Just the thought of plastic nails eems counter-intuitive. Can they really work? What are they good for?
We previously tried Raptor brand
composite nails and answered those
questions in the affirmative. Now
Senco has entered the arena with their
own line of plastic nails and nailers, offering new choices for woodworkers.
Why plastic nails?
Plastic composite fasteners beat conventional metal nails in specialized
applications. In the modern woodworking shop, the most common use is
fixturing for CNC machining. Rather
than rely on vacuum hold-down for
unusual fixturing challenges, you can
use plastic fasteners. You can cut right
through the fasteners without damaging cutters or saw blades. You can even
stack parts on the CNC and break
them apart after machining.
You can use plastic fasteners as a
clamping aid in glue-ups and not wait
for the glue to dry before machining or
sanding. The fasteners sand well and
won’t clog or damage abrasives.
Boat builders and other woodworkers
making projects subjected to moisture
and weather can use plastic composite
fasteners without fear of rust.
Senco offers composite fasteners in a vari-
ety of staple and nail configurations and
sizes. We tried the 15-gauge fasteners with
the SPFN15XP nail gun, which is specifi-
cally designed for the plastic nails. ( You
cannot use plastic fasteners in nail guns
or staplers not specifically designed for
them.) Operation is very similar to using
conventional metal fasteners, and hold-
ing power is excellent. Composite nail
manufacturers, including Senco, tell us
that heat generated by friction when the
plastic fastener enters the wood actually
melts the fastener to some extent to create
a glue-like bond with the wood.
We used the fasteners in a variety of
applications, including cutting them
on a SawStop saw. There was no visible
damage to the saw blade, and the safety
device was not triggered. The Senco
gun performed flawlessly, and was light
and handy to use. We particularly liked
the ball-and-socket air connection on
the gun that allows for more freedom
of movement with your air hose.
You can learn more about the Senco
composite nailers and fasteners at
by William Sampson
firstname.lastname@example.org IN THE SHOP
Why use plastic nails?
Senco offers new line of composite nails and nailers.
; Want more?
To see this in action,
watch our video on your
smart phone or online
William Sampson is a lifelong
woodworker and the editor of FDMC
The Senco SPFN15XP is a pneumatic finish nailer specifically for plastic composite
nails, which can be used in a variety of applications, including CNC fixturing.