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bcfcciderhead

What caster's / Rollers for roll off, roll on roof?

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After a few re-build's i now have the space for a "roll on, roll off" roof on my obsey project (well converted shed),

All going well with sides up and pier set in concrete and looking funky,

Now i need to get the rollers for the roof, seen a few in Screwfix, ebay and b&q but a little unsure what kinda of weight these will hold, they all seem ok and im putting 4 on each side (length is 5ft) which i think should be ok.

The ones i want are of course fixed to slide in a track and i dont want them to stand to tall.

So i'm just wondering what types others have used.

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Have a look at this thread - http://stargazerslounge.com/topic/105459-the-build-beginspart-1-the-pier/

I am building a ROR obsy at the moment and this one is the project I'm basing my build on.

There are discussions on castors in this part of the forum, I'm leaving the shed part to a local shed builder so i'm not involved in that part of the build.

Every part of the roof has to be part of it's strength, or the weight of it increases & the timber size to cope with it. Then the shed part has to be stronger etc.

Cheers,

fondofchips.

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I used castors with 50mm nylon wheels and plated steel frames. Thinking of rust in years to come They were well greased before installation. I also bought a few extra. Should any get damaged I can easily swap out without having to look for the same size, fixings, etc. If you look for food industry castors, then stainless frames may be available.

My castors are fixed to the roof, with a track fastened onto the shed sides just below roof height. The track can fill with snow and ice. So, if doing it again, I would build the other way up.

Don't worry about paying a few quid extra on quality castors. Their part of the cost of shed + scope + everything else is negligible. An easy to slide and quiet roof is important.

I would be happy to let you have a few photos of my install. It might save a bit of head scratching!

David.

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Dave - When I built my RoR I put guide rails on one side only and a 50mm flat on the other. This still keep the roof on track but avoids the problems if they are not perfectly aligned or if they move over time. I used 4" wheels.

Regards Andrew

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Thanks once again guys,

I have been looking at the 50mm nylon wheels, seem man enough to do the job, thanks for advice Dave.

Been thinking of doing the same Andrew, hoping this might help the movement and stop any "jamming" if my track is not true, but i will make the track with some "play" to allow for this.

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Casters are fine but I had a few problems with roof alignment and friction on the wooden guide rails.

If you have the money and want to ensure you have no problems what so ever then get "U groove wheels" or "sliding gate wheels". These run on a track or rail so you have to fork out additional cost on the tracks.

The advantage is that it´s easy to align the roof properly and once fixed down there is very little friction acting against the wheels (I can open and close mine with my little finger).

The problem is cost, it obviously costs a bit for the rails and wheels.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Sliding-Gate-Wheels-very-solid-with-bearing-6-options-/110754551100?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_3&var=&hash=item19c97c553c

http://www.gatesplus.com.au/wheels.html

It is a fantastic setup if you can afford the cost though, much better than casters in my opinion.

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+1 for the gate rollers approach. I did castors on the first roof and had lots of problems. The replacement roof with gate rails and wheels is so much better! I'm only half an hour from you if you want to come and have a look and a roll!

Helen

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I use roller skate bearings to guide my ROR sideways, bearing on the sides of the running rail. I think I would agree though that gate rollers and track would probably be better but I was running low on funds after everything else.

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I use roller skate bearings to guide my ROR sideways, bearing on the sides of the running rail. I think I would agree though that gate rollers and track would probably be better but I was running low on funds after everything else.

Sent from my GT-P5110 using Tapatalk 2

I think funds are the problem, i was running low with roof version 2 so bought the casters. When the roof got blown off i got some insurance money and rebuilt it with rails.

The other problem i had with casters was they were rolling over the same bit of wood each time and the weight starts causing the wood fibers to lift off creating "wear" cracks and chunks to come off.

So even with casters i would still advise to put something for the casters to roll on that protects the wood.

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Sent from my GT-P5110 using Tapatalk 2

I think funds are the problem, i was running low with roof version 2 so bought the casters. When the roof got blown off i got some insurance money and rebuilt it with rails.

The other problem i had with casters was they were rolling over the same bit of wood each time and the weight starts causing the wood fibers to lift off creating "wear" cracks and chunks to come off.

So even with casters i would still advise to put something for the casters to roll on that protects the wood.

I'll keep an eye on that then - no problem so far - thanks.

