If polyurethane wheels had their own playlist, “Start Me Up” by the Rolling Stones would definitely top the list. Why? Because a wheel’s startup force—or rollability—can vary significantly based on the type of poly tread used.
In fact, there are actually thousands of ways you can manipulate and cure a given urethane through creative chemistry to enhance or diminish its properties. That’s why you should never judge the quality or performance of a poly based on its color or hardness.
So which poly should you pick? That depends on your application. Today we’ll focus on three performance factors that are always top of mind: rollability, load capacity and durability.
Say you want to order pushcarts for manual operations in your workplace. You need to choose wheels that work best for your environment, load performance and worker safety. By selecting a wheel with high rollability, you’ll make your material handlers’ job easier and safer while helping to reduce workman’s comp claims.
First, pick the largest diameter wheel that’s possible and practical for your application. The larger the diameter, the easier the wheel is to push. Second, choose a poly wheel with a low startup force. Hamilton offers several polyurethanes designed specifically for strong rebound. A high-energy poly with great rebound like the Hamilton Ergo-Tech™ is an ergonomic favorite. It’s designed to minimize push/pull forces and reduce work-related injuries.
The heavier your load, the more both polyurethane formulation and thickness factor into effective wheel performance. Certain poly formulas are designed to carry more weight. For example, the Duralast® XC wheel carries up to 30% more capacity than our standard Duralast® and rolls easier on smooth floors. Keep in mind, however, that most loads don’t maintain an even weight across the length and width of a pushcart. An off-center load will prematurely wear the overburdened casters. Hamilton offers 3 standard polyurethane wheels specifically engineered for extreme loads.
Heat buildup is polyurethane’s number one enemy. Good thing durability is our specialty. We maintain strict specifications on our poly with respect to tensile strength, tear strength and rebound. Some polys, like our DuraGlide™, are engineered for very low thermal retention to stand up to heavy or continuous loads for longer service life. And Hamilton Super Ultralast® represent our highest performing urethane. It features the ultimate 1” extra thick Ultralast poly molded to a super heavy-duty forged steel center for off the chart performance that outlasts the competition.
You know what they say: Tough wheel. Long life. Happy budget.
In total, Hamilton offers 12 standard polyurethane-treaded wheels for almost any application. All the wheels provide great floor protection, quiet operations and long use with minimal wear, but to really help you choose the right revolution for your needs, use our handy cheat sheet below.
(And in case you were wondering, the poly wheel that rolls on our production floors at Hamilton is…drumroll…the Ergo-Glide™. We like it for its great ergonomics, durability and value for the money.)
Feeling overwhelmed? Hit the easy button and call one of our inside sales engineers and we’d be happy to make a recommendation.
Just ask our friends in the oil and gas industry. Hamilton recently partnered with an international productivity solutions provider to custom-engineer two trailers specifically designed to load and transport large, cumbersome components for assembly.
“Handling these parts can be challenging. They’re heavy and irregularly-shaped, not to mention fairly expensive,” said John Yater, Hamilton lead design engineer on the project. Yater and his team worked with the customer to create safe, cost-effective and modular trailers that could be secured and handled in multiple ways. Productivity, check. Safety, check, check.
The XT2814 trailer—designed to support wellheads—is a quick study in ergonomics. It’s got an extra thick deck armed with forged adjustable clamps that are perfect for locking down flanges of all different sizes and thicknesses. No flanges? No problem. Lashing rings can be used to secure the load. Its rear tube bumper is designed for easy power pushing, while the tubing sub-frame is lined with internal guides to mate easily with a lift table. Everything rolls on our indestructible Superlast® wheels: their steel centers and thick polyurethane treads ensure a quiet, gentle ride for giant loads, while the caster swivel locks keep maneuverability stable during transport.
Just like the XT2814, the XT2813—engineered for valve trees—is designed for easy loading and transport with the same casters, tube bumper and fork pockets. It’s also highly adjustable for both assembling and disassembling parts. A wide range of parts can be moved in four different directions: left and right, up and down. The deck is slightly tilted so that oil can properly drain out one end.
