DEWALT 15-Gauge Finish Nailer – 4 Year Look Back

DEWALT DCN650 Finish Nailer Look-Back Review

In this look-back tool, review were going to look a the DEWALT DCN650. Its DEWALTs Brushless 15 gauge finish nailer. [Gen 2]

Finish carpentry has been relying on pneumatic nailers since the first one was introduced in 1950. In 1986 we saw their introduction of gas and battery nailers and now were seeing totally battery-only, cordless finish nailers.

In 2017 we reviewed the Dewalt DCN650D1 15 GA Cordless Angled Finish Nailer and tried to answer the question – Is it good enough to cut the hose on the job site?

Back then we told you the short answer was yes it was, and that my personal opinion was, it depends. Production trim guys would still want air.

The DEWALT DCN650 15 Gauge Angled Finish Nailer drives 15 Gauge angled finish nails from 1-1/4″ to 2-1/2″ which makes it ideal for finish carpentry and trim work. It is powered off the 20-volt platform, weighs 5.8 lbs., and has a brushless motor.

The beautiful thing about battery-only, cordless nailers is that as long as you have a charged battery, you’re ready to use the tool. They also do not require gas cartridges or the cleaning that gas models require, which means low maintenance and reliability.

The DEWLT Finish Nailer – 4 Year Ago

Four years ago we told you we liked:

Line of sight/nose

The micro nose that offers really nice line of sight, as good as any pneumatic nailer.

Selectable firing mode

While we found the tool fast it’s still not a pneumatic nailer in the speed department, while this is less important to me, I know many of you [mostly trim carpenters] feel speed is important.

I prefer using all of my nailers in the sequential mode, as speed is far less important to me. Fastener placement, safety, accuracy, and doing a good job is my focus.

DEWALT 15-Gauge Finish Nailer

Depth of Adjustment

A tool-free depth adjustment for countersinking of nails is included and was a bit stiff and awkward to operate but it did loosen up a little over time.

Jamb Release

This nailer also features a tool-free stall release lever. This lever is located near the top of the housing of the tool, it is used to release and reset the driver blade in the event of a nail jam. Additionally the nose of the tool opens, tool-free, to access the front end of the nailer if needed.

Did we get this one right four years ago?

Yep – all day long!

This nailer was a home-run for DEWALT and continues to be on today. It’s a go-to nailer that has seen thousands of board feet fastening. We highly recommend it – 4 years later.

I’ve never used the pencil sharpener or the 16” on the center gauge on the magazine, not once. Frankly, I forgot they were there. Also of the no-mar tips have long been lost.

This nailer is solid – plain and simple.

Dewalt Finish Nailer Cost

Purchase online for $319 as a bare tool, and pretty soon you’ll see this online at Ohio Power Tool!


The one thing that impresses me the most about DEWALT is that they have never taken their foot off the gas with regard to their development process. Like many high-end tool companies, they are constantly evolving, involving, and receiving feedback from PRO end users.

Well-done DEWALT!



About the author

Rob Robillard

Robert Robillard is a remodeler, general contractor, and principal of a carpentry and renovation business located in Concord, Massachusetts, and serves as the Editor of Tool Box Buzz and founding editor of A Concord Carpenter . Rob is in charge of our Tool and Product Review - Tool and Product Review - Video Channel, , where we post all of our tool reviews and video tutorials. Rob enjoys using his knowledge and experience to help and educate building professionals as well as DIYers on best practices in the remodeling industry. The Concord Carpenter's motto: "Well done is better than well said!" : Read more about Rob Robillard

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  1. Harrington orr

    I have the dewalt 15 gauge finish nailer and it is the most constantly misfures jams constantly, rated touse up to 2 1/2″ nail but the dewalt 2 1/2″ nails dont fit so they won’t never finishes a clip of nails, with 8 or so nails left it will not fire..i am returning mine today not sure which one you tested but this cheap plastic thing is not what dewalt should stand for. This nailer is highway robbery.

  2. bob r

    I just picked up this nailer to replace my (15 year old?) DC628 gun…which was originally an 18v tool, but has been used with a 20v battery adapter for about 5 years. The 628 started acting up after about a million nails (est, lol). If the new gun lasts half as long, still a good buy.

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