Skatewheel Conveyor Selection Guide
03rd February 2021
Skatewheel conveyors will convey lightweight loads that have firm flat bottoms such as cartons, totes, cases, etc. Skatewheel conveyors “roll” easier than roller conveyors allowing for lighter packages and less slope. The individual wheels in the curved sections also allow packages to track more so than roller conveyor. These conveyors are used to transport lightweight packages or for operations that require lightweight sections. Primarily they are used in shipping departments, stocking areas, assembly lines, etc. Hook & rod couplers along with tripod supports make it ideal for temporary set-up.
Choosing Your Conveyor
The best place to start when choosing a skatewheel conveyor is to determine the weight and dimensions of the product you wish to conveyor. This will narrow down the width, material, and wheel density that you will need for your conveyor.
Between Frame Dimension vs. Overall Width
Skatewheel conveyors are commonly referenced by their overall width rather than the between frame dimension where the wheels sit. While the conveyors are measured by their overall width, it is important to know the between frame dimension in order to help choose supports that are compatible with your conveyor.
Frame Capacity, Materials, and Couplings
The frame must be capable of supporting both the conveyed items in addition to the frame and wheels. Each skatewheel conveyor will have capacities listed in their construction. These capacities are based on 10’ support centers and 5’ support centers. Having supports located every 5’ will increase the frame capacity, whereas having supports every 10’ will decrease the frame capacity.
We can provide different materials for the frames and wheels. The frames can be galvanized steel or aluminum and the wheels can be galvanized steel, aluminum, or black nylon. Aluminum frames and wheels can provide a lighter solution, but will reduce the capacity and increase the price per unit. The galvanized versions will give more capacity to allow for heavier products.
The standard couplers for skatewheel conveyors are hook and rod. Hook and rod couplers will come on skatewheels with widths from 12" to 30". However, hook and rod couplers are not available for wheel densities of 32 wheels per foot and more. This is because the wheels interfere with the coupler connection sites.
Often curves will determine the width of the conveyor system, as the product requires additional space to negotiate the turn. The additional space depends upon the length and width of the product.
Wheel Density and Centers
Wheel density is described as wheels per foot. There must be a minimum of three axles and five wheels under the load at all times in order for the product to flow properly.