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How to Move Big, Heavy Scenery & Equipment Easily : The StageMaster Series Triple Swivel Caster

StageMaster Triple Swivels start at just $100 and ship overnight

In our industry, scenery and equipment are constantly relocated, shipped, stored, pushed and pulled. One of our favorite tools for accomplishing these tasks is the Triple Swivel Caster StageMaster Jr. It’s both inexpensive and can carry a substantial amount of weight (weight capacity varies depending on the model chosen). While a lot of shops build their own casters using valuable labor time during tight schedules, StageMaster Triple Swivels start at just $100 and ship overnight, from our stock, to virtually anywhere.

The StageMaster Jr. triple swivel caster with 2.5" neoprene wheels

StageMaster Triple Swivel Casters are also known as “Zero-throws,” “Turtles” and “Tri-way Swivels.” Whatever you call them, they have significantly less resistance to movement than ordinary casters; a huge advantage when moving large, heavy objects. StageMaster Triple Swivel Casters also help you avoid the shifting of those large and heavy objects, which often occurs when you start to push them on an ordinary caster.

This Stagemaster Jr. is being bolted directly onto a scenery platform riser. Notice the engineered notch that allows for easy placement of a rachet

The benefits of the StageMaster Triple Swivel Caster translate into less manpower, or motorized power, to accomplish a given task. In general, use the 15% rule when calculating the amount of force you’ll need to move an object using the Triple Swivels.  For example, if you have an object that weighs 3000 pounds, you’ll need to provide about 450 pounds of pushing force pressure (i.e., 15% of 3000) to get it rolling. That’s roughly the equivalent of two grown men pushing.

Typically, caster spacing under a set piece should be four-feet in any direction, for easy movement of the piece on a stage. We know of one scene shop that pushed things close to the limit, but successfully moved large shop carts containing nearly 2 tons of plywood across a concrete floor, using two people and just eight StageMaster Jr. casters.

StageMaster Casters spaced 4'x4' on a scenery riser. A scene shop standard

We love these casters to the point where we’ve partnered with Darnell-Rose to bring you a deep inventory of the StageMaster series. All parts and pieces are 100% forged and assembled by American craftsmen and U.S. suppliers. The following provides a number of items that you may want to consider before making a purchase:

  1. Weight capacity – this will vary from roughly 300-1800 lbs. depending on the size and composition of the StageMaster Triple Swivel Caster chosen.

  2. Wheel diameter – the larger the wheel, the easier it will roll over uneven surfaces.

  3. Mounting height – consider how much clearance you’ll need beneath the edge of the platform to which the caster might be mounted.

  4. Wheel composition – this helps to determine how easy the caster will roll and the sound produced when rolling. Casters with advanced elastomer wheels are a good all around choice, while those with neoprene wheels are slightly quieter.

Clearance space underneath your set piece should always be considered in deciding which StageMaster is right for your job. These StageMaster Jrs with 2.5" wheels provide .75" of clearance from deck to set piece.

Technical Specifications of StageMaster Jr. and StageMaster Casters

If you have any questions about which StageMaster caster would be most appropriate for your needs, please email us at or call us at 800-223-1624.

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