Grex GC1850
Comments: The Grex is a light and well-balanced gun. It has an excellent line of sight for accurate nail placement. A very small front housing allows this gun to work well in small spaces and corners. According to Grex, the gun can fire up to 1,300 nails per canister and up to 50,000 nails on two AAA batteries. This gun did jam when low on fuel, but not often. An onboard Allen key is required to clear the jam. As with all gas-powered guns, there is no bump mode offered, but you can fire rapidly (about one nail per second). The tip and nose provide minimal hole size and no marring. This gun has tool-less gas-cartridge exchange but requires tools for a battery swap.

PROS: produces minimal odor; is compact in size, lightweight, and well-balanced; produces smallest hole size of all guns tested; gas canister is small and well-placed CONS: misfires on low fuel; the depth/power adjustment is ineffective; tool required to clear jam; a small C-clip fell off from the trigger pin—we’d like to see a more permanent connection here

Nail size: 1/2 in. to 2 in.
Dry-fire lockout: Yes
Magazine capacity: 100 brads
Weight: 4.4 lb.
Warranty: 1 yr. limited
Cost: $440 (includes tool, case, and batteries; gas cartridges sold separately, $25 for four-pack)

Mike Triller and his partner Bruce Cranston are finish carpenters living in Saratoga Springs, NY.