Hanging Potrack in pre-war building


Old 08-03-05, 11:52 AM
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Hanging Potrack in pre-war building

I live in a pre-war building. Plaster walls/ceilings. I want to suspend a potrack from the ceiling. But the eye-hooks need to go into wood ceilng joists.<?>I've tried "drilling-for-wood" to no luck.

How can I find them - or are the Lath boards going to be a problem?
I'd like to hang in a specific spot, over the sink.



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Old 08-03-05, 04:40 PM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: California
Posts: 1,722
There are some ways to find joists. An easy way, if you can get into an attic above where you intend to hang the rack is to find them in the neighborhood of where you intend to hang it and drill a tiny hole right beside it. Now be careful because even a tiny bit from the top down might make a quarter sized hole in the plaster. Maybe the rack will cover such a hole.
Sometimes in a ceiling you can see the joists if the light is just right. The plaster might have sagged ever so slightly between the joists. Use strong side lighting and maybe you will see them. In some older poorly insulated houses there is a line along the joists.

Maybe you can take the light fixture, if there is one loose and probe beside not in the box for a joist. Use some stiff wire to push toward the side until you run into something It is probabaly the joist. Then measure over and drill a hole and see if you hit it or not.

A practiced ear might be able to find joists by tapping with a wood stick or something.

In some houses the joists project beyond the walls even if they are boxed in with something you might be able to spot the nails then use a window or door or something as a point of reference and maybe you can find the extension of the joist inside.

I have no experience with electronic stud finders.

You can always just hunt with a hammer and nail or drill and just keep hunting. It would be helpful if you at least know which way the joists run so that you don't make a hole every inch for two feet and keep running right between two joists. If you have wood lath I suggest a drill rather than a hammer and nail. It will do less to break the keys that hold the plaster to the lath.

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