The Everwin SCN65 weight 5 lbs, takes
The Everwin SCN65 weight 5 lbs, takes

Recently, my crew and I worked on a project for which we installed about 30 square of 6-inch Boral siding, which we blind-nailed, and we also ran 5/4-inch-by-4-inch Boral trim around windows. Four guys, including a lead carpenter, worked on the project. Our go-to guns have been Bostitch and Max USA siding guns. They’ve all been installing siding for a long time, so it seemed like a good opportunity to put the new Everwin SCN65 Siding Nailer to the test. After a few weeks of heavy use, my crew got a good sense for the gun.

A (Slightly) New Approach to Actuation
The SCN65 nailer features what Everwin calls a “smart trigger.” It’s an interesting approach to switching between sequential and continuous (that is, bump-fire) modes. Traditionally this requires changing the trigger on the gun, as is the case on our Bostitch and Max USA nailers. On those nailers, the two modes are distinguishable based on the color trigger that’s installed on the gun.

The so-called “smart trigger” doesn’t need to be changed in order to switch actuation modes--so you’re always using the same trigger. Actuation modes change based on when you pull the trigger in relation to the work. For example, if you pull the trigger and then contact the work, it is now set in continuous mode until you release the trigger again. If you contact the work and then pull the trigger, the nailer is in sequential mode.

In theory, this is a nice feature, but in practice it left us all shrugging our shoulders and saying “meh-so what?” All of our siding nailers are set up with the continuous-mode triggers, so that’s what we used. The smart trigger is essentially the same thing--it doesn’t function much differently than nailers that are equipped with the continuous-fire-mode triggers. You can’t press the nose on the work, pull the trigger, and then keep bump-firing--but if you pull the trigger first, you can--so it just didn’t make sense to us as a stand-out useful feature.

That said, the nailer fires extremely fast, has minimal recoil, and does not double-fire--a really nice feature, especially when you're installing siding.

Simple Yet Practical Features
We liked the fact that you can easily change the belt hook to either side, making it easy for two guys of different handedness to pass the nailer back and forth while working on the same piece. There’s a ricochet shield around the nose, which is nice--especially when you're running wire-collated nails, because it keeps the wire bits from flying in your face, which can sometimes happen. Being able to move the air exhaust in any direction is a nice plus--it’s not an uncommon feature these days, but we were glad to see it on this gun.

The depth of drive setting is well-designed and functions well. It’s located just below the trigger. In use, it has an audible “click” as you turn the dial, and the nose moves noticeably with each segmented shift. We also liked the design of the basket. There are clear, distinct positive stops for the various nail lengths; you pull out the carriage, twist it, and then set it back down. This feature held the nails securely in place, and the lid on the basket snaps tightly closed; it never opened accidentally during use. A red no-mar tip fits firmly on the nose--and it works very well; we never had any issues with marring the surface.

All-in-all we were impressed with this nailer. It’s not the lightest siding nailer we have; it’s significantly heavier than the Max USA, though we like the balance and feel of the SCN65 a lot. It didn’t jam during use, but jam-clearing is a straightforward process as with most other siding nailers, because you have full access to the jam. We noticed that the plunger did not hit the center of the nail at all times, so it sometimes set the nail head at a slight angle to the work. Because we were blind-nailing or otherwise filling holes, this didn’t matter to us--and it’s pretty much an issue with every nailer we’ve ever used. In the end, we found this to be a good nailer that’s well-balanced and well-designed--an all-around solid gun that seems as though it will be reliable for a long time.

At $270, the SCN65 is a good value especially when you consider its features and the fact that it can be used as a sheathing nailer as well. It fires 15° round head flat, wire, or plastic coil smooth, ring, and screw shank nails. The basket capacity is 200 to 400 nails.