DEWALT Cordless Metal Connector Nailer Review

Tool Box Buzz rating:

DEWALT 20V Max Metal Connector Nailer DCN693M1

DEWALT Cordless Metal Connector Nailer

4.5/5
Manufacturer: DEWALT
Model number: DCN693M1
Price: $449.99
Power source: 20V Max Li-Ion
Motor size: Brushless
Weight: 8 lbs
Modern framing in both residential and commercial construction includes the use of engineered timber products and light gauge metal connector plates. The expansion of engineered lumber has been quite significant over the last 10 years which means carpenters are spending more and more time nailing structural metal connectors during the course of an average day on the job.

Until recently this meant that framers were using pneumatic metal connector nailers in order to efficiently install these connector plates. Fast forward to today and now there is a cordless option that is sure to make some waves in our industry. DEWALT recently introduced the DCN693M1 20V Max Metal Connector Nailer designed specifically for installing structural fasteners into light gauge metal connector plates.

dewalt-dcn693m1

DEWALT DCN693M1 Features & Specifications

  • Brushless Motor and Engine Design provides the power to sink both 1 1/2″ and 2 1/2″ fasteners
  • Tip Probe guide for precision placement of fasteners
  • RapidCycle Mode for speed, Sequential mode for accurancy
  • Nail Diameter Range: .131″ to .162″ in
  • Fastener Size: 1 1/2″ & 2 1/2″ in
  • Tool Free Depth Adjustment
  • Integrated Rafter Hook
  • Magazine Capacity: 29 Fasteners (1 clip)
  • Dry Fire Lockout
  • Tool Weight 8 lbs
  • Power: 20 V MAX Li-Ion

dewalt-dcn693m1-nailerJobsite Performance

Installing metal connectors can be a tedious and demanding task for any framer. Things can get a bit tricky when you start framing up in the air in trusses and rafters and even on some floor systems due to the heights and ladder use. So having a cordless option available is extremely attractive for anyone looking for freedom from an air hose and compressor. So the big question remains, can a cordless metal connector nailer perform like a pneumatic? We think the DEWALT DCN693M1 does perform that well!

metal-hanger-nailer-dewalt-dcn693m1

On a recent house build my crew used the DEWALT DCN693M1 side by side with a Paslode pneumatic metal connector nailer for a very good side-by-side comparison. The new DEWALT exceeded our expectations and easily handled all the different materials we were fastening to including:

  • Weyerhaeuser: Microllam LVL Beams
  • Weyerhaeuser: Parallam® PSL Beams
  • Weyerhaeuser: TJI® Joists
  • and traditional framing lumber

dcn693m1-tip

In addition to being capable of handling these hard framing materials the DCN693M1 didn’t slow down the crew. When turned onto the RapidCycle Mode the nailer can easily fire nails at a speed equivalent to similar pneumatic nailers. Once we had the depth of drive set for the base material this cordless nailer made quick work of the numerous hangers on the jobsite.

dewalt-metal-connector-nailer-dcn693m1

DCN693M1 Run Time

The first thought I had about using a cordless metal hanger nailer was run time. A viable cordless option only makes sense if you can get sufficient run time to ensure you’re not charging a new battery for each hanger. The DCN693M1 ships with a 4.0 Ah 20V MAX battery pack and charger. On a single charge we were able to work until lunch break before needing a charge which I thought was very respectable for a 4.0 Ah pack.

dual-speed

To increase run time we starting using the new 20/60V FlexVolt packs which allowed us to run the nailer all day without a charge. The reality is this, if you have two 4.0 packs then you can easily work all day only stopping once to switch out packs. So we feel this tool offers great run time and a viable cordless solution for nailing metal connector plates.

size-selector

Room for Improvement

We hate to write a review without putting our two cents into the conversation. If I were heading up the design team over at DEWALT there are two things I’d suggest.

  • Increase the nail magazine length to accommodate 2 full strips of nails. Most metal connectors require a significant number of nails which means you’ll be reaching for a new strip often. Currently the nailer only holds one full strip at a time.
  • I’d also like to see this tool sold with either a larger capacity battery pack or with two packs so that one can be charging while the user is working with the tool. This may not be an issue for most users that already use the DEWALT platform if they own several 20V packs.

Overall Impression – DEWALT DCN693M1 Nailer

The continued explosion of cordless tools that are cutting cords and air hoses is staggering. The DEWALT DCN693M1 is a tool that will no doubt make work safer and more efficient for framing contractors. Powerful and fast are the two words that come to mind when I think about this cordless metal connector nailer. Combine that with a tool platform that offers a wide range of tools for the framing contractor and the DCN693M1 is a real winner.

Priced around $450 this is a healthy investment. However, for guys that do framing most days of the week the investment will pay off in productivity and safety. You can also buy the tool by itself for around $370.

Bottom line is this, if you want a cordless solution for metal hanger installation this tool is the real deal.

DEWALT Cordless Metal Connector Nailer
$449.99

 

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About the author

Todd Fratzel

Todd Fratzel is the Editor of Tool Box Buzz and the President of Front Steps Media, LLC, a web based media company focused on the Home Improvement and Construction Industry.He is also the Principal Engineer for United Construction Corp., located in Newport, NH. In his capacity at United he oversees the Residential and Commercial Building Division along with all Design-Build projects.He is also the editor of several other sites including: Home Construction & Improvement and Today's Green Construction

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1 Comment

  1. Oleg Kuperman

    I think that this is the single best metal connecting nailer out there, pneumatic or otherwise, I got a chance to use it a few days ago and I was more than impressed! I love the technological innovation and absolutely love my 16ga angled nailer, despite the stupid led placement and the fact that the nails are hard to come by and are not sold at home depot… Nonetheless, with all their shortcomings Dewalt’s cordless nailers are the best out there, end of story!

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