Best Framing Nailer Reviews

Woodworking projects inevitably call for lots of nails…

What do you do when the tried-and-true hammer just isn’t man enough for the job? Well, it’s time for a nail gun if you want to get more work done in less time while barely breaking a sweat.

Offering the twin advantages of time and money saved, the modern approach to nailing is hard to beat.

Today, we’ll explore framing nailers having recently looked into brad nailers in some depth. If you need assistance with big and high-volume projects, there really is little substitute for a framing nailer.

Editor's Choice

  • Takes 21-degree nails (2 to 3 ½ inches)
  • 8 ½ pounds
  • 21 x 15 x 6 inches
  • 360 degree adjustable exhaust
  • 1-year limited warranty
Rated as
Budget Friendly

  • Accepts 21-degree nails (2 to 3 ½ inches)
  • 8 pounds
  • 23 x 16 x 6 inches
  • Magnesium housing
  • Driving power to 1050 pounds per square inch
Rated as
Amazon's Choice

  • Accommodates all nails up to 3 ½ inches
  • 7 pounds
  • 23 x 18 x 7 inches
  • Magazine at 22 degrees to drive axis
  • 90-day limited warranty
Rated as

Best Framing Nailers Reviews – Comparison Table

If you’re looking for a nail gun, it’s understandable if you’re overwhelmed by the breadth of choice available. We’re here to make your life easier today and guide you every step of the way through getting a framing nailer for home or the jobsite.

Here’s a snapshot of the 5 framing nailers we’ll look into:

Table of Contents

Main Features
  • Takes 21-degree nails (2 to 3 ½ inches)
  • 8 ½ pounds
  • 21 x 15 x 6 inches
  • 360 degree adjustable exhaust
  • 1-year limited warranty
Rated as

First up in our framing nailer reviews is a fantastic and cost-effective 21-degree nailer from NuMax.

If you’re regularly undertaking projects where a hammer would be too slow and too much effort for you nailing needs, a framing nailer steps think up a notch from the smaller brad nailers we looked at last week.

Coming in with a shower of advantages and not too much customers are griping about, check out the core features of this nifty nailer before we explore it in more depth…

This NuMax framing nailer is a real all-rounder worthy of a place in any serious toolkit. Whether you’re decking or roofing, sheathing or fencing, the SFR2190 is a versatile performer in one powerful package.

With a die-cast aluminum body, this nailer feels much more expensive than it really is. This translates to a heavy-duty nailer that weighs under 9 pounds. Even if you need to use the nailer for extended projects driving thousands of nail, you should find yourself burdened down.

The standard issue black trigger fires out one nail after another. Quick-smart sequential firing comes with the red trigger provided. This is a nice touch and lets you ramp things up if the needs of the project dictate.

The manufacturer recommends 21-degree nails and suggests the plastic-collated variety. This is the type that comes grouped together on little strips. The magazine accommodates nails from 2 inches right on through 3 1/2 –inch beasts so you’re spoiled for choice even for more challenging nailing projects.

Running your air compressor at 70 PSI is perfect for most regular applications. You can run on up to 115 PSI if you need to work with denser and harder materials. The ¼-inch NPT fitting thrown in makes connection a cinch so you’ll be up and running straight out the box as long as you have that compressor in place.

Although this nailer is cut out for aggressive and ambitious projects, you don’t want speed and performance at the expense of a smooth, accurate finish. The no-mar tip keeps your workpiece mercifully dent-free. If you need a bit more holding power, you can easily disable this feature.

As with all the best nailers, the exhaust rotates fully through 360 degrees. This means that whatever angle you’re nudged into with your nailer, your workpiece won’t get belched with fumes and neither will your face.

You’ll be able to tweak the driving depth without any fanfare so you can streamline your work and save even more time on bigger projects.

With wearable parts backed for the first month and a 1-year limited warranty in place, you really can’t ask for too much more at this price point.

