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The 7 Best Flooring Nailers in 2024 Reviews & Buying Guide

Love wooden flooring? then a flooring nailer will help you achieve the perfect finish without any professional help.

Flooring Nailer is a specially designed nailer used widely to nail down hardwood flooring. It eases your floor installation work compared to doing it manually. You have to use a rubber mallet to strike the actuator for proper shooting of fasteners (cleats or staples) at an angle of 45° into the material.

This nail gun can install both soft and hardwood floor panels accurately with a pleasing finish. It saves a lot of your time, money, and effort for a perfect installation of the wooden flooring.

Before investing in a flooring nailer, we recommend you consider the following key factors to grab the best option.

Manual Or Pneumatic Nailer: There are two main types of flooring nailers available – manual and pneumatic. Each type has its set of pros and cons.

  • Manual nailer is a basic tool that works on the operating power of the user. They are affordable and has low operating costs. It requires two hits of the bumper for nail shooting.
  • Pneumatic nailer runs with an air compressor that can handle any type of flooring task quickly and easily. Hence, it is most preferred option that offers precise results with a single hit of the bumper. It is perfect for large surfaces, yet expensive.

Gauge Size: Choose the correct size of gauge (16 or 18) nailer based on the type of the working material. Here, the 18-gauge floor nailer can fire thinner nails, which is suitable for thin or delicate floors. While 16-gauge floor nailer is effective to shoot thick nails that can handle any flooring task and are most preferred by professionals.

Fastener Type: It is essential to decide which fastener you prefer to shoot (cleats or staples) from your nailer while doing flooring projects. Some models use cleats, while others use staples for shooting into the material. Few premium models allow you to customize and use both (cleats & staples).

  • Cleats are made of steel and are the best option to handle any type of wood and attach both subflooring and flooring. They hold much better to the floor than staples, yet expensive.
  • Staples are a bit bigger yet more affordable than cleats. Initially, it offers a better hold, but it loosens over time. So, it is used mostly on small-scale flooring projects.

To help you in choosing the right option, we are here with some Best Flooring Nailers enlisted after doing thorough research on several products. For more information, we recommend you read our detailed “Buying guide” to pick your best option.

Top Flooring Nailers in 2024

Flooring NailerGauge RatingLength SupportWarrantyBuy Now
NuMax SFL618 Flooring Nailer 15.5 and 16 gauge1 ½ inch to 2 inch1 yearCheck On Amazon
Dewalt DWFP12569 Flooring Nailer 15.5 and 16 gauge1 ½ inch to 2 inch3 yearCheck On Amazon
Freeman PFL618BR Floor Nailer 15.5 and 16 gauge1 ½ inch to 2 inch7 yearCheck On Amazon
Wen Pneumatic Flooring Nailer18 gauge5/8 to 2 inch---Check On Amazon
Bostitch BTFP12569 Flooring Nailer 15.5 and 16 gauge1 ½ inch to 2 inch7 yearCheck On Amazon
Powernail Palm001 Floor Nailer 16 and 18 gauge1 ½ inch to 2 inch1 yearCheck On Amazon
3PLUS HFSNSP Floor Nailer 15.5 and 16 gauge1 ½ inch to 2 inch1 yearCheck On Amazon

Best Flooring Nailers in 2024: Reviews

1. NuMax SFL618 Flooring Nailer

NuMax is a brand of power tools that is mainly known for making affordable and budget options when it comes to power tools. This is also true for its flooring nailer model mentioned here.

The NuMax SFL 618 pneumatic flooring nailer is present in the 1st position in this article as it is among the cheapest options available out there. Despite its budget price tag, you get decent performance along with various handy features with it. One of the best things about this flooring nailer is that it comes with a total of 3 working modes. These modes allow you to use T-cleats, L-cleats, and staples for flooring in your house or office. And these staples or cleats can have a gauge rating of 15.5 gauge and 16 gauge that is quite good for the price.

Since this is a budget-oriented flooring nailer, you only get a 1-year long warranty with it. Although, its build quality is pretty good with a sturdy construction. Its ergonomic design offers an extended handle for ease use. You even get a rubber mallet for easily moving things around during the flooring process. Another great thing about this flooring nailer is that it can hold up to 90 to 120 staples in its magazine that is quite high.

