Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Field Stencils: TruMark's How-To Guide for Application

New to field stencils? We can help. Here is our advice to get the best results so you can dominate the competition and impress the crowd!

  • First, cut the grass as short as possible. The stencil will look crisp and clear on shorter grass and as a bonus you will use less paint. Most stencils will need two coats of paint to look as vibrant as possible!
  • Lay out the stencil a day before you are ready to paint to help flatten out the edges. Don't lay and leave the stencil on your field- it will heat up the grass and dry it out.
  • Get some help! Depending on the size of the stencil and its complexity, we recommend having at least 1 extra person on hand to help move the stencil around and get it aligned properly.
  • Have weights available to keep the stencil in place as you are painting. Don't use stakes or anything to pierce the plastic. Our sandbags are a great option!
  • Be prepared! Take a bucket of water with in case you make a mistake so that you can instantly remove the paint.
  • Take a photo of the logo to the field with you for a visual. This is especially helpful to have if your logo has a few colors as most stencils will have bracing and outlines. This will help to make it as easy as a paint by number!
  • As with anything, a higher quality paint means less coats and ultimately less cost.
  • Take a step back! Stencils are made to look best from a distance. Keep this in mind as you are painting. Step back to get your fans perspective!
  • Get creative! Try adding a free-hand border around your logo or letters. It is much easier than it sounds and has a great visual impact!
  • When done painting lay your stencil out flat so the paint residue can dry and it doesn't stick together. Remember not to lay it on your field or it might ruin the grass!
  • Bring a camera-you're going to want a picture when you're done! Send TruMark the picture so we can share it!

Still have questions? Ready to get your custom logo and paint your field? Visit our site to see some custom stencil examples and contact us via email or at 800.553.MARK to get a quote!

We also have the basics like hash marks, sideline numbers and end-zone letters.

Stay tuned, next week we will be posting a case study for a new stencil trial at a local golf course.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Heavy Duty String Winder Product Review

TruMark's Heavy Duty String Winder:

Holding string, winding string, never breaking

Description of services:
Can be inserted into the ground, holds up to 1500 ft of string, best of all-attach it to a power drill and you can rewind all your string in minutes.

This is a no nonsense tool that holds and winds your string for field lining. String is a pain, this makes it better. Pictures speak louder than words, take a look at the video here.


For more info contact TruMark at 800.553.MARK, send us an email or visit us online at

Monday, June 29, 2015

Field Anchors; Looking for a Home

These field anchors are looking for a home!

They are construction grade steel anchors that have been protected from rust by being zinc plated. What they enjoy most out of life is permanently marking intersections of fields or buildings  so that you never waste your time looking for those locations again. They are 5 ½ inches in height with a 3 inch diameter top that contains a ¾ inch diameter hole in it that can contain a whisker plug, practice corner flags, or really anything else that you can think of. They are loners by nature so they prefer to be left in the ground for years.

If anyone is interested in adopting these anchors please contact us by phone at 800.553.MARK, by email or visit us online at!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Field Intersections; Tricky Business

Perfect intersections are the cornerstone (pun intended, sorry about that) of a perfect field. No one wants a field that looks like this à

To help you make sure that you are creating perfect 90 degree angles at each and every location we recommend using marking whiskers to quickly and accurately locate your intersections.

The marking whiskers are bundles of brightly colored nylon that are hammered into the ground after being attached to either a 60 penny nail or a composite nail. (the composite nail gets bonus points for being less of threat to your mowers. It will break instead of damaging the mower blade if the mower ever pulls the whisker out of the ground).  You trim the whiskers to the height of the grass and can leave it in there all season. After your whiskers are in you will easily be able to find and string the lines so that they will be perfectly straight every time.

Some other items that will help you out:

Eazy Crease – circles are a pain to paint, this tool will make it the easiest part of painting the field

String winder – string gets tangled and takes a long time to rewind, let’s use a power drill and take an early lunch.

Stake-Alls – another form of whisker for those that love options

Field Anchors – versatile construction grade anchors. These go in the ground and will never come out marking permanent locations. (take a look, we make whisker plugs for them as well!)

