Aluminum trucks

There’s an ebay seller listing aluminum Kluge trucks, any opinions on aluminum vs delrin vs (original micarta) ?

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I have never used aluminum trucks, so these are my comments from a theoretical, machine design standpoint. If anyone can offer any practical experience, I defer to them.

In theory, the good thing about aluminum trucks would be that the aluminum is softer than the iron or steel rails which they ride on, so the trucks should take the wear instead of the rails. This is what you want to happen because the trucks are a lot easier to replace than the rails.

The bad thing about aluminum trucks is that they don’t have the slight “give” which the softer Delrin or other polymers have, so I would think that the aluminum trucks would wear faster than the polymer trucks. Polymer trucks, like the aluminum trucks, also have the advantage of being softer than the rails, which should cut down the wear on the rails.

I’ve made a number of aluminum trucks for my Kelsey and Pilot presses, and they work perfectly. In theory they shouldn’t last as long as the original steel ones, but after several years of use they don’t seem to be showing any appreciable signs of wear.

Of course a lot depends on the load they are subjected to, and I have no idea how tight the springs are on a Kluge… .but if they are similar to a C&P, aluminum should work just fine.

About Delrin: I have not made any trucks out of it, but I have tried ABS and HDPE plastics, and I can’t recommend them. They machine nicely and function well, but cleaning solvents attack them over time.

One thing to keep in mind when buying trucks from unknown sources is Quality of Manufacture. To function correctly the trucks need to be the right diameter for your rollers, perfectly concentric, and fit you roller cores tightly.