Contractor Supply Magazine's Tom Hammel covered a hot list of growing trends in pneumatic tools for 2014, which continue to drive product development into 2015:
• As demand grows, shortages in skilled labor are increasing demand for tools that maximize productivity and efficiency to get more from smaller crews.
• Ease of use is more valuable than ever. Tools need to be designed for different experience and skill levels as new workers enter the labor pool.
• Reliable and consistent performance is a must, as crew chiefs have become frustrated with poor performance from poor quality tools coming in from Asia. Now that the market is rebounding, they are showing a willingness to invest in better quality.
• Low tool maintenance requirements, so tools can stay in production longer.
• Designs that reduce job site fatigue (low vibration, compact, light weight), for workers who work long hours due to small crew sizes.
"The nailer and stapler industry is a mature market with many competitors selling tools of various quality. Fuel-cell and battery-powered technology is advancing, but these tools still do not compare with the speed, weight and cost of standard pneumatic tool and compressor systems."1 Cordless powered tools are more portable, but still can't deliver the speed of pneumatic tools.
The BECK Fastener Group® is focused on these trends, delivering pneumatic tools that provide the time and cost savings contractors demand by focusing on quality and innovation. The result is products that are versatile, reliable, and power through projects faster.
Technology is a way to differentiate products to provide these benefits in a way not before possible, so continued investment in research and development is also a critical factor. For example, the development of our new Diamond Coating for staples increases withdrawal values, which increases the durability of the connection.
In our previous post, "Latest Trends in Pneumatic Tools, Part I," we noted the growing need for heavy-duty jumbo pneumatic tools capable of handling the big jobs. On another front, framers, general contractors, custom home builders and remodelers are also looking for more specialty items, ensuring higher efficiency by matching the right tool and fastener to the job at hand.
For instance, the BECK Fastener Group® has created a whole new system for fence applications that replaces the traditional method of using bulk fasteners and a hammer. It consists of the new Fasco brand F46 40-315 Fence Stapler paired with EF40-315 or EF40-315B Fence Staples, which together create a system that allows users to attach wire to fence posts with the speed of collated fasteners rather than manual application. This frees one hand to hold the wire in place and dramatically speeds up project completion while reducing effort. The powerful pneumatic stapler can countersink 1-9/16" staples to pressure-treated posts, and has adjustable depth of drive to accommodate varying fence wire types and thicknesses.
The staple's patent-pending diamond coating and precision divergent points also deliver superior holding power vs. manual installation.
Traditionally, when wooden components are connected and exposed to the weather, shrinkage and expansion will gradually loosen the nails and degrade the integrity of the connection. Coatings can be applied to the fasteners to mitigate this effect. Normal coatings consist of a blend of thermoplastic resins that melt when the fastener enters the wooden material, due to the high friction. After the connection cools off, it forms a kind of adhesive film between the wood and the fastener.
The BECK Fastener Group® has greatly advanced this technology to develop a polymeric bonding agent called Diamond Coating, which includes expansion elements that diminish the friction between the fastener and the wooden material. Less friction means that the fastener destroys less wood fibers, leaving more reliable contact points, which gives the fastener a better grip and therefore higher withdrawal values. An additional positive side effect is that less driving force is needed, which reduces air pressure consumption and allows for less wear and tear on tools, plus reduced recoil fatigue for the operator.
What trends are you seeing in the pneumatic tool industry? Let us know in the "Comments" section!