I recently purchased a used pool table and light from an auction. I didn't realize how heavy the lighting fixture was until after I got it home. There are three glass refraction globes that weight 8 pounds each. The total weight of the lighting is about 35 pounds. There are three metal hanging chains on the main rod to hang from.

I need to hang this above my pool table. The ceiling height shouldn't be an issue, but I'm worried about the weight. I have access to the attic, as it's going in my house. I was thinking about placing some 2x4's across the joists in the ceiling and then using some threaded rods to extend down past the ceiling. I assume I can find some hooks or something to screw onto the ends of the threaded rods. Then I can use the chains on the light to hang on the hooks.

I'm really not sure what the best approach is for hanging this light. If anyone can point me in the right direction, it would be much appreciated. I don't want to make large holes in my ceiling. I also want to damage my ceiling or cause sagging.

EDIT: Adding photo. I should also note that, I already have one electric box mounted in the ceiling (with power), but it is not centered to the pool table. It's about 3 ft away. I was thinking of running the power to the current box. Maybe I should just mount a new fixture and move the existing power to it.

EDIT 2: I may be missing some mounting parts.

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    Can you post a picture of the fixtures? – bib Aug 2 '18 at 1:00
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    Fan rated old work box should work. It can be installed from below, and expanded to fit. – Tyson Aug 2 '18 at 1:07

You could definitely design and build structure in the attic, get threaded rods, etc., that would support this light fixture, but it would be 10 or 100 times easier to get a proper ceiling fan rated box that would do the job. In this case get one that is rated for 70 lb.

You evidently don't have the instructions for this particular fixture and may not have all the mounting parts. Generic mounting parts would probably work, but would have to be mounting parts rated for a light fixture like this and not just metal brackets that "look like" they would do the job. Go online and get instructions for this particular fixture.


If this fixture is designed to be suspended from more than one mounting point, then simpler mountings could be used because weight would be distributed. If the fixture that is 3 ft away is controlled a wall switch and you want to use that switch for the pool table light, then that would be a much easier install. You could run a 14/2 + gnd cable (if this is a 15-A circuit but 12/2 if this is a 20-A circuit) in the attic from the existing light to a new box for the new fixture.

I would imagine that two suspension points would be sufficient and these could be 24 inches apart on adjacent joists. If so, then fairly ordinary hooks could be screwed into the joists to support the fixture and one standard electrical box placed suitably for the wiring connection. In this type of installation the box would not be used for suspension.


You use decorative hooks like these if the chain or a carabiner at the end is large enough to go over the hook oil rubbed bronze swag hooks and you wanted a finished look or you could use heavy steel hooks for a more industrial functional look.


Some hooks that I like are decorative hooks but there are many choices. You could even drape a wire from the other fixture under the ceiling and have a connection in shallow surface mounted box, a so called "pancake box" which could just be attached to the surface of the ceiling with screws into plastic anchors since in this installation it would not be used to support the fixture but only the chain through which the wire would be intertwined. But honesty it looks a lot better to have the wiring hidden.

  • Thanks for the answers. There are three chains in total. So, I imagine it's supposed to hang from three different points; see the three loops in the photo. It looks like I'm missing the mounting plate for this light. There's a small round cover that has one of the chains thru it. – jjwdesign Aug 2 '18 at 13:51
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    I'd guess that the outer two chains are the physical supports and the middle one is there to support the wire to the entire fixture. What is the diameter of the small round cover? Does it have the wiring going through it? The way I imagine it there would be only one cover, the one that fits on the electrical box. The other two chains would simply have a link of the chain over a hook in a joist, exposed. This type of fixture would be designed to be fitted to a standard light fixture ceiling box. – Jim Stewart Aug 2 '18 at 16:10
  • I think I found the piece I was missing. It's called a cross bar set. The one here has a loop on the end. grandbrass.com/item/cb291bl/… – jjwdesign Aug 2 '18 at 19:48
  • I'm not certain the size of the cover (currently at work), but it looks like it would fit the typical round boxes. I assume the wires will go thru it. The center chain may be to just hide the power cord. It might not be for hanging. The outer two chains will handle the hanging load. I'll take your advice on the 2x4 blocking and the Strong Tie galvanized corner supports. Thanks a bunch for your help! – jjwdesign Aug 2 '18 at 19:57
  • I examined the chains in more detail. The two outside chains run to the light "cap" that would cover the cross bar (need to purchase). The center chain has the electrical cords. The center chain runs up to the hook point that would attach to the cross bar. The cords go thru the chain and hook point, which would go thru the nipple that would screw into the cross bar. I think I'm finally getting it now. Will be heading to the store tonight. Thanks you! – jjwdesign Aug 3 '18 at 18:07

