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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings all! First time posting here. I recently bought a house and plan to replace the overhead fluorescent light in the kitchen with 6 recessed lights. I've discovered that the joists run perpendicular to the cable run that I'll need to make meaning that I'll have to bore holes in every joist. I have a few questions regarding this:

  • What's the recommendation for removing the ceiling drywall? I want to remove as little as possible but since I need space to drill the holes in every joist, it seems like I'll need to make a cut down the entire length of the run vs. making several small holes for the cans
  • Assuming I make a cut down the entire length of ceiling: when I remove the existing drywall from the ceiling, do I leave the old screws in the joist or remove them? Any concerns with weakening the joists by adding new screws?

Thanks in advance for the help!
 

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If you use a cable bit (e.g. flexbit) you can drill through the joists with minimal drywall removal then fish the romex through the holes with the bit. I recommend springing for the placement tool as well (see link).

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Klein-To...PIPHorizontal1_rr-_-203115403-_-203913339-_-N

Go to YouTube and search for "installing cable behind drywall" or "using a flexbit to install cable". It's not difficult.

If you go the flexible bit route (i.e. do not remove the drywall) you'll have to use remodel cans (i.e. not new construction cans). If you have insulation (attic above kitchen) the bit will twist it up. I think they make a tube to prevent this. I assume since you you're looking to remove the ceiling, you don't have on attic above the kitchen.

I use these clips to patch drywall holes. They work great.

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Wal-Board-Tools-Drywall-Repair-Clip-6-Pack-54-014/202015408
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
This is an interesting idea. My concern with it is that I need to run the electrical cable about 10' and that is a lot of joists to cut through without knowing what other cable or pipes share that space. Here is what I am thinking of doing (notice the slot cut out for drilling the joists):

http://cdn1.tmbi.com/TFH/Step-By-Step/FH03SEP_DRLIGH_03.JPG

I like the drywall clips. I'll check those out next time I'm at HD. Thanks for the suggestions.
 

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Jello Wrangler
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Pics?

Are there any soffits along the cabinets?

You'll only need one cable run. I would cut my can holes. Then use them to drill some of the holes. You will then need to cut a few holes to jump from one can to the next. I would think that you should be able to get by with less than 4-6 holes. They only need to be 6" x 6". An 8" knife will make the first pass of mud and a 12 on the second.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I don't have any pics to share since we haven't actually moved into the house yet. I have attached a really basic drawing of what I'm talking about. The rectangle in the center represents the existing fluorescent light.

To answer ChiTown's question about soffits: yes, there are soffits but we plan to remove those in the future when we renovate the kitchen. I was thinking the same thing about using the soffits to run the cable but then I would have to redo the wiring in a couple of years. Also, the soffits don't run the entire length of where I would want to put the last row of lights.

I think that cutting a single strip for my cable run and then cutting out the holes for the remodel cans makes the most sense.
 

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Jello Wrangler
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Cutting a single strip will be harder to get back level. It will leave a couple of ridges down the ceiling. Trust me when I say a few small holes is better and much easier to blend. I've installed hundreds of can lights.
 

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I have never done what your going to do but I like ChiTown Pro's suggestion.
The hardest part of the whole project is going to be making the drywall holes "disappear" completely.
 

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First make sure where your joists are. If you can drill holes between the joists, you can work on the joists and a lot easier to repair. Can light hole saw makes it easy. Cut in reverse and someone holding a vacuum.
Angle drill, 1/4" drill bit and wire if need to explore and short spade bit for the holes.
 

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I have never done what your going to do but I like ChiTown Pro's suggestion.
The hardest part of the whole project is going to be making the drywall holes "disappear" completely.
Watch some videos on drywall repair. Do 2 to 3 coats of joint compound, letting each dry 24 hours, sanding each coat with a sanding sponge. Apply the first coat with 6 inch putty knife, second coat with 12 inch taping knife. On the 2nd coat sand it all down, then run your fingertip all over and spot sand anywhere you can feel anything using lighter pressure to finish it off. If you can't feel it, you can't see it. Repeat with a third coat if needed. Put on a good coat of drywall primer and paint that entire part of the ceiling (to it's joints/trim).

I fixed a 9 inch hole inside this trim with drywall clips and 2 coats of joint compound. It can be done!
 

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