As Mark continues to install the living room ceiling, I continue to cut holes for the overhead lighting. The holes are 6½ inches in diameter and they always straddle a joint between two ceiling pieces. For each light I measure its exact location from the exterior wall, center it in the ceiling bay, draw a circle with a compass, and cut it out using a jigsaw.
We tried to secure the electrical cables well away from the hole locations before the ceiling went up. In some places we secured them too well: I couldn’t reach the cable stubs after I cut my hole and had to yank them out with the fishtape. And we failed in at least one place, as my jigsaw cut right through the two cables intended for that location. No safety issue here (none of the cables are live), but we’ll have to strip the cables shorter when we wire that fixture, and if there’s not enough left we may need to string a new cable entirely. Ah well, experience comes from bad judgment.
This team doesn’t only make holes; we also fill them in. Hans and Mark filled a nasty hole in the basement to give that floor a smooth surface for the first time in its history. You may recall the jackhammer exploits of D.D. about a month ago, when he removed an erratic boulder around which the original basement was built. Using crushed-up rubble from that job, along with seven 80-pound bags of Quikrete, we placed our patch level with the surrounding floor and left the new concrete to set. Now it’s far more comfortable walking around the basement… though I still have to duck.