Best Features:

  • 1 ½ inch to 2-inch length support
  • 5 gauge and 16 gauge rating support
  • 1-year long warranty
  • Holds 90 to 120 staples in magazine
  • Works at 70-110 PSI air pressure

Pros:

  • Value for money option
  • Decent performance
  • Various function modes
  • Holds multiple staples at once

Cons:

  • Only 1-year warranty
  • Slightly heavy

Buy Now From Amazon

2. Dewalt DWFP12569 Flooring Stapler

Dewalt is one of the most popular and well-known brands of power tools out there. You can find all sorts of products from Dewalt, including a flooring nailer for construction purposes.

Dewalt’s DWFP12569 flooring nailer is present in the 2nd position in this article as it one of the best performing options out there. You can use it for a total of two different function modes that include the support for 15.5 gauge staples and 16 gauge cleat nails as per your wish. It is able to offer these functions while weighing just 10.6 pounds that is quite decent for the given price.

Another great thing about this flooring nailer is that it offers a great build quality to the user that can easily last for a long time. To further make this flooring nailer reliable and durable, you get a 3-year long warranty with it that is much better than other options out there. This means that you get its 1 ½ inch to 2-inch length support in a reliable design and power tool.

Best Features:

  • 1 ½ inch to 2-inch length support
  • 5 gauge and 16 gauge rating support
  • 3-year long warranty
  • Great build quality
  • Two working modes

Pros:

  • Comfortable and ergonomic grip
  • Great performance
  • Long warranty period

Cons:

  • Slightly expensive
  • A bit large

Buy Now From Amazon

3. Freeman PFL618BR  Flooring Nailer

Freeman is known for making value for money power tools that are also highly durable and reliable. Their flooring nailer is also a great option for the given price for most users out there.

This Freeman PFL618BR flooring nailer is one of the best options out there if you are looking for a highly reliable one. It is better than other budget or value for money options as you get a 7-year long warranty with it. Not only that, but the build quality offered by this Freeman flooring nailer is pretty good. It features an ergonomic and comfortable that prevents any arm strain over a long period of time. To further make this flooring nailer more practical, its sturdy build and design is quite lightweight when compared with other options present in its class.

As for its performance numbers, you can use 15.5 gauge staples and 16 gauge cleats for flooring with the help of this flooring nailer. Its 1 ½ inch to 2-inch length support is quite similar to most other options out there. Another great thing about this flooring nailer is that you get various accessories included with it. These accessories can be handy for a lot of users out there that make this flooring nailer a great value for money pick.

Best Features:

  • 1 ½ inch to 2-inch length support
  • 5 gauge and 16 gauge rating support
  • 7-year long warranty
  • 3 working modes
  • Comes with various accessories
  • Justified price tag

Pros:

  • Great value for money
  • High reliability along with a decent build quality
  • Decent performance numbers and features

Cons:

  • Slightly large in size
  • Lacks advanced features

Buy Now From Amazon

4. WEN 61741K Pneumatic Flooring Nailer

Wen Pneumatic Flooring NailerWen is a reliable manufacturer of power tools to meet the needs of woodworkers and artisans across the world. The brand designs a variety of common everyday tools including chainsaws, soldering guns, generators, and nailers.

This is a versatile tool that allows you to brad nail, staple, and floor nail for all your woodworking needs. The flooring nailer operates on a decent pressure range of 60 to 100 PSI. With this flooring nailer, you can drive18-gauge brad nails between a length of 5/8 to 2 inches. Plus, you can shoot 1/4-inch narrow crown staples between the length of 1/2 to 1-5/8 inches. There is an adjustable spring using which you can load the flooring shoe at an angle of 45 degrees for versatile nailing applications.

The flooring nailer features a quick release nose for easy jam clearing. It comes with a magazine capacity of 100 nails for a long run without refilling. There is an onboard depth adjustment wheel for precision nailing. You can set the exact depth the fastener shoots nails into the workpiece. The flooring nailer is lightweight with only 3.3 lbs for easy handling. Besides, it has a rubber-backed grip that improves accuracy and reduces hand fatigue even when you operate the tool for long hours. There is a carrying case for easy storage and portability.

