Hi there!

I’m slowly working towards some simplicity within the home, but hey! It’s a lot of hard work!

I love having a go at growing my own veges and always use herbs fresh from my garden. I try to plant from seed whenever I can and have learnt to save and share my own seed for the following year. I make Award Winning preserves and pickles; and my husband brews Award Winning boutique beers as well. I love to stockpile and try to limit quick trips to the shops. I dabble in bread making and enjoy making my own stocks too.

I enjoy feeding my family good hearty meals, nothing like those tiny restaurant stacks you have to look for on the plate. My husband maintains our vehicles and machinery and we both enjoy fabricating on a small scale mostly relying on metal & timber recyclers for any materials needed.

While I don’t always have time to reply to comments, I love reading them. I hope you enjoy your stay and I hope you learn something new because I love sharing what I learn, and I'm always looking for another new skill myself.


Thursday, June 9, 2011

Making a basic trolley

Having a trolley for moving heavy pots...or even huge buckets of water...or any other reason can be such an important tool to have around.....I built this one though to make it easier to get under the unit to have access to my mushroom farm.
I wrote yesterday.....
I slowly had to give up looking after my mushroom farm under the house. It's been so cold lately, with cold weather I seem to have more aches and pains....and after crawling around under the unit on my knees...I'm useless for the rest of the day....so I needed to come up with a plan....there must be an easier way to get around under there....so I made myself a scooter or a trolley to get around. 

When I go to garage sales, I like to collect jars of screws, bolts and other bits and pieces...I then bring them home and sort them out....We have many tubs with all sorts of odds and ends....The beauty of this is that I hardly ever need to buy those types of things brand new.....Screws, Nuts and Bolts are all so expensive....
I suppose you could even say that these tubs are part of our stockpile.

The best trolley is made with two swivel wheels in the front for the steer....and two fixed wheels for the back....I already had two swivel wheels (brand new still in plastic from a garage sale)....and yes I did need to go to Bunnings for two fixed wheels. At least I didn't need to buy all four though.
One of about 10 tubs of screws, nuts & bolts...
all sourced second hand
So when deciding which screws to use...there are a few things to check first....

  • are they short enough that they wont go straight through the timber?

  • If you don't have any screws short enough, but you have heaps of washers.....you could stack the washers to make up the difference in length....It's not pretty, but for a trolley...they are underneath and can't be seen anyway....

  • When screwing into timber, it is wise to drill pilot holes first...this helps the thread of the screw bite into the timber without splitting it. For a pilot hole, I always try to go with a drill bit half the size of the screw being used.

  •  So you don't have to worry about keeping the wheel base straight while screwing it in place..I always recommend screwing them all in to nearly tight first......then once you have all the screws established.....then line up the base plate and screw it down tightly.

  •  Decide on which will be the front and the rear of the trolley...Use swivel wheels for the front steer....if you use swivel on all four...it will be difficult to steer, especially on uneven ground.  

 Ok, so for my purpose, to be able to pull out the trolley from underneath the unit...I added a handle to the back....it turns out that it serves more than one purpose...it is a carry handle too....making it much easier to carry it to another location if needed.
A basic kitchen door handle...sourced second hand.

  • Notice the notches in the screws supplied with the door handle....
  • Screw the screw into the handle...and line it up with the timber, this will help to know how many notches to remove...

  •  Using a pair of pliers, bend the section back and forth until the bit breaks off....check again with the thickness of the timber....When the handle sits flush with the timber...it is the correct length.

  • For these, you need to drill a hole all the way through the timber as the screw is being screwed into the handle and not into the timber...the drill bit size is determined by one or two sizes bigger than the screw.

You can follow this for putting this type of handle on almost anything.

  • You can make this trolley to any size...this one is huge with heavy duty wheels, but a smaller square one is great for placing a heavy pot on if you move it around regularly.....and I think you can get the smaller wheels for a song at cheap stores too.
  • Maybe you would like to make one to sit your solar oven on...making it easier to follow the sun...(if you have one that needs to be moved)
and the finished product is......

Do you have a trolley similar to this? Would you have a go at making your own? What else could you use a trolley like this for?


  1. Necessity is the mother of invention! Fantastic job - I just love your attitude. When you need or want something, you just do it! Good on ya for doing such a great job making that trolley. It will help you a lot I'm sure fir many things.

  2. Thanks Sherrie....I like that term "Necessity is the mother of invention", it's so true....
    Hubby is used to me doing stuff like this...He knows that his power tool gifts from me are probably going to be used by me more than him....Once, he bought a work mate home to try some home brewed beer, and I was outside building something, hammers, drills, table saw....It was all out....the guy was stunned....he couldn't stop staring at me while I worked....he later told hubby that he has one of those wives that worry about breaking her finger nails.....I could never be like that.


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