Quantcast
  • We invite you to join UKWorkshop.
    Members can turn off viewing Ads!

Nails or screws

UKworkshop.co.uk

Help Support UKworkshop.co.uk:

tony

Established Member
Joined
13 Jun 2010
Messages
137
Reaction score
0
Location
Cumbria
Hi , I am reasonably inexperienced compared to the people on here & I'd like some advice. A friend has asked me to make a small garden gate , I have some spare t & g boards & I will put a couple of rails & brace on it . I believe the correct way is to screw the outside boards & then to (clench) ? nail the inner ones . I know it's only a small project but nailing it by hand is time consuming and wondered if I there is an easier option. What would happen if I screwed all of the boards . Thanks, Tony
 

Essex Barn Workshop

Established Member
UKW Supporter
Joined
11 Jul 2020
Messages
40
Reaction score
12
Location
Loughton, Essex
Great excuse to buy a nail gun! I think Lidl have a cordless bare unit one tomorrow for £19.99
I do have some lidl clamps etc, please don't see this post as a recommendation for that particular tool, I've never seen it or used it!
 

artie

Sawdust manufacturer.
Joined
12 Jan 2015
Messages
1,261
Reaction score
248
Location
Norn Iron
Great excuse to buy a nail gun! I think Lidl have a cordless bare unit one tomorrow for £19.99
I do have some lidl clamps etc, please don't see this post as a recommendation for that particular tool, I've never seen it or used it!
Sorry for being negative but, seriously unless the gate is made of paper.
 

tony

Established Member
Joined
13 Jun 2010
Messages
137
Reaction score
0
Location
Cumbria
Not being very experienced , I believed it was all to do with movement
 

Geoff_S

Established Member
Joined
12 Sep 2017
Messages
718
Reaction score
35
Location
London
I made a T&G gate and made the mistake of screwing the boards. Every winter I end up with a concave gate!

I asked a similar question to you about why this might be happening. Apparently it was because I had screwed the T&G boards. I should have nailed them because nails allow movement when expansion/ contraction occurs. I should have also not butted the boards up tight, I should have allowed a little gap between each board to allow for any movement.

All learnt here on this forum
 

tony

Established Member
Joined
13 Jun 2010
Messages
137
Reaction score
0
Location
Cumbria
I made a T&G gate and made the mistake of screwing the boards. Every winter I end up with a concave gate!

I asked a similar question to you about why this might be happening. Apparently it was because I had screwed the T&G boards. I should have nailed them because nails allow movement when expansion/ contraction occurs. I should have also not butted the boards up tight, I should have allowed a little gap between each board to allow for any movement.

All learnt here on this forum
Thanks Geoff
 

Doug71

Established Member
Joined
28 Aug 2016
Messages
1,565
Reaction score
280
Location
Yorkshire
Screwed should be okay as long as you leave at least a couple of mill gap between each board to allow for expansion, some would recommend only one screw in each board. If the gate is going to be painted or stained put some on the tongues before you put the gate together.
 

Jameshow

Established Member
Joined
4 Oct 2020
Messages
392
Reaction score
209
Location
Bradford
I'd never screw t and g cladding.

I've had screws pop thier heads off with the expansion of the wood.

If the wood is dry you need to leave a millimetre or so of space. If it's wet treated cladding you don't need too.

Cheers James
 

TheTiddles

Established Member
Joined
14 Oct 2007
Messages
2,040
Reaction score
187
Location
Wiltshire
I made a T&G gate and made the mistake of screwing the boards. Every winter I end up with a concave gate!

I asked a similar question to you about why this might be happening. Apparently it was because I had screwed the T&G boards. I should have nailed them because nails allow movement when expansion/ contraction occurs. I should have also not butted the boards up tight, I should have allowed a little gap between each board to allow for any movement.

