The following article discusses the components and uses of adjustable casters, which are widely used but rarely mentioned. Supporting an item of furniture such as a washing machine or settee, castors provide an easy solution when relocating certain pieces. A device that is not given much thought has become an essential asset in daily life.

Fully rotatable casters allow items to be easily moved and rotated as needed. Wheel axles and bearing races can be replaced depending on the use served by casters and can also be found with rigid housings, meaning forward or reverse motion in one direction.

Castor solutions were used on things like wheel chairs and ‘baby cages’ in the 1500s! A ‘baby cage’ was a real thing used by mothers to contain their babies so that they could carry on with household chores and not have to worry about escaping or hurting themselves. Casters were installed at the bottom of the cage for easy transport in and out of the room. Although controversial today, the ‘baby cage’ was an earlier model of the ‘play pen’ that many parents use in this day and age.

In 1730, casters were made from leather, similar to wooden floors in homes. Leather eventually gave way to brass. Before this date hardwood was preferred and since castors were in their early stages of development it took many years to reach full material.

Castor has a prominent place within the home and in many workplaces. Nylon, rubber, aluminum, cast iron, pneumatic tires, stainless steel, and plastic are just a small portion of the materials available for successful casting. When choosing this it is good to use the principle that the larger the diameter of the wheel the less resistance the castor wheels needs and it depends on how much the castor is required to move.

Let’s take a shopping trolley as an example of an outdoor use of castor. Shopping without a trolley would be difficult. Casters are fixed to move the device straight forward, backward and around easily, providing a solution to thousands of people every day.

Another example shows castor in hospitals. Without this, it will be difficult to shift patients to the right wards. While another solution would surely have been invented, it shows that such a simple thing has become so prominent in everyday life. Scaffolders also rely on casters as refuse collectors when wheeling bins round.

Fixing kits are available when purchasing casters to add to furniture. Kits include nuts, bolts and washers and are available in a range of sizes to suit the needs of the object to which the caster will be attached. If the correct kit is not used, the castor is likely to loosen.