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Old 04-18-2017, 08:23 PM   #1
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Default seeking extension for odd 4" square box

I don't have a picture, but I'm working in a 1920 vintage house with a lot of black steel conduit and junction boxes. One enormously overstuffed 4"square box desperately needs an extension.

However, the two cover screw holes are NOT in the corners. They are slightly inset, in the style of what we nowadays see on 4-11/16-in boxes. I've searched the internet and found nothing vaguely resembling such a box, let alone an extension.

It has something like 6-7 pieces of 1/2" conduit terminating in it, some with multiple circuits. I do NOT want to remove the box just to put in a modern one that has an off-the-shelf extension -- not if I can possibly avoid it.

Suggestions would be WELCOME. THX
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Old 04-18-2017, 08:25 PM   #2
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Would this work?

http://www.garvinindustries.com/elec...-tab-converter
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Last edited by Switched; 04-18-2017 at 08:33 PM.
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Old 04-18-2017, 08:31 PM   #3
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I have been there too. I dont have anything to recommend, but if you do need to change it out, use colored tape. Mark all the wires that are together with the same color.
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Old 04-18-2017, 08:34 PM   #4
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For some reason the link isn't working, just go to Garvin and look under boxes for the old box converter accessory.
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Old 04-18-2017, 08:39 PM   #5
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Page 44 of the catalog....

https://s3.amazonaws.com/cesco-conte...achmentURL.pdf
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Old 04-18-2017, 08:54 PM   #6
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I know the kind of box you're talking about....

You could make an adapter from a two gang zero rise mud ring. Drill holes in the perimeter of the mud ring that line up with the old box mounting holes. Bolt the murine to the back of an extension ring, then secure the whole thing through your newly drilled holes to the old box.

EDIT: Or get some of those things Switched talked about

Last edited by RePhase277; 04-18-2017 at 08:57 PM.
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Old 04-18-2017, 08:54 PM   #7
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Take a basic deep 4 square box and KO its back out with a 3 1/2" punch.

Use the old flat cover as a template -- so as to drill out mounting holes -- a tad over-sized -- then get're done.

If this box is a real disaster, go with a 8x8x4 NEMA1 can and do like wise.

This way, you're not holding up the show, not waiting around to find some trick item.
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Old 04-18-2017, 09:48 PM   #8
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Quote:
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It seems like this will do the trick. Just ordered 5 pairs. THX.
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Old 04-19-2017, 12:58 AM   #9
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They call them male enlargers.
Hickeys may also work.
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Old 04-19-2017, 02:29 AM   #10
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Quote:
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They call them male enlargers.
Hickeys may also work.
Maybe don't google them by that name...

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Old 04-19-2017, 11:39 AM   #11
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The male enlarger lowers the stud. The hickey permits wire to be pulled.
Old octagon boxes guessing before WW2 didn't always have the 2 screw ears.
It was hung off a bracket that had a nipple. Or old school the box may have hung off the RMC conduit. Even older the box may have been hung off the gas pipe feeding the lamp. Some early 19 centuries lamps were duel source gas & electric. See a building about 100 years old with a plug covering up one of the conduits in the j-box. That plug may be a gas line still connected.

Doing service on old building you learn to save those extra fittings. But still sometimes it was just easier to drill and tap some holes, depends on the fixture.

The bracket below with the nipple and octagon box was what we used to hang fans. We done 1000's of fans with those brackets and boxes using drywall screws. Until they changed the code.

http://inspectapedia.com/electric/Ol...s_219_DJFs.jpg

http://bungalowclub.org/newsletter/s...light-fixture/
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Old 04-19-2017, 11:43 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by active1 View Post
The male enlarger lowers the stud. The hickey permits wire to be pulled.
Old octagon boxes guessing before WW2 didn't always have the 2 screw ears.
It was hung off a bracket that had a nipple. Or old school the box may have hung off the RMC conduit. Even older the box may have been hung off the gas pipe feeding the lamp. Some early 19 centuries lamps were duel source gas & electric. See a building about 100 years old with a plug covering up one of the conduits in the j-box. That plug may be a gas line still connected.

Doing service on old building you learn to save those extra fittings. But still sometimes it was just easier to drill and tap some holes, depends on the fixture.