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I used the Screwfix steel/rubber wheels each will hold 125kg so more than enough. Also fitted them inverted. So wheels up and channel in roof so no blockage from debris, snow, ice etc

HTH

Jamie

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Try this site -

http://www.barrier-components.co.uk/sliding-gate-hardware/sliding-gate-wheels.html

or for castors -

http://www.castors-online.co.uk/acatalog/castors_wheels_with_rubber_castor_wheel_industrial_uk_supplier.html

I'm still undecided on whether to go for castors or gate wheels. You may want to check out my thread (Astrokev's Obsy Build) for further discussion on pro's / con's of different wheel options.

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I thought about various solutions using 'proper' metal rails. But after bringing in Messrs Heath and Robinson as Consulting Engineers, the following was adopted.

The castors are running on a plastic semi circular track. This avoids wear or fatigue on the wood. Should the track fail, it is a low cost item.

Drainpipe technology in use here.

I took lengths of (from memory 40mm) standard waste pipe. Sink drain type. I sawed this in half to give me the two semi circular sections. Small countersunk screws through to the support wood avoided the 'bumps' when rolling.

The little bit of flex in the plastic means that any small alignment errors are dealt with. 5 years on the plastic has not degraded due to UV, so it seems like a good solution.

Edited by DavidValentine
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Hmmmm.... Looking again at gate wheels and tracks, the cost is still prohibitive as far as I'm concerned :( Looked on ebay for wheels and they don't have any like I got before - only ones with polycarbonate axle bearings and described as for lightweight uses. Of course, that's just on my search and a different search might dredge some up :D

I think sliding gate systems would probably give the smoothest and simplest setup but would probably be noisy. Rubber tyred wheels running on aluminium or stainless steel flat bar would be quiet and long lasting. Aluminium angle would provide guiding and allow drainage to one side but with some friction when guiding and I guess the side of the tyre would wear eventually. Separate ball bearing wheels arranged horizontally and bearing on the outside of the running rails provide very free running and no wear but with the disadvantage of more complexity - they want shielding from the weather too though no problem with well overhanging roof sides.

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I thought about various solutions using 'proper' metal rails. But after bringing in Messrs Heath and Robinson as Consulting Engineers, the following was adopted.

The castors are running on a plastic semi circular track. This avoids wear or fatigue on the wood. Should the track fail, it is a low cost item.

Drainpipe technology in use here.

I took lengths of (from memory 40mm) standard waste pipe. Sink drain type. I sawed this in half to give me the two semi circular sections. Small countersunk screws through to the support wood avoided the 'bumps' when rolling.

The little bit of flex in the plastic means that any small alignment errors are dealt with. 5 years on the plastic has not degraded due to UV, so it seems like a good solution.

That sounds a good solution :) Do you have any drain holes in the exposed section or do you rely on rainwater running out of the end? And how is it with snow? Edited by Gina

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Hi Gina.

Rainwater is not an issue. In practice the open ends and reasonably level tracks mean little remains in the runners.

If the runners did fill, it would not be a problem as water displaced by the castors would overflow to the garden, or shed sides.

It would be possible to drill small holes, or do some saw cuts, if it was an issue in another installation.

I did wonder about adding on the roof end a couple of small paint brushes, or hand brushes to sweep the track clear of leaves. But this has never been much of an issue.

Snow. Hmm. Only if it is the wrong type of snow. Soft snow is easily brushed out of the runners at the same time as clearing the roof. You don't want snow falling off the end of the roof into the shed when opening. Also, when we get a lot of snow, the weight can be significant, causing the roof to sag.

But when snow starts to melt, then re-freezes in the runners, that is the weakness of this system.

If rebuilding, I would put the castors upside down on the fixed framework and the track on the roof section.

I also toyed with the idea of fixing some pipe heater tape next to the runners to melt any snow. But when the problem exists, it is too cold to go out. Later in the year the problem does not exist so gets forgotten!

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Hmmmm.... Looking again at gate wheels and tracks, the cost is still prohibitive as far as I'm concerned :( Looked on ebay for wheels and they don't have any like I got before - only ones with polycarbonate axle bearings and described as for lightweight uses. Of course, that's just on my search and a different search might dredge some up :D

I think sliding gate systems would probably give the smoothest and simplest setup but would probably be noisy. Rubber tyred wheels running on aluminium or stainless steel flat bar would be quiet and long lasting. Aluminium angle would provide guiding and allow drainage to one side but with some friction when guiding and I guess the side of the tyre would wear eventually. Separate ball bearing wheels arranged horizontally and bearing on the outside of the running rails provide very free running and no wear but with the disadvantage of more complexity - they want shielding from the weather too though no problem with well overhanging roof sides.

