Here are some pointers to ensure you have the right size caster and caster wheel.

You’ve probably heard the saying “measure twice, cut once.” Taking a proper measurement is always an important consideration, especially when choosing the right caster.  Because besides making certain you’ve covered your weight requirements, you also need to make sure that the actual caster size suits your application. This guide will teach you everything you need to know about measuring casters to ensure you’re buying the right size.

#1 – Measure the top plate to ensure the replacement caster fits

The top plate is used to attach the caster to the object, whether that object is a cart, rack, or even a piece of furniture. Top plates are available in various sizes, so it’s important that you measure properly to ensure that your replacement caster fits. Measure both the length and width and write these down.

#2 – Measure the bolt hole pattern for alignment

For most applications, it is very difficult (or impossible) to change the bolt hole pattern on the object that the caster will attach to. For this reason, you will need to measure the bolt hole pattern very carefully and ensure you get a perfect match. To do this, measure from the center of one hole to the center of the other lengthwise, and then repeat this process again widthwise. Take note of these measurements.

#3 – Check the Wheel Size

When it comes to measuring the actual caster wheel size, you will need two separate measurements: the width and the diameter of the wheel.

  • Width – With the wheel upright as if it was attached to your cart or object, just measure from the outer edge of one side to the outer edge of the other.
  • Diameter – To measure diameter, lay the caster wheel flat on its side to start. Measure from one side of the wheel to the opposite side (essentially, the opposite of measuring the width).

Again, make a note of both of these measurements as they will be vital when it comes to purchasing casters.

#4 – Swivel Radius

Swivel radius measurements can be important in many applications as it provides important information as to how much clearance you will need for your caster to swivel. The goal for a swivel caster is to be able to swivel 360 degrees.

To determine your swivel radius, lay the caster down on its side and measure from the center of the kingpin to the back edge of the wheel. A straight edge lying up against the face of the wheel will make it much easier for you to determine this measurement; the point where the tape measure meets the straight edge will determine your swivel radius.

#5 – Check the Overall Height of the Wheel & Top Plate

Finally, it’s time to measure the overall height of the entire caster assembly, from the very bottom of the wheel to the very top of the top plate. This is simple enough; just lie the caster on its side and take the measurement. Again, write these numbers down and be sure they’re appropriately labeled.

Having all this information makes it much easier to purchase a caster replacement. Just provide your measurements and the maximum weight of your loads, then determine what kind of features you would like your casters to have. There are many choices available, so there is a caster to suit every single application.

Questions? Give the material handling professionals a call at 517.680.7950. We’re here to help.

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