Caster Placement on Carts or Trucks

Building a Cart? Where should you place the wheels?
Here's what Ollie says:
There are several variations for installing the casters on your cart.
Follow the diagrams above where this symbol is the Swivel Caster and is the Rigid Caster.
1. 2 Swivel casters on one end and 2 Rigid casters on the other end is probably the most widely used. An example of this is a baggage cart at an airport. You should push from the swivel end and the rigid casters allow you to maintain a straight line when pushing the cart long distances. The disadvantage is that you have to "park" it to get it against a wall as you can not push it sideways.
2. 4 Swivel casters is another widely used arrangement when you need to maneuver in confined spaces. This is typically seen on a "furniture dolly". The advantage to this is that you can push it sideways, spin in place and make tight turns. The disadvantage is that it is difficult to move in a straight line when pushing heavy loads long distances.
3. This caster arrangement can be made in 2 different ways, both utilize 4 Swivel casters and 2 Rigid casters. All the casters can be the same height or the 2 rigid casters in the middle can be slightly larger. With 6 casters you increase the capacity of the cart. With the 2 rigid casters slightly taller in the middle, you can turn around within the length of the cart. This can typically be seen at Lowes, Home Depot and on stock carts in grocery stores.
4. This is a variation on # 3 using 2 Swivel casters and 2 Rigid casters. They can be the same height or the rigid casters can be slightly taller.
5. This unique design uses 4 Rigid casters with the 2 middle ones slightly taller. When you push from one end, you are able to make turns. This design is only used on very light weight carts to move short distances.

So, who knew there were so many ways to build a cart. # 3 is very good for long carts, # 2 is great for moving small items in small areas and if you have to push things long distances, make sure that you use some rigid casters.

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