Bosch 23 Gauge Pin Nailer Review – Model FNS138-23

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Bosch 23 Gauge Pin Nailer

Bosch 23 Gauge Pin Nailer

Manufacturer: Bosch
Model number: FNS138-23
Price: $150
Power source: Pnuematic
Weight: 2.3 lbs

The FNS138-23 was introduced at a Media Event in the summer of 2012. I remember being very impressed with the new pin nailer after only a few minutes testing it at the event. Since that time I’ve had the pleasure of using this new pin nailer in the woodshop and it has shined even more than I anticipated.

Features and Specifications

  • Optimized firing technology – Counter sinks fasteners with 10% more power
  • Zero nail dry fire lock out – First pin nailer to lock out with no nails, avoids damage to workpieces and internal components by preventing blank firingBosch FNS138-23 Pin Nailer
  • In line self cleaning air filter – Prevents debris from getting into the tool extending service life
  • Slim Body – Better line of sight, better maneuverability
  • Work piece protection – Rubber over mold on housing prevents damage to work piece
  • Narrow nose – Allows for excellent line of sight, greater accuracy, and access to tight corners
  • Rear muffled exhaust – Muffles exhaust away from user
  • 1-3/8″ Maximum Length – Ideal fastener length for 1X material
  • Any brand fastener – Accepts any brand of fastener
  • Recessed Magazine – Allows access into tight corners
  • Low nail indicator – Allows user to see when nails are running low
  • Auto nail length adjust – Magazine automatically adjusts to nail length

Bosch FNS138-23 Pin Nailer Kit

Compact Size, Quality Materials, and Excellent Performance

Last summer the folks at Bosch let members of the Media preview their all new 23 gauge pin nailer in the Bosch Woodshop. I was really impressed with the pinner and finally got one into our shop for testing earlier this year. Pin nailers haven’t always been super popular but they seem to be making a bigger impact throughout the industry in recent years. If you don’t own a pin nailer I highly recommend you get yourself one, you will use it far more than you ever thought.

Bosch FNS138-23 Double Safety Trigger

The FNS138-23 from Bosch is a Home Run from start to finish. When compared to other similar models throughout the industry Bosch has managed to deliver a very compact, powerful, ergonomic pin nailer at an incredible value and they built it from top quality materials. Simply stated it’s an A+ from the bottom up.

Some of the more notable design features include:

  • Trigger Safety – pin nailers are used for such delicate work that they cant’ reasonably use a more traditional tip actuated safety device. Instead the Bosch pin nailer uses a double trigger system. The design and layout of the double trigger is very comfortable to use and very effective at reminding the user to pull both triggers.
  • Dry Fire Lockout – One of my favorite features in this new pin nailer is the Dry Fire Lockout system. This ensures that the pin nailer doesn’t continue to fire after running out of nails. This is very important for two reasons including: you won’t be continuously firing the drive head into an empty chamber, and you’ll know when you’re out of fasteners. That alone can be a great feature as the pins are so small you can’t always see them to know where you left off.

Bosch FNS138-23 Auto Fastener Length Detection

  • Automatic Fastener Length Detection – Another really cool feature is the automatic fastener length detection. When you slide the pins into the chamber it has guides that help determine the fastener length.
  • Power – The FNS138-23 is reported to have 10% more power than other similar models. While I can’t prove that I will say that this pin nailer did what many others simply don’t do. That’s to say this nailer consistently set the pins below the work surface. Why is this so important? Well it’s important because pins are so “light” that there’s no way to “set” them after the fact.
  • Compact Design – The FNS138-23 is likely one of the smallest pin nailers on the market so it’s really easy to get into tight spaces.
  • Quality Materials – I really like the materials used for this pin nailer. For once I think this tool has more metal than plastic (that’s not easy these days). This pin nailer is built to last on and off the jobsite.

Bosch FNS138-23 No Mar Tip

Final Thoughts

The Bosch FNS138-23 is an excellent Pin Nailer. Built from really good materials and craftsmanship this is a tool that’s likely to be a top pick for years to come! Best of all is the pricing. Currently selling online for around $150 the FNS138-23 is certainly pricier than some of the other brands like Porter-Cable and Bostitch. However, it’s considerably cheaper than pin nailers like Grex. Trust me when I say everyone should own the new FNS138-23.

Where To Buy

Bosch 23 Gauge Pin Nailer


About the author

Todd Fratzel

Todd Fratzel is the Editor-in-Chief and Founder 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 Home Construction & Improvement.

@tfratzelTodd Fratzel

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