All learnt here on this forum
I think it’s where and how you screwed the T&G, not the screws themselves. Other than the mechanism of action they result in the same thing. Nails are just cheaper because they’re simpler. Maybe slightly more secure but most burglars are not nice enough the undo the screws and line them up for you to put back in, all except one case on my parents shed where one did

Aidan
 

TheUnicorn

Established Member
Joined
21 Feb 2020
Messages
372
Reaction score
124
Location
Bristol
my instinct is to say to use nails as they would be malleable and would cope better with movement compared to somewhat brittle screws. I'd get good spacing of the boards, and as doug suggested, paint the t and g before assembly to maximise the protection
 

OldWood

Established Member
Joined
1 Mar 2005
Messages
1,004
Reaction score
37
Location
Edinburgh
It's funny how you go through life and then some one like Unicorn makes a statement - nails are maileable, screws aren't - that is so obvious but I'd never thought of before.

One point - where you do use screws, use stainless steel (brass OK but not so strong).
 

Doug71

Established Member
Joined
28 Aug 2016
Messages
1,565
Reaction score
280
Location
Yorkshire
It's funny how you go through life and then some one like Unicorn makes a statement - nails are maileable, screws aren't - that is so obvious but I'd never thought of before.
As I understand in earthquake prone areas when building houses etc things are nailed together because the nails can give a bit while screws just shear and then things fall apart.
 

TheTiddles

Established Member
Joined
14 Oct 2007
Messages
2,040
Reaction score
187
Location
Wiltshire
It's funny how you go through life and then some one like Unicorn makes a statement - nails are maileable, screws aren't - that is so obvious but I'd never thought of before.

One point - where you do use screws, use stainless steel (brass OK but not so strong).
I really don’t think this is right, nails are generally made of steel, screws are generally made of steel, I’m not seeing how the two are going to behave differently other than a second moment of area difference the length that can flex is so small even that would be negligible.

however if you put two screws across the width of a board outdoors and one nail in the middle of another I’d expect the former to split and the second not, but the type of fastener would not be the driving factor

Aidan
 

TheUnicorn

Established Member
Joined
21 Feb 2020
Messages
372
Reaction score
124
Location
Bristol
I really don’t think this is right, nails are generally made of steel, screws are generally made of steel, I’m not seeing how the two are going to behave differently other than a second moment of area difference the length that can flex is so small even that would be negligible.

however if you put two screws across the width of a board outdoors and one nail in the middle of another I’d expect the former to split and the second not, but the type of fastener would not be the driving factor

Aidan
if you put a handful of screws and a handful of nails of a similar size, into some wood and knock them all sideways with some hammer blows, a lot more of the screws will have snapped than the nails. If you had left the wood and nails outside in the elements for a year, the difference will be exaggerated.
 

TheUnicorn

Established Member
Joined
21 Feb 2020
Messages
372
Reaction score
124
Location
Bristol
popular mechanics says so too, although confusingly it then says that screws hold up better to movement.

"When deciding between nails and screws, keep in mind that nails are less brittle, so they provide greater shear strength. They may bend under pressure, but they seldom snap.

Screws, on the other hand, may not be as forgiving, but their threaded shafts hold better in wood and draw boards together much more tightly and they have greater tensile strength. Screws also do a better job of holding tight during wood’s natural expansion and contraction."

.
 
Last edited:

LBCarpentry

Established Member
Joined
26 Sep 2012
Messages
419
Reaction score
68
Location
Leicester
Hi , I am reasonably inexperienced compared to the people on here & I'd like some advice. A friend has asked me to make a small garden gate , I have some spare t & g boards & I will put a couple of rails & brace on it . I believe the correct way is to screw the outside boards & then to (clench) ? nail the inner ones . I know it's only a small project but nailing it by hand is time consuming and wondered if I there is an easier option. What would happen if I screwed all of the boards . Thanks, Tony

Never screw........
When a nail will do..
 

TheUnicorn

Established Member
Joined
21 Feb 2020
Messages
372
Reaction score
124
Location
Bristol
Never screw........
When a nail will do..
I have to say 90% of the time I'd opt for a screw, I just feel it gives me more control

on this occasion I'd go for a nail, however I think the spacing of the T and G is maybe more important
 

Latest posts

Top