I just moved into a new apartment and want to install bike mounts on the living room wall. First I tried a drywall anchor, but after screwing it about 3/8" into the wall with just my hand, it wouldn't go in any further. I drilled a pilot hole to help, and saw that the anchor had been hitting wood - there were wood pieces on my drill bit and wood dust came out of the hole. This made me think I hit a stud, but it's also only about 3/8" thick - then I reached a cavity. So does this mean the wall is plaster and lathe? It's got 3/8" of plaster/drywall like material, then 3/8" of wood, then a hole, in the one spot I tried. It's 3/4" thick before I reach a cavity.
I figured I couldn't use a drywall anchor here, so I thought I'd try a toggle bolt. I made the pilot hole 1/2" in diameter to fit the metal bracket of the toggle bolt through, and I stuck the toggle bolt in the hole and reached the cavity, but then I realized that the cavity is only about 7/8" deep before I hit brick. The living room wall has the entry staircase for the apartment building on the other side of it, and this stairwell has brick walls. The metal bracket on the toggle bolt is 2" long, and the cavity is only 7/8" deep, so it doesn't have enough space to turn to be parallel to the wall on the inside of the cavity. So I guess this won't work either.
Now I'm thinking I could install masonry screws on the brick that lies underneath my living room wall, but the screws would have to go through the 7/8" cavity and the 3/4" living room wall before they got to the inside of my living room to receive the bike mount. I'm wondering if this will compromise the strength of the screws, because it's increasing the length of the lever arm that would be pulling the screw down and out of the brick.
Do you have any suggestions as to how I can install bike mounts on the wall, or what material you think my living room wall is (i.e. is it plaster and lathe?)? Or what kind of hardware I should use on this wall? My roommates and I hope to install 3 bike mounts on this wall, on top of each other, staggered to the left and right, like a zig zag going up the wall. Thank you for any thoughts you have.