If you’re planning on buying stem casters, you’ll need to know how to install them. Stem casters are characterized by the presence of a rod-like stem. They feature an undriven wheel. At the top of the wheel is a stem. You can install a stem caster by inserting the stem into a hole in the bottom of the object.
Measure the Stem
Most stem casters feature a threaded stem — similar to a standard bolt. You can install them by turning them clockwise into a set of threaded holes. The object with which you intend to use them should feature a set of threaded holes. The threaded holes, of course, must be the same size as the threaded stems.
You can measure the diameter of a threaded stem to determine whether it’s the right size. Don’t just use a taper measure, however. For more accurate measurements, use calipers. Take the calipers and measure the diameter of the threaded stem. You can then check the diameter of the object’s threaded holes to see if they match.
Insert and Turn
As long as they are the right size, you can go ahead and install the threaded stem casters. Place them in the object’s threaded holes and turn the casters clockwise. As you turn the casters, the threaded stems will enter the threaded holes.
If the threaded stem is too large, it will be loose. Casters with oversized threaded stems won’t remain in the threaded holes. Casters with undersized threaded stems, on the other hand, won’t fit into the holes. You can avoid installation headaches such as these by choosing threaded stem casters in the right size.
What About Unthreaded Stems?
While most stem casters feature a threaded stem, others feature an unthreaded stem. There are expansion stems and grip neck stems. At the top of their wheels is a rod-like stem, but they don’t feature the same design as traditional threaded stem casters.
Grip neck stem casters have an unthreaded stem with a flanged top. The flanged top allows them to sit inside a socket with a similar flanged design. Also known as wood stem casters, grip neck stem casters are commonly used on furniture.
Expansion stem casters feature a partially threaded stem. The stem only features threading at the very top. They are known as “expansion stem casters” because they are designed to expand into the holes in which they are inserted. Turning a hex nut under the stem will cause the rubber adapter sleeve to expand.