Introduction: Mobile Power Tool Cart
Having power tools on wheels can help you accomplish a lot in a little shop. Not only can you move unused tools against the wall, you can also move a needed tool into a big open space.
Power tool stands used to have holes in the bottom of the legs ready for levelers or stem casters. Many power tools today simply have rubber pads at the bottom of the legs. What follows is a description of how I bolted dual-locking plate casters to my band saw stand.
Step 1: Cut the 2 X 4's
My project required two 34" long 2 x 4's, yours will probably be different. I cut the 2 x 4 pieces so they reached 1-1/2" beyond the tip of the leg points. This gave me plenty of room to mount the plate casters so as they spin around the footprint is never smaller that the stand without casters.
Step 2: Find the Center
Drill a 1/8" hole in the center of both 2 x 4 segments. Insert a nail or drill in the hole to allow them to"scissor". Open the scissored boards to the angle that centers the 2 x 4's under the four legs. My project boards were spread by 78 degrees. I measured this angle by making spots on the floor next to the legs tips. I drew two diagonal lines connecting the four spots and measured the angle between the lines with a protractor. With the two boards scissored to the correct angle, clamp them. Mark each board where it overlaps the other board.
Step 3: Make a Lap Joint
In the overlap area, one-half of the wood needs to be removed so when the boards are fitted together they form a flat surface for the power tool to rest on. I removed the wood on my boards with a sliding miter saw, but it can be done with a hand saw. (The lap joint does not have to be perfect for this project to work.) When finished, hold the lap joint together with a wood screw in the "scissor hole".
Step 4: Mark the Footprint
Set the power tool on top of the crossed boards. Be sure the feet of the power tool stand are centered on the crossed boards. Then, trace around each leg of the stand. Label the legs and boards so they stay registered with each other throughout the project.
Step 5: Drill the Eye Screw Holes
Set the board next to the stand leg and drill a hole slightly larger than the root diameter of the eye screw. Drill on a compound angle matching the stand leg angles. Put a screwdriver in the "eye" of each lag screw and screw them into the board. Position the power tool stand on the 2 x 4 cross so all four legs are next to their eye screw.
Step 6: Drill the Bolt Holes
The center of the "eye" of my eye screws is 1" above the wood and in the middle of the leg. I marked a piece of tape where to punch and drill a small pilot hole followed by a 1/4" bit for the bolts. Debur both sides of the legs.
Step 7: Mount the Casters
Mark where to drill the holes to mount the plate casters. My outermost screw is 3/4" from the edge to prevent splitting the 2 x 4. Drill root diameter holes for the caster screws then, screw the casters into place. It is important that you use dual-locking casters, they lock the wheel and the spindle. The cart will wobble if you don't lock the spindle.
Step 8: Bolt the Cart to the Stand
Set the stand on the wood base and bolt together. A fender washer under the nut completely covers the eye hole and solidly connects the base to the power tool.
After confirming everything worked as expected I decided to radius the outer corners of the 2 x 4's on my disk sander and radius the 2 x 4 edges with a 1/4" roundover router bit. These steps are optional, but made project look more appealing.
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