Visit our website, send us an email or call us at 800.553.MARK for more information.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Easily Mark the Circles and Arcs for any Sport!

Everybody knows that painting the circles and arcs on a field is a chore! The Eazy Crease was designed to save you time and effort so you get perfect lines without the hassle of measuring!

The sports offered are soccer, softball, rugby, field hockey, basketball and lacrosse. To give you an idea of how it works, here are a few videos:

Men's Lacrosse
Watch a video here of the men's lacrosse crease being marked in less than 60 seconds.

Women's Lacrosse
Watch a video here of the women's lacrosse goal crease, 8 meter and 12 meter arc in less than 3 minutes.

Watch a video here for how to mark a basketball court in your driveway!

Find the Eazy Crease on our website at or contact us via email or by phone at 800.553.MARK!

Friday, June 12, 2015

2015 College World Series Baseball Championship back in Omaha

We have a special place in our hearts for the NCAA College Baseball Championship, the College World Series. Omaha is our home base and we love hosting the 8 best teams in the country each year. Do you want your field to look as good as the championship field at TD Ameritrade Park? Here are some ideas to spruce up your field to make a lasting impression with players, fans, alumni, recruiters and more.

We offer Aer-flo's Tuffy windscreens that are second to none in the industry. Made of a Vipol mesh material, these windscreens are super durable. Protect and preserve your fence while making a statement with your team name or logo.

Protect your turf and teach players how to visualize bunt zones with this product. Made from an industrial grade vinyl and coated with a polyester mesh, it is spike resistant and virtually tear-proof. 

Wind-weighted Rain Cover
Protect your field from the elements with a wind-weighted tarp. Triple-patented and virtually wind-proof, the galvanized steel chain around the edge will make these tarps stay put.

TruMark EZ-70 Field Marking Machine
This battery powered marking machine is perfect for baseball fields because the low voltage design won't blow away the dirt as you are spraying! And with 2 hours of battery life you can mark your field quicker than ever.

One of the ways to make the most impact is to paint your team logo on the field! Our stencils are made from an agricultural grade plastic that can be rolled or folded for storage and when properly cared for can last many years. The quoting process is as simple as sending us a high-resolution file of your logo and we will get a quote to you in 2-3 business days. 

Looking for more ways to improve the aesthetics of your field? Give us a call at 800.553.MARK or send us an email and we can talk about your specific needs!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Get Ready for the 4th of July with a Ribbon or Star Stencil!

Do you have any events around the 4th of July? A game or even a party at your house? 

The star stencil is 12' from tip to tip.

Use a patriotic ribbon or star stencil and red, white and blue aerosol paint or chalk to show your spirit and respect! Order now to get it on time!'

The patriotic ribbon stencil is 9' wide x 18' tall.

Stencil Application Tips:
  • Paint a white background under the entire stencil to make the image more vibrant. One way to look at it is like painting the stencil on a wall in your home. If your wall was a green color (like the grass) you would most likely use a primer to prep the area and eliminate the need for multiple coats. Treat the painting of a field stencil no differently!
  • Use an aerosol field marking paint can or spray wand applicator to quickly outline the painted sections of the stencil so the stencil can be removed quickly from the turf. After the stencil has been removed then fill in the respective paint areas.
  • For more tips visit our website!
Have any questions or ready to order now? Give us a call at 800.553.MARK or send us an email.

Monday, June 8, 2015

EZ-70 Field Marker; Easy for anybody to use

Another EZ-70 is going out the door today!

The EZ-70 is a battery powered, walk-behind field marking machine. Its low voltage design is safe for anybody to use and won’t blow dirt away during spraying. It’s perfect for painting soccer, rugby, lacrosse, softball and baseball fields and more!

Some unique features:  • 2 hours of operation per battery charge
• Adjustable width paint shields make it easy to get any field or surface ready for play
• Made of corrosion-resistant powder coated steel, stainless steel and brass parts
• Floating paint shoe assembly ensures line width and minimizes drift
• Paints bright, crisp, straight lines on any terrain
• Handle bars fold down for easy set up and storage
• Easy for anybody to use

Check out some pictures of the EZ-70 in use here!

