Adjustable Cabinet Casters

Thoughts on a tricky detail: casters for an island cabinet that would allow the cabinet to be lowered all the way to the floor. August 29, 2006

I am currently building a set of kitchen cabinets that include an island. The customer would like the island on casters, however he would like them to be hidden from view and locking from inside the cabinet, i.e. with a tool through the floor. I've spent some time looking, but all I find are standard casters with a lock lever. Any suggestion on where I can look would be appreciated.

Forum Responses
(Cabinetmaking Forum)
From contributor A:
Rather than locking the casters, try something that lift the island up off the casters.

From contributor B:
Drill a hole in the levers on the lock down side and run a long small eye bolt through the floor of the case into the lever with a nut on both sides - not too tight on the lever - and a flat washer on the eye end inside the case. If you push down it locks, and pull up and it unlocks. And it's adjustable. If you want to get fancy, spring load the things and run cables to the eyes and a lever.

From contributor C:
Even if you come up with some stealth way to flip caster locks, there will still be some movement due to the casters still being able to pivot even if they can't roll. You need a concealed leveling leg that will lift the casters right off the floor. How about a system like the mechanism that lifts the motor and cutterhead on a portable planer? Four threaded rods as feet, each with a sprocket connected by a chain, and only one has a crank on it.

From contributor D:
If the client wants power to that island check the codes with an electrician first. I once had a client’s kids spin the island around till they snapped the bx cable and wires as well. There was a 220 cooktop on that island and it was a miracle nobody got electrocuted. Better safe than sorry and you can print this and send it to the customer.

From contributor E:
This is not a great solution, but consider having levelers on the inside where you can adjust just enough to take the weight off of the casters and make it stationary and with just a few twists of a wrench, it becomes mobile. I would have to consider what surface you are putting this on. In my experiences, the island will not move with ease due to all the weight, but if they want it completely stationary at times, levelers may work.