Since you have access from above, you can install a new work ceiling fan box or chandelier box. Both are designed to carry heavy loads. Fan boxes are designed to carry loads which are also vibrating.

"New work" boxes are designed to be used when you have relatively good access to the ceiling joists. "Old work" boxes are designed to be retrofit installed through the 3.5" diameter junction box hole. They are not as strong because they are a design compromise. Use a new-work box if able.

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    Thank you for your answer. I'll be purchasing one of these later today. I was thinking of getting one of the "old work" boxes that you twist to adjust, but you've convinced me to go ahead and get "new work" box. – jjwdesign Aug 3 '18 at 18:00
  • Would one of these saddle fan boxes be a new work ceiling fan box? grainger.com/product/… – Jim Stewart Aug 3 '18 at 23:32
  • I guess the "real" new work fan box has a heavy metal bar that could be put in place from above and attaches to the sides of adjacent joists. the bar will be adjustable to fit either 16" OC or 24" OC joisting or anything in between. The fan or chandelier is supported by the bar itself by bolts that screw into machine threads in a heavy steel plate which is part of the bottom of the bar assembly. – Jim Stewart Aug 4 '18 at 20:31
  • @JimStewart Saddle boxes by nature are intended to be installed from below, before the drywall is installed. It's used if the box needs to be centered dead square on a joist. It would be tough to install after-drywall. I agree 100% with your thoughts on bar-based boxes, which are for between joists obviously. – Harper - Reinstate Monica Aug 5 '18 at 5:01
  • Harper, couldn't saddle boxes be used before or after the drywall was installed? This would be the cheapest box and if the location was right on a joist or blocking was intentionally placed there, then it could be used. – Jim Stewart Aug 6 '18 at 21:12

It depends on the material of your ceiling. If it is concrete, use concrete anchors for maximum strength, you could use a relatively thin concrete anchor to minimize the size of the holes to drill. If your ceiling is wood, use a lag bolt screwed into a into a beam, this will need to be thicker than a concrete anchor for the same load. If it is drywall, ideally a attaching the light to a beam is best, however, if no beam is available, toggle bolts may be sufficient.

Do check the specifications of the bolts you want to use to see if they are up to the load. It also looks like you can attach the light in three places, which means the load will be divided over three different attachment points.

  • There are wooden joists. New Florida construction. Pretty easy to get to everything from above. – jjwdesign Aug 2 '18 at 13:53
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    If the joists are not in the right place to receive two hooks to support the fixture, then you would install one or two 2x4s or 2x6s between two joists. These are called "blocking". I'd attach them with screws to prevent ceiling damage from hammering on the joists. Then you'd drill from below and screw in the right sized hooks for the outer two chains. (Thirty-five years ago I suspended a very heavy old Hunter fan from a single piece of 2x4 blocking between 2x4 joists 24 inches on center, and it has lasted, very secure.) I used Simpson StrongTie galvanized corner supports. – Jim Stewart Aug 2 '18 at 16:29
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    The fact is that for this purpose the blocking (perpendicular to the joists, usually 24 inches on center, so about 22.5 inches long) could be nailed or screwed at the ends angled from the top into the joist and this would be sufficient. I was hanging a heavy fan and used Simpson StrongTie corner connectors, one on each side opposite. – Jim Stewart Aug 2 '18 at 17:03
  • @JimStewart - I believe I will need to mount the two 2x4's (blocking) between the joists. This sounds like the perfect solution and will take the weight. Then the middle point/chain will connect the wiring, which I will have to move or extend from the old box. – jjwdesign Aug 2 '18 at 19:48
  • How does your fixture compare to this: build.com/westinghouse-6332500/… – Jim Stewart Aug 6 '18 at 15:13

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