The PowerShot “Heavy Duty” Staple & Nail Gun features a forward action design, meaning that you actually press down on the front of the tool to actuate it, rather than the back end. This is not only more ergonomic, it also applies the most pressure to the point where the staple is firing, delivering more power and control with less effort. This makes the tool easy to use, but also gives it an unusual mechanism which is more prone to jams. The PowerShot fires 1/4″ through 9/16″ heavy duty narrow crown staples and 9/16″ PowerShot brand nails. It can use PowerShot staples, Master Mechanic #4 Heavy Duty & Stainless Steel Staples, and Arrow T-50 staples (our favorite).
The Arrow PowerShot 5700 stapler is extremely ergonomic in the hand. The rubberized grip just feels good and the action is easy to get used to, though different from a traditional staple gun. Loading it is a simple process, though since the stapler is reversed you will likely, as I did, find yourself attempting to load the wrong end on more than one occasion.
In our testing the Arrow PowerShot stapler worked well for handyman tasks, but we also used it for securing a small area of Tyvek to a home. This more extensive use showed us that the PowerShot tended to drive staples fully into traditional lumber, but older hardwood was problematic. Jams weren’t frequent, but you could count on them after a time and we got very good at fixing jams.
For those who intend to do a lot of stapling, it’s a no-brainer to look into a high-quality air-powered stapler. For casual use this stapler seems to be an acceptable solution, though we feel there are more robust options of a more traditional design that may deliver better value and performance over the long haul.