Here are all the specs:
At Hamilton, we like making things so good they’re bad. As in, casters-so-superior-to-the-competition-that-they’re-almost-renegades-in-their-field bad. As in, trailers-so-divinely-strong-they-break-all-the-rules bad. You know, baaad.
So we could relate when we heard about the training “issues” surrounding the F-35 Lightening II, the fifth generation Air Force stealth fighter jet. During some recent practice simulations against fourth generation surface-to-air (SAM) missiles, ground troops running the simulated anti-air threats couldn’t detect the planes.
That’s right, the jets are so stealthy that nobody could detect them on radar. The pilots had to turn on their transponders just so the folks on the ground at Mountain Home Air Force Base in Idaho had a fighting chance. “We basically told them where we were at and said, ‘Hey, try to shoot at us,’ said Lt. Col. George Watkins, the commander of the 34th Fighter Squadron at Hill Air Force Base, Utah, to the Air Force Times.
With its stealth capabilities, supersonic speed, extreme agility and state-of-the-art sensor fusion technology, the single engine F-35 is largely being touted as the future of military aviation. Essentially, it can be everywhere and nowhere all at the same time.
Like we said. So-good-it’s-bad is an awesome “problem” to have.
It’s been 47 years this summer since NASA first put a man on the moon. To celebrate that game-changing Apollo 11 mission, the Smithsonian Institute has created a high-resolution 3D scan of the Command Module Columbia’s interior—the spacecraft that catapulted the three-man crew of Neil Armstrong, “Buzz” Aldrin and Michael Collins to lunar glory.
Capturing the real spacecraft for 3D was no cakewalk. Employing a robotic control system to access the vessel’s every nook and cranny, the Smithsonian team used laser scanners to scour more than a million measurement points per second at sub millimeter accuracy. That’s a lot of history to digitize. We should know. Hamilton uses 3D printing more and more each day, not just from prototype to production but in our sales, marketing and operations efforts, too.
To get inside the 3D Columbia experience, travel through the hatch here. It wouldn’t hurt to cue up 2001 Space Odyssey while you’re at it.
The challenge posted on YouTube was simple yet undeniable between the U.S. and Japan:
“We have a giant robot. You have a giant robot. You know what needs to happen. We challenge you to a duel.”
That was the exchange between Megabots, the Oakland, California-based maker of a 15-foot mechanical gladiator called the Mark II and Tokyo-based Suidobashi Heavy Industries, makers of the 13-foot Kuratas.
Japan, of course, accepted, and now the ring is set for an international battle of robot supremacy. While the exact date and location are yet to be determined, it’s all part of Megabots’ plan to turn gladiator-style robot combat into “big-time entertainment, while developing new industrial technologies and inspiring a new generation of engineers.”
Win or lose, watching big, heavy machine showdowns might be our new favorite spectator sport.
At Hamilton, we are all in on engineering challenges. So when Service Caster tapped us to solve a laundry service dilemma, we didn’t hesitate to get our hands dirty.
The ask: Spec power-driven wheels for a drive application used in the laundry service’s pre-dryers. The pre-dryers, which spun towels at high speeds to drive out excess water and reduce time in the heated dryer stage, used wheels made from Nylon 6 material and employed keyways in the wheel hubs. Over time, the nylon didn’t hold up, the keyways elongated and the wheels failed. No bueno.
Enter Hamilton Nylast Wheels to the rescue. Why Nylast? As a popular alternative to steel, they’re made from solid cast high performance nylon and provide superior impact strength and resilience compared to conventional injection-molded nylon wheels (in other words, they’re much stronger than Nylon 6). Specially formulated with finely divided particles of molybdenum disulphide (MoS2), these wheel warriors enhance load bearing capability while maintaining the impact-defiant properties of nylon. Plus they’re moisture- and chemical-resistant, making them ideal for applications that demand sanitary conditions.