Best Features:

  • 5/8 to 2 inches length support for brad nailing
  • 1/2 to 1-5/8 inches length support for stapling
  • 100 nails magazine capacity
  • Operational pressure of 60 to 100 PSI

Pros:

  • Versatile option
  • Easy jam clearing
  • Onboard depth adjustment for precision
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Reduces hand fatigue

Cons:

  • Not suitable for heavy duty applications
  • Floor shoe is hard to adjust

Buy Now From Amazon

5. Bostitch BTFP12569 Flooring Tool

You can find a wide range of power tools options from Bostitch, most of which are highly durable and reliable. And as you would expect, they also make a flooring nailer that is equally durable and strong.

This Bostitch BTFP12569 flooring nailer is present in the 5th position in this article as it is the most reliable option mentioned here. It offers a 7-year long warranty that is much higher than most other options out there. When combined with its excellent build quality, you can easily rely on this flooring nailer for a long time. Just like the previous Dewalt power tool, this one also offers a total of two working modes to the user for extra flexibility when needed.

You get a pretty decent gauge rating support with this flooring nailer that works with 15.5 gauge staples and 16 gauge cleats. These staples can be 1 ½ inch to 2 long and will still work flawlessly. One of the best things about this flooring nailer is that you get a comfortable and ergonomic handle with it. This can be quite handy for using it for a long time without needing to stop as you will not face much strain or issues.

Best Features:

  • 1 ½ inch to 2-inch length support
  • 5 gauge and 16 gauge rating support
  • 7-year long warranty
  • Ergonomic and comfortable handle
  • Includes various accessories

Pros:

  • Decent value for money
  • Excellent build quality
  • Highly durable and reliable

Cons:

  • A bit heavy
  • Average performance numbers

Buy Now From Amazon

6. Powernail Palm001 Floor Nailer

When compared with other options out there and the ones mentioned in this article, Powernail is a much smaller brand of power tools. But as per its name, it makes a wide range of nailers, including a flooring nailer.

The Powernail PowerPalm flooring nailer is one of the smallest options out there that makes it a great option for smaller applications. You even get a matching gauge rating of 16 gauge and 18 gauge with this flooring nailer. As a result, you have to use thin staples and nails with this flooring nailer that can vary from 1 ½ inch to 2 inch. While these nails might be on the thinner side, you get a pretty similar performance from it as other options out there.

Unfortunately, since Powernail is a smaller brand of power tools, you only get a 1-year warranty with it. Although, if you take proper care of it, its decently durable build quality should last you for some time. As per its name, the PowerPalm flooring nailer is controlled by your palm. It starts working as soon as you press it with your palm that makes it one of the simplest and easiest to use options available out there.

Best Features:

  • 1 ½ inch to 2-inch length support
  • 16 gauge and 18 gauge rating support
  • 1-year long warranty
  • Small and compact design
  • Easy to use

Pros:

  • Decent build quality
  • Easy to use
  • Decent performance

Cons:

  • Made for thinner nails
  • Only a 1-year long warranty

Buy Now From Amazon

7. 3PLUS HFSNSP Flooring Nailer

3Plus is another brand of power tools that is quite small and comparatively new. Although, its flooring nailer can be a decent option for a lot of users out there because of the features that it offers.

3Plus’ HFSNSP pneumatic flooring nailer can be another great pick if you are looking for an affordable option. Even though this is the cheapest option present in this article, you get a total of two function modes with it. These modes allow you to choose between staples or cleats as per your wish. You can use either 15.5 gauge or 16 gauge staples and cleats with this flooring nailer with ease. As for the supported length range, it is the same as all other options out there, which is rated at 1 ½ inch to 2 inch in length for decent flexibility.

Just like most other budget flooring nailers or power tools in general, you get a 1-year warranty with this 3Plus flooring nailer, which is to be expected for the given price. Its removable long reach handle can be quite useful for various applications. Since this is a pneumatic tool, it can easily drive into even hardwood panels without any issues. Another great thing about this flooring nailer is that it comes with a rubber mallet included in the box that is useful during the flooring.

Best Features:

  • 1 ½ inch to 2-inch length support
  • 5 gauge and 16 gauge rating support
  • 1-year long warranty
  • Removable long reach handle
  • Includes a mallet for ease of use

Pros:

  • Various accessibility features
  • Decent performance
  • Small and compact

Cons:

  • Only 1-year warranty
  • Not the best build quality

Buy Now From Amazon

How to Choose the Best Flooring Nailer:

A flooring nailer will make the wood floor installation much easier and quicker than doing it by hand. As a buyer, you need to know certain decision-making key factors of the handy nailer for the proper selection.

