Review By Dean Bielanowski  

Grip-Rite GRTMP16 Mini Air Palm Nailer

 Text and Video Review

By Dean Bielanowski

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   The Grip-Rite GRTMP16 mini air nailer is a palm sized pneumatic tool that takes the place of a traditional hammer. In fact, it is approximately one third the size of other palm nailers allowing its even greater flexibility and versatility. The mini air nailer allows you to use a wide range of standard nails in different gauges and different head types, however, nails with small diameter or narrow heads cannot be used with this tool. The tool will take up to 16d nails and can drive nails up to 3.5 inches long in most softwoods.

The air nailer may have difficulty in driving nails into some hardwoods if the size of the Nail is too long or the gauge is too large. You can see this demonstrated in the accompanying video below. The plus side of using such a tool that can handle common nails is that specialty nails usually sold for other air nailers are not required and hence common loose nail packs are much cheaper to purchase.

The tool will operate on most small sized and pancake compressors. I use this tool on a 2 hp, 24 L compressor and it handles the air load of this pneumatic tool perfectly fine.

This is a specialty air tool and is best used where space for swinging a hammer is at a premium. The Grip-Rite pneumatic nailer will allow you to drive nails where it is very difficult or impossible to swing a standard hammer and is used mostly by framers and deck builders primarily.

The retractable metal tube surrounding the primary driver is magnetic allowing the nail to be held in the tool body ready to be driven. As the nail head applies pressure to the workpiece it triggers pneumatic mechanism to start firing in rapid succession. This rapid hammering action, similar to a jackhammer, drives the nail into the wood. This is not a fine finish tool. The driver will leave a mark on the surface of the material being nailed if you overdrive the nail, however, in most instances that this tool is used the finish becomes unimportant and is often hidden.

Included in the GRTMP16 box is the mini palm nailer, a metric hex wrench for opening and securing the outer cover, a small bottle of air tool oil, and a male charge air style plug already fitted, however, this can be removed and replaced with an air fitting of your own if required. The tool comes with a standard one-year warranty.

Maintaining the tool usually only requires the user to insert one or two drops of the provided air tool oil each morning before use. If the tool is being used heavily during the day, extra oil may be required halfway through the day. The compressed air running through the air nailer disperses the oil placed in the air connector to lubricate the inner tool mechanisms.

This tool works great for softwoods and as you can see in the video supplied it drives large gauge nails into pine framing with little difficulty. The tool can be quite loud however compared to other air nailers sound output is quite respectable. Personal protective equipment is always recommended when using any power or air tool.

Overall I enjoyed using this tool very much. It certainly does have its limitations however, when used within its scope, it performs very well indeed. If you have a need for a small palm nailer that will allow you to reach into tight spaces and drive nails, the mini air nailer is well worth considering.

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