Who Invented the Stapler

Are you shopping for a new staple gun? Whether you’re attaching the staples to plastic, vinyl, or wood it’s important to pick the right unit. That includes various factors like the durability, reliability, capacity, ergonomics, and features. When selecting a new model you might be wondering who invented the stapler.


The key is it really depends on how you define a “stapler.” There’s a big difference between tools used to attach fasteners to paper and hardwood. Still, there’s some cross-over between a lightweight desk stapler and heavy-duty pneumatic stapler, for example. So it’s important to consider the invention/development of different “staplers.” The situation might seem as confusing as choosing the right staples for your staple gun.

We fully understand why it might seem baffling. That’s why we’re here to sort out everything about the stapler inventor. This will help to clear up everything so you’ll know all the critical facts and figures related to the story.
 

Everything You Need to Know

Staplers and Staple Guns

Before talking about the issue of who invented the stapler it’s important to differentiate a stapler and staple gun. In fact, the two terms are often used to refer to the same type of machine. The term “stapler” often refers to a manual/electric tool used to fasten sheets of paper together using wire. It can also refer to machines used to do wire-stitching for tasks like book-binding.

The term can also refer to a staple gun. Such tools are powered manually or by power sources like compressed air or electricity.

The First Stapler

Legend has it that the first stapler was invented in the 1700s for King Louis XV. The staples were allegedly made of gold, covered with precious stones, and included the Royal Court’s symbol.

However, the first patented stapler was the “paper fastener” created by the Novelty Manufacturing Company. This was an early version of the modern stapler. This unit required a lot of reloading since it had a super-low capacity of one staple.

There was a big design flaw of this early stapler. The operator would press down on the machine to embed metal into pieces of paper. The problem is the stapler didn’t technically fasten the paper. That process had to be done by hand so fastening one bunch of paper was hard as nails.

The process was improved by George W. McGill’s 1879 stapler patent. The Single Stroke Staple Press eliminated the need to fasten the staple to metal. However, the reloading process was tough since it had to be done several times.

The Hotchkiss and Speed Stapler


This problem was solved about half a decade later by the F.H. Hotchkiss Company headquartered in the US state Connecticut. The 1895 unit known as “The Hotchkiss” operated with a string of staples that were wired together. This helped to solve the issue of constantly reloading the stapler.

A remaining problem was small tools like mallets were required to separate individual staples from their strip to fire them into a stack of paper.  The engineering problem wasn’t solved until several decades later.

Swingline was founded in 1925 in the US state of New York. Its Speed Stapler No. 3 was an industry game-changer. The big difference of the model from this stapler inventor was how easy it was to load the unit. Instead of using a screwdriver and hammer you just opened the stapler’s top then installed the staples. The mechanics of desk staplers have changed little during the past 80+ years since Swingline perfected the design.

From Staplers to Staple Guns

The issue of who invented the stapler isn’t just about who invented the first desktop stapler but also the first staple gun. These units are hand-held tools for heavy-duty use. They can be powered manually or by air/electricity. Pneumatic units are air-powered while electric units are powered by batteries or electrical cords.

Staple guns are used to attach thin materials to a type of solid backing like softwood/hardwood, bulletin board, etc. Like staplers there’s many manufacturers, models, and features to consider when picking a particular unit. Manual staple guns provide more control while powered staple guns offer more speed.

The First Staple Guns

As mentioned before staple guns could be defined as staplers. However, the first true staple gun was invented by Morris Abrams during the 1950s. The American businessman founded Arrow Fastener Co. in 1808. Since 1999 the company has been under the parent company Masco Corporation.

Morris invented several staple gun models including the T50. It became a trademark of Arrow in 1989 and had sold more than 40 million units by 1994. In fact, the Arrow T50 is the top-selling staple gun in the US. The stapler inventor’s unit includes several features like:

· Steel housing
· Durable coil spring
· Magazine window
· Steel working parts
· Jam-resistance

These features explain why the Arrow stapler has remained popular among professionals/homeowners. That’s due to features like the unit’s durability, functionality, and reliability.

