Hitachi NR1890 18v Brushless Cordless Framing Nailer - First Impressions / Review
Submitted by Keith on Saturday 17/03/2018
Hitachi NR1890 Framing Nailer
In this video I'm going to talk about the Hiatchi NR1890 Brushless 18v Framing Nailer, I'll talk about my first impressions, the features, and I'll also put it through some tests in this video.
I've only used the nailer on one project so far, and that was the sheet materials storage rack I made for my lock up storage space.
This nailer is a relaitively new product and at the moment there is only one other battery operated framing nailer available to buy and that is the DeWalt DCN692 18v Brushless. That one has similar functions and features to the Hitachi.
The big benefit of using a battery operated nailer is the convenience. The two alternatives to battery operated are pneumatic nailers which require connection to an air compressor via a hose, or a gas nailer which requires replaceable gas cartridges which obviously cost money, let off smelly fumes and also require cleaning and maintenance.
This nailer is kind of a battery/pneumatic hybrid as it has a compressed air cylinder built in to the tool which is sealed so no chance of any dust or dirt getting inside, and when you pull the trigger the compressed air is released, driving a piston down to strike the nail in to the wood all driven by a brushless motor for great performance, lifespan and also battery efficiency - apparently you can fire up to nails using one of the Hitachi 3.0Ah battery. If you need more run time you can obviously use bigger batteries available from Hitachi.
My first impressions of this tool are as follows:
It's powerful. When I first got this out of the box just to try it out, I fired a nail through a 20mm thick short piece of pine and the nail actually went straight through it and out the other side, splitting the piece of wood clean in half. I've also tried it in some dense hardwoords like oak, and it drives nails in fully as you'd hope - so it certainly doesn't lack power. There is a depth adjustment knob on the front so you can set the power of the nailer according to which size nails you are using and how far you want to drive them in.
It's quite heavy. It weighs just over 4kg without a battery and is bigger than most pneumatic framing nailers but for me personally, I think that's a fair trade off for the convenience you get from using a battery operated nailer. Hitachi does have lighter batteries than some of their competitors though because they use less cells for the same amount of power. If you're thinking of using this tool for longer periods particularly if you're using it to fire above your head you might want to consider the extra weight of this nailer over a pneumatic nailer which tend to be a bit lighter weight.
Loading the nails is easy, you just slot them inside and pull back this trigger allowing the nails to feed.
To operate the nailer you use the power button, hold it down for about a second and the blue light comes on. There's also a function button here, when the blue light is on the nailer is in single fire mode, if you press it the blue light will flash meaning the nailer is in bump fire mode. It also has a battery indicator button which unfortunately only has two lights so it's not ideal for accurately knowing how much juice is left in the battery, but that's not a major issue, for me anyway.
After 30 minutes of no use, power to the nailer is automatically switched off. Obviously you can also turn it off manually using the power button. There's also a safety lock switch on the handle.
It also has an integrated hook which seems a bit on the bulky side to me, you could hang this from a 4" beam which might be useful for some but I think it would have been nice to see Hitachi include an optional smaller hook in the package so you could swap it over. This one isn't ideal for putting on your belt, it's too big so it's just going to twist around
For any jams you do need an allen key in order to open up the front and remove any blockages. I've not had any issues with jamming and to be honest I think it's very unlikely that jamming on a modern nailer like this would be an issue - I expect that would be quite a rare occurance.
It fires nails between 50mm and 90mm in length.
It also has a safety feature to avoid accidental firing - the trigger needs to be pressed within 2 second of pressing the nailer head in single fire mode, and in bump fire mode it's vice versa, i.e. the nailer head needs to be pressed within two seconds of holding the trigger. Very clever design there I think.
It's fast, you can drive two nails per second, here you can see i'm in bump fire mode.
So my experience using this tool so far have been very positive, I really enjoyed using it. It's very comfortable in the hand. I've not had too much experience using framing nailers in the past and it's not often that I get to work on construction projects but I really look forward to the next one as I'll get to use this some more. If I could go back in time to when I built my workshop, my workshop extension, my shed and the palletshed I made for my friend, this tool would have made those projects much quicker and easier. I look forward to using it again in future projects.
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