I am in the midst of a siding project. I'm securing my siding using a Paslode CF325XP cordless 30° Paper-Tape nail gun. The nails I'm using are 3 in. x 0.120" Galvanized Ring Shank Paper Tape Framing Nails nails

When I fire these nails, the paper tape usually sticks to the head of the nail. I then have to tear off the paper from the nail heads before I paint them. This a tedious extra step that requires me to get back on a ladder. So I wonder:

  1. Is there a way to prevent the paper tape from clinging onto the nail head in the first place?
  2. Is there an easier way to remove the paper tape cleanly from heads? One idea I had was to put duct tape sticky side out on a paint roller on a pole.

tape on fired nailsenter image description here

Picking off the tape with my hands doesn't always look as clean as I'd like: enter image description hereenter image description here

  • 1
    Those nails aren't even going all the way down. Nov 30, 2017 at 16:25
  • 1
    @Harper what do you mean? I've been fastening them snug (siding manufacturer's term) rather than flush most of the time. There is some variability based on how I happen to be holding the gun. I'm very much a novice.
    – Jon
    Nov 30, 2017 at 16:34
  • Not sure if it would work in this particular case (probably if the nails were flush), but I clean up stuff like this with a sander. It "grinds" away the loose bits. Maybe even a wire cup brush on a Dremel, but not sure if that's abrasive enough to tear away the paper.
    – JPhi1618
    Nov 30, 2017 at 16:38
  • Consider a wire brush.
    – Paul Logan
    Nov 30, 2017 at 17:23
  • 1
    Framing nails do not sound suitable for fastening siding. Nov 30, 2017 at 17:53

2 Answers 2


Not really. Those nails are not intended for finish work, and unless you're driving them below flush so the paper is sheared off, it will be a hassle.

Maybe look for a third-party brand of nails that uses wire connectors instead of paper.

  • My nailgun uses nails that are glued together, so the only stuff besides the nails is a tiny amount of glue. I don't know what kind of glue it is, but when a strip of nails broke into lots of small clumps that didn't fit into the nailgun magazine, I stuck them back together with plain white Elmer's, without gunking up the nailgun. I don't know whether you can get glued nails for your nailgun, but maybe you can find siding nails that don't leave a mess.
    – Steve
    Nov 30, 2017 at 20:50

I'll list what professional siding installers use below. If you don't want to deal with the problems you're having, then purchase or rent these tools:

These are the nails 3 in. x 0.120 in. 15 Degree Hot Galvanized Smooth Shank Nails that are typically used for this application. Some people like using ring shank nails, but fiber-cement board will blow out if you use them so most siding installers just use smooth nails for everything. Just because the professionals do it that way doesn't mean it's the best way.

LP does not recommend using or not using ring shank nails, so it's up to you and what nails you can find in stock.

This is the tool Pneumatic 15° Coil Framing Nailer that will drive those nails. You will also need an air compressor to operate this tool. I don't think that Paslode mades a cordless one, but I could be wrong.

Some people were commenting that you aren't driving the nails in far enough. Here is a diagram from LP that shows what they're looking for. I think they're snug enough, but I also like the look of a flush driven nail better too. Nail depth

  • Thanks for the information. I agree that a coil nailer would have been more ideal for this particular job. I bought the paslode because it is more versatile and doesn't require the noisy, bulky compressor as you mentioned. Renting might have been an option if code in minnesota didn't require a 3 inch nail in this case.
    – Jon
    Dec 7, 2017 at 20:37

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