Mobile Power Tool Cart

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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.

Supplies:

One 2 x 4

Four 2" diameter dual locking casters

Four 1/4" x 3" long eye lag screws

Four 1/4" x 3/4" long bolts

Four 1/4" dia fender washers

One 1-1/2" long wood screw

Saw (I used a sliding miter saw)

Drill & drill bit

Hammer

Chisel

Protractor

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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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8 Discussions

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hyperfocused72

6 weeks ago

That's excellent. You could also find the scissor angle by crossing the 2x4s and supporting the top one with another 2x4 cutoff *under* each end and cutoffs on *top* of the lower 2x4 on the ends to level everything out. Then put the machine on top to fine tune the position and draw the lines across the crossed 2x4s where they meet in the middle without a protractor. Good work!

3 replies

Excellent idea and implementation. Timing is just right for me, as I'm bringing my tools into my new workshop. As I'm thinking about your project I'm developing some thoughts to fit it into my situation.
When I build mine, the lap joint in the middle will not be a custom measured degree cut. With the miter saw set at 22.5 degrees, I'll make one lap cut. Then I'll swing the saw around to 22.5 degrees the other side of 90 degrees and cut the other side of the lap. Then clean out the lap as shown in the image attached. This makes the "scissor action" adjustable. Then I'll tighten the center bolt. That way determination of the angle is not so critical, and perhaps will be useful on the next saw stand.
Also, where the legs meet the 2x4, I'll use an "eye-bolt" with threads and a nut/washer underneath. I'm a little concerned with keeping that leg tight over time with a lag screw. That's not a criticism of your current method; just my experience kicking in.

AngledLapJoint_22-1:2.png

Your adjustable scissor idea is clever! I too thought about using eye-bolts, but was concerned the nut might interfere with the placement of the plate caster. Good luck setting up your new shop!

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sawdustagainhyperfocused72

Reply 6 weeks ago

Your suggestion to use stacked 2x4 scraps to level the cross while marking the lap joint area is an excellent idea!

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tlebsack

6 weeks ago

Excellent work. This project could make make my shop a lot more functional. Question: How do you like your Wen bandsaw ??

1 reply
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sawdustagaintlebsack

Reply 6 weeks ago

I would buy the WEN 3962 10-Inch band saw again. After attaching the stand and table, I followed the blade adjustment procedure, but discovered everything was set perfectly at the factory. So far I've been pleased with all my cuts. I regret not having bought the band saw twenty five years ago -- it would have been helpful on so many past projects. There are two issues that deserve attention, though: 1) My table insert that surrounds the blade where it meets the table was low. A couple layers of gaffer's tape under the insert brought it flush with the table surface. 2) The work light is mounted on the back which is not the best angle to illuminate your work. After the two year warranty expires I plan to move the work light attachment point to the front side just above the power switch. I'll have to drill a hole in the square tubing that forms the backbone of the band saw. It shouldn't be too difficult.