Download a PDF with additional details or visit our website.

Is the EZ-70 right for your program? We're here to answer that question for you. Call us at 800.553.MARK or email us and we can assess your field marking needs!

Thursday, June 4, 2015

TruMark June Newsletter

TruMark June Newsletter

We make your field look great fast, for less.

Our mission is getting you ready to play with the tools and products you need to play inspired. This monthly newsletter is one way we do that. Every month you can expect to see tips and tricks for getting your field ready for gameday and product demonstrations that show you how to do things like apply paint, spread chalk, mark out fields and more. You’ll also get access to special promotions and discounts on the products and paints you use most.

Make Your Mark

Find your intersections quickly with convenient marking tools such as whiskers, Stake-All marking whiskers, Anchors or String Winders. To get you started, enter the code:  ICANFINDIT at checkout to save 10% on any field marking tools for the month of June.

Instantly Download Field Layout Tools!

No more waiting to get the templates you need to mark your field with confidence. When we redesigned the TruMark website, we made it easier for you to get free field layout tools. Now you can instantly download free tools that help you make straight lines in less time for:
Visit or click here to get these free tools now!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Free Field Layout Tools for Soccer, Rugby, Lacrosse and Ultimate Frisbee

Having a hard time squaring up your field using different size field combinations? Looking for a quick method to lay out a field? 

Check out the soccerrugbylacrosse, and ultimate frisbee layout tools using a MS Excel template to input field dimensions where the tool automatically calculates the distances to the different staking points. You'll achieve a perfectly squared field of play in a fraction of the time!

Here are a few user comments we have received regarding the layout tools:
  • Thanks so much for the Lacrosse Layout Tool. I don't know what other people have been using, but everyone from our parents, the other team, and even the referees complimented me on how our field lining looked! Considering I was doing it for the first time, that is pretty remarkable.
  •  The very first time I used the soccer field layout tool I went from four hours to mark a full size field to less than two hours. I have now been using this for about four years and tell everyone how great it works!
  • I have to lay out anywhere from 20 to 30 soccer fields twice each year. The layouts that used to take a team of people hours to complete can now be done in less than 30-45 minutes by one person. I love it!

Save time and effort by downloading your copy here!

Monday, May 11, 2015

TruMark's New Website

We've launched a new website that makes it easier for you to find and learn about the field markers, stencils, paint,chalk, screens, sandbags, marking tools and accessories you need to make your field look great. New features include:

-Instantly download field layout tools
-Get a quick quote on the products you're interested in before you buy
-Find out what you need fast with new product categories
-Research all the information you need about a product in one, convenient place with streamlined product descriptions
-Links to our social media channels let you watch product videos, share photos of your field, ask questions and connect with others who have a passion for playing.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Marking Flags for Soccer Fields and Marking Requirements.

Field Marking Flags
After a long back order we now are offering marking flags for soccer fields and other marking requirements. These reinforced vinyl orange pennant flag with an orange 1/4" fiberglass pole are outfitted with stainless steel spring that fits the Field Line Anchor. There are now packaged deals to include sets of 4 Stakes and Whisker Plugs.

You have several different options, 6 foot training marking flags, 5 foot corner flags with stainless steel spring, sets of 4 five foot marking flags and field line anchors, set of 6 marking flags and field line anchors, sets of 4 marking flags and field line anchors with stakes, and sets of 4 marking flags and field line anchors with stakes and whisker plugs.

The Whisker Plugs add to Field Line Anchors help quickly identify the intersections when the field is not in play. The Stakes can be used with the Field Line Anchors to set string line for line marking.

Tru Mark Volunteers to Paint NCHS Sports Activity Complex for Football

Each fall Tru Mark personnel volunteers to mow and paint the Norfolk Catholic High School's Sports Activity Complex football field that is used for practice, JV, Freshman/Sophomore, and Junior High games. Here for the photo album series of images.

