stem vs top plate casters on 4x4 cedar


I am looking for some advice. I am going to build a variation of the grilling center in Junes Workbench magazine. I want to add 3" casters to the end of the cedar 4x4 legs. Would I be better off using top plate (1-1/2" x 2-1/2") or stem (3/8" socket) casters.
Thanks
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While I like the looks of the stem style casters I think you might have trouble with them because of the soft cedar. If you can get metal insert sockets to mount into the ends of the posts that match the stems on your casters you will likely do OK, and that is the way that I would do it if it were my project. Otherwise, I would use the plate mounted casters.
--
Charley


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The softenss is what I was worried about with the stems. Even with the standard metal insert sockets wouldn't the sockets just distort the cedar instead. With the plates I am worried about the smaller screws nearer the edge splitting the wood (being that they are inserted int the end grain).
Am I just being an old lady worrying about everything?
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Consider how forces act: The main force just is along the axis of the stem, and a castor rolling on the ground giving not much force orthogonal to the stem axis I would not bather too much about stability there, just do not expect the stem to turn easy in it's wooden socket, rotation of the castor around the stem axis has to happen at a bearing between the castor proper and the stem.
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writes:

The biggest problem here will be that the stem type casters will eventually tend to fall out if the piece is lifted to go over a sidewalk or bump.
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Yes it will. I had stem casters on Oak office chairs and the metal insert sockets still wore the hole out and would never stay in. Stem type casters are best used with steel feetor legs.
With the plates I am worried about the smaller screws

This can happen but most of the strain is not on the screws. The screws simply keep the caster from sliding out from under the leg or foot. You can also drill a larger hole where the screws will go in and glue in a hard wood dowel to reinforce the holes that the screws will go in to.
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THIS is why I browse threads that, on the surface, don't have much relavence to what I'm currently working on - the chance to find a sweet nugget like this! Thanks Leon.
Leon wrote:

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