Mobile Cart for Pilot Press?


I am looking for a mobile cart for my tabletop press. Something along the lines of those metal push carts for AV equipment with lockable wheels that can support the weight of a Pilot press. Any ideas or suggestions? What are you guys out there using? Thanks.

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You’ll probably be happier with the press mounted on something a bit more stable. Even with our C&P Pilots bolted to their original stands they scoot across the floor a bit as the press is used. I suggest something heavy that is the right height (approx. 25 inches) and has no wheels!

Daniel Morris
The Arm Letterpress
Brooklyn, NY

A turtle would probably be a good choice — I think some have adjustable height since they’re designed to transfer heavy formes from the stone to the press. Very stout and heavy, but may not have lockable casters, though maybe some had locking feet that drop down and lift the casters off the floor. You need to be able to lock it in position for printing or you’ll be chasing the press all over the room!


i’m with daniel, you don’t want wheels under your press, and i think a turtle would be to high, you would have to stand on a box to reach the press. Dick G.

I have my Craftsmen Superior setting on a wheeled cart. I can attest to the statements the others have made. Wheels make printing on this machine less than ideal. I happened to have a cart that would work, so I put my press on it. Right now, it allows me to use the press in a variety of locations while I decide on a more permanent place for the press. I have to physically press my body against the delivery board so that I can pull the handle down. It is OK for a run of 50, but not pleasant on a run of 200 or more.
I would look into making or buying a stout table that is 25” high. This is far better than a wheeled cart.

Yeah I understand the wheels could be a problem but I figured some with lockable casters would work. The reason I’d like it to be mobile is because I’m working/living in a studio and I’d like to be able to wheel it into the open then wheel it to an out-of-the-way area when not in use.

Well no one will stop you from trying. I just don’t think I would invest much money. My cart was free.
Good luck.

You might also consider using something like a small hand truck or luggage carrier to move an otherwise fixed stand around — that could give you the best of both worlds. You could easily build a sturdy table of 2x4s and 3/4 inch plywood whatever height you prefer and just big enough to hold the press and your needed tools and paper. A small portable hand truck could easily move such a load.

At any big-box hardware store you can find stands to mount machines on (i.e. table saws, drill press etc.). They also sell mobile base kits, to use with these stands, that are very stable and locking. The stand and mobile base will list the allowable weight that can be supported.

We bought a BEKVÄM cart from IKEA. Cost $60. Has only two wheels so we can reasonably move it from one area to another. We set it up and tried it for a while and then took it back apart and shortened the legs so the height was better for people taking our workshops. It is really sturdy and sits solidly on the floor.

We coated it with polyurethane. Here is a photo showing the Pilot and the top of the cart along with a view of the one holding our metal furniture.

We actually have 4 of these carts at Lead Graffiti. One for the pilot, for cabinet of metal furniture, for a nipping press, and one we use for ink mixing.

image: 2-ikea-w-furniture.jpg


image: 1-ikea-w-pilot.jpg


Ha!! I used the same cart but seeing as how I’m 5’ tall I had to cut down the legs on the Bekvam. It’s very sturdy even though I didn’t cut the legs exactly even. I thought about trying to cut it down so that the wheels would be retained but was in a hurry to get things up and working. I’m using it for a Sigwalt 6” x 9”. How it is with the wheels on? I think I added some angle irons to reinforce the table but I don’t think it was necessary.

Wow I’m surprised the Ikea one supports the weight. Thanks.

Well I guess I’ll be a ginny pig. I’m buying a press now and have bought a rolling cart to put it on. I’ve had four locking wheels put on instead of the standard 2. It’s necessary to have the rolling cart so I can store the press in a tight space in my garage. Will roll it out where the car usually is to print. When I was buying the cart from a professional casters place they thought I would actually only need 2 locking wheels when I told them what I’d be using it for.

I like AdLibPress’s idea but since I already purchased the cart yesterday I’ll test it out. I’ll let you know paperback how it goes for me. Thank goodness there’s craigslist if I need to go an alternate route.

I just bought the Ikea stand for my pilot. Is anyone using the stand with the wheels? Also, I was wondering how much I should shorten the stand - I’m 5’9”. Thanks for posting the tip for the Ikea stand.