Everything You Need to Know

Staplers and Staple Guns

Before talking about the issue of who invented the stapler it’s important to differentiate a stapler and staple gun. In fact, the two terms are often used to refer to the same type of machine. The term “stapler” often refers to a manual/electric tool used to fasten sheets of paper together using wire. It can also refer to machines used to do wire-stitching for tasks like book-binding.

The term can also refer to a staple gun. Such tools are powered manually or by power sources like compressed air or electricity.

The First Stapler

Legend has it that the first stapler was invented in the 1700s for King Louis XV. The staples were allegedly made of gold, covered with precious stones, and included the Royal Court’s symbol.

However, the first patented stapler was the “paper fastener” created by the Novelty Manufacturing Company. This was an early version of the modern stapler. This unit required a lot of reloading since it had a super-low capacity of one staple.

There was a big design flaw of this early stapler. The operator would press down on the machine to embed metal into pieces of paper. The problem is the stapler didn’t technically fasten the paper. That process had to be done by hand so fastening one bunch of paper was hard as nails.

The process was improved by George W. McGill’s 1879 stapler patent. The Single Stroke Staple Press eliminated the need to fasten the staple to metal. However, the reloading process was tough since it had to be done several times.

The Hotchkiss and Speed Stapler

This problem was solved about half a decade later by the F.H. Hotchkiss Company headquartered in the US state Connecticut. The 1895 unit known as “The Hotchkiss” operated with a string of staples that were wired together. This helped to solve the issue of constantly reloading the stapler.

A remaining problem was small tools like mallets were required to separate individual staples from their strip to fire them into a stack of paper.  The engineering problem wasn’t solved until several decades later.

Swingline was founded in 1925 in the US state of New York. Its Speed Stapler No. 3 was an industry game-changer. The big difference of the model from this stapler inventor was how easy it was to load the unit. Instead of using a screwdriver and hammer you just opened the stapler’s top then installed the staples. The mechanics of desk staplers have changed little during the past 80+ years since Swingline perfected the design.

From Staplers to Staple Guns

The issue of who invented the stapler isn’t just about who invented the first desktop stapler but also the first staple gun. These units are hand-held tools for heavy-duty use. They can be powered manually or by air/electricity. Pneumatic units are air-powered while electric units are powered by batteries or electrical cords.

Staple guns are used to attach thin materials to a type of solid backing like softwood/hardwood, bulletin board, etc. Like staplers there’s many manufacturers, models, and features to consider when picking a particular unit. Manual staple guns provide more control while powered staple guns offer more speed.

The First Staple Guns

As mentioned before staple guns could be defined as staplers. However, the first true staple gun was invented by Morris Abrams during the 1950s. The American businessman founded Arrow Fastener Co. in 1808. Since 1999 the company has been under the parent company Masco Corporation.

Morris invented several staple gun models including the T50. It became a trademark of Arrow in 1989 and had sold more than 40 million units by 1994. In fact, the Arrow T50 is the top-selling staple gun in the US. The stapler inventor’s unit includes several features like:

· Steel housing
· Durable coil spring
· Magazine window
· Steel working parts
· Jam-resistance

These features explain why the Arrow stapler has remained popular among professionals/homeowners. That’s due to features like the unit’s durability, functionality, and reliability.

Types of Staple Guns

After learning who invented the stapler it’s important to consider the main types available including:

Manual

 This might seem like the worst option since it’s not a powered stapler. That’s not always the case. In fact, it’s a good option if you’re doing DIY projects. For example, if you’re upholstering a chair or putting together a picture frame then this is a better piton over pneumatic/electric units.

Another plus is manual staplers offer more control since there’s fewer moving parts. So while you’ll have to use arm strength to operate the unit it you won’t have to worry about the staple gun being over-whelming if you’re using your first staple gun. That would be more likely when operating a powered unit.

However, if you’re doing a larger product at home or work then you should generally avoid using a manual staple gun. It probably won’t provide the juice you need to complete the task and could require much more time to finish up.

Pneumatic

This is an air-powered unit and is a good option if you want more power. The drawback is you’ll need to own an air compressor. This can be a major drawback if you have to purchase one separately. It should also produce enough power based on the staple gun’s pound-force/sq. in. So even if you already own an air compressor you still might have to purchase a new one to give your staple gun enough power.