Let’s get into the factors to consider while shopping for this nailer.

1. Purpose (Professional Vs. Home Use)

Before buying a flooring nailer, you have to decide for what purpose you want to use them – either for household purpose or for professional usage. Thus, it will give a clear idea and ease your selection process to get the best option.

  • Professional grade flooring nailers are powerful that can handle lots of nailing. They can easily install different types of floor materials, which makes it more expensive, yet hard to handle for frameworks.
  • Home/household grade flooring nailers are used by DIY enthusiasts and homeowners. They are simple and easy-to-use flooring nailers at an affordable rate.

Irrespective of professional or home use flooring nailers, the key factor is to ensure that you bought a powerful, durable, and versatile model to quickly and easily perform your flooring task.

2. Types of Flooring Nailers (Manual Vs. Pneumatic)

Before buying a flooring nailer, you should know which type is best suitable for your requirement. The flooring nailers come in two different forms – manual and pneumatic. Both these types are good at flooring work, yet each one has its set of pros and cons you have to know them before making your buying decision.

a. Manual Flooring Nailer: It is a simple and basic type of flooring nail gun that won’t require any electricity or air compressor to shoot nails into the wood. They rely on the operator’s muscle power (manual functioning). It needs two hits of the bumper – one is to position the cleat and another one is to actuation. Since they won’t need an air compressor, these nailers are more affordable and run for a longer time.

Benefits:

  • Affordable option
  • Quick and easy to use
  • Low operation costs

Drawbacks:

  • Require multiple mallet hits.

b. Pneumatic Flooring Nailer: With the help of a pneumatic floor nailer, there are not at all big or hard flooring tasks, which makes these nailers a popular and most preferred option for both professional contractors and DIYers. They shoot cleats (nails or staples) into flooring planks by using an air compressor. Unlike manual nailers, you have to once hit the bumper for firing nails into the object/material.

These are faster, and create more precise and accurate results than their counterparts. Thus, it becomes the best option while performing large-scale flooring projects. The main drawback of this type of nailer is that they are expensive to purchase, operate and maintain in the long run as well.

Benefits:

  • Powerful option
  • Ideal option for large surfaces
  • Requires single mallet hit
  • Provides precise and accurate results.

Drawbacks:

  • Need air compressor
  • Expensive
Verdict: Pneumatic nailer is the best option for professionals to work on a larger floor that provides highly reliable, accurate, and quick flooring. If you are a budget freak/having a tight budget, then choose manual nailers to work on small floors/surfaces or for occasional flooring tasks.

3. Flooring Nailers (16-Gauge Vs. 18-Gauge)

If you use the wrong nails for the flooring, then it may either be unable to hold the floor better in its place (or) split the material to ruin your floor, thereby causing the annoying squeak. So, it is essential to select the correct cleat gauge (16 or 18 – used for flooring projects) that fits perfectly in an apt nail gun for its proper shooting.

  • 18-Gauge Flooring Nailer:  Usually, a flooring nailer with an 18-gauge is designed to fire thinner 18-gauge cleats/nails, which is a perfect option for thinner floors (or) while using delicate and thinner flooring planks. Some of these 18-gauge flooring nail guns will fire stronger cleats that can easily get into harder flooring planks, yet they won’t provide enough fastening power to hold them in their place for a longer time.

  • 16-Gauge Flooring Nailer: The type of floor nailer is designed to shoot thicker 16-gauge cleat nails easily into affixing harder and thicker wood planks. They offer more holding power compared to 18-gauge nails. Also, these nailers are mostly preferred by several contractors, as they can easily handle any type of flooring job and thereby complete them efficiently.

Note: Based on the type of material you use while flooring will also decide the type of gauge you need to choose. Go with an 18-gauge flooring nailer when using a thinner or brittle material for flooring. Whereas, a professional contractor uses a 16-gauge flooring nail gun to easily handle thicker and harder wood flooring planks.

