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Old 06-05-2011, 09:21 PM   #1
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I an trying to install a ceiling fan in a location that has NO ceiling electrical box. Putting one in is too expensive for me. So as an alternative I decided to attach a wide strip of finished plywood across to adjacent joists. I know they are 24" on center. I have a laser stud finder coming and a flat triangular 2 axis laser level coming. The issue is that I need to project one of the laser lines so it is parallel to the SHORT dimension but at the same time run through the mark I made as the hanging spot. The joists run parallel to the LONG wall. Therefore there will be 3 small marks on the center line, one at either end 24 oc for the 2 screws into the joists above, and one in the center as a reference mark. The fan hanging bracket will be centered over this same mark on the plywood. The wire will exit the canopy and run along the ceiling on two hooks to the nearest wall and drop verticaly and then plug in. The fan has two pull chains, one fan, one light.

How do I use the laser triangle to project the line across the ceiling parallel to the SHORT wall intersecting the center mark? Is the triangle placed on the ceiling with putty? or 2 sided tape long enough to DRAW a line over the laser line? From there I will locate 2 adjacent joists. Any advice welcome.

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Old 06-06-2011, 07:14 AM   #2
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The purpose of the electrical box is two fold. One is to hang and support the fan, the other is a safe place to make electrical connections.

You are way over engineering the hanging part, while not paying attention to the safe connection and wiring part. Whatever method you use to anchor the fan, you still need an approved enclosure (box) to make electrical connections. And a secure way to get the wire there. Your proposal of an extension cord is probably not a good idea.

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Old 06-06-2011, 07:36 AM   #3
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If you can't put it up correctly, don't put it up at all because it will fall and injure someone.
You can buy a laser but you can' put up a ceiling fan the right way because of it's cost?
That's an interesting thought process.
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Old 06-07-2011, 07:50 AM   #4
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For roughly $20 you can buy the proper fan box/brace kit. Who knows, you could probably pickup enough returnable cans and bottles on the side of the road on your way to the store to cover the cost.
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Old 06-08-2011, 06:17 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Just Bill View Post
The purpose of the electrical box is two fold. One is to hang and support the fan, the other is a safe place to make electrical connections.
.
This will be a good solution of you problem. Second one.. Nowadays, cooler or A/c are quite cheaper so buy good quality A/c too...
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Old 06-08-2011, 10:13 AM   #6
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You can not fix a big ball into a small case.
Better buy a new box and install it.
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Old 06-08-2011, 10:51 AM   #7
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When I installed a ceiling fan in a room that had no light or fan there, (it was a tray ceiling as well), I simply strung a chalk line from one corner diagonal to the other, snapped, then did the other diagonal. That gave me the dead center of the room.

I then used a screwdriver to open up a small hole in that center location. Then I went up to the attic to observe the new small hole and its location relevent to the joist/beam. I then purchased an electrical box hanger that fits between two joists. (As we mentioned by someone else). I scribed the hexagon box on the ceiling with that hole in its dead center.

Then I cut the hole out, inserted the electrical box into the enlarged hole, and began to rotate the screw base so that the electrical junction box would tighten between the two joists.

From there I located my electrical source in the attic (I had a different rope light application I was removing.), and tapped into that wire that already had an exisitng switch setup. From there it was a simple case of installing the ceiling fan onto the hex electrical junction box, wire it appropriately, etc.

One note: Be prepared that if you use that chalk line method that you will have to repaint the ceiling as that line will not come out. You could also simply use a measuring tape across, find the total distance and divide by two. Do the same on the opposing diagonal and you will have two marks very close to each other, and you can get fairly close to both and find dead center.

Also, make sure your power is off before doing any electrical wiring, and also, if going up into your attic, dont step on teh drywall areas..step on the beams.

But go to a hardware store and ask for an electrical juntion box bracing setup. Its meant to be ran in the attic, or just above the drywall between the two joists. ok?
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Old 06-08-2011, 06:02 PM   #8
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err, try using those "push-pins", as used on cork boards, and sewing thread to locate/mark a place on a ceiling. Push the pins into the sheet rock (Na-Na plaster), pull the sewing thread between the pins and locate any mid-point, for any reason. When finished, just remove the pins and thread. If anyone can see those tiny holes - - they're looking too hard. This has worked for me many times.
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Old 07-18-2011, 03:09 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thurman
err, try using those "push-pins", as used on cork boards, and sewing thread to locate/mark a place on a ceiling. Push the pins into the sheet rock (Na-Na plaster), pull the sewing thread between the pins and locate any mid-point, for any reason. When finished, just remove the pins and thread. If anyone can see those tiny holes - - they're looking too hard. This has worked for me many times.
Along the same lines: I have used string and blue painter's tape to make and "x" and fine the center point of a room. When I am done, throw out the tape and wind up the string. No marks!
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Old 07-18-2011, 05:08 PM   #10
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the first time i put in a new fan i spent time finding the exact center of the room, then had to move it over a couple inches to clear a joist. since then i just use a tape and find the approx center, then shove a coat hanger through and go up into attic to inspect. if i see that I am right in between two joists, i then go back and spend the extra time to "tune it in"
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Old 07-19-2011, 10:41 PM   #11
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If you can run wire to the spot, you should be able to find the right way to hang it. There are a bunch of tricks as others have already mentioned. They make a flat, pancake electrical box which may work. (I think it's approved for fans). If you can't run the wire then you might want to rethink the whole idea. You could always run the wire externally in those decorative conduits.

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