Wiring in wood


Old 06-04-07, 03:43 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 32
Wiring in wood

I'm thinking of building a bar area in my basement and I wanted to know if my plan for overhead lights was OK.

I want to build a 3-sided wooden box to hold some of the 3" LED recessed lights. (Would basically look like a horseshoe or even simpler, the wood would form a U-shape) I would then secure the box to the ceiling by securing 2X2 "cleats" and nailing through the side of the box into the cleats when on the ceiling.

I wanted to have a total of 6 lights that would shine down onto the bar/ counter and the simplest option I saw was the 3" recessed lights - I believe they're either LED or perhaps halogen bulbs. So, I was joing going to drill some 3" holes into the wood and secure them. Is it Ok to run cable between the holes and secure them the same way as you would secure recessed cans in a normal drywall ceiling...

Is it OK to run lines from fixture to fixture inside of an "enclosed" wooden box - are there any considerations as to how far the lights should be from the ceiling....

I was planning on using 1X6 wood - so after routing in the bottom piece of wood, I would probaby have somewhere around 5" of clearance from the wood to the ceiling - i think the fixtures are roughly about 3-4 inches in height - is 1 inch enough?

I haven't built this yet, so I'm still open to suggestions... the other thing I considered was putting in round boxes and hanging pendant lights - I really didn't want anything to hang per se, but if it's safer and smarter, then I'll do it.

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Old 06-04-07, 03:50 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Near Lansing, Michigan
Posts: 10,541
> believe they're either LED or perhaps halogen bulbs

There's a huge difference here. LED produces almost no heat; halogen produces a lot of heat. In either case the fixture must be rated for recessed installation.

> Is it Ok to run cable between the holes

Yes, just like a drywall ceiling.

> fixtures are roughly about 3-4 inches in height - is 1 inch enough?

It depends on the rating of the recessed light fixture. A fixture rated non-IC requires 3" of clearance in all directions. An IC rating requires only 1/2" clearance to framing and may be in direct contact with insulation material.

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