Whether they are heavy duty albion casters or you bought them from your local hardware store, caster wheels come in a variety of shapes and sizes. They have become a staple of modern industry, moving boxes and palates of things efficiently from place to place. If you’ve ever bought something, anything, chances are it arrived in your hands with the help of a caster wheel.
With that being said, here are the top 3 things you need to know about casters.
What They Are
Caster wheels are comprised of 2 main components: the wheel assembly and the mounting head. From there, casters are separated into two distinct categories: swivel and rigid.
Swivel casters are meant to spin 360 due to the ball bearing mount design and are meant to move in any direction, swinging to the short side moving forward as they roll to increase stability.
Rigid casters have no bearing assembly and can move only laterally according to the wheel’s direction. These are typically used on equipment that doesn’t require much transport.
What They Do
When you combine the casters together, they form a directional cart, formed by 2 rigid casters in the rear and 2 swivel casters in the front.
Casters are defined by their load rating which ranges from light-duty or up to 300 pounds, all the way to extra-super-duty or loads greater than 6000 pounds.
Since different applications require different wheels, casters must be chosen carefully so that they will effectively transport the given item.
Some casters aren’t designed for transporting things. For example, the wheels at the front of a lawnmower that allows it to steer are simply swivel casters. Another example of the same design concept is the casters on the front of a wheelchair.
How They Do It
Some examples of casters working on common things can vary as widely as coffee carts to commercial dumpsters. Since their functionality is so wide-ranging, that makes casters one of the most adaptable moving parts when it comes to equipment and furniture. Many are resistant to corrosion, temperatures, and chemicals that many other types of wheels would not.
As casters are continually used every day, it’s good to know that there are dependable wheels on the bottom of so many shipping carts, musical equipment, and hospital beds. They interact with almost everything on some level and will therefore continue to be a staple of modern progress.