Before rounding out with our verdict, check out a summary of the leading advantages and minor drawbacks so you can see at a glance if this nailer makes sense for your workshop…


Why we like it

  • Magnesium body delivers maximum durability without causing fatigue to set in on bigger nailing projects
  • Very compact nailer with a comfortable rubberized grip so you can work for hours and you won’t blister up your hands
  • This nailer is ideal for flooring, fencing and decking so works well in your home or out in the yard
  • Trigger allows for sequential or single firing so match the speed to the application at the flick of a switch
  • Standard mechanism in place to mitigate chance of dry-firing
  • Capped air-filter helps you to keep your nailer free of rust
  • Accepts all 21-degree nails from 2 inches through 3 ½ inches at the upper end
  • Teeth designed so they won’t slip on the workpiece
  • No-mar tip ensures your workpiece remains free of blemishes
  • Hook up to your air hose without needing a third-party connector using ¼-inch fitting provided


If you’re looking for a heavy-duty framing nailer that will return plenty of service at a reasonable price, the NuMax is well worth a place on your shortlist.

Whether you’re a woodworker, a contractor or a home DIY enthusiast, the NuMax SFR2190 is a very flexible performer at an almost unbelievably low price point.

As long as you don’t expect to start using this nailer day in and day out on the job site, you should get plenty of faithful service for a very modest investment. We really can’t recommend this nailer highly enough. It’s a budget model that punches substantially above its weight.


Main Features
  • Accepts 21-degree nails (2 to 3 ½ inches)
  • 8 pounds
  • 23 x 16 x 6 inches
  • Magnesium housing
  • Driving power to 1050 pounds per square inch
Rated as

Since merging with Stanley, you’ll get even more bang for your buck when you buy into Bostitch and this round-head framing nailer comes in the traditional black and yellow livery of the industry heavyweight.

Much like the compact NuMax, this nailer is small and light enough to use for long, unbroken spells without fatigue setting in. Weighing just 8 pounds thanks to the innovative magnesium body, you’ll nevertheless get 1050 pounds per square inch at full clip.

Check out the basic functionality of this framing nailer before we break down how it distinguishes itself in a crowded marketplace…

This Bostitch nailer is proof positive you don’t need to outlay a fortune to get more work done in less time. Most framing nailers offer more or less exactly the same features and output but this neat little round-headed unit sets itself apart in a few important ways…

You’ll get proportionally more power with the Bostitch than with comparable nailers but this doesn’t come at the expense of maneuverability. Despite impressive raw firing power, this nailer is lightweight and nimble.

You get the option of both sequential and bump triggers which widens you scope nicely. A pair of nosepieces means you can optimize your nailer for metal or framing.

The impeccable 7-year warranty is another small but important way the Bostitch elevates itself above the bulk of the competition. This goes some way to show the confidence the manufacturer puts in this nailer. After all, companies don’t serve up guarantees expecting to lose out on the deal.

Now you’ve seen what the Bostitch does differently, how about the normal stuff you’d expect from a framing nailer in this class?

You can use any nails from 2 inches up to 3 ½ inches in size so you should be covered for most reasonable projects. The magazine is substantial enough to hold 60 framing nails or 60 metal connector nails. There’s an indicator so you can see clearly when it’s time to reload.

As with all the best framing nailers, you’ll have a tremendous range of flexibility with the Bostitch. Whether you’re framing or sheathing, roofing or decking, this powerhouse nailer will help you get far more done in a fraction of the time without expending much physical effort.

Being able to adjust the drive depth at the push of a button enables you to further streamline your work on large projects and really hit them hard.

We’ll look now at the chief upsides and drawbacks with this cost-effective framing nailer so you can see whether you fancy giving it a road test.

Why we like it

  • Slot in nails of any brand from 2 inches up to 3 ½ inches if you’ve got larger projects in mind
  • All the benefits of a lightweight magnesium chassis without sacrificing durability
  • Get 2 nailers in 1 thanks to sequential and bump triggers
  • 2 nosepieces thrown in suitable for metal and framing applications
  • Generous magazine holds 60 plastic-collated nails or 60 connector nails in metal
  • Unbeatable power to weigh ratio with 1050 pounds per square inch at just 8 pounds
  • Versatile nailer ideal for framing, decking, sheathing, and roofing
  • Set driving depth at the push of a button for your complete convenience
  • Class-leading 7-year guarantee removes all the risk from purchase


If you’re looking to buy into a brand you can trust without taking out a bank loan, this Bostitch round-head nailer is well worth popping on your shortlist.

