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Old 04-03-2008, 08:41 AM   #1
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


Okay, I've been looking around and trying to figure out the best plan of action.

In a few weeks I am going to be starting the remodel of another bedroom. I am tired of cutting holes in the ceiling for boxes with my sawzall. When we gut the rooms, we leave the existing ceiling in place because of the insulation above. I need to cut through plaster in lath to get a metal ceiling fan box, another box for smoke, then one in the hallway for smoke, and finally one in the living room below for a fan box.

I don't want to have to buy 2 seperate hole saws if possible.

I know this is a remedial question, but are fan rated octagon boxes going to be the same size as an old work box?

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Old 04-03-2008, 09:04 AM   #2
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


The old work octogons in my house are a size smaller than ceiling fan rated boxes - BUT, in the only act of intelligence the original electrician ever made, they were mounted directly under a stud so I didn't have to add any bracing system - just a bigger box.

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Old 04-03-2008, 10:14 AM   #3
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


Hole saw kits are invaluable. Give your parents a hint to buy it for you, say for ... your birthday. They are rather inexpensive.
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Old 04-03-2008, 10:37 AM   #4
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


Buy whatever size hole saws you need Andy. Get good ones.
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Old 04-03-2008, 10:39 AM   #5
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


Quote:
Originally Posted by JGarth View Post
Hole saw kits are invaluable. Give your parents a hint to buy it for you, say for ... your birthday. They are rather inexpensive.
An entire holesaw kit probably wouldnt be that practical for me, as I probably woun't use it much to make it worth it. Most that I have seen are well over the $100 range.

BTW, my parents don't buy me things. I do.

If you didn't have alzheimer's you would remember the nasty PM exhance a while back where you insisted I was "some kid" and for whatever twisted reason do not believe that I am 28 years old, own a house, have a wife and 3 kids.

And have all of my teeth.

And they are real.
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Old 04-03-2008, 10:39 AM   #6
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


Quote:
I don't want to have to buy 2 seperate hole saws if possible.

I know this is a remedial question, but are fan rated octagon boxes going to be the same size as an old work box?
Are you bored or what?

Get yourself some Great White Hole saws from klien with the correct mandrels.

If you want to do it the hard way take a thin piece of plywood about 12 inches square. Outline the electrical box right in the center of the square. drill a 1/8" hole in the center of the outlined electrical box. 1" or less on each side of that drill 2 ..1/2 inch holes. Mark the spot on the ceiling where the center of the box will be. Hang a string from that point and thread it through the 1/8" hole of the template, drill through the ceiling through the 1/2 inch holes. Insert two toggle bolts through the 1/2" holes using fender washers under the head of the toggle and tighten down the template. Use your sabre saw to cut out the box outline.

Now wouldn't you rather buy a couple hole saws?

Last edited by Stubbie; 04-03-2008 at 10:42 AM.
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Old 04-03-2008, 10:44 AM   #7
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


Quote:
Originally Posted by Stubbie View Post
Are you bored or what?

Get yourself some Great White Hole saws from klien with the correct mandrels.

If you want to do it the hard way take a thin piece of plywood about 12 inches square. Outline the electrical box right in the center of the square. drill a 1/8" hole in the center of the outlined electrical box. 1" or less on each side of that drill 2 ..1/2 inch holes. Mark the spot on the ceiling where the center of the box will be. Hang a string from that point and thread it through the 1/8" hole of the template, drill through the ceiling through the 1/2 inch holes. Insert two toggle bolts through the 1/2" holes using fender washers under the head of the toggle and tighten down the template. Use your sabre saw to cut out the box outline.

Now wouldn't you rather buy a couple hole saws?
I want to aviod buying more than I have to. I don't like doing it with the sawzall because i keep screwing it up.

I'm just wanting to know if there is 1 particular size that I should buy to use for both octagon and old work round boxes...


