I am not a thorough person.

I am not a thorough person. If there is an opportunity for slapdasherry I am your man. If you want to accurately sort 3000 assorted beads into appropriately labeled bins, I am not. That said, I am afraid of ceiling fans. Or more accurately already installed ceiling fans, and builder pre-blocking of ceiling fans. Because there’s a lot of slapdash, hacked up stuff going on under a lot of ceiling fans. Stuff that’s too slapdash for me. But I’m getting ahead of myself, last night I went over to help the Holmes install ceiling fans.


If you refer to “the Holmes” in the plural, does that refer to “the Holmes” and his family or “the Holmes” and his legion of dopplegangers and humonculi? Discuss.

So I volunteered to help the Holmes install some ceiling fans. I’ve installed 5 (six if you count last night), and I can do them pretty quickly now so I figured it would make the work lighter. Plus he helped me build my deck. Not the applying the decking part which is fun and gives you a great sense of accomplishment. Nope, he helped me with the structure. The concrete removal, and 3 weeks of geometry, and levels, and moving heavy beams around. Plus I like hanging out with him.

I got over there, and the Holmes had discovered what I already knew. Installing a ceiling fan is pretty easy. Time consuming. Tiring on your arms as the blood keeps flowing out as you try to work. But easy. He was about half done with one when I got there. I went to work on the second one. I tore down the old fan. Pulled a medallion off the ceiling, and got ready to screw on the hanger bracket. One problem. The screws on the sides of the hanger bracket ended up somewhere in the middle of the drywall, because some tool decided that putting the electrical box 2 cms above the drywall was close enough to flush. I monkeyed with it, trying to figure out if I could make it work. Because I’m not above hackery if it’ll work. But in monkeying I realized that the electrical box was only attached to one beam. Attached by two screws and some staples on a piece of angle iron that was glued to the box. Those staples looked great as long as the glue holds. I ended up pulling out the old electrical box, and the Holmes and I drove off to the Lowes in search of a metal fan brace. Brace in hand we returned. This was at about 8:00. Stella was up past her bedtime, and I hadn’t even started installing the fan.

I installed the brace. They’re pretty cool. They’re a metal bar with a foot on either end. You feed it through the opening in the ceiling and twist the bar to expand it, until both feet are bumping up against a joist. It also happens to be really secure. You could probably do chip ups on one. Not that I recommend that. Attaching the actual junction box to the bar is always a laugh and a half, but 20 minutes I had the whole setup working and was actually ready to install the fan. The fan went pretty fast. I was able to get Travis’ verification on the wiring so I didn’t have to spend 20 minutes deciphering the directions to verify I was doing it right. I got the whole thing up and the light kit attached. We turned it on and everything worked. I had to take it apart one last time because some of the wires in the light kit were bumping up against the fan blades and making a clicking sound, but ultimately it went up and turned on the first time.

So the fan installation was not slapdash. The fan is very securely attached to the ceiling and it looks a whole lot more attractive. Plus if anyone over 6 foot buys the condo they won’t loose their head. For some reason a lot of people like to use the drop kits with 8 foot ceilings.

I left the Holmes with a decimated bedroom. His comforter was covered in insulation and drywall, and there were screws and pieces of Styrofoam and plastic everywhere. I’m completely like those installer guys you hire and then complain about because they trash your house. Yeah that’s me, and my thoroughness is the reason that the Holmes was dumpster diving late at night. Because I’m so methodical that I bury unattached parts of the fan under a pile of trash.