4. Staples Vs. Cleats

It is essential to decide which type (cleats or staples) you want to shoot from the flooring nailers before buying them. Most modern floor nail gun models use both staples and cleats, in which you can use based on the purpose for what you want to use the flooring nailer. So, it is better to opt for the models using both types of fasteners.

Here is a detailed explanation of both these types that lets you decide the correct option for your needs.

  • Cleats: Cleats or nails are the popular options that handle most types of wood (especially hardwood flooring). These cleats are available in two different types – T-shaped and L-shaped cleats. Flooring nails are made of steel and they come with a ribbed edge that makes them gently attach to both subflooring and flooring. With these ribs, the cleats offer a better hold to the flooring compared to staples. Since the cleat is more accommodative for contracting and expanding of the wood, it becomes a better choice in places having drastic fluctuations in temperatures. However, the cost/price of these cleats is its main drawback. These are expensive and may cost you twice as staples.

  • Staples: The flooring staples are made of two long and smooth prongs, which makes it a bit bigger than cleats, and can easily get into flooring and subflooring. Initially, they provide a better hold, yet over time it starts loosening its hold due to the contraction and expansion of the wood. They are more affordable and economic compared to cleats.

Note: A flooring nailer using both staples and cleats are the most preferred option for professional contractors. While for DIYers or those working on home improvement projects, it’s better to opt with a bit affordable/cheaper nailer that only drives staples.

5. Body Construction

Although flooring nailers are not expensive tools, we don’t need to purchase a new model after a few projects. It means you have to check the body construction of the nailer and pick the one, which is highly durable and well-built.

The build quality is essential to consider before buying these nailers. Instead of choosing a sturdy or tough material, go with a lightweight model having a comfortable handle that is made of the best quality material.

Aluminum material is commonly used in the making of these floor nailers, as it is lightweight, tough, and durable that allowing you to work for a longer time without getting any fatigue.

6. Weight

The weight will depend mostly on the nailer material. Usually, most of these nail guns are made of lightweight aluminum, which is a sturdy and durable material. Keep in mind that your nailer should be light enough that can be worked for a longer time and moved around easily, yet not too hard to balance while working. So, opt for the models weighing under 15 pounds, which is considered the best option by several users.

7. Safety Features

People using flooring nailers do need to follow some safety features for an easy, safe, and efficient operation. Here are a few tips mentioned.

  • Manual nailers are a bit safer than pneumatic models. So, make sure that your pneumatic nailer has Dry Fire Lock Out, a unique safety feature to prevent misfiring or accidental firing.
  • Wearing safety goggles is a must while nailing. Also, a few models offer them as a part of their kit.
  • It is good to use ear protection while working around compressed air or compressors.
  • A work glove is required to remove blisters, which might result from using the mallet several times.

8. Versatility

In general, some flooring nail guns use only a specific fastener, whereas other models use both fasteners (staples and nails) of variable lengths. In case, if you are planning to use the nailer to perform different tasks, then opt for 2-in-1 or 3-in-1 models, which acclimate to different fasteners.

Look for a nail gun with more versatility when you are installing various types and thicknesses of hardwood floors. Also, a model has adjustable base plates to put up both 3/4-inch and 1/2-inch floors. Extra base plates are offered by some models, while you need to separately purchase them for other models. So, ensure that your model has the correct base plate for performing the flooring work.

9. Comfort

Since flooring is a bit time-taken process (might be several hours in a day or many days), you have to select the nailer option that lets you work comfortably even for extended periods. A flooring nail gun with an ergonomic rubber handle offers a soft grip that reduces fatigue and allows you to easily handle the tool for a longer time. Moreover, select a nailer with a long handle to make the nailing process much easier and comfortable without bending too far, and prevents getting back pain as well.

10. Price

The price of these nailers will vary greatly based on their types, materials, and features. The general price range of the floor nailers will be from $50 – $500. Consider the price range along with the features, build-quality of the nailer to make it the best deal. Most experts suggest you decide your budget range initially and then search for the best option that offers a high-performance, well-built, and longer warranty within that range.

11. Warranty

As no one is sure that the flooring nailer they choose and brought will serve you better and last longer. So, to ensure this, you have to check the warranty offered by the particular model before buying.

Some models offer a minimum of a 1-year warranty, while others come with 7-year warranties or even some premium models have a limited lifetime warranty.

