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Old 01-19-2014, 12:17 AM   #1
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Advice needed: Cutting holes for ceiling cans


What is the easiest way to measure and cut the holes properly? We are going to drywall my daughter's basement ceiling, and there are 8 recessed can lights.

I don't have a spiral cutter, so I thought of using a compass to draw the circle before cutting.

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Old 01-19-2014, 05:54 AM   #2
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Advice needed: Cutting holes for ceiling cans


For that small a number of holes this will work and contain most of the dust.
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Klein-Too...731/203828012#

I use a hole saw made just for can lights. It has carbide grit instead of teeth. But it's pretty pricy.
A string pulled tight and a tape measure for spacing is just one way to lay it out.

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Old 01-19-2014, 06:25 AM   #3
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Advice needed: Cutting holes for ceiling cans


If your not doing it for a living......

for a 6" can....the lid from a 1 gallon paint can is just about right. I drill a hole and then use either my sawzall or a drywall saw
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Old 01-19-2014, 07:10 AM   #4
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Advice needed: Cutting holes for ceiling cans


Buy a drywall compass----they are available where ever drywall tools are sold---they have a sharp cutter wheel--then saw an X into the center of the ring and break out the waste.
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Old 01-19-2014, 08:06 AM   #5
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Advice needed: Cutting holes for ceiling cans


Watch out for ceiling joists, I seem to dead center them almost every time.
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Old 01-19-2014, 08:22 AM   #6
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Advice needed: Cutting holes for ceiling cans


Quote:
Originally Posted by BigJim
Watch out for ceiling joists, I seem to dead center them almost every time.
All you have to do is cut out a big notch for the can. One notch in a joist is not going to hurt anything.


(Disclaimer....the above comment was intended for humor only. Do NOT notch a joist like that)
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Old 01-19-2014, 10:23 AM   #7
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Advice needed: Cutting holes for ceiling cans


Quote:
Originally Posted by ddawg16 View Post
All you have to do is cut out a big notch for the can. One notch in a joist is not going to hurt anything.


(Disclaimer....the above comment was intended for humor only. Do NOT notch a joist like that)

Haha, I think I've seen people do that before. I know I've seen plumbers cut joists for traps all the time. Scary.

Putting the pot lights in before you drywall may help with the layout but you may need a different stye of pot light. You can use a regular compass and drywall saw or buy a cheap drywall router. You will need to cut out switches and receptacles as well.
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Old 01-19-2014, 01:07 PM   #8
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Advice needed: Cutting holes for ceiling cans


Thanks guys. Harbor Freight Tools has an Electric Cutting Tool on sale for $21, plus I have a 25% off coupon. Has anyone used it? Any tips on how to use one of these to cut out can lights?
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Old 01-19-2014, 03:26 PM   #9
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Advice needed: Cutting holes for ceiling cans


Not sure how anyone would know without a model #, picture, something?
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Old 01-19-2014, 04:50 PM   #10
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Advice needed: Cutting holes for ceiling cans


Sorry. I don't know how to post a link. It's a cheap "drywall router".

After I put the ceiling drywall up, do I just put in a few screws before routing out the hole for can light? Then screw in the rest?

Thanks.
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Old 01-19-2014, 06:47 PM   #11
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Advice needed: Cutting holes for ceiling cans


You screw them in except close to the light. You know if this is what I think it is, a RotoZip in cheaps clothing, the lights have to be up first.
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Old 01-19-2014, 07:10 PM   #12
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Advice needed: Cutting holes for ceiling cans


Yep--sheet right over the can--punch the tool into the center of the can---cut until you find the edge-move the cut to the outside of the can and cut ,quickly in a clockwise direction.

Go to slow and you will overheat the cutter and it will break.
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Old 01-19-2014, 07:19 PM   #13
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Advice needed: Cutting holes for ceiling cans


Thanks. Yes, the cans are already in.

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