When we installed an “inverter” split (DC, variable, no motor noise) in our bedroom, we moved the noisy split (AC/heater/dehumidifier) unit to our dining room. Finally, today, I mounted its remote control to the wall, removing two pieces of clutter from the counter top.

Took me ten years to figure this out.

But that’s not the story. In north North America, hanging something on a wall is pretty simple, dealing with drywall and (usually) wood studs. In south North America, and South America, our home for ten years, you deal with a different situation: plaster and brick walls. In Uruguay the requisite plastic expanding anchors are called Tacos Fisher, and I’ve often found myself sticking wood slivers or broken toothpicks alongside them because the hole ends up too big.

Until I figured it out.

To install a wall anchor, do not drill a hole.

This will be obvious to a machinist, or someone who has worked a lot with metal, but I am neither. You don’t drill a hole: you drill a hole twice, the first time with a smaller drill bit. You then use the proper-size drill as a reamer.


I can’t believe it took me over nine years to figure that out :0




  1. Syd Blackwell
    Jan 26, 2017

    I usually choose a bit that is too small, but by the time my imperfect drilling is done, the hole has miraculously expanded to the right size, mas o menos.

  2. Michael Brown
    Jan 28, 2017

    A short video would be a great addition to your article

    • Doug
      Jan 28, 2017

      Good idea. At this point I don’t need any more holes, but maybe I can find a bit of sacrificial wall to demonstrate 😉