Paper Vs Plastic | Battle Of Collated Nails

By Todd Fratzel on Product Reviews

Paslode Paper NailsPaper Collated Nails

If you use pnuematic nail guns then you know collated framing nails typically come held together in strips by plastic or paper. Over the years it seems as though the plastic collated nails have dominated the market place with very few manufacturers offering the paper version. However, recent changes by some manufacturers has seen an increase in the use of paper collated nails.

The big question is therefore which is better? Paper or Plastic? I’m not sure I have an answer myself for this debate but we have had some great luck recently using paper collated nails. We recently tested several new pneumatic nailers from Paslode and Duo-Fast which all used paper collated nails. We were pleasantly surprised by the reduced occurrences of jambs and the added benefit of not having small pieces of plastic shooting out of the guns at us.

Paslode NailsAccording to Patrick Talano, Market Manager for Paslode, paper collated nails increase crew productivity thus offsetting any small additional costs associated with buying paper collated nails. Patrick recently wrote an interesting paper, Nails: More Important Than You Thought To The Bottom Line, which provides some insight into this change in attitude about paper collated nails.

So far our experience certainly justifies the idea that paper collated nails are less likely to jamb and therefore an improvement on crew productivity. Which do you use? Paper or Plastic?

About the author

Todd Fratzel

I'm full time builder for a large construction company in New Hampshire. I run their design-build division that specializes in custom homes, commercial design-build projects and sub-divisions. I'm also a licensed civil and structural engineer with extensive experience in civil and structural design and home construction. My hope is that I can share my experience in the home construction, home improvement and home renovation profession with other builders and home owners. I'm also the author of Tool Box Buzz and Today's Green Construction. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions, suggestions or you'd like to inquire about advertising on this site.

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  1. David Mitchell says:

    It seems to me that collated nails are far cheaper than the nearest equivalent regular nails?

    Therefore is there any reason not to buy collated nails whether for use with a nailgun – or to use with a regular hammer?! Just strip the paper and use a hammer.

    Am I mistaken here?

    • Todd Fratzel says:

      Not sure where you’re buying nails, but buying bulk nails by the pound (hand bangers as we like to call them) is way cheaper than collated nails.

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