Metal-connector nailer is a leap forward in technology
MCN 150 StrapShot
• Manufactured by Stanley Bostitch
• 800-556-6696; www.bostitch.com
• Cost: $230
A few years ago, my crew switched from hand-nailing hurricane ties, joist hangers, and all other metal connectors to using Paslode’s Positive Placement nail gun. It provided a huge savings in time and energy, but the trade-off was a heavy gun that was hard to fit into tight spaces. When I got to the job site one day and broke out Bostitch’s new compact metal-connector nailer, everyone’s eyes lit up.
This tool isn’t a standard nail gun retrofitted to become a metal-connector nailer; it was designed from scratch just for this application. As a result, the StrapShot is about half the size and weight of the Paslode, and it fits more easily into nooks and crannies — even between 12-in. on-center framing. Older metal-connector nailers have a probe on the gun’s tip to guide the nail into metal-hardware holes. Instead of a probe, the StrapShot is designed so that the nail itself protrudes from the gun to guide placement. The safety features are a bit different as well. When the trigger is pulled, a shield pops forward around the nail. If the shield senses contact with the hardware, the nail is fired.
Despite all its positive features, the StrapShot has some weaknesses. For one thing, it shoots only 1-1/2-in. nails, not the 2-1/2-in.nails that we use for a lot of large hangers. Also, unlike the probe found on other metal-connector nailers, the protruding nail point can’t be used to press hardware into position before fastening. For some tasks, such as pushing the sides of hangers tight to the framing, the Paslode works better. But for repetitive jobs like installing a roof full of hurricane clips, the StrapShot is a giant leap forward.