It’s hard to believe that viable cordless finish nailers have existed long enough to have multiple generations, but it’s true. And once you cut the hose and use a battery, it’s hard to imagine going back. The Senco Fusion F-15 isn’t the first of its kind, but it certainly made an impression on Tom Gaige back in 2010. With a sealed nitrogen cylinder and a lithium-ion battery to keep things powered, he found it to be a powerful, compact, and light tool that competed well with his pneumatic nailers.
It was as if we had stepped into the wayback machine when we came across a brand new FN65DA. But there it was: pristine and begging us to do some work. We hadn’t moved completely off our pneumatic tools, but we figured it was as good a time as any – even if a few years late! – to see if battery power could get the job done. We’ve added our thoughts to Tom’s review to give you an idea of where the F-15 fits in a sea of cordless nailers
The Senco Fusion F-15 comes packed inside a large black molded plastic carry case. It has more than ample room for the tool, the charger, and battery. There is an additional storage space for nails and small parts that under its own hinged cover. The body of the nailer is a tough gray plastic with black rubber overmold on the handle. On the top of the tool is red metal cylinder that sort of gives this tool its futuristic look.
It’s (Sort of) A Gas
There’s a permanently sealed charge of nitrogen gas inside the cylinder. The nitrogen gives the gun a pneumatic-like charge to send the nails home. Since the gas system is permanently sealed, the gas is continually compressed and recycled inside the cylinder. While this might sound like a perpetual machine, the laws of physics still prevail: the lithium-ion battery energizes the motor by resetting it to the ready position.
Over time, there is a slight pressure loss of about 5 PSI for every ten to twenty thousand nail shots. The engineers at Senco claim that the cylinder will hold its useful charge for around 100,000 nailing cycles. We only shot about 1,000 nails – all of which went home without a hitch. We think are going to have to just trust them on the additional 99,000 shots.
There is an easy-to-configure nail depth adjustment wheel located on the top front of the tool. A visual gauge shows you its current position. This takes the place of the traditional jam-clearance latch. On the lower part of the handle is a sliding switch that makes it easy to adjust from single fire, off, and bump-fire modes.
Should the magazine ever become jammed, there is a release button that opens the business end of the magazine. It provides easy access to the nail channel and inside of the magazine. You can remove the belt hook located at the base of the handle or position it on the other side for ambidexterity. Its 18V lithium-ion battery has an LED battery level gauge, therefore you constantly know how long your tool or power source has before it needs a recharge. In just 15 minutes the charger will bring the battery up to 80% of its capacity. And it takes about 45 minutes to bring it to full charge.
The prospect of leaving the air compressor and hose is behind is enough to make any tradesman giddy. The convenience and potentially increased productivity are hard to understate. The Senco Fusion F-15 uses – as the name suggests – 15 gauge finish nails, which allows it to perform heavy trim work – including setting doors.
Trimming out a house means there is a lot of movement from room to room. With the Senco, we didn’t have to worry about routing an air hose through the place. All too often, a hose can kink up under a door or around a corner somewhere down the line. Being hoseless makes all the difference in the world. We used this nailer to install nearly 20 interior split jamb doors along with all the casement trim for the doors and windows.
We also shot crown molding into plaster and the Senco didn’t bat an eye! That’s a good bit of power.
No Jam Session
We didn’t experience one jam with the Senco, and that’s wonderful. As mentioned above, the traditional jam clearance latch on top of the nose is now a convenient depth of drive gauge. Theoretically, then, you’d clear a jam by quickly removing the magazine. It seems a little tricky at first, but it snaps right in when you line it back up to the gun. We dig it.
The weight and balance of the tool made it a joy to use. The battery life was more than adequate but we never did get the claimed 500-600 shots out of the battery system. The most we got was about 450 nails – which is still a respectable amount. Thankfully, the charger is quick working and got us back on track after only a 20 minute charge time. One other small but handy feature was the LED work light that made it easy to place precision shots in low light.
The long-term cost of ownership of the Senco Fusion F-15 is going to pay off in a big way compared to gas packs. You already know that the gas power packs can get pricey. The Senco F-15 can easily save you $200 to $300 a year.
The Bottom Line
The Senco F-15 FN65DA is fantastic cordless nailer that actually can fully replace a pneumatic nailer or any other gas powered cordless nailer out there. After using our test sample extensively, we feel that given the power to drive 2-1/2″ nails into even hard materials, along with the relativity light weight, and a size that is comparable to most other 15 gauge nailers, this nailer would be an excellent tool in your collection.
But here’s the thing – this is a 7-year old tool that seems to have figured out all the issues that other brands are still working through. No one else has the balance of weight, tight trigger pull-to-fire time, and driving performance. If there’s anything to complain about, it’s only that I can’t use Senco batteries in my other cordless tools.
On the pricing side, it’s not bad. Ryobi is cheaper but with a noticeable difference in performance. The other major brands are right in the same area or more expensive.
Senco Senco Fusion F-15 Angled Finish Nailer Features
- Patented reflex-shot design for instant trigger response
- Robust aluminum drive cylinder and rugged aluminum magazine are resistant to damage
- 18V Lithium-Ion battery is eco-friendly, powerful, and consistent
- Selectable drive switch with contact or sequential actuation
- Nose mounted LED light that illuminates work surface
- Belt hook adjustable for left or right mount
- Thumbwheel depth-of-drive – perfect counter-sinks
- Innovative EZ-Clear feature clears jams fast
Senco Senco Fusion F-15 Angled Finish Nailer Specifications
- Model Number: 5N0001N
- Cordless: Yes
- Length: 13 inches
- Width: 3 inches
- Height: 13.5 inches
- Weight: 6.2 pounds
- Batteries Included: 1
- Battery Type: Li-Ion
- Depth of Drive: Adjustable
- Dry Fire Lockout: No
- Fastener Capacity: 110
- Gauge: 15
- Fastener Type: Finish Nails
- Firing Modes: Contact / Sequential Actuation
- Jam Clearance: Magazine Release
- Lubrication: Oil-Free
- Magazine Angle: 34 Degrees
- Magazine Type: Bottom Loading
- Max. Fastener Length: 2-1/2 inches
- Minch Fastener Length: 1-1/4 inches
- Tip Style: Non-Marring
- Voltage: 18V
- Price: $269.99