Ok, firsts I really need to once again thank you for the wonderful advice so far, I surely would have used the wrong sized nail (which I might have gotten away with). But I would have used the wrong nails for sure – and that would have been a costly mistake ! I visited home depot last night and looked into ACQ rated nails – I think they were called Hot-Dipped Galvanized….as usual no one was there to help me – so I am planning on trying again this evening (I couldn’t wait last night….I pick up the kids at daycare…)
Now – my new question. I want to pick up the finish nailer….are there a difference in nailers? I see some say round head nails, split head nails and then finishing nails. I am really confused with all that. When I construct my railing I do not want to see nail heads – I think the original deck was made with finishing nails, at least the few nails I pulled don’t appear to have a head.
The spindles of the railing go straight up and down – on the top is a flat 1x4 (perfect size to sit a beer on). That 1x4 will be nailed straight down into the spindles – as an end product it will be painted white. What is the correct nail to do that job with? I suppose a 2” finishing nail with no head should be good right? Can I buy the Rigid or Porter Cable Finishing Nailer for this job (and is one better than the other)? They are $180 at Home Depot – I am really watching costs on this project and don’t want to buy this if it’s the wrong tool. I planned on a $250 tool budget, and a $100 beer budget – together they beat the estimated contractor labor charge by nearly 10 fold :D so I suppose the price is right if it’s the right tool for the job.
IMO finish nails do not have the holding power required to keep wood from twisting and curling in outdoor projects. I would also be concerned if you have young ones on the deck and they could easily pop out a spindle that is held by finish nails. I would use the big gun loaded with 2 - 2.5" ring shank nails to hold the spindles or you could use the finish nails to hold the wood until the outdoor waterproof glue dries (titebond 3).
I was afraid of that being the answer. Ok then, what is a ring shank? Does that mean a round nail head? So then I need to sink them a bit and kit it with some wood putty prior to painting?
I decided to run over to the HD around me here at work. I picked up 2 3/8 Hot Dipped Galvanized for my framing gun – I suppose I’ll set it to sink the head a tad and then fill it in with wood putty. I just hope these don’t split my wood when I construct the railing.
I saw that you really can’t get a smaller nail rated for ACQ lumber. When this deck was originally built the rotten bastages built it with untreated pine and had a much better selection in terms of fasteners than I am faced with. I thank you for the insight – I will post a picture or two once I get moving on it. I am sure I will have a boat load of more questions.