I agree. No matter how effective they would be, I've decided I just can't justify the cost of gate wheels and track.

The current preferred option that I've been developing is as you suggest Gina. I toyed with the idea of inverting the wheels (put them on the walls rather than the roof) but I considered this had the disadvantage of leaving wheels exposed on the run off track when the roof was shut, which I didn't want.

So, my current plan -

Rubber tyred wheels mounted on the roof, running on flat aluminium strips. The same wheels mounted laterally at the end of the roof beams, to keep the roof in line, with more Ali strips fixed to the sides of the top wall bearers. As Gina mentions, this will require a little more fabrication to enable the lateral wheels to be positioned correctly, but this won't be difficult. I'll draw up a sketchu drawing of my approach tonight and post on my own thread for comment. I think it should work well though.

The following wheels look pretty good (bottom of the page) -

http://www.castors-online.co.uk/acatalog/castors_wheels_with_rubber_castor_wheel_industrial_uk_supplier.html

150kg load which will be well strong enough.

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I toyed with the idea of inverting the wheels (put them on the walls rather than the roof) but I considered this had the disadvantage of leaving wheels exposed on the run off track when the roof was shut, which I didn't want.

That occurred to me too when mulling over David's idea. Also, because the track is only on the roof part, it is not in contact with all of the wheels all of the time so the alignment would need to be precise so that the wheels smoothly engaged into the track as the roof moved over them, perhaps by splaying out the ends of the track a bit. But you could end up just swapping one set of problems for another.

The sliding gate wheels & track does look to be a Rolls Royce solution but of course at the corresponding price. It will boil down to how deep your pockets are - most of us regrettably have to drawn the line at some point and choose options that perhaps aren't the absolute best but still work well enough.

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Yes, depth of pockets but assuming limited funds, what the money is spent on. Astro gear or a smooth running roof.

The problem with inverting the wheel/track system is that half the wheels are exposed to the full rigours of the weather - rain, snow, freezing up and dirt. The track will be far more resistant to the weather.

Edited by Gina

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After the amount of grief my first roof gave me I decided that an extra <£100 on the roof rolling mechanism was money well spent. My supplier said that just 2 wheels each side would be sufficient, I actually went with 4, but that's because the roof on one side rolls off the end of the rail and I wanted to stop any sagging. So you could save some money there.

Helen

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I went with two each side and it's more than enough. It isn't actually very noisey on the rails as the wood deadens the sound. The gate i have for the drive is aluminium, large and sat on two wheels. THAT makes a hell of a noise no matter how slowly it's opened!

Sent from my GT-P5110 using Tapatalk 2

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Hi Helen,

I take your point and at the end of the day I guess it's down to personal choice. It sounds like this was the best solution for you and your system sounds great.

At the end of the day, the key deliverables have to be functionality, robustness and resistance to the weather. Like in all other walks of life, there's many ways of skinning the cat :laugh:, and thank goodness says me; this forum would be pretty boring if there was only one perfect solution and everyone did exactly the same thing :p

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Yes, life is full of compromises, and we all have our own ways of working out what we think is best for our individual circumstances. As we're all unique the chances are our solutions will be unique too :grin: That's what makes life interesting and diverse!!

Helen

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Yes, life is full of compromises, and we all have our own ways of working out what we think is best for our individual circumstances. As we're all unique the chances are our solutions will be unique too :grin: That's what makes life interesting and diverse!!

Helen

Absolutely!

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Thanks for all the advice guys, very helpful and have taken on board all you have said.

Well so far i have made the runners for the roof, have used decking boards and i have now got to make up the track for the soon to get wheels to be guided in,

the reason i used decking boards is the fall on the roof to allow the rain to run of will go onto the roof runners, so the grooves in the decking should help the water run of, also nice and straight and good quality.

So if the rain stops should get the roof on and working, will gets some picks up if done and happy with result.

My next question is keeping the roof shut tight in the wind, was thinking "turn buckles" on all 4 sides?

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