Serving the Pacific Northwest since 1950
(503) 234-8515 | 3005 NE Sandy Blvd, Portland, OR

INTRODUCTION

This section was developed to give you a better understanding of the anatomy of a caster and how they operate. This brief description provides important factors to consider when choosing the most efficient caster for your application.

Caster-101-diagram

CASTER FACTS

CASTER SELECTION GUIDE

The first questions usually asked pertains to what the total weight to be moved is (includes the weight of the cart or equipment & the load it will be carrying) and on how many casters. The simple formula is: divide the total load weight by the number of casters or wheels you will use. That will tell you the load capacity you will need for each caster or wheel.

 

Total Load ÷ Casters or Wheels on Cart = Minimum Load Capacity Per Caster or Wheel

 

Be aware that the best combination of wheel, bearings, and caster frame requires more knowledge than just the load capacity rating. Our load capacity ratings are based on a speed of up to 2.5 mph intermittent usage over smooth floors in ideal operating conditions. Your application is seldom ideal. Did you know that heat generated from a heavy load being moved at a higher speed can cause the bonding agent which holds the tire on the wheel center to break down? The result can be tire separation and wheel failure. Avoid problems by consulting with us.

 

FLOOR PROTECTION:

In order to determine the proper wheel for your application, you need to consider the type and condition of the floors they will be rolling on. Wheels with soft non-marking rubber treads (tires) provide the best floor protection on hardwood floors, such as in your home or in a school gymnasium. Wheels with Polyurethane treads provide floor protection when soft rubber wheels lack the needed capacity. There are also countless applications where only a hard nonmetal or metal wheel will do the job. Remember that repetitive travel over the same path with wheels having a hard surface will eventually wear the surface of even concrete floors. Each of our wheels have numerous applications for which they are best suited. Please consult with us.

 

OPERATING CONDITIONS:

Other factors to consider when selecting a caster or wheel are: abuse, likeliness of impact or shock loads; is noise a factor; what speed will it be rolling; will the equipment be moved manually or by mechanically powered equipment; will they be used in extremely hot or cold temperature; will they come in contact with water, chemicals, oil/grease; will they be rolling over debris, cords, floor joints, etc; what is the condition and types of the floor surfaces (smooth, rough, uneven, broken concrete, coated concrete, asphalt, gravel, grass, carpet, hardwood, linoleum, tile, etc). Each of our wheels have unique physical properties; their features and benefits appear on each wheel page. For example: glass filled nylon wheels are best in a moist high temperature environment, while High Temperature Phenolic wheels are best suited for a dry heat environment. Polyurethane wheels are popular on road (travel) cases, polyolefin wheels are popular for equipment going through a rack washer, and our retort wheels are the wheels of choice in autoclaves. Each wheel type can be used in many different applications and there are countless applications. We urge you to read the pages describing each of our wheels and casters. If you still have questions or wish to confirm your choice, please contact us.

 

ERGONOMICS AND SAFETY:

A human being has to push or pull castered equipment; with that in mind, here are a few helpful facts: the larger the wheel diameter, the easier it will roll; wheels with anti-friction bearings (tapered, ball, or roller) roll easier than wheels with a plain bore or delrin bearings. Try to select the largest practical wheel diameter and anti-friction bearings if the application will permit. Using these tips helps ensure that you will maximize efficiency and productivity and reduce work related injuries. Numerous factors need to be considered.

 

EXTREME CLIMATE:

We offer a broad selection of wheels capable of withstanding a wide range of temperatures from -50° F to 1,300° F.

 

COST EFFICIENCY ANALYSIS:

Initial cost is an important factor in a purchase decision; however the fact is that choosing the least expensive casters that meet your requirements can save money up front, but may actually cost you more in the long term, including the cost for maintenance, down time, and replacement. Selecting stronger casters with a higher weight capacity, larger wheels, and better bearings insures maximum productivity and longer caster life.

OUR VENDORS

We offer an extensive catalog of orderable products as well as maintaining a comprehensive local inventory, granting us the capability to build, repair or customize your order for specific application. View Products »

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SERVING THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST SINCE 1950