Wheel Material for Gym Floors

We are looking for wheels that eliminate or significantly reduce marks on polished wood floors. Currently thinking that the gum rubber conveyor belt material might work best, but asking for ideas. Thanks very much!


Much of the equipment in gyms uses colson wheels (or equivalent) so I would recommend those. You can buy them from wcp or vex with hex hubs or you can just buy hubs that press into them.


Just keep them clean.

My first bet would actually be blue nitrile. I’ve seen colsons leave skid marks, but I don’t think I’ve seen the same out of nitriles. Totally anecdotal though (and I’m sure that someone will come in and disprove it - the fastest way to get a correct answer online is to post an incorrect one).


I’ve definitely been in the room when my Colson-shoed robot left skidmarks in the gym. I think nitrile maybe, but my first reaction is, I remember when we had gym shoes and street shoes, so maybe there’s a compound that works well that already exists.

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Over the years, there appears to have been quite a few threads on this. Most recommend to use colsons as @LiamSnow said but as Tyler_Olds said here:

Pneumatic wheels have also been recommended but ymmv.

However, as you are a school team (to my knowledge) speaking from both personal experience and this comment from RC:

Like most things, it might just be best to try both colson and pneumatic wheels and see which one works better/hurts your floor less.


Doesn’t seem like you’re alone on this one.

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I would never, NEVER use mecanums on a gym floor, or anything other than carpet or concrete. They are too fragile, and if they break they will scratch worse than any other option


You don’t have to buy the colson wheels from wcp/vex. I would recommend getting a different type of colson wheel (maybe higher durometer) and then buying the hub from wcp/vex.

Our hype bot has used mecanum wheels ever since 2010, and there hasn’t been any issues with leaving skid marks. High durometer wheels probably won’t leave any either. We use 80A hiGrips at outreach events, and no issues there(different robot),

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I do love me some colon wheels


You can get all the different kinds of Colsons on McMaster, like most things (at a premium).

and @heatblast016 I have no idea what you’re referring to. : )

Our t-shirt cannon robot uses pnuematic wheels and it doens’t leave marks but the wheels are a little bit too grippy. We have a pretty big drop center but it stills can barely turn.



For a t-shirt cannon robot at my alumni team, we used pneumatic wheel chair wheels. Most of the are listed as non-marking, but will need some work to adapt to the common FRC drivebase.

I’m 100% certain that the KOP white wheels leave scuff marks on the hallway floors; we’ve never been able to drive on the gym floor. Just safer to NOT use these wheels.

Murphy’s Law :joy:

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Time to steal the Colsons and replace them with KOP Stock!

Having operated a robot with mecanums on a gym floor, not sure that I agree with you here.
At the time, this was the 10 inch mecanums - they made an impressive rumble, which added to the demonstration! To my knowledge they didn’t leave marks, either.

There’s an easy way out here. Just make the wheels out of whatever already goes on the gym floor, like the bottom of an anti-slip mat near the doors, wrestling mats, etc.

If it does end up marking the floor, you can blame the product the school already purchased instead.

But seriously I have like no idea other than tons of surface area (treads). Maybe 2 wheel drive with small casters at the front and back to almost completely eliminate “point scrub”? I know it’s strong 90s robot vibes.