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Learn: Rotating Dollies

The rotating dollies are made to maneuver heavy loads in confined spaces. The wheels swivel individually 360 degrees. This gives the dolly omni-directional maneuverability and also lets you turn the load in place. This maneuverability lets you move a heavy load that is on dollies down a narrow corridor and turn around a tight 90-degree turn.

The dollies have a low profile, so the load and equipment stay very close to the ground, providing more safety and low head clearance. The smaller load dollies come with a single wheel per swiveling foot. The wheels change direction easily, even under maximum load weight. Heavier loads exert such high pressure onto the wheels that traditional wheels have a difficult time turning into a new direction. Crow bars often must be used to turn the wheels.

Our specially designed dollies are always easy to move. For heavier loads, our larger dollies are outfitted with double wheels. Unlike a traditional wide wheel, our double wheels can turn in opposite directions when spinning in place. They can rotate on one spot. This eliminates the opposing friction forces and makes for easy turning.

To aid the easy turning, our specially formulated JUWAmid is a wheel material with slick turning characteristics that reduces the "rubber effect" friction when spinning in place. The wheels are mounted in rotating cassettes which lead the wheels into the turn. This "follow-behind" design assists for easy turning of heavy weights.

The wheels will also not damage or mark floors, even on tile or sensitive epoxy. A pulling handle or a connecting bar can be attached to the dolly via its side arm. These pulling handles and connecting bars are sold as optional accessories, but please note:

  • The pulling handle locks in a straight position and cannot be used to turn.
  • It can only pull the load in a straight line.
  • The connecting bar (which connects two dollies together) is used for a 4-dolly configuration.
  • It will drag along any dolly that has lost contact with the load due to a recess in the ground. In most applications, the dollies are used without handles and connecting bars. + 

If you are using 4 dollies or more and are worried about slippage, the larger dollies come with a center hole in each loading pad which allows you to use a holding bracket or tie down rope to affix the dolly to the load. As discussed in the “3-point vs. 4-point support” slide show, the safest, most efficient transport configuration consists of a 3-point dolly support.

The weight of the load presses down on each dolly at all times in a 3-point system. This will prevent the dollies from slipping – even on uneven ground.

If you are using 3 dollies, we recommend spacing the dollies evenly apart so that each dolly will carry the same weight, creating the maximum load capacity for the set.

So instead of spreading three dollies apart between the front and back end of the load…

...which places more weight on the single removed dolly (which is the one placed on the opposite end of the two which share weight)…

…you may consider placing the rear dollies further into the load to distribute the weight more evenly. For example, if you have a 20-ton load and place two dollies at the rear corners with one at the front, the one at the front will carry ten tons while the dollies in the back will carry 5 tons each. To even out the load carrying, you can move the back dollies forward until each dolly holds 6.5 tons and evens out the weight on the dolly system.

If you must spread the dollies apart, you can alternatively place two dollies as close as possible to simulate a single contact point at the end where there would regularly be just one dolly in the 3-point system. The weight is now more evenly divided between the dollies but there is still a 3-point system.

If you have to use a 4-point system because your load sits on four legs or I-beams, please monitor that the rotating dollies do not slip out when weight is lifted off one dolly on uneven ground.

If the load of a 4-point system is able to rock on an uneven surface, the weight is carried by the remaining dollies. Make sure you have enough safety capacity on all dollies in case one dolly loses contact with the load.

To fit your application needs, you can mix and match the rotating dollies with our other machine skates of the same height.

If you do not need as much maneuverability, please compare the rotating dollies to our steerable & straight-line machine skates which are more economically priced.

And please feel free to call us with any technical questions. 1-800-786-6112