Pin Nailer vs. Finish Nailer – What is the Difference?

Pin Nailer


Pin nailers are generally headless, and the diameter is the same as a sewing needle. Here are some of the benefits of pin nailers.

  • Pin nailers have tiny pins. So, when you shoot a pin, it will not split your wood piece. With this tool, your workpiece will remain non-damaged.
  • Since pin nailers use a headless pin, there will be no visible holes in the workpiece after use. Painting, staining, or varnishing is entirely unnecessary in this case.
  • Pin nailers hardly damage the most delicate items due to their thin and headless nails.


Read the below points to learn pin nailers’ disadvantages.

  • The holding power of pin nailers is less compared to their counterparts. Most of the time, after installing pin nailer nails, gluing is mandatory.
  • Due to its less versatile feature, you can’t handle a wide range of applications using a pin nailer.

Finish Nailer


Finish nailers are delicate and small, offering the below advantages,

  • This tool sets the depth at which the nails are shot. This means that using additional tools like a nail set is not required.
  • Leaves fewer holes for headless features and needs no sanding or filling sometimes.
  • Finish nailers are stronger compared to other nails. As a result, their holding power is quite good.
  • These are a good option for furniture and cabinet building for their small size.
  • This versatile tool allows you to tackle various tasks like baseboard installing, chair rails, crown molding, and many more.


Don’t assume that finish nailers don’t come with disadvantages. Find the drawbacks of finish nailers from the below points,

  • Not a suitable choice for delicate and thin materials.
  • Small nail holes that require filling or sanding quite often
  • Doesn’t do the dishes

Cost Comparison

When buying nail guns, a few common factors play a crucial role – cost is one of them. Brand and type of material are important considerations when comparing pin nailers and finish nailers based on the price.

If you choose a model from a premium-quality brand like Metabo, Freeman, etc., you will need to pay $50 – $100. While the price range of a good quality finish nailer from brands such as NuMax, WEN, etc., is $50 – $100. It seems, in terms of price, both will cost you the same amount of bucks.

However, the price of a pin nailer may increase if additional features named air hose, starter kit, etc., are included with your selected pin nailer.

Pin Nailer vs. Finish Nailer – Which one to Buy?

Pin nailer and finish nailer both have their benefits and drawbacks.

You should choose a pin nailer due to below reasons,

  • You will not have a troublesome time using a pin nailer. All you need to do is, drive the nail into a plank of wood by pulling the trigger. Moreover, this tool is super-fast. As a result, these are a good choice for trimming around doors and windows.
  • Using a pin nailer is effortless for a wide range of projects, making it a versatile tool. You can use it for crown molding to corner boards.
  • Flying nails can damage you in several ways. The good news is that most pin nailers come with a safety shield, protecting you from flying nails. These shields are beneficial when you work with pin nailers around doors and windows. A lot of potentials is available in these areas, causing injury.
  • A pin nailer is an inexpensive tool that can handle many small jobs. This will be an ideal option if you want to upgrade your existing equipment or a new one.

Meanwhile, buy a finish nailer for the following reasons,

  • Finish nailers perform faster than nails and hammers. Installing trim will take only a few minutes with a finish nailer. At the same time, the same project will take at least an hour with nails and a hammer.
  • A finish nailer will be the best choice if you need to install a large piece of wood and trim. This tool is powerful and speedy; you can complete a large project within a few hours with the right efficiency.
  • A finish nailer will allow you to install wood and other materials such as baseboards and molding.
  • Finish nailers are lightweight, letting you carry them comfortably in your workplace.
  • A positive trigger is available in finish nailers that control the depth of the nail. This means, with the help of this feature, you can fire 1 or 2 pins simultaneously, depending on your project.

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