A general rule is that the longer the warranty the better it performs, yet check the terms of the warranty, manufacturer/brand reputation, and customer service offered by the brand before buying them.

Also Check: Best Siding Nailers

Safety Tips While Using a Flooring Nailer

Here are some of the safety tips that you have to know when working with a flooring nailer.

Eye Protection – Take care of your head, especially eyes while operating these floor nailers. As any sort of failure will result in the device firing nails or staples at you or your surroundings. So, check the operating pressure of these pneumatic models before working to prevent the damage caused by this tool. Also, working with wood, and dust will interfere with the eyes and respiratory tract.

Inspect the Tool Before Using – It is essential to check the health of each part and component of your tool before starting the process. For instance, if the manual nailer works with tension, then it’s time to lubricate its parts with oil for smooth and reliable working.

Proper Nails or Staples Placement – Since safety is supreme, you have to check the integral part of its proper working. After checking, insert the nail carefully and securely. Also, select the nails suitable for all parameters of caliber, thickness, working material, etc. Make sure to insert with outstretched arms and don’t load a nailer pointing towards others.

No Fun When Using this Nailer – Penetrating sharp nails will hit everyone if misused or misfired. These nail guns have to be kept away from children and pets. There is a chance of any kid pulling the trigger on someone, which results in a hazardous situation, and must have to visit a hospital. Also, you should keep your finger away from the trigger while not working with the nailer.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is a flooring nailer is enough to install hardwood flooring?

Ans: Usually, a flooring nailer isn’t enough to do hardwood flooring, yet you may require a finishing nailer for the proper installation of the first and last rows.

2. What is the main purpose of using this flooring nailer?

Ans: There are several types of nailer that offer multiple purposes, yet this flooring nail gun is specially designed to perform a single job – secure a new floor as a constant foundational underlayment. These nailers are available in various models that use either cleats or staples (or both) to secure the materials. Keep in mind that these specialized tools won’t be used for any other nailing works, but only to put down your flooring.

3. Which one is the better option to use – cleat nails or staples?

Ans: Based on the nature of your flooring, you can use either of them. We suggest you opt for a tool that uses both types of fasteners, which let you use either according to floor type. But most experts state that staples are poor/bad alternative to nails. The reason is that they simply leave marks around the targeted area and won’t last long.

4. What does a warranty cover in flooring nailers?

Ans: Mostly, a warranty will cover material and manufacturing defects, yet temporarily offers replacement or repairs of the parts when they are worn out.

5. How do we clear the jammed nails if the automatic button won’t work?

Ans: You can clear the jammed nails easily even though its automatic button is not working. Initially, you have to unfasten the screws on the back magazine. Push away the magazine track from the tool, and then tap on the driver in the tool body gently with the help of a hammer and screwdriver. This will release the jammed nails, and after it cleared, you have to reassemble the magazine by placing screws back on the magazine.

6. Shall we use nails of a different size than recommended size on the pack?

Ans: No, you should always use the appropriate nail size mentioned on the pack. A nail holder is designed with a special depth adjustment system, which means it is only compatible with the specific size of nails.

Conclusion

If you work in house or any other kind of construction, then you must know that flooring is a highly important process that needs to be done precisely. Hence, a flooring nailer is a highly useful and essential tool out there. And we have mentioned some of the best flooring nailers in this article, along with their major features and details as well as a detailed buying guide. These things can be quite handy for picking up the perfect flooring nailer for you. But if you are still confused, you can choose a flooring nailer from our recommendations:

  • The Bostitch BTFP12569 flooring nailer offers the best build quality and comes with a 7-year-long warranty. These things make it a highly reliable option while being highly powerful since you can use 15.5 gauge staples or 16 gauge cleats of 1 ½ inch to 2-inch length
  • You can also go with the Freeman PFL618BR flooring nailer if you want the best price to performance ratio. Even though this has a justified price tag, you get a 7-year warranty along with class-leading performance numbers. It even comes with various accessories for ease of use.
  • However, if you are on a budget, the NuMax SFL618 flooring nailer can also be considered as it is the cheapest option present in this article. It offers a total of 3 in 1 working modes with the support for 15.5 and 16 gauge staples that is quite good.

Make sure to share your thoughts in the comments section. You can also post any questions down there if you have any!

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