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Vol. 37 No. 3, May/June 2000
Pages 305 - 314

Wheelchair caster shimmy II: Damping

James J. Kauzlarich, PhD; Theodore E. Bruning III; John G. Thacker, PhD

University of Virginia, Mechanical Engineering Department, Charlottesville, VA; Compaq Computer Corporation, South Colorado Springs, CO

Abstract — The theory of shimmy damping is investigated including tire friction, spindle bearing friction, and hydraulic damping. A new theoretical improvement in hydraulic damping is presented. Experimental results are presented along with a discussion concerning the limitations due to the approximations used in the theory. The basic theory of wheelchair caster shimmy was published by the authors in 1984, and an examination of the sources of shimmy damping is corrected and updated in this paper.

Key words: caster design, casters, damping, shimmy, wheelchair casters.

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