To make the wheels even tougher, we carved into them and inserted a special stainless steel core with the keyway to address the elongation. Nylast plus stainless steel equals pure driving power.
Fluff and fold, baby. Fluff and fold.
Bring us your Cretan bulls, your nine-headed Hydras. Our new colossal-sized trailers are ready to take on your toughest towing battles, pronto.
Hamilton is proud to announce Hercules, a new line of pre-engineered super duty industrial trailers. With a load capacity range of 20,000 to 40,000 pounds per trailer, they’re ready to power blaze their way through any plant. Plus they’re engineered for quick turnaround, and available to ship with an unmatched lead time of four to five weeks (most high capacity industrial trailers have a minimum lead time of seven to eight weeks).
Just how much tout-suite muscle are we toting? The Hercules line is available in a total of 10 standard deck sizes that range from 4-feet-wide x 8-feet-long to a whopping 5-feet-wide by 24-feet-long. Ideal for hauling tooling, dies, molds, structural steel bars, rolls, cylinders and plate steel, the series is grouped in 20K, 30K, 35K and 40K load capacities designed for severe loading and power towing conditions.
Our design engineers selected heavy duty press-on polyurethane wheels that range from 14-inch to 22-inch diameters on the 20K and 40K load trailers, respectively. And with its forged steel loop designed for extreme loads and solid fifth-wheel steering construction, these trailers are destined for years of service-free wear and tear.
Want to meet Hercules in the flesh? Check out our product page for more information. And be sure to bring your best muscle tee. If trailers had biceps, ours would flex in their sleep.
Why walk when you can ride? Life is better on wheels. They can even make the game of golf way cooler. Here’s proof: Meet the GolfBoard, a standing golf cart designed to forever change the rate of play. Made in the good ol’ US of A, it’s basically a giant electric skateboard that can ride up to 10 mph, letting you cut, slash and glide your way across the fairways in as little as half the time it takes players to hoof it through an average game of golf.
We especially like the 4” x 11” turf tires that provide maximum traction, and the 4-wheel drive is pretty sweet for scaling hills, too. It’s also got an ergonomically designed one-touch thumb throttle for zippy stop and go. Surfers and snowboarders will definitely appreciate the GolfBoard’s ability to “surf the earth” as the tagline states. Hang ten all you want. Your golf bag rides shotgun.
Now if it only had a cooler in the back and a cup holder on the side...
Watch how much fun these guys are having
The tiny pinholes that degrade airships can be tricky to locate and repair with the human eye and the human hand. Lots of man hours and manual labor, along with reaching nearly inaccessible locations. This time on the ground for maintenance defeats the purpose of airships when you consider what they were born to do: move massive amounts of stuff from one place to another efficiently and economically.
That’s why you send in the big guns from our friends at Lockheed Martin Skunk Works to create “Self-Propelled Instruments for Damage Evaluation and Repair,” better known as SPIDERs. These autonomous robots can scan and patch rogue holes on the vessel’s “envelope” in no time, literally shedding light on one of the greatest challenges to ever face the industry.
Watch as they weave their web of airtight precision.
From our pioneering history to our passion for American-made manufacturing, this quartet of curiosities puts the “H” in Hamilton: heavy-duty, headstrong innovation, hustle and history.
We do things big. Colossus is Hamilton’s largest and strongest caster every built, with a 100,000-pound capacity that soars 52 inches above the factory floor. Witness its birth.
Ingenuity is in our DNA. We’re one of the original inventors of kingpinless casters, with our patent for the legendary “Economic” going back to 1925. View the patent.
Our unmatched PRONTO® service gets the product you need out the door and on its way within 24 hours. It’s not easy, but our team makes it happen every day.
Our president, Dave Lippert, is a two-time published author. Not only has he penned a book honoring the first 100 years of Hamilton history, but he’s also an authority on bringing manufacturing jobs back to the USA through reshoring. Get this book.
Have the revolutionsent to your inbox