How Does a Pneumatic Nail Gun Work?

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Gone are the days when one had to use a hammer to put a nail inside something. The advancement of technology brings in new tools that can ease the process of inserting a nail. Nail guns have gained huge popularity for their ease of use and time-saving mechanism.

A lot of workers are seen using nail guns today. It is used in many activities and even DIY Projects. These nailers have made the task of driving nails much easier. According to their mechanism, workload capacity, and so on, there are various types of nail guns available in the market.

One of these types of nail guns is the Pneumatic Nail gun. If you are interested in knowing more about this nailer, and How Does a Pneumatic Nail Gun works, then keep reading further.

How Does a Pneumatic Nail Gun Work

What is Pneumatic Nailer?

A Pneumatic Nailer is a combustion nail gun that uses compressed air. Using this nail gun, you can insert nails into materials like Boards or wood, plywood, etc.

Generally, the Pneumatic nail guns work through the mechanism of electromagnetism. Some of the Pneumatic nailers also require highly inflammable gases like propane. Hence, the use of pneumatic nailers requires permits in some states.

How Does a Pneumatic Nail Gun Work?

A Pneumatic Nail gun is one of the very complicated tools out there. But at the same time, they are also very useful and efficient in getting the job done. Another thing about these types of nail guns is that they have to be handled very carefully since most of them make use of highly inflammable gases.

So if you are looking forward to knowing more about Pneumatic Nail guns then here are some insights about the same. When talking of the best pneumatic nail gun, we have options like Bosch pneumatic nail gun and DeWalt nail gun.

The different parts of Pneumatic Nail Gun

A Pneumatic Nail Gun, as mentioned before, is a little complicated. Many people just dive into it by looking at a few pictures. This is clearly not enough. You need to know more about the different parts of this nail gun.

First of all, the Pneumatic Nail Gun has an air compressor that runs on electricity or gasoline. This part of the nailer does the job of supplying compressed air. Then we have the air reservoir which is a hose that pushes the air.

Both the air compressor and the air reservoir work together in delivering the air into the holding space. The traditional type of Pneumatic Nail Gun comes with a piston. This also includes a standard shaft, called a driver.

The driver contacts the head of the nail gun. It does another job of forcing the surface you are working on. The piston stays inside the cylindrical body of the nail gun. You will find a valve above the piston. This valve is helpful in holding air in its place.

Mechanism of Pneumatic Nail Gun

So now that you know the different parts of Pneumatic Nail Gun, here is how the nail gun actually works. Initially, the air pressure above the piston is lesser than the pressure below it. The cylinder of the nail gun holds the piston in its place.

When you trigger the nail gun, it starts the valve. This opens up and forces the air to enter the cylinder. This will create pressure that increases above the piston. Then the drive of the piston goes down and hammers the nail.

When you release the trigger, the air gets around the cylinder and then begins venting. This procedure takes place from the tiny holes. The holes are present at the bottom half of the cylinder.

This way the pressure of the piston increases again. This further leads to bringing back the piston to the original position. Then the valve opens back for pushing the air used. This can happen through the port that is present at the top of the gun.

A drive will push both the blade and the piston downwards. The nail will propel out from its place. The sliding piston will then drive the air within the cylinder via the holes. As the air force increases, the pressure level of the chamber rises.

Thus, when you release the trigger, the plunger slides back to its position. The airflow to the piston then gets blocked. At this point, there is no downward pressure and the piston head goes back to its original position. The air on the piston head comes out in the atmosphere.

This was how the pneumatic nail guns work. Due to the air pressure, this nailer can drive the nails into thick and hard materials like wood, etc. There certainly comes a little drawback in using a pneumatic nail gun – the bulky air compressor and a complex tool to use but the results are worth it.


What is a pneumatic brad nailer?

A pneumatic brad nailer is somewhat similar to a standard pneumatic nail gun. The only difference is that the brad nail gun comes with a tiny head. This nail gun can be used to work on the thinner frames than the general nail guns.

These types of nail guns usually come with an 18-gauge. Brad Nail guns are ideal to use with small trims. You can use them to add tiny stops or moldings. The gun makes such small holes that you will not have to apply putty once you are done.

What is a pneumatic framing nailer?

A pneumatic framing nailer is slightly complicated and professional in nature. You might have to visit a qualified training agency or even need a valid operator’s permit in some of the states to use this gun. You can also take the help of an instructor with this gun.

Can I use a pneumatic nailer without previous knowledge?

A majority of the pneumatic nailer guns come with a slightly intricate functioning. It can also be very confusing at times and hence it is better to get proper training either from an agency or an instructor to get things done smoothly. Some of the states also have certain rules with Pneumatic Nailer usage like having a permit to use it.


I hope you all could easily understand the How Does a Pneumatic Nail Gun Work with the help of the above article. In case you have any questions, feel free to ask us in the comment section below. We will be glad to help you out. Also, do share any suggestions you have for us. We will be happy to hear from you.

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