Most deck builders drive a lot of metal connector nails, which can be pretty time consuming. If you’re still nailing off hangers by hand, the Paslode 150S will save you time, for sure, and pay for itself quickly.

The tool has a metal nosepiece that you just place in the hardware hole. Pull the trigger, and the 150S sets the nail nicely without overdriving and distorting the hardware. It’s well balanced and comes with a skyhook that can be put on either side. It also features a low-nail lockout to prevent damage to the driver when you run out of nails.

The ease of use and reliability of the 150S make it ideal to hand off to a laborer or less-experienced employee, so your carpenters can move on to other tasks. You’ll need only a few minutes to teach someone how to use it.

The only downsides are small. Although this is not usually a problem for deck builders, when I used the nailer to install truss clips, the nails were left a little proud when piercing the gusset plate. And it only shoots 11⁄2-inch nails, while some framing hardware requires 21⁄2-inch nails. On the plus side, Paslode does sell the 11⁄2-inch nails in a mechanically galvanized version.

Paslode PF150S-PP, Positive Placement Nailer, Illinois Tool Works, 800/222-6990,, Street price: $300