Hand nail verse coil nails

Hi Brothers!

I have bin exploring the debate of the for mentioned title, I imagine that there is a thread on this form, but would like some, maybe, old new information on the debate. So ill throw out some observational science…or maybe its just bullshit… but here she goes.

First, my disclosure statement lol, I have bin using guns since I started on my own 5 years ago, I havent had a blow off that I know of yet (cross the fingers).

The diameter of the coil nails I use (prime and topgun) are always a hair under 3/8.

The wire on the shank of the nail does not break consistent causing a extra long peice sticking up (maybe every 20 or 30 coils drivin)

I dont imagine the wire going through the shingle, when the nail is drivin down, creates a even point of entry for the nail. ie. The wire tears one side of the hole or is traped under nail head.

Its just a little more challenging, knowing if the coil nail has hit decking or crack.

No one in 8 communitys around where I am stocks anything but 1 1/4!! Lol bigger coils are special order!! Lol

the wire seems to rust quite easily, making it hard on the nailer.

I hate picking up elastic bands…totally hate when they tangle up in the pouch or apron.

lots of other stuff tied to this topic I know… after really studying old nails from the 40s and 50s and comparing them with alot of modern ones .shank size…ribs…wires …head diameter. …head roundness…types of metals used…I had to ask the questione. Whats the best, why is it the best. I think hand nailing is better…not faster… I think coil nails suck in quality and if thy were made better we would never have to do more then a few hand nails ever again.

Delete this, you double-posted.

I deleted the other one, this one didnt give me the option for some reason.

Odd, but thanks!

The problem with nail guns is they often end up in the hands of unskilled, non professionals who just want to be fast and then problems follow. I make a lot of money repairing slipped/missing shingles that were improperly gun nailed. There are a few times that they were improperly hand nailed as well but usually its gun nailed shingles with too much air compression causing the nails to be imbedded into the shingles.

This needs a “super double like” button! Way to often we come across gunned roofs with over driven/crooked nails or underdriven nails where the installer was too lazy to smack a nail with a hammer if it was over a rafter or a knot in 1 bys.

Today I am hand nailing a hundred year old barn roof (gambral) 1 3/4 nails, its 20 Celsius out side with a bit of wind, I bid high and insurance accepted it…I wish all jobs were this awesome… :lol:

Why exactly is this particular job getting hand nailed and with such long nails?

No one sells 1 3/4 around here (coil)

7/16 osb deck over 3/4 inch lumber, some rough sawn at 7/8

Were not gonna tear out the 100 year old rafters just to get a inch or so stright. i would lol but then ill just build i new building for they guy cause it would be cheaper.

Last guy, 3 years ago charged 7800 for 56 bundles that just blew away! I came in at 8400, for superior underlay resheet custom bent flashings and roof repair. I am making too much! So I told the guy will get some extras for him.

My understanding of building movement in my area told me this

The barn is unheated and not used for live stock,

the lumbar in the building is a hundred years old plus the age of the trees used

the foundation is solid

The barn is located in a area of heavy north west cross winds

There will be some movement due to age and wind pressure (unknown)

A shanked roofing nail penatrating the original decking with a larger head diameter drivin properly through both substrates seem like the bes option.

…it was built by hand years ago by hard working farmers…sometimes it feels good to keep that heritage alive

im gonna be the devils advocate here.

we don’t get paid enough not to use nailers.

seriously. some these dude get paid alot to repairs this and that blah blah blah. we are not repair men. we install entire roofs and need to make money fast. that hand nailing stuff is a dying breed. they are awesome and all but seriously a hand nailer cannot keep up with a nail gun. yeah yeah yeah I’ve seen the ultimate hand nailers pro blah blah blah.

and about roofers. don’t go acting like we all educated and fortunate. we are roofers for a couple reasons. we didn’t go to college. we have criminal records. we are poor. are fathers or uncles taught us and we fell in love with the trade ect. Im not sure i know anyone who went to university to become a roofer. anyways thats beside the point.

using a nail gun is so much faster.

up here we get super high winds and no matter how many nails or hand nails you put in you’ll get blow offs or cracks or damage regardless.

and that why we have a insurance industry.

and for the hand nailers out there. Keep hand nailing and keep fixing our crappy work.

phew…i needed to get that off my chest.

I don’t believe all that but some of it is true. If you can hand nail like a champion hand nail. you wont have any problems. but if you need to make money i doubt it will matter in the long run.

most roofers dont install there whole lives anyway.

the roofers dream is not to install his whole life. its to have other crews work for him so he can drive around in his big truck all day collecting cheques.

I agree, to make money, use guns.

I chose to be in the roofing world tho, and chose to remain in it.

Believe it or not, many people in my area are willing to pay more for hand nailing. Trust me when I say we make plenty of money. I don’t care how you go about it but longevity in this business is not getting caught up in the “blow and go” price wars, it’s all about marketing yourself as a higher end contractor and delivering. We aren’t cheap but you’ll get what you paid for.

There’s nothing wrong with a nail gun in the hands of a professional and nothing wrong with being fast as long as you are doing the work properly. In fact, it’s my opinion that fast and right at the same time is the best you can do.

I’m definitely old school and do all repair work these days but that doesn’t take anything away from all the years I spent doing tear offs and installing new roofs. When I first started roofing nail guns were barely an acceptable method of installing roofs and almost nobody used them. So yes, I as well as many other roofers became very efficient at hand nailing and some years later I/We also became very efficient at gun nailing.

Thanks for all the replys guys, your insight really helps and places value on my thoughts.

tar monky and lucky chucky, I just got a repair job because the guy specifically asked for a hand nailed and tabbed down roof. The last guys gunned just about all of it and only tabbed a small percentage of the roof (among a hole load of other problems) but!! On this piticular job the wind blew of 10 hand nailed shingles and 2 gun nailed both areas failed at the exposure line with just about all nails left in the sheathing. They I/w ed’ the whole roof .and left big bubbles in it, looks as tho the sheathing buckled its so bad …so obviously the shingles never had a chance to lay flat. The best part is…! Who ever designed the bran new 4000 sq foot house, build the center dormor to big and now the vallys of the other 2 dormors run right into the wall!!! And the coup de grace!! The trough guys placed the drainage back towards the roof then a down spout on to the shingles so now the water runs right into the wall of the center dormor. …anywho!! I just flapping my gums now lol.