The bracket below with the nipple and octagon box was what we used to hang fans. We done 1000's of fans with those brackets and boxes using drywall screws. Until they changed the code.

http://inspectapedia.com/electric/Ol...s_219_DJFs.jpg

http://bungalowclub.org/newsletter/s...light-fixture/
Have a picture? That sounds wrong no matter what code you went by.
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Old 04-19-2017, 11:59 AM   #13
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Picture?
We didn't have camera phones.
Or even use cameras. You had to buy film of what 12-24 pictures. Then pay to get it developed. Don't think too many took picks of J-boxes unless there was a legal issue.

Box did not need to be rated unless (the fan) weighed more than 35 lbs NEC 422-18.
The plastic fan boxes seem wrong to me, but that's just my opinion.
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Old 04-19-2017, 12:35 PM   #14
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Quote:
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Picture?
We didn't have camera phones.
Or even use cameras. You had to buy film of what 12-24 pictures. Then pay to get it developed. Don't think too many took picks of J-boxes unless there was a legal issue.

Box did not need to be rated unless (the fan) weighed more than 35 lbs NEC 422-18.
The plastic fan boxes seem wrong to me, but that's just my opinion.

I use the half pancake half box that fits under and next to the bottom cord of truss all the time. It, and the fan is held up by using the two 3'' long supplied wood screws that go thru slots where the regular boxes have threaded holes for 10-32 screws or fan boxes with holes for 10-24 machine screws. It is a superior method than a listed fan rated metal box with those short 10-24 supplied machine screws and also you get way more box fill area.
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Old 04-19-2017, 12:39 PM   #15
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Quote:
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Picture?
We didn't have camera phones.
Or even use cameras. You had to buy film of what 12-24 pictures. Then pay to get it developed. Don't think too many took picks of J-boxes unless there was a legal issue.

Box did not need to be rated unless (the fan) weighed more than 35 lbs NEC 422-18.
The plastic fan boxes seem wrong to me, but that's just my opinion.
Where did the sheetrock screws come into play?

To secure the box better or to attach the bracket to the box?
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Old 04-19-2017, 07:56 PM   #16
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A 1/2" nipple attaches thru a 1/2" KO in the J-box with a 1/4-20 screw to hold it together. The drywall screws attach the bracket ends to the joist.

http://www.garvinindustries.com/hang...FQ6bfgod3MMMIQ
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Old 04-19-2017, 08:09 PM   #17
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A 1/2" nipple attaches thru a 1/2" KO in the J-box with a 1/4-20 screw to hold it together. The drywall screws attach the bracket ends to the joist.

http://www.garvinindustries.com/hang...FQ6bfgod3MMMIQ
Thanks, sounds better than what I had envisioned!
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Old 04-20-2017, 07:42 AM   #18
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A fan can be mounted under any box if you drive the screws into a structural member.

When it comes to fans, that's usually the best method. I use used saddle boxes like Mikey mentioned, but I really don't need the extra wiring space since the fan canopy has it, so I use normal pancake boxes.

When it comes to hanging lights in old houses, having fittings like active1 mentioned is important. One situation he didn't mention is the old "knuckle". It's just a piece of metal mounted to wood that BX cables came thru, held in with a set screw. Then in the middle there was a threaded hub to hold the light. There was no box, the light canopy serves as the enclosure. It's probably best to replace these, but that raises the cost $200+. So when the customer just wants a new light put up cheap, having these parts helps:


seeking extension for odd 4" square box-img_0316.jpg
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Old 04-20-2017, 07:48 AM   #19
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NICE BOX!
Quote:
Originally Posted by HackWork View Post
When it comes to hanging lights in old houses, having fittings like active1 mentioned is important... So when the customer just wants a new light put up cheap, having these parts helps:
Attachment 103962
I have a much smaller box, I have to up my game.
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Old 04-20-2017, 07:54 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by active1 View Post
Picture?
We didn't have camera phones.
Or even use cameras. You had to buy film of what 12-24 pictures. Then pay to get it developed. Don't think too many took picks of J-boxes unless there was a legal issue.

Box did not need to be rated unless (the fan) weighed more than 35 lbs NEC 422-18.
The plastic fan boxes seem wrong to me, but that's just my opinion.
Film? Back in my day, a pterodactyl in a box had to use his beak to chisel an image into a stone tablet.
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