ETA: Ya, I'm bored today... slow day 'round here...
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Old 04-03-2008, 10:51 AM   #8
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


How about a Roto-Zip?
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Old 04-03-2008, 10:56 AM   #9
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


Andy

As a side note if your thinking about getting into the electrical trade your going to have to have your own tools, the employers don't buy them for you. Buy a good klien electricians hole saw kit. Sometimes emplloyers give you a list of what you need to start out. It won't be cheap to purchase all those tools at once. When I got my brother in law into the trade years ago I loaned him the money to get started. I do admire someone who doesn't want hand outs just so you know. He paid me back in a couple months and has helped me free of charge on many projects on my property.
He turned out loving to bend conduit and is now a very respected electrician and the go to guy for the crews conduit bending. It's an art and a sight to behold watching someone who is good at building a conduit run.

Point being you need the correct tools so get them. And yes I know how the budget gets with 3 kids.
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Old 04-03-2008, 10:58 AM   #10
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


3-5/8" I believe is the size I use for most old work boxes. You might have to trim that a little for a 4" oct. Also, if you are going through plaster, get the kind with the carbide grit, not the regular toothed version. Plaster and sheetrock will dull the hell out of a holesaw quick.

InPhase277

Last edited by InPhase277; 04-03-2008 at 11:01 AM.
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Old 04-03-2008, 11:06 AM   #11
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


Yep a lot of guys use roto-zips. I didn't mention it because of the cost. Andy doesn't have the funds as yet for that kind of purchase it seems.
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Old 04-03-2008, 11:37 AM   #12
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


Quote:
Originally Posted by CowboyAndy View Post
An entire holesaw kit probably wouldnt be that practical for me, as I probably woun't use it much to make it worth it. Most that I have seen are well over the $100 range.

BTW, my parents don't buy me things. I do.

If you didn't have alzheimer's you would remember the nasty PM exhance a while back where you insisted I was "some kid" and for whatever twisted reason do not believe that I am 28 years old, own a house, have a wife and 3 kids.

And have all of my teeth.

And they are real.
All you need now ... is a steady J O B ... then you could buy the hole saws for yourself ....
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Old 04-03-2008, 12:14 PM   #13
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


I got a knockoff Roto-Zip from Menards a while back for $30 I think. I've only used it a few times, but so far it's been worth the money. We'll see how it goes when I get further into my basement remodel.
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Old 04-03-2008, 12:38 PM   #14
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


Quote:
Originally Posted by Stubbie View Post
Andy

As a side note if your thinking about getting into the electrical trade your going to have to have your own tools, the employers don't buy them for you. Buy a good klien electricians hole saw kit. Sometimes emplloyers give you a list of what you need to start out. It won't be cheap to purchase all those tools at once. When I got my brother in law into the trade years ago I loaned him the money to get started. I do admire someone who doesn't want hand outs just so you know. He paid me back in a couple months and has helped me free of charge on many projects on my property.
He turned out loving to bend conduit and is now a very respected electrician and the go to guy for the crews conduit bending. It's an art and a sight to behold watching someone who is good at building a conduit run.

Point being you need the correct tools so get them. And yes I know how the budget gets with 3 kids.
I don't want you to think that I don't have respect for your opinion, because I do.

But, I also have a wife who is in charge of the $$$. She doesn't understand the concept of the right tool for the right job. We have had the chat about me getting into the electrical field, and the response has been "well, when the time comes"...

You know how wives can be...

I would love to buy a roto zip. There are a ton of things I could use it for.

Quote:
Originally Posted by InPhase277 View Post
3-5/8" I believe is the size I use for most old work boxes. You might have to trim that a little for a 4" oct. Also, if you are going through plaster, get the kind with the carbide grit, not the regular toothed version. Plaster and sheetrock will dull the hell out of a holesaw quick.

InPhase277
Is this the type you are refering to?
http://www.holesaws.com.cn/products/.../gritsaw02.htm

or this?

http://www.holesaws.com.cn/products/.../gritsaw01.htm
Quote:
Originally Posted by JGarth View Post
All you need now ... is a steady J O B ... then you could buy the hole saws for yourself ....
Maybe you could get me one as a janitor at the nursing home you are in...
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Old 04-03-2008, 03:56 PM   #15
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Hole saw advice for ceiling boxes


Quote:
Plaster and sheetrock will dull the hell out of a holesaw quick.


If all you have is a standard holesaw, run the drill backwards. Works fine for drywall and, in a pinch on plaster.



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You need to sac up an take charge. Chicks dig that

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