July 22, 2024


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A wheelwright, sometimes known as a wainwright, is a person who used to construct wheels and perform wheel repairs. Wheelwrights are a vanishing breed, this term is not commonly used nowadays, unless you are referring to those who construct wheels for carts or wagons for horses. Which are both examples of the term “wheelwright.” The process of creating and balancing the modern-day wheel is still considered skilled labor. However, the majority of wheel producers today employ advanced robotical technology to construct these well made wheels for automobiles. The surname Wheelwright was derived from an English surname that was frequently used prior to the invention of the word wainwright.

What is a Wheelwright?

The term “wheelwright” refers to a trade occupation that is still used today when specialized workmanship is required to create modern-day wheels. These are highly qualified experts who are familiar with every aspect of the design in order to create the wheel in engineering draft and to mold its components. Furthermore, it would imply that these specific persons who possess such abilities would also be able to fix a wheel or identify a fault in one, resulting in the designation of “wheelwright.” Not only would they be able to fix a wheel, but they would also be able to contribute to its creation, simply because it is their crafted trade that gives them the capacity to create, develop, study, and mold the perfect completed wheel.

Wheelwright History

Wooden wheels for carts and carriages were created by wheelwrights throughout history; they were mostly made of wood, occasionally bone, and of other materials were included into the creation of each wheel. Leather, rubber, different metals, and a variety of woods were used in addition to the above materials. Today, wheelwrights may still be found in the vicinity of horses, since they have maintained their title and profession. They create wheels for carriages and carts of varying sizes, as well as trailers that can be hauled by horses.

It was not until the 1800s that a wheelwright created the first design of the rubber wheel, which was then manufactured. This design was then patented, and it became increasingly popular for bespoke creation. The wood and iron used in the building of this wheel, plus rubber filled with air contributed to its strength. Smaller wheels were fitted into this technology and were designed specifically for modest everyday applications such as a wheel barrel or a wheel needed for toy carts and wagons. The wheelwright has gone a long way from the days of constructing wheels out of bone and horn to the days of wood and metal.

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