Tractor Trailer Wheels #1: Wheel Jig

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Blog entry by SouthavenToyMaker posted 12-14-2018 11:38 PM 904 reads 2 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Tractor Trailer Wheels series Part 2: Drive Wheel »

I know that there are several blogs already available on how to make wheels for the toy/model trucks, but I have been asked several times on how I make mine. So, I decided to create a blog series on how I currently make them.

Lets start with the jig / fixture for cutting the grooves in the drive tires.

Materials used

1/2 board 16” long 4” high for the miter gauge, 1/2” stock for the indexer, 5/16 carriage bolt and nut, two 608z bearings, two tee nuts and matching bolts

Making the indexer

I created a circle template from this following website, provided to me by bushmaster. I make a 2 1/2” circle with 24 increments. I connect all the increments and mark on each line 1” from center. I drill an 1/8” hole at each marking. I use a 2 3/8” hole saw to cut out the indexer. Enlarge the center hole to 5/16” using a step bit. Insert a 5/16 carriage bolt in the indexer

Making the fixture for the table saw

Attach the 1/2” thick board to your table saw’s miter jig. I use the tee nuts so that the jig can be easily removed / attached to the same location for each use. Cut a slot about 1/2” high in the board. I will add that the blade I use is a 7 1/4 Diablo Blade part number D0724R.( HTL advised me about this blade, he has several blogs as well on making wheels and models.)

Once the initial slot is cut remove the board from you miter gauge an locate the center of the slot and place a mark 1 3/8” from the bottom of the board.

Drill a 3/4 hole on center of the mark for the bearings, this will allow you to tighten the wheel pieces and the indexer together as one; but still allow them to turn on the miter gauge between each cut. The bearings I use are the same bearings used on my band saws for the side to side tracking and also found on most fidget spinners.

Transfer a mark from one of the holes on the indexer to the jig. Drill an 1/8” hole at that mark. I use a pick from Harbor Freight to lock the indexer between each cuts.

Reattach to the miter gauge

If everything went as planned, you should be able to rotate the indexer through each hole.

I will make another blog on the actual making of the drive wheels and then one for the steer wheels.

All comments and suggestions are welcome.

-- Sean

5 comments so far

View anthm27's profile


1747 posts in 1911 days

#1 posted 12-15-2018 01:24 AM

Well done all of that. Nice craftsmanship

-- There is no hope for any of us if we keep apologizing for telling the truth.

View Dutchy's profile


3774 posts in 2969 days

#2 posted 12-15-2018 08:46 AM

Thanks for the link. A easy to make jig and extremely suitable for his task. Well done.


View Jason1974's profile


251 posts in 1123 days

#3 posted 12-15-2018 12:17 PM

Nice, never thought about using my miter gauge for making a wheel jig. Can wait to see your blog on how you mke your drive wheels.

-- Jason, Camden, NC -- I didn't do it, Stupid Did!

View stefang's profile


17039 posts in 4135 days

#4 posted 12-15-2018 03:19 PM

Great little gig which can be used for more that just wheels. Thanks for sharing!

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View SouthavenToyMaker's profile


216 posts in 2289 days

#5 posted 12-15-2018 05:12 PM

I have to make a correction, when I drilled out the 1/8” holes for the indexer I did not measure 1” from the center, I drilled at each tick on the outer ring of the circle.

-- Sean

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