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Thread: Manual V-Nailer

  1. #1
    CGF, Certified Grumble Framer NcFramingChick's Avatar
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    Default Manual V-Nailer

    Does anyone use or have used a manual v-nailer. How does it perform? Any good? I currently have a pnumatic and it is about to retire and I found a good deal on a manual but have never used one.
    When life hands you lemons...make lemonade
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  • #2
    Grumbler
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    I have a Pistorius VN-M that I have used for 25 years. It is a manual machine. Back when I did more production work, I added an air assisted kit to this machine. Now that I no longer do production I have converted it back to manual operation.

    I also have a Brevetti pneumatic v-nailer that I used very rarely mainly because the v-nails have been discontinued and I ration my remaining supply. I used it mainly for assembly of readymades.

    Others will disagree but I prefer the manual Pistorius because I have more control of the pressure used and the low maintenance needs of the machine. Also United carries the v-nails. Unless you do high production, a manual machine is fine. A negative on the Pistorius is the difficulty in changing nail size. I generally use a shorter nail and stack them when required.

    Rufus

  • #3
    CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level II FramerRandy's Avatar
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    I've used an ITWAMP Mitre-Mite VN Manual Vnailer for about 7 years. It's great for a low volumn shop.
    Randy Schwacofer

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    MGF Master Grumble Framer
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    I've used my uncles manual and was surprised by how easily the nails went in, even in hardwoods. I wouldn't get one if you have high volume but for a lower volume shop I don't realy see a problem with them.
    Life is like picture framing. There are always hangups.

  • #5
    CGF, Certified Grumble Framer NcFramingChick's Avatar
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    What do consider to be a low volume shop?
    When life hands you lemons...make lemonade

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    SPFG Supreme Picture Framer God Bill Henry-'s Avatar
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    I’ve been using a Pistorius VN-J for over 15 years with no problems.

    It is engineered well (I’ve only had to replace the “hold down” clamp once). If you really tighten the vise clamps well, tap down the hold down well, and draw the nails as quickly and firmly as you can, you should seldom have problems with incomplete insertion or separated corners.

    I like the fact that its manual because I don’t have to worry about the noise and maintenance of a compressor.
    Don't take life so serious, son. It ain't nohow permanent!Porky Pine

  • #7
    SPFG Supreme Picture Framer God
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    Quote Originally Posted by NcFramingChick View Post
    What do consider to be a low volume shop?
    The point at which a pneumatic machine becoms practical depends on your total cost for labor, and the nature of your framing business. The concept is to determine your cost of joining a frame by various methods, and select the method that costs you the least. Get out your stopwatch and get to it.

    For example, if your labor rate is $75/hour ($1.25/minute) and it takes your framers an average of 20 minutes to glue, vice, nail brads into 4 corners, and putty the holes, your cost for joining would be $25 per frame.

    If your framers could join frames with a fancy pneumatic underpinner taking 7 minutes per frame, your cost for joining woulld be $8.75. You would save $16.25 per frame

    If you build an average of five frames a day/120 per month, your total joining cost would be $3000 with vices/brads, compared to $1950 with a fancy pneumatic underpinner.

    The difference of $1050 per month represents your savings. So, if you spend $3000 for a fancy pneumatic underpinner with tilt stand, air filter/lubricator, a couple of other accessories and a generous supply of fasteners, you would achieve "payback" in 2.85 months. In the fourth and all subsequent months, your savings just keeps on going.

    Is that savings real? You bet it is. Consider that today a typical, individual framer can design and build half a dozen fairly complicated frames a day using fast, technologically advanced equipment, such as a CMC, POS, pneumatic underpinner, vacuum press, visualization system, etc. But just a few years ago that same framer might have been hard pressed to produce half as much by manual methods. The actual savings by advanced equipment could easily equal the cost of 1 to 2 additional framers.

    Shameless plug:
    If you're in the market for an underpinner -- manual or pneumatic, plain or fancy, stop by the Fletcher-Terry booth at DecorExpo-Atlanta this weekend. I'll be there to discuss your needs, demonstrate the machines, and help you try them out.

  • #8
    CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level II bill t.'s Avatar
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    Just this morning drove some v-nails with an Inmes IM2. They went into the medium soft wood just fine. The owner says the only issue is don't go too fast on the pedal, just a smooth continuous motion rather than a jab.

    There are no clamps for the rails, you just hold them down. The little bar that clamps down the work opposite the nail is on the small side, the owner sometimes uses a 4 x 4 inch piece of plywood covered with felt to spread the pressure over curvy mouldings. I was able to stack two 10mm nails. The moldings did not shift or open up during nailing. Total time to triple nail a corner is no more than 15 seconds. The pedal can be turned around towards the back. It's possible to stand quite close to the work table, one can stand inside the frames for the larger sizes. There are wings on the sides that come off easily. This one is stored in a closet, one guy can drag it out.

    Have not seen any other manual models. Although the construction and operation are not hardcore industrial grade, they seem OK to my engineering sensibilities.

    Probably a great choice for an on-again, off-again framer like me, I think I'll buy it. There may be better ones available, but this one's good enough and it's here right here in town. Beats the heck out of gluing and clamping, and is a definite step up from my current Wobbly Manufacturing Co. pneumatic nailer.

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