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Finish nailers often go overlooked in favor of their larger-gauged brethren, but in the Toolmonger woodworking shop we pick up the Ridgid 2-1/8” brad nailer as our first choice.

This gun claims the singular distinction of being the only nailer in the Toolmonger shop never to have jammed. This is no small feat; we’ve run close to 10,000 nails of different sizes through this gun and not had an issue — ever.

It’s just very well mannered. It makes no more noise than the BB gun you had as a kid — with about as much kick. You can dial in depth settings simply via a small rotating wheel located near the trigger. Ours has never gotten in the way or been knocked out of the proper setting under heavy use. It’s also tough as, well, nails. We’ve beaten up and dropped this gun so many times we lost count, and it still performs like new.

Though this isn’t a rig for heavy construction work, it’s almost foolproof, whatever your level of experience. Just position the gun and pull the trigger. It doesn’t get any more reliable or simple to operate than this. We can and do recommend it to anyone.

Street pricing starts at around $120.

R213BNA 2-1/8” Brad Nailer [Ridgid]
Street Pricing [Google Products]


3 Responses to TM’s 2007 Favorites: Ridgid 2-1/8” Brad Nailer

  1. Chris Murray says:

    I have that very same brad nailer and its a champ. It is also oil-less which makes it ideal for fine work where a small splat of oil can ruin a project.

    Its also very light, which is nice when you’ve been holding it all day long, or when you have to hang it off of your tool belt of jeans pocket to position a work piece.

    Ridgid’s 16ga finish nailer is very similar, although it does require oil it is my second most used nailer in the shop.

  2. PutnamEco says:

    I have the near clone Milwaukee. It seems to be holding up pretty well. Not all brads seem to work in it though. Fasteners unlimited brads don’t seem to work well at all. They just don’t go through the gun.

  3. Fred says:

    Our kit includes a Grex P635 23 gauge Pin Nailer which has performed great.
    There is a newer model that accepts longer pins.

    We also use a Porter Cable BN200A which does jam once in a while on off-brand 18 gauge brads.

    For finnish nails I use either a Hitachi NT65MA2 15 ga angled nailer – which I modified with a sequential trip trigger – or a Paslode IM250A 16ga angle nailer (uses Mapp Gas Cartridges) to free you from the compressor. Except for some people complaining about the smell (especially pronounced when remodeling in tight spaces) the Paslode is great (does need breakdown and piston cleaning). I think that the Hitachi is the best finish nailer I’ve ever used – but I have not done any side-by-side comparisons.

    I’d also recommend a Makita AN611 which I use with SS siding/fencing nails

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