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Frequently Asked Nail Questions



Q. How long has your company been in business?
A. Tremont Nail Company opened it's doors in 1819 on the same site we use here today. The company changed hands a few times more by the end of the century. In 1927 Tremont Nail was purchased by James S. Kenyon, Sr. and remained until 1989 when it was purchased by W.H. Maze Co. of Peru, IL who sold it to Acorn Manufacturing Co. Mansfield, MA in 2006

Q. What is the most popular flooring nail?
A. The most popular nails for flooring are the Decorative Wrought Head, Common Standard, Common Rosehead and Fire Door Clinch. Any of these nails will hold equally well, so your choice is for the style you prefer.

Q. What nails can I countersink in my flooring?
A. If you are counter-sinking your nails the best to use is the Common Standard. You can also sink the Common Rosehead and Masonry nails. For other uses, the Box nail, Headless Brad, Flooring, and Fine Finish nails can also be counter-sunk.

Q. Why do people choose the Decorative Wrought Head for flooring?
A. The Decorative Wrought Head nail is great to achieve the antique Colonial look. Although, some prefer to use it on the walls because the head protrudes from the floorboards. The nail can be set into the wood, but it is a time consuming process and detracts from the hand-hammered look of the nail.

Q. Why should I use galvanized nails outdoors?
A. Although nails that have been galvanized have a brighter silver shade to them, they are recommended for outdoor projects because they do not rust. Standard nails will rust and can cause streaking of the wood. There are instances, however, where a project called for that authentic streaking look, and the nails were slightly rusted prior to application to speed up the process.

Q. How many nails will I need for my job?
A. For an accurate estimate please call our customer service department at 1-800-835-0121.

Q. Why are my boards splitting?
A. There could be several reasons for splitting. Check to see that you are lining up the long side of your nail with the grain of the wood. If you nail against the grain your nail is acting as a wedge to split the wood. If your nail is longer than 1 1/2", you may want to drill a small pilot hole to help ease the nail into the board. If you find that the pilot hole is not large enough, widen it to the thickness at just below the center of the shank and try again.


Q. What is the recommended spacing for face-nailing floors?
A. If your boards are wide, remember that even if decorative these nails will prevent cupping and bowing when used right. Any board 8" wide or less can be nailed two across. From 8" to 12" should have at least three nails across. Any larger board should have no more than six inches between the nails. All nails should be at least one inch from any edge of the board. If you are nailing less frequently than 16" on center, consider using more rather than fewer across the board.

Q. Do you have tours?
A. Unfortunately, OSHA and our insurance carrier do not allow us to give tours of our factory. All the original buildings are in tact and can be viewed from the outside. We encourage visitors to wander the grounds and visit the river that runs along our factory.

Q. What does "penny" size mean?
A. Penny size is a term that refers to the length of a nail. The term comes from Colonial era pricing unit for nails, which were priced by the hundred. For example, one hundred 2 1/2" nails would have sold for eight pennies. We have adopted this method with today's wire nails, and of course still use it as a regular term of measurement here at Tremont Nail Company.

Q. What is the normal delivery time for nails?
A. Most orders ship within two to three days of being ordered. Once they leave us, it is up to UPS or the USPS to get them to you. If you are ordering online and would like to be sure that your nails are in stock, please feel free to call our toll-free number 1-800-835-0121or email us.

Q. What are my payment options?
A. We accept MasterCard, Visa, Discover, American Express, and personal checks.

Q. Why does your Rosehead look different than mine?
A. The term "Rosehead" is sometimes used in reference to hand forged nails because of the multi-faceted head. We have two Rosehead nails that do not look hand forged at all. They are a decorative headed nail for flooring, siding, and other projects. There is a small dimple in the center of the head that serves as decoration for those who want a fancier nail, but do not like the hand forged look of our Decorative Wrought Head nail.

Q. Do you sell in 50lb boxes?
A. We do have nails in 50# boxes that will ship via UPS. To order please call 1-800-835-0121.

Q. What time period do your restoration nails represent?
A. Manufactured 'cut nails' were first introduced in the late 1700s. These machine-produced nails were manufactured much more efficiently than their hand-forged predecessors. Our Decorative Wrought Head nails are indicative of the previous style, since up until that time nails were wrought by hand.

Q. Why should I use cut nails?
A. Cut nails are preferred by those who are trying to keep their project historically accurate. Our cut nails are very similar to the first nails made here at Tremont, so they match well the nails that may already exist in your house or furniture. Others like our nails because of the interesting look the provide a project. Cut nails provide superior holding power because of their four edges. A cut nail tears through the wood fibers, rather than splitting the fibers as wire nails do. This minimizes surface splitting of the wood.

Q. What kind of steel is used to make your nails?
A. All our nails are made from flat sheets of steel. Our Masonry, Flooring and Common nails are made with a high-carbon steel. All others are made with low-carbon steel. Some nails are galvanized after cutting. For a more authentic look, the Decorative Wrought Head nail is given a black oxide finish.


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