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#115715 - 12/10/03 10:39 PM Found these at a customer's house ...  
Admin  Offline

Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 3,447
[Linked Image]
The 1900 was in a 3/4" home run I was trying to trace to split a kitchen circuit. I knew there had to be one in there somewhere... hey how about up in the ceiling? Wound up cuttin throught the drywall, paneling, and the stud blocked directly underneath the box to get access.
[Linked Image]
The photo of the switch and outlets is from the same room. Notice the "compliant" nails and the lack of a plaster ring!
[Linked Image]
The Front hall switches were mounted in a plaster / lathe wall, with no boxes whatsoever - met with good old knob & tube, with switched neutrals. Luckily, the owner said "fix it so it's right", not "why do I have to?"

- DougW

[This message has been edited by Webmaster (edited 12-10-2003).]

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#115716 - 12/11/03 12:12 PM Re: Found these at a customer's house ...  
Mean Gene  Offline
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 152
Ohio, USA
The second picture, of the the switch and outlet, looks like very recent work. Did the homeowner do this?

#115717 - 12/11/03 07:09 PM Re: Found these at a customer's house ...  
DougW  Offline
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,143
North Chicago, IL
He bought the house less than two years ago, and denies doing any "updates". The "hidden" 1900's are a recurring theme - there was one in the partition wall in the basement bath, and another hidden behind screwed-in-place ceiling paneling.

Have found several additional "hole in the wall" installed switches throughout the house. Will be spending next couple of days pulling the K&T, and replacing w/NM, to provide separate home runs as well as correcting the switched neutrals throughout the upstairs. Thank goodness for balloon construction! [Linked Image]

It looks like when they updated to 100A service (sometime early 70's by my guess), they "updated" everything in the basement, up to the point where it went into the walls to go up. There, they just terminated the EMT or Romex into 1900's, connected the K&T to the other side, and covered it up. Yeesh.

#115718 - 12/11/03 08:28 PM Re: Found these at a customer's house ...  
ThinkGood  Offline
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 1,081
Milwaukee, WI
What is a "1900" -- a 4x4 square box?

#115719 - 12/11/03 10:24 PM Re: Found these at a customer's house ...  
NJwirenut  Offline
Joined: Sep 2001
Posts: 806
Bergen County, NJ
A "1900 box" is a standard 4x4 surface mount square box. One of those regional slang things, I guess. Not sure where the name comes from, though. Perhaps some manufacturer's catalog number at one time?

#115720 - 12/12/03 01:33 AM Re: Found these at a customer's house ...  
DougW  Offline
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,143
North Chicago, IL
I don't know where "1900" came from either. I've just heard 4x4 junction boxes referred to as that for years.

#115721 - 12/12/03 08:33 AM Re: Found these at a customer's house ...  
Bill Addiss  Offline
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 3,878
Here's an explanation from


#115722 - 12/12/03 09:41 AM Re: Found these at a customer's house ...  
ElectricAL  Offline
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 597
Minneapolis, MN USA
Great reference, Bill.


Al Hildenbrand

#115723 - 01/07/04 05:54 PM Re: Found these at a customer's house ...  
rizer  Offline
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 91
bradenton ,fl.,usa
thanks bill great stuff. when i first moved to virginia in the late 80's and asked the supply house for a case of 4 squares he said he'd never heard of them and soon discovered i was asking for "1900 boxes" i then had afew more thrown at me like 11b = an 4 11/16 box and 8o= octogon box.

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