Tool Talk: Heated Jacket, Two Nailers Stand the Test

This entry was posted in Products, RB February 2011, Rural Builder Magazine, Tools and Jobsite Equipment. Bookmark the permalink.

Milwaukee M12 Heated JacketWe have been testing the new Milwaukee M12 Cordless Heated Jacket for over a month and have to admit that this jacket will keep the wearer warm. On the day the jacket arrived it was 5 degrees Fahrenheit – just the right temperature to test a heated jacket. Once the M12 RED LITHIUM battery was charged, inserted in the battery holder and the power button turned on, the jacket warmed up nicely and performed well in the frigid Nevada high country.

Compatible with the entire line of M12 professional power tools, the new heated jacket utilizes the innovative M12 Red Lithium battery technology to actively warm the body and stimulate blood circulation in even the coldest jobsite conditions. Hidden in a zippered back pocket, the battery delivers superior runtime, with up to six hours of continuous heat on a single battery charge.

Providing unparalleled warmth and comfort, the new M12 heated jacket utilizes three sewn-in carbon fiber heating zones, strategically placed in key areas, to warm the user’s core. This durable heating element can be set to high, medium, or low with a simple touch of a button on the lapel – the button glows red, white or blue indicating the level of heat. The heated jacket is also water and wind resistant to help keep the heat inside and to provide comfort and durability in harsh environments.

Not only will the new M12 Milwaukee heated jacket keep you warm on the jobsite, it is stylish enough to wear off the job for outdoor Fall and Winter activities. The jacket sells for $119 – battery and charger sold separately. If you already own Milwaukee M12 compact cordless tools, you have a battery and charger that can be used by this jacket. Batteries sell for around $40 each. This jacket has a one year warranty.

Recently Duo-Fast introduced a lightweight pneumatic Tico Nailer, Model DF150S-TC. This tool is designed to fasten joist hangers, straps and anchors into wood with 1-1/2-inch Tico Nails. The compact design allows for easy maneuvering in the typically tight spaces where joist hangers are fastened. The rear loading magazine has a 23 nail capacity which also reduces the foot print of this nailer.

Duo-Fast Tico NailerThe new Duo-Fast Tico nailer features a Locator Probe which allows the worker to quickly locate any nail hole in the joist hanger and drive a fastener through that hole. This is easily three times faster than hand nailing thus increasing productivity and reducing labor costs. 

The DF150S-TC is a very durable tool, built for the professional contractor to withstand jobsite abuse with less moving parts and a high quality aluminum housing. The tool was designed primarily for contractors focused on building single and multi-family homes and weighs just 6 pounds 5 ounces. Other features include a steel rafter hook, which can be positioned left or right, adjustable air exhaust, cushion grip and a four nail lockout to prevent dry firing.

Along with the DF150S-TC Tico Nailer, Duo-Fast has also introduced its own code approved 1-½ inch Tico nails. These nails are heat treated to reduce ricocheting and nail bending. The nails are collated with a heavy paper tape that won’t bunch up even when wet.

Each nail is also head marked for easy identification, meaning they are ICC-ES recognized under s/b ESR-2126. This is important because it means a building inspector will know immediately that code approved nails have been used in the building construction.

Duo-Fast Tico nails come 23 to a strip, and due to extensive jobsite research with contractors and builders, Duo-Fast Construction decided to offer these nails in 1,000 count boxes instead of the industry standard of 3,000 or 4,000 nails per box.

“The number of Tico nails in a 2,000 square foot house outside of coastal areas range from about 400 to 1,000 nails,” said Jacek Romanski, Marketing Manager for Duo-Fast Construction. “In this economy, contractors want to buy only what they need to build the house. So to help contractors lower out-of-pocket costs, we decided to offer our Tico nails in 1,000 count boxes.”

The 1-1/2 inch Tico nails come in six varieties to cover every possible application and builder preference. They are available in .131 and .148 shank diameters, in brite, electro galvanized or mechanical galvanized.

Suggested retail price for the Duo-Fast DF150S-TC Tico Nailer is $369- and a box of 1,000 fasteners runs between $15 – $40 depending on diameter and finish type.

Speaking of nailers, Milwaukee recently introduced the industry’s first cordless palm nailer – Model M12 2458-20. To be sure there are several palm nailers out there but they all require an air compressor and air hose to operate. This nailer can drive 6D to 16D nails quickly. It will drive a 16D 3-1/2 inch framing nail in about two seconds. Additionally, it will drive 100 of these framing nails on a single charge.

Milwaukee palm nailerAt only 3.4 pounds and 6.5 inches from palm to tip, the M12 Palm Nailer easily operates in tight spaces, providing a unique solution in places that are unreachable by a traditional nail gun or hammer. The palm nailer also features an industrial magnetic collet – as all palm nailers do – to securely hold a nail for one-handed use and all metal gear housing for jobsite durability.

In use the M12 Palm Nailer is strapped to the right hand of the user with a Velcro strap. A nail is inserted in the magnetic collet and pressed to the work piece. The nailer is activated by pressing a large button with your right thumb on the side of the housing and the fastener is driven home. Countersinking the nail head is also an easy task. The top of this palm nailer is insulated to reduce user fatigue and to presumably protect the user from electrical shock if contact should be made with a live circuit.

Other handy features of the M12 Palm Nailer include an LED work light which is very handy for nailing tasks in low light situations. There is also a ‘fuel gauge’ on the left side of the nailer which indicates the state of charge of the battery when you press the button with your trigger thumb.

The M12 Palm Nailer comes with one RedLithium battery, 30 minute charger and carrying case. Suggested retail is $129- with a five year warranty. RB

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