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Review Summary

Positive Placement System
Suggested Retail $369
Reviewed by Leon A. Frechette
04/18/02 New Review 03/12/07

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Paslode - Positive placement system

When working in any construction or remodeling project you'll come in contact with some type of metal connectors—metal straps or hangers. Unfortunately, they can be a pain to install because their short nails are specifically designed for use in the pre-punched holes in the connectors. It's time-consuming and awkward to hold the connector and nail with one hand and try to hammer with the other.

In the summer of 2001 while building a deck, I had a lot of joist hangers and other types of metal connectors to install. I decided it was time for a little pneumatic help, so I brought in Paslode's Positive Placement Pneumatic Fastener to test.

This tool was remarkable! Finally I was able to quit worrying about dropping the nail, smacking my fingers with the hammer, or scraping my knuckles on the connector. I was able to hold the joist hanger securely in place, insert the specially designed nose into the pre-punched hole, and squeeze the trigger. The nail slid down the positive placement nose and entered the hole dead center. As fast as I could place the nose of the gun into the holes is how fast the nail was placed and I could move on to the next.

It's an accurate and safe method for attaching metal connectors. Using this tool decreased my labor time by at least 50 percent—and that's money in the pocket.

Paslode - Positive placement systemNew Review 3/12/07: The new Positive Placement System has undergone some major changes. As you can see by comparing the upper photo of the new model to the older model in the photo to the right, the updated gun's head has a sporty new look. It's still about the same size, but the PF250S-PP has a softer, rounder design.

Paslode shaved off 5 pounds in the tool redesign so it weighs in at 8.5 pounds—and this certainly will help when using the tool in overhead situations. It still has a 30°collation angle, which provides a natural fit when placing the probe in the holes of the metal connectors.

The older gun was both a Positive Placement and a Framing Nailer just by changing the magazine; however, this unit is a Positive Placement Nailer only. This change accounted for a $30 drop in the retail cost. It can still fire up to 10 heat-treated hardened steel fasteners per second. The magazine can hold from 44 to 48 nails (2 strips) of Positive Placement nails—no roundrive or clip head nails—with diameters of .131, .148, and .162 with lengths of 1 1/2" and 2 1/2".

Paslode did away with the lever on the backside of the nose that switched between 1 1/2" and 2 1/2" nail lengths. Now the gun automatically switches from shorter to longer nails. "Head Markings" stamped into the heads of Paslode nails help to identify the type of nail and its size, both length and diameter. This ensures the correct nail for a specific application. They also added a quick clear lever to remove (infrequent) jams, a more durable nose, and a driver blade. Paslode claims that the unit can go through +300K cycles before any parts need to be replaced.

On the older gun, the discharge air diffuser at the head of the unit didn't swivel. The deck I was building had joists close to the ground, a common situation, and there just wasn't enough space to use the gun in an upright position. I had to straddle the accompanying joist and use the gun upside-down as I held the joist hanger. Every time I fired the gun, air discharged from the unit would kick dirt up into my face, playing heck with my safety glasses and my breathing. If there had been a swivel diffuser, I could have relocated the discharged air, making the tool more user-friendly for this type of application.

I hoped the company would develop a retrofit kit to solve this problem or incorporate changes into the new design. While they didn't create a user-friendly swivel diffuser, they did redesign the diffuser so it is round and has only one Allen-head fastener to hold it in place. Simply loosening the fastener allows you to rotate the diffuser to suit your application. This is a big plus in my book!

While still on the heavy side, the Paslode Positive Placement System has a comfortable grip and feels comfortable to use. Overall, I recommend this tool for fastening most metal connectors. If you want to save time (up to three times faster than hand-nailing) and nail accuracy, this tool is a must!

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Paslode F-250S-PP Positive Placement Metal Hardware Framing Nailer

Copyright © 04/18/02 & 03/12/2007 LAF/C.R.S., Inc. All rights reserved.

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