Sometimes you need the power of a more robust nailer along with a chassis light enough to hold for hours on end. Bostitch manages to pull this off and you’ll be amazed at how much work you’ll get done and how little effort you’ll need to put in.

Use this framing nailer on a single major project and you’ll recoup your investment in the time and trouble you save. Go Bostitch and you’ll never look back.

Main Features
  • Accommodates all nails up to 3 ½ inches
  • 7 pounds
  • 23 x 18 x 7 inches
  • Magazine at 22 degrees to drive axis
  • 90-day limited warranty
Rated as

This 22-degree framing nailer from PORTER-CABLE is next up in our framing nailer reviews and makes a slight change from the standard 21-degree models flooding the market.

You should be clear off the bat that this nailer is certified refurbished. While we don’t generally consider such projects, we made an exception with the FR350BR since it’s an enduringly popular nailer well worth adding to your arsenal.

Take a look at the main features then we’ll explore where this nailer excels and where it could be improved.

The first thing you’ll notice about the PORTER-CABLE is the sleek and understated design and the first thing you’ll feel is how lightweight this nailer is at a mere 7 pounds.

The magazine on this nailer comes at 22 degrees to the drive axis, a degree out of kilter with the more common 21-degree angle. You will also be able to use 21-degree nails which maximizes your options nicely.

Reloading this magazine is quick and easy, an important feature on any labor-saving device. The last thing you need if you want to work quickly is regular pitstops fiddling with laborious loading mechanisms.

You’ll be able to use just about any nails up to 3 ½ inches long so you won’t be locked into a proprietary brand. You should always double down on what nails you can use before committing to purchasing any given framing nailer. You should also make sure to factor the ongoing cost of nails into the equation when budgeting.

There’s a selectable trigger as with all the best framing nailers and you’ll get trigger lockout for restrictive or actuation mode. This gives you a nice amount of wiggle-room and lets you work more efficiently whatever the application.

Although it’s a small thing, the reversible hanging hook shows a nice attention to detail and is much appreciated by anyone taking this nailer out on site.

Perhaps one of the less obvious benefits of this prime nailer is the way misfiring and jamming is reduced to the bare minimum. You’re always going to get some issues like this when you’re using nail guns but you’ll find it mercifully rare with the FR350BR.

As with most power tools, despite a shower of advantages, the PORTER-CABLE also comes with a couple of minor drawbacks worth pointing out…

The guarantee is weak at just 90 days. Don’t proceed unless you’re happy with this minimal level of coverage in the event of anything going amiss.

The safety seems very temperamental and sensitive so be aware of this in advance.

You might also notice some sparking when you’re firing nails but this should lessen over time and is certainly not a deal-breaker.

Here’s a brief summary of the pros and cons before we give you our verdict on the PORTER-CABLE and press on with the last pair of framing nailer reviews…

Why we like it

  • Buy into a brand you can rely on at a very keen price
  • Ergonomic, low-slung design so you can work away even in tight spaces
  • You’ll get enough power to fire a 3-inch nail straight through a 2 x 4 with very little effort or resistance
  • Despite this firepower, the PORTER-CABLE is extremely lightweight so you’ll be able to tackle sustained spells at work fuss-free
  • Hanging hook is a small but important touch if you’re working on a busy construction site
  • Blissfully rare instances of misfiring and jamming
  • Trigger lock adds an extra layer of safety
  • Very user-friendly even if you’ve never used a nail gun before
  • Super-simple to load up the magazine meaning you’ll waste less time fumbling around over the course of a day
  • Selectable trigger giving you a lot of freedom


PORTER-CABLE has a hard-won reputation carved out by producing top-tier power tools at astonishingly low prices considering the quality and performance consistently served up.

This nailer can cope with occasional forays to the jobsite as long as you don’t expect to use it all day every day and it’s more than sturdy enough to last for years on end in the home workshop.

