operate this tool in two different modes, such as contact and sequential modes, for distinctive purposes. 

Now, the dual trigger feature also enhances the speed and accuracy of this tool up a notch, which is probably the secret behind its astounding performance. Moreover, its magazine can hold up to 65 nails at a time, which makes it more preferable than the MCN-150. 

What could have been better?

Although it’s popular as a heavy-duty tool, we believe that 9 pounds are a little heavy for a framing nailer. And that’s mainly because its key competitors Freeman and Bostitch tools are comparatively lighter than this product. Apart from that, this product doesn’t give us a lot of room to complain about.

Pros
  • Dual trigger mode
  • Heavy-duty performance
  • Can hold up to 65 nails
  • User-friendly product
Cons
  • A little heavy
  1. Porter-Cable FR350B Full Round Framing Nailer

Porter-Cable is one of those brands that’s quite popular in every household by now. We’ve recently tested its FR350B Full Round Framing Nailer, and we’re quite impressed to acknowledge how much power it can drive despite its compact size. If you’re searching for a decent option under a meager budget that wouldn’t disappoint, we couldn’t have a better suggestion. 

PORTER-CABLE Framing Nailer, Full Round, 3-1/2-Inch, Tool Only...
  • Lightweight at just 7.3 pounds
  • Power to drive nails up to 3-1/2-inch by...

Why did we like it?

Starting with its frame, the dimensions and weight of this tool seem ideal for long-term usage, without causing any fatigue to our arms. Based on these grounds, this tool appears to be more of a preferable option to us than the Senco Framepro 601 unit. 

When it comes to magazine capacity, this tool gives a tight competition to the Bostitch units by holding up to 60 nails at once. This product also supports nails between the length of 2 to 3.5 inches, which is the standard criteria to qualify as a heavy-duty framing nailer. 

Well, yes, this device doesn’t feature an anti-dry fire mechanism like its key competitors. However, it comes with a one-of-a-kind low nail indicator that does not only compensate for it, but also enhances its efficiency by a great deal. Not to forget, this product can drive up to a maximum OP of 140 PSI, which is the highest we’ve come across by far. 

However, we do not recommend the users to push up to 140 PSI every time, as it may cause the device to malfunction.

What could have been better?

To begin with, we’ve noticed that it lacks an air exhaust feature, which gives it a thumbs down if compared to most of our other recommendations. Furthermore, we’ve seen that it doesn’t support paper collated nails, so its usability is basically limited to plastic collated nails.

Pros
  • Best value for money
  • Compact and ultralight body
  • Dual trigger mode
  • Rafter hook feature
Cons
  • Does not feature an air exhaust
  • Works only with plastic collated nails
  1. Surebonder 9772 Pneumatic Framing Nailer

The ultimate recommendation on our list is none other than the Surebonder 9772 Pneumatic Framing Nailer, one of the best-selling beginner nailers in the market. The main feature that had our attention from the beginning is its exceptional safety setting. Let’s explore what more this product has to offer, which makes it a worthy recommendation to consider.

Why did we like it?

Professionals mainly prefer this product due to its superior durability. Simply put, this product features a sturdy aluminum frame that prevents it from being damaged easily. Furthermore, it also comes with a rubber grip handle, which makes it very easy and comfortable to hold. On top of that, its lightweight body makes it even more convenient for long-term usage.

This tool can push up to a maximum operating pressure of 100 PSI, which itself speaks for its power and performance. Due to this, the product stands eligible for being used on wooden materials. However, we’re not very sure about its efficiency on metal connectors. 

What we’ve liked about this product is that it’s magazine can hold up to 75 nails, which tops the capacity of the Senco Framepro unit. Also, its speed and accuracy are quite satisfactory, and so is it’s battery life. 

What could have been better?

Initially, when we were testing this product, we faced some difficulties while getting accustomed to its depth adjustments. We’re hoping that Surebonder makes necessary modifications to simplify the depth adjustments so that beginners can use it with ease.

Pros
  • Features a selective trigger mode
  • Ideal to be operated on engineered woods
  • High safety to prevent accidental firing
  • Compact and ultralight body
Cons
  • Depth adjustments are complicated

Framing Nailer Buyer’s Guide 

How many of us can honestly tell which is a perfect framing nailer, and which isn’t? Not many, because hardly a few understand what it takes for this tool to nail the job, if you excuse the pun. 

And that’s why we’ve included this brief buyer’s guide so that you can acknowledge the essential features that you must double-check while buying one of these products. 

Dimensions and weight

You mustn’t forget that it’s handheld equipment, at the end of the day. Thus, it must be easy to hold and carry around. Otherwise, your arms will be fatigued if you use it for a long time. So, make sure that the product you’re buying features a compact and lightweight frame.

Nail type and collation

We wish there were only one specific type of nail, but unfortunately, there isn’t. There are many types and collations, such as round-headed/clip-headed nails, plastic collated/paper collated nails, and so on. Luckily, various brands are offering framing nailer support numerous types of nails, which extends its versatility by a great deal.

Actuation mode

What good is a power tool that doesn’t have room for flexibility? The actuation mode feature helps in delivering a convenient user experience by making it easier to switch from bump modes to sequential modes. Now you can buy a framing nailer without an actuation if you’re planning to use it for personal tasks. But if you’re a professional, it’s a must-have. 

Depth adjustment

Unlike hammers, these machines require being adjusted as per the nail lengths to deliver a satisfying performance. There are numerous tools out there that don’t work along with long nails, which can be a barrier for professionals. 

Clear jamming

As this machine shoots many nails at once, frequent interference or jamming is a common issue one can suffer from. On that note, various products feature advanced anti-jamming settings that help in smoothing the process.

Verdict

Hammering nails by yourself is unnecessarily time-consuming and stressful, and there’s no argument against it. However, having your own framing nailer does not only save you from this hassle, but also guarantees higher accuracy and precision than our bare hands (obviously!). 

Nevertheless, it has become tougher to find an ideal framing nailer, considering how many brands are launching new variants on the daily. And what’s even worse is that the product info is too less in case of framing nailers, which makes it harder for the customers to distinguish an efficient nailer from an average product.

On that note, we hope that our top 11 recommendations could be of any help to you. We’ll take your leave now, but we promise to return soon with similar guides to help you make a smart purchase.

Till then, stay connected.

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