Patching a nuisance nail

Q:

I didn’t angle my air-powered brad nailer right, and the fastener blew out the side of my project. Can I pull the brad through, or do you have a better idea?
—Shawn Smith, Bridgeport, Ohio

A:

 You can pull the brad through, Shawn, if the wood is soft enough, the brad head is small enough, and you have enough room to attach a pair of locking pliers to pull or pry it out.

Another option, shown above left, is to break off the brad beneath the surface and patch the hole. In this instance, bending the loose end of the brad back and forth broke it off just below the wood surface. Should the nail break off slightly above the surface, use a hammer and nail set to drive the exposed portion beneath the surface. After lightly sanding the damaged area, fill the hole with putty, as shown above right, to match the finished color of the wood.

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