What is a Brad Nailer and How to Use It?

By The Shower Drapes | Blog

What is a Brad Nailer and How to Use It
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The brad nailer is a smaller version of the standard finish nailer. People use it to attach small decorative strips and moldings to carpentry projects. Since brad nailers are thinner than finish nailers, people often use them where a typical finish nailer can split the trim piece while driving the nail.

Therefore, the two tools are generally considered to be complementary rather than mutually independent. Although there are more applications for a surface nailer, brad nailers are very convenient for joining thin strips and delicate finishes.

However, be aware that twists and turns can be challenging to pass through some stiff and artificial wood products, such as plywood or MDF or Medium Density Fiberboard.

What Is a Brad Nailer?

A brad nail gun is an optimized nailer for small or detailed wooden applications, such as trimming, molding, fittings, and several leisure activities and project work. Brad clasps are supposed to fire brads, which are practically a thin clasp, perfect for connecting flexible wood trimmings.

The nailer used in the brad nailer is made of 18-gauge wire. It is much thinner than the regular 15 and 16 pins used for pneumatic or battery-powered cordless 16-Gauge finish nailers. The head of the nail is also fragile, and when the nail falls under the surface of the appliance, the nail hole becomes smaller.

It means that fewer holes need to be filled with a wood trowel before the piece is finished, and in many cases, it may not be necessary to fill them.

The length of the brads usually ranges from 5/8 inch to 1-1/2 inch. Due to their short length and small diameter, they do not have the strength to hold large dowels or wood screws.

Applicability, where you can use a brad nailer, is limited to tiny trim parts.

Brad Nailer Styles

Most nailers are pneumatic, meaning they need a hose connected to an air compressor to power the tools. However, some manufacturers are beginning to see cordless nailer benefits.

It combines batteries and a compressor. The air reservoir provides the ability of the device to drive a brad nailer into the wood.

Likewise, until recently, straight clamps were used in most curved nailers. In other words, the magazine holding the nail clipper is at a right-angle vertical to the drive cylinder.

However, some manufacturers have started to provide bevel nailers that are easier to install in narrow spaces. Make sure no matter what style you choose; you can find the right type of brads in your nailer. It would help if you compare the varieties to get the best one that fulfills your priorities.


Compared to farming or peephole nailers, brad nailers have generally been considered a reasonably safe tool as they are much smaller, but that does not mean they do not cause any harm.

It would be best to take standard precautions with any other power tools as well as a brad nailer. Wear goggles, keep loose clothing away from the work surface, and wear earplugs or additional hearing protection in a confined environment with loud noises.

A brad nailer does not use too much-compressed air, so it does not make much noise compared to other nailers. A small compressor usually supplies enough compressed air to power the tool efficiently.

Usage Tips

As mentioned earlier, brad nailers are usually used when small or thin decorative plates or strips need to be attached to an assembly. Using a finish nailer with gauge nails may cause the board to break. But if the brad nailer is placed too close to the board's end or edge, it will fail.

A better method is to keep fastening the brad nailer to the board to prevent the ends from cracking. Each type of wood has different splitting characteristics.

Still, if you have little experience with every kind of wood and wood thickness, this will give you a rough idea of ​​what can be processed to the final particle size blank.

Also, because brad nailers are too thin, you may encounter nails that do not correctly bind into the appliance. It is a common issue with brad nailers.

It is much more difficult to hammer a brad into an appliance with a hammer and nail than with a standard finish nailer. You will quickly find that the crank under the hammerhead is very easy to bend.

The brad also tends to deflect from the wood's knot, causing a perfectly aimed brad to throw out a piece of trimmed side.

Rather than trying to cut or nail a blown-out brad that is portruding, it is smarter to remove it. When you want to pull out a brad, please do not use a hammer or crowbar to pull it out, but try to use this convenient tip to remove the nail easily. This technique is especially useful with lightweight brads.

You can use a brad nailer to install shower curtains or to hang shower curtain hooks.


With a brad nailer, you can multitask, but you need to understand how to use it. Hopefully, this beginner's guide will provide you with basic knowledge of using a brad nailer and gaining confidence in using this valuable tool.

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