Facts About Casters

Whenever you want to make something in your shop mobile, you need to know what caster is right for you. Swivel and rigid casters are the two primary styles. You will want to know a few facts before deciding on the style or combination that is best for you. Here are the primary differences and normal wheel configurations.

Rigid

These are fixed in place and can not turn. These are perfect for moving things in straight lines, such as forward and backward. While you can’t steer these, they bear a lot of weight. Each wheel can bear several tons. They are perfect if you plan on moving heavy loads over long but straight distances.

Swivel

When you have to navigate equipment or tables through tight spaces, swivel casters are the way to go. They spin when in motion, so you can move and turn your equipment easily, and they are often equipped with a locking mechanism to increase your shop’s safety. These casters do not hold as much weight as rigid wheels. It can also take more power to maneuver these wheels. This is because it can be difficult to get the wheels moving together. Additionally, swivel wheels are not good for long distances. This is because they are not good at moving in straight lines.

4-Wheel Non-Tilt

This configuration has four swivel wheels on your equipment. It lets you change directions, so you are not limited to straight lines. However, it is not good for straight lines over long distances. You can make this option better for long distances by putting swivel locks on the casters. This will let you make the occasional long-distance trip over a straight line easier.

4-Wheel Steer

This is a prevalent configuration. It has swivel casters on one side and two rigid ones on the other. It is easy to turn and can move in straight lines. However, it takes a lot of power to make turns. This is because you will have to turn the equipment on its rigid wheels.

Wagon

This is a combination of two rigid wheels on one end, and an axle joined pair on the other. This is great for heavy objects. However, it isn’t easy to move equipment with this configuration, so a great option is a power source to move them.

It is best if you understand the caster and configuration options before purchasing yours. This means considering how you will use the equipment and which options are best for you.

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