1.1 Background of the Study
Since human wants are practically unlimited therefore, the satisfaction or the creation of storage structure was initiated (Akpan, 2010). The storage structure is known as a cabinet or cupboard. A cabinet is a set of shelves with door or doors either built into a room as a fixture, or a separate books and non-books materials. Cabinet can be used in storing valuable and laboratories. The book and the non-book materials which can be stored in the cabinet include; food, clothes dishes, files, books, audio and video cassette.
Cabinet can be constructed with different materials of construction. These materials include; wood, metal, plastic, glass, and some other materials (James, 2008). Wood was formerly used for the construction of all sizes of cabinet because it is readily available. However, this kind of storage structure constructed with pieces of wooden materials has a lot of disadvantages attached to it such as easy access to thieves, destruction by termites. However as technology advances, the introduction of a metallic cabinet was called to play. Considering the importance of cabinets to human race many types of cabinets have come to be known, each type depending on the demand. The steel or metal cabinet was generally accepted for offices uses, while the wooden cabinet fitted for most domestic uses (Obi, 2008).
Steel is primarily used as materials for construction of steel cabinet steel has its variety of characteristic, which makes it far better than wood and some other materials. It cannot be broken into pieces with ease like the wooden or glass cabinet, thus, materials which are kept in it are kept safe. In case of fire incidence the cabinet and the content can get burnt.
Materials, however, are known to corrode by the effect of air, moisture and some chemicals. These can be prevented especially on steel by processes like painting and coating, so that the cabinet made of steel stands the chance of such protection. Steel generally has a quality that makes it non hazardous and resistant to termite and chemical attack. In the design and construction of metal, wide ranging research work is carried out to obtain the best possible design, with the desired types of structural material for the cabinet being put to use. This is due to the fact that there is a wide variety of materials that could be used for construction (Akpan, 2010).
In the construction of this cabinet, the research considerations were based on the materials availability and the maintenance replacement of the parts of the cabinet.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The wood class of construction materials consists of all the construction materials from plants (stems and branches). Wood is generally known to be composed of 44% carbon, 6% hydrogen and 58% oxygen and nitrogen. Thus, it could be referred to as an organic substance (Akpan, 2010).
The very important class refers to the metals. These include (cast iron, wrought iron, malleable iron, pig iron), steel (cast steels and low carbon steel), alloys steels (stainless steels, magnetic steels, tool steels), aluminum and aluminum alloys. This class of construction materials has a very high range of advantages over wood as they are stronger and more machinable. They offer properties like electrical and thermal conductivity, high tensile strength, ductility and reliability (Okon, 2008).
Mild steels are generally considered for most construction processes. It is usually the most suitable for fabrication process that involved cutting, bending, folding because it is easily machined and can be handled without risk of wear and chemical attack and is resistant to corrosion and rusting agents.
The steel cabinet has wide ranging application and importance. It is useful in preservation storage and saving of document (paper and non-paper materials). Laboratory kits, equipment and chemical species.
Therefore, to meet the demands of growing businesses and the fact that the existing statue in file cabinets systems does not allow for mobility, the researcher decided to embark on a more versatile system of construction in which the cabinet could be moved easily from one position to the other with ease without engaging much labour.
1.2 Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this study was to design and construct a metallic office cabinet. Specifically the project sought to:
1) Design a metallic cabinet with rollers.
2) Construct a metallic cabinet with rollers.
3) Test the workability of the metallic cabinet with rollers.
1.4 Significance of the Study
The outcome of this project would be of immense importance to the students as the product would be used as a learning model in both theory and practical classes. It would assist the lecturer during lecture session as a model and instructional aids. It would serve as a basis for further research on how it could be improved upon and be redesigned in a more economical way. To the general public, it would be useful in the office, homes, hospitals, industries, and schools. Also, the knowledge and skills in design and construction of the mechanism would enable the students to be self-reliant and also become employers of labour.
1.5 Delimitation of the Study
This work is delimited to the design and construction of a 3 step metallic office cabinet with rollers.