Old "hockey puck" JB


Staff member
Durango, CO, 10 h 20 min without traffic from wing
wire pulling grunt
Yes fixture weight. a 7 pound fixture that needs to be installed.

I don't have my code book on me but for some reason I keep thinking I'm supposed to change the box out to a ceiling fan rated box....but maybe that's only for new installations
You don't need a ceiling fan box unless you are installing a ceiling fan or a fixture more than 25 lbs if memory serves. Even then you don't need a ceiling fan box if you can support the ceiling fan independently of the box.

You do need a ceiling fan box if you are doing new construction and you pull a 14-3 to the ceiling light box even if you are not installing a ceiling fan.


Senior Member
New York
Master Elec./JW retired
Cast iron or steel, I think 7 lbs. is nothing for (2) 8/32, I would bet some old fans are still on regular steel and plastic boxes.

al hildenbrand

Senior Member
Electrical Contractor, Electrical Consultant, Electrical Engineer
How much weight can an existing "hockey puck" size JB old? The old JB that is common for old K & T or old BX.
About the only common feature of old K & T or old BX ceiling junction boxes is that they were mostly non-galvanized steel painted black.

To me, a "hockey puck" invokes the memory of a 3-1/4" octagon box that is 1-1/2" deep.

I've routinely seen:
  • flat pan 1/2" deep both 3-1/4" and 4" wide. black paint
  • octagon box 1-1/2" deep, 3-1/4" and 4"wide, black paint
  • actual round boxes 1-1/2" deep, 4" wide, black paint
More often, than not, in my experience, the box is on a rudimentary bar hanger with a 1/2" IP fixture stud, otherwise, it is screwed ( OK ) or nailed ( ! ) to a framing member or backboard.
Most have #8x32 fixture mounting screw holes in box ears.
Some boxes have no box ears at all.
Some really old boxes have #10x20 or #10x24 fixture mounting screw holes in the box ears.

I agree with ActionDave, above, that a 7 pound luminaire (as long as it is not a paddlefan) is well within the original NEC of installation to be supported from the old black painted ceiling boxes.

Practical experience has taught me to check the box attachment to structure, and if possible to beef it up, but that is not needed very often.