Despite that durability and genuinely impressive performance, the classic FR350BR comes in at a price to suit pretty much all budgets. Road test this nailer today and you won’t regret it.

Main Features
  • Accommodates all nails up to 3 ½ inches
  • 8 ½ pounds
  • 18 x 2 x 12 inches
  • 70 to 115 PSI
  • 7-year guarantee
  • Cylinder and magazine in anodized aluminum
Rated as

As we near the end of our framing nailer reviews, we’ve got a budget nailer from the lesser-known Freeman. The PFR2190 is a regular 21-degree framing nailer that offers no-nonsense nailing at a price you’ll love.

While this framing nailer is decidedly entry-level in terms of price, the functionality and overall feel is more in line with a much more expensive tool. This extends from the build quality through to the unrivalled 7-year guarantee, a rarity in power tools these days.

We’ll walk you through the basic features of this nifty nailer then we’ll explain why you should seriously consider adding the Freeman to your toolkit.

As with many of the very best framing nailers, you’ll get all the grunt you need in a very compact and lightweight chassis. The anodized aluminum looks great, lasts the distance and won’t feel like you’re carrying a lead weight as you’re nailing.

Excellence in build quality extends to top-notch componentry like the oil-free O-rings made from Teflon and all the anti-ding aids you need to keep your workpiece pristine even if you’re working at full clip. The one-piece drive blade is built to last.

The magazine, as is fairly standard with this class of nailer, holds 55 nails and you can roll with anything up to and including larger 3½ –inch nails.  One thing to be aware of is that this gun won’t fire through the last handful of nails in the magazine so you’ll need to reload prematurely rather than waiting to run completely bare.

adjustable air exhaust, magnesium, depth adjust, no mar tip, teeth, grip, interchangeable trigger

If you’re planning to use this nail gun for some home DIY, the plastic-collated nails this nailer uses are great since you won’t experience the hazard of flying metal when you’re working inside.

All the safety features you’d expect are in place, again surprising but gratifying at this price point. The exhaust rotates through a full 360 degrees so neither you or your workpiece will be exposed to the fumes. There’s also a neat air filter and a cap to prevent any dirt or debris working its way inside your nail gun.

The only real niggles from users center on the dual trigger which some have found less than intuitive or ergonomic. This is pretty subjective so you might want to test out the gun and see how you feel. Even if you intend to pick up your framing nailer online, there’s nothing to stop you trying one out in a store first. Think of it as practical, active window shopping!

We’ll break down the leading advantages of this superb 21-degree framing nailer now so you can decide whether to pop it on your shortlist…

Why we like it

  • You’ll be spoiled for choice with nails since this gun will take anything from little 2-inchers right up to 3 ½-inch nails. You’ll be able to use both straight and ring shanks
  • Reasonably generous magazine with space for 55 nails
  • Magnesium body gives you surprising durability in an incredibly lightweight gun you can use for hours without feeling the strain
  • No-slip teeth give you extra grip when it counts by removing the no-mar tip
  • That tip makes sure your workpiece remains free from dents and dings so you’ll get a smooth finish not just raw pace
  • Driver blade fashioned from a single piece of hardened steel for the ultimate in performance and longevity
  • 360-degree exhaust along with anti-dust cap and air filter so you can work safely and in comfort
  • Oil-free Teflon O-rings give you more lifespan, an unexpected bonus in a budget nailer
  • Works well for framing, decking, sheathing, fencing, or wood box assembly so an extremely versatile performer
  • Rock-solid guarantee should remove any lingering doubts about purchase


While we normally stick to the familiar old faithfuls here at Miter Saw Judge, the pocket-friendly Freeman is a strong enough performer for us to bend the rules.

If you’re looking for a super-light nailer you can use all day without your shoulders and hands aching but you don’t have much to spend, the Freeman is the ideal combination of price and performance.

If you don’t fancy the 21-degree model, this gun is also available in 34-degree guise.

Check out the Freeman today and you’ll be powering through larger DIY projects with absolute ease.

