Rolling Luggage, Carry On Wonders
Re-inventing the Wheel
Wheels on a bag to make it rolling luggage. It was such a simple invention, but rolling carry on luggage took the travel world by storm in the late 80s relieving the tired backs and arms of weary travelers globally.
The concept of wheels on luggage was the brainchild of an airline worker who was sick of hauling his luggage back and forth off airplanes. That worker was Bob Plath, who through use of his own ingenuity and a few tools in his garage came up with the idea of attaching wheels to luggage. Plath later went on to start the luggage company Travelpro, that now serves in supplying more than 400,000 airline workers with luggage worldwide.
This little piece of ingenuity was embraced by the travel industry, and became more than a passing phase or gimmick, with wheels featuring on nearly every piece of luggage designed today.
The application of wheels on luggage has advanced so far that they now appear on every type of bag from duffels to garment bags.
The convenience of having wheels on your luggage has been highly appreciated by travelers who are faced with having to cart their luggage through today’s huge airports – where often they have to trudge from terminal to terminal, some which are often miles apart.
What to look for when buying rolling luggage
When you are buying rolling luggage, the most important thing to look at is the wheels themselves. While a wheel might seem unimportant to some people, the type of wheel that is used; how it is constructed; and components used with it are crucial to how your piece of luggage will perform and how long it will last. Most pieces are equipped with two wheels, but some manufacturers have designed four and six wheeled products that help in tight and narrow spaces.
Inline skate wheels are by far the best type to have on your luggage. As these are designed to carry the weight of a person on them, who will in turn perform several jumps and maneuvers on them, they are made to last. Inline skate wheels should also be equipped with ball-bearings, which basically makes them go round smoother – the last thing you want are your wheels jamming making for an unpleasant ride.
Should anything go wrong with your wheels while you are using the bag, (and let’s face it – that’s the only time that anything does go wrong with luggage. When did you last see your luggage fall apart while it was sitting in a cupboard at home?) always carry a spare wheel with you. There’s nothing worse than suddenly having to carry a fully-laden bag after it breaks. Luggage manufacturers all carry a range of spare parts which you can obtain from them, usually at a nominal price.