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We have long said that someone needs to start throwing kits together for the DIYer/Homeonwer crowd that arms them with the tools they need to get things done around the house. Not drills and saws (others have that covered), but the more obscure home maintenance chores. We knew someone would come up with it eventually, but we didn’t expect it to come from Campbell Hausfeld. Yet the FP260097 Home Improvement Kit and its three like-minded sibling packages are exactly what we were talking about.

It’s not rocket science; tell someone what they need to do then give them a package with all those tools in it for an entry-level price. Apparently someone at CH has their head on straight because that’s what they did. They also threw in an instructional DVD that tells you how to start getting done the projects you bought the kit for.

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Bosch added another gun to its Full Force line with the RN175 Roofing Nailer. Like other roofing nailers the RN175 features a coil-style cartridge and is smaller and more balanced than a framing gun might be.

The RN175’s single-action, side-loading nail canister functions a lot like dropping a speed-loading cylinder into a revolver, so load time is smoother and faster than older clunky styles. Like the rest of the line the new roofing nailer sports an aluminum housing, steel wear plates on the tool body, and carbide inserts to protect the nosepiece.

It will accept a load of wire-collated 0.12 nails from that range from ¾” to 1-3/4” inch length and will work with 60-120 psi. coming through the hose.

Expect to pay around $300 at the local home center.

RN175 Roofing Nailer [Bosch]
Street Pricing [Google Products]


Ever have an air line or tool go shooting off accidentally when you disconnect it? Besides being dangerous, it could damage the connector as it whacks the ground. To prevent this uncontrolled reaction, safety couplers like this one from Milton Industries make connection and disconnection a two-stage process.

Several retailers of the safety coupler describe the operation as follows: “First click locks coupler and plug; second click engages air pressure. When disconnecting, first click will relieve air pressure; second click allows coupler and plug to be safely disengaged.” Not having laid our hands on one yet, this sounds a little vague. Has anyone used one that could provide a better explanation of how the coupler works?

This 1/4″ M-style safety coupler comes in either male and female 1/4″ NPT threads. Milton retails the safety couplers for $10.

Milton Industries [Corporate Site]
Street Pricing [Google Products]
Via Amazon [What’s This?]


As of a few days ago, Bosch announced that their new “Full Force” pneumatic lineup including three finish nailers and an 18-gauge stapler are available at retail outlets nationwide. We mentioned them in a preview post a few months ago and it appears that Bosch has made good on the delivery schedules.

The new lineup includes the following four tools: the FNA250-15: 15-gauge angled magazine finish nailer, the FNA250-16: 16-gauge straight magazine finish nailer, the BNS200-18: 18-gauge brad nailer and the STN150-18: 18-gauge finish stapler.

Check out our overview on the newest pneumatics on the market for a quick rundown. We suspect the more contractors’ hands they fall into, the more converts Bosch will bring over from a yellow or green gun –- however, only time will tell.

Bosch also says that more pneumatic fastening products are slated to become available in the next few weeks.

SN-350 Framing Guns [Bosch]
Preview: Bosch Full Force Framing Nailers [Toolmonger]


For all the sub-rock dwellers clinging to the dark and safe ways of yore, this is an air compressor. It is your friend. Embrace it, love it and bask in its many conveniences. The new 26-gallon Campbell Hausfeld compressor is specifically aimed at the challenges and objections homeowners have to an air-powered rig.

To get the party started, just kick the big red power button at the bottom rear and the hose fills to 115psi; then the tank fills in preparation for continued operation. That’s right — the hose fills first. It might sound a little weird but it’s sort of a slick idea.

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Following the recent trend of top-of-the-line pneumatic gun rollouts, Campbell Hausfeld just released three new units bearing the CH blue:  from biggest to smallest, the CHN70899 3-1/2” framing nailer, the CHN70699 15-gauge nailer, and the CHN70299 18-gauge brad nailer.  Can you guess the first highlighted feature of the new guns?  If you said “targeting laser,” you nailed it.

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Last week, we had the opportunity to visit with the folks at Bosch in Chicago about their 2009 lineup. The first item on the long list of new gear Bosch is rolling out this year is their Full Force Technology nailers, the stars of which –- mostly ‘cuz they’re the only ones out yet — are the SN350 series framing guns.  The phrase “lean and mean” was tossed around a lot by many folks at the event, and while we admit that it’s largely a catchphrase, it applies in this case.

The Full Force in the name refers to Bosch’s new pneumatic system which was designed from the ground up and works differently than the traditional gun. To start off with, it’s around twenty percent smaller than, say, a Paslode or Hitachi, and it’s a little more powerful.

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Here we see our Ridgid twin-tank aluminum air compressor in its native environment — its central position right under the miter saw is no accident.  This compressor is a slightly dusty star of the show, and the shop wouldn’t be able to function correctly without it.

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Almost universally, a professional framer will choose a gun when there’s serious work to be done.  A few old-school crews still use hammers, but when the heavy lifting’s about to begin, the guys in the know reach for a rig like this Duo-Fast 20-degree DF350S strip nailer.  We got our hands on one to see what it was all about.

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Duo-Fast announced its new DF350S framing nailer last week.  Its 20-degree-angled magazine rail holds two strips — which means you can fire off sixty 3-1/2″ nails without reloading.

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