Main Features
  • Accommodates wide range of Paslode nails
  • 7 ½ pounds
  • 17 x 17 x 5 inches
  • Full cordless functionality
  • Lithium-ion battery
Rated as

Last, but by no means least, in our framing nailer reviews is the 902600, a very capable cordless unit from the industry giant Paslode.

Using a pneumatic nailer makes perfect sense if you already have a well-stocked workshop with an air compressor in place. If you don’t, perhaps you’re reluctant to spend out all that extra cash simply to operate a relatively cheap tool like a nail gun.

The Paslode 902600 gives you the chance to sidestep the compressor at the expense of a little weight and a powerful lithium-ion battery that gives you plenty of juice on a single charge.

We’ll give you the honest lowdown on what is undeniably a strong contender for the very best cordless framing nailer on the market so you can see whether it would make a good fit with your nailing needs.

Paslode make first-rate power tools and, while they are not cheap, the best things in life seldom are.

Although this framing nailer is made of plastic, it feels super-solid and the material doesn’t cheapen the overall feel. The handle is treated so it’s non-slip and comfy enough to hold for long periods without your hand feeling like a claw.

Cordless technology is not for everyone and many purists will scoff at the idea of this nailer. If you’re not convinced, you’re far better of sticking with a pneumatic nailer.

For anyone prepared to give the benefits of lithium-ion battery technology a shot, you’ll be rewarded with a nimble and compact nail gun capable of firing 6000 nails on a single charge.

Charging only takes 1 hour so you can still use the gun on site without needing to down tools for the day if you run out of oomph. If you’re right at the tail end of a project and the battery gives out, you can generate enough of a jolt to drive 200 nails in just 2 minutes then you can pack up and head home with the job done.

While this element is outstanding, the magazine capacity is much less impressive. 48 nails might sound acceptable but when you consider this gun fires at a rate of 2 or 3 nails a second, you can see they won’t last you long. Put simply, the magazine should be bigger to get the very most out of this adaptable nail gun. As it is, you’ll need to resign yourself to pretty regular reloading if you’re working at full speed.

You’ll get everything you need thrown in down to the carrying case so you’re good to go the moment your nailer arrives.

We’ll list out the major pros and cons of this powerful Paslode before polishing off these framing nailer reviews and giving you all the information you need to get the best nail gun for your needs.

Why we like it

  • Get up to 5 hours of use on a single charge then recharge in 1 hour so you can take a short break then get back to work
  • Grab a 2-minute quick charge giving you enough power to drive another 200 nails. This is perfect if you run out of steam at a critical point with the end in sight
  • You’ll be able to drive 6000 nails before needing to recharge
  • 48-nail magazine that takes paper-collated nails
  • All the advantages of cordless technology without the encumbrance of too much extra weight
  • Heavy-duty and well-crafted nosepiece enables toe-nailing at all angles
  • Exceptional brand heritage and all the performance and staying power you’d expect from an industry titan
  • Economic use of fuel cell enabling you to fire up to 1200 nails on a single cell so you’ll spend less time reloading and more on the job earning money and saving time
  • Nicely coated handle lets you work for long spells without blisters
  • Package includes charger, hard case, wrench and safety glasses so you’ve got all you need to get going directly out the box


If you’re looking for the cheapest framing nailer, the Paslode 902600 is not for you.

If you think the best framing nailer needs to be pneumatic, we’re not here to convince you otherwise.

If, on the other hand, you’re looking for a durable and dependable nail gun tailor-made for even more demanding and larger projects from a brand synonymous with power tool excellence, the Paslode is the obvious choice and a staple on construction sites the world over.

Best Framing Nailer: Looking for more information?

Interested to learn more in-depth details about selecting the right tool for your needs? Read our Informational Buyer Guide and Frequently Asked Questions sections on this topic for more details.

Final Words...

We very much hope you’ve enjoyed these framing nailer reviews and you’re now well-placed to buy the most appropriate gun for all your nailing needs.

While buying a nailer is not rocket science, there are enough variables to make it worth your while doing some careful research first. Buying blind, you’re highly likely to end up with the wrong nailer for the intended job.

We’ll be taking a look at panel saws later this week so come back soon!

Before then, here’s a round-up of the most frequently asked questions for framing nailers…

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