That said, if you’re looking for a powerful stapler for industrial projects then an air-powered unit is definitely one you should consider. Keep in mind that since air-powered staple guns are more powerful they’re also heavier than electric units. So if mobility is a priority you should probably consider a battery or e-cord unit.

Electric

There are two main types of electric staple guns: battery and e-cord. The one you select should be based on different factors. For example, battery-powered staplers are heavier than ones that plug into an outlet. This could be an issue if you have health conditions or want to avoid arm fatigue when operating the power tool all day.

Meanwhile, e-cord units also have pros and cons. They’re lighter than battery-powered models. That said, the main drawback is you have to deal with power/extension cords. That can be a hassle if electrical outlets are hard to find at your job site. There’s also the chance of tripping over the cord, which can cause issues related to convenience and safety.

Types of Staple Guns

When you’re searching for a staple gun after learning about the stapler inventor here are some of the different issues to consider:

Warranty

If you’re looking for a new power tool you should look for one that at least includes a limited warranty. Is it the best option? As the name suggests it only covers certain things like manufacturer defects. However, it’s better than staplers with no warranty at all.

Then there’s the matter of how long the warranty is valid. Sometimes it’s good for a certain time period like 1, 2, or 7 years. Other times it’s a lifetime/forever warranty that’s valid for as long as you own the unit.

Price

This is based on different factors. If you pick an established brand like Bostitch, Paslode, Hitachi, or Black & Decker then you should expect to pay a higher price tag. However, you’ll also get better quality and service than an off brand.

There’s also other factors that affect the price tag. They include the unit’s quality, features, and service. There are exceptions but the old saying “You get what you pay for” usually applies when purchasing tools like staple guns.

Capacity/Speed

When selecting a staple gun make sure to consider the magazine’s capacity size. This will affect how often you have to reload the unit. Higher capacities are important if you want to boost efficiency and decrease down-time.

Do you have the need for speed? Powered staplers are always faster than manual units. However, the number of staples/second they can fire still ranges. It typically ranges from about 2-5 staples per second for powered staplers. 

​Durability

This is one of the most important issues to consider when picking a staple gun. Make sure to weigh factors like the design, materials, and craftsmanship. Some of the best materials are aluminum and magnesium if you want a unit that’s strong/lightweight. Metal alloys are also a good option for that same reason.


Safety Features

There’s many to look for. Trigger locks prevent a unit from accidental firing when the stapler is in storage. Meanwhile, some units have a system for preventing dry firing when the unit is out of staples, which can cause damage to the unit.

​Power Source

The main types of staple guns are manual, pneumatic, and electric. Each type has pros and cons so you should consider them compared to the type of stapling work you intend to do. If you’re doing DIY work then a hand stapler might be enough, while pneumatic staplers are a better option for industrial work.

​Reliability

Here’s another critical issue to consider when picking a staple gun. Jams/Misfires are a part of owning a stapler/nailer. However, it’s important to pick a unit that minimizes them. You should also consider how easily you can access the unit’s nose to unjam the unit. Look for units with a no-tool jam-clearing system to save time and effort.

​Features

You can pick a basic staple gun or one with many kinds of bells & whistles. When considering different units you should definitely consider your wants and needs. Various features include jam-clearing, depth control, accessories, safety features, magazine loading, etc. The key is to figure out which feature you’ll need for your stapling work then pick a unit that has everything you need.

​Types

After learning who invented the stapler you should consider the various types of nailers. They include roofing, siding, upholstery, carpeting, etc. Different types of units have different features. So it’s important to consider the type of work you’ll be doing with the stapler.

Another key issue is whether you’ll be using the stapler for light or heavy-duty tasks. This will help to determine how much power the unit should produce in terms of amps/volts/watts.

CONCLUSION

We’ve just addressed the big issue of the stapler inventor. It really depends on what a “stapler” is. The first unofficial inventor of the stapler was the royal court of King Louis XV. Meanwhile, the first modern stapler was created by Swingline. In terms of staple guns Arrow Fastener developed the world’s first unit.What’s the final answer about who invented the stapler? It’s a complicated issue. Whether you’re purchasing a desk stapler or staple gun make sure to look for the features and benefits that will offer you the best results. You’ll “invent” an incredible stapling experience!