This is an excellent opportunity for Tru Mark to demonstrate new equipment and supplies as part of our offerings. In this case we brought out a new Snapper mulching mower from Riegle Implement, Madison, NE, along with the Titan Powrliner 850 field marker equipped with the Tru Mark Titan Spray Shoe Assembly implementing the Tru Mark's Terrain Following Paint Shield technology, Embark Plant Growth Regulator, and the SwitchBack MVP field marking paint.

This is the second field marking activity following 11 days after the first field striping where Embark plant grow regulator was used 1/2 ounce per gallon of diluted paint. The lines were remowed, then repainted using SwitchBack MVP diluted 3 to 1.

In one of the first images Embark PGR shows the grass growth retarded from an paint field striping application 11 days earlier using Embark. The white grass line is about an inch shorter than the surrounding grass.

A second image sequence shows the lines mowed before repainting. Looks good without paint restriping.

A third image sequence shows a goal line repainted using SwitchBack MVP diluted 3 to 1, a goal line with a 6 inch wide line using at Titan Powrliner 850 and TR2 spray tip.

The final image sequence shows NCHS complex completed, mowed and restriped in less than two hours, only the 10 yard lines.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Tru Mark E-100 Field Marker Used for Pavement and Synthetic Turf Striping

Tru Mark Model E-100 3-in-1 Sprayer
We received a recent questions from a current Tru Mark Model E-100 12-volt battery operated diaphragm pump field marking unit on the use for pavement striping. "We have a E-100 sprayer and would like to use it to mark our parking lot. What tip is needed for paint to exit."

Early on Tru Mark investigated on whether the Model E-100 could effectively apply pavement striping paint. Through experimentation we came up with some 'rules of the road' so to speak when using this unit for pavement striping operations. If given an option use white versus yellow pavement striping paint.

You can use the same spray tip that you have been using for field marking (80-04 Spray Tip, 80 degree spray fan, 0.4 gallon per minute output at ~40 psi).

However there are couple E-100 operational considerations to take into account for pavement striping.

- First we recommend plugging one of the output spray nozzles (preferably the front nozzle body). If you don't have a brass plug you can use a circle piece of thin cardboard to fit inside the front cap on spray nozzle, just remove the spray tip and check valve.

- You might remove the check valve from the remaining spay nozzle assembly to minimize any back pressure this requires (5 psi). Unfortunately this will result in some dripping from the tip. I always plug back on the unit about 6-12 inches at the end of the line before I move on to allow for some of this dripping.

- More importantly when using pavement striping paint you'll need to dilute the paint to get it to flow through the system. For white I recommend diluting up to a half gallon of water to one gallon paint. For yellow you will need to get half to one gallon of water to one gallon of paint You may have to experiment a little to achieve the optimum dilution. Normally pavement striping paint is not diluted however the 12-volt diaphragm pump technology will not effectively work without dilution.

- Instead of water you can use16 ounces of latex paint conditioner for every gallon of paint used. This especially helpful when the temperature get colder.

- You will likely need to clamp off the return line going back into the 5-gallon tank to increase the pump head pressure. A small adjustable Vise grip tool works well.

-  The height of the nozzle bracket assembly needs to be lowered as you don't want any of the paint touching the paint shield assembly.

For synthetic turf striping we've expanded on our tips to include the following.

- Each time you use field marking paint you should ensure the paint is will mixed due to settling and separation of some of the ingredients.  We like to use an electric drill or cordless drill with a paint paddle mixing accessory to help mix the paint thoroughly. Most hardware stores selling paint will have a paint paddle.

- For the low pressure low volume 12-volt diaphragm pump operations you should dilute the paint at 1 gallon of water for every one gallon of paint (1:1) to ensure a well defined spray fan from the spray tip(s). When diluting the paint pour water from and existing filled pail into the pail of paint. Do not inject air into the paint mixture (e.g., filling the paint pail with a water hose while the water flow is exposed to the air).

- When applying synthetic turf paint (or any bulk water based paint) (less dilution) you need to prime the pump by using water first before putting the intake line into the paint tank with paint. You can use a 5-gallon tank with water next to the unit to help with this process. We recommend using a small pan or container to catch the water and paint before spraying the solution on the turf.

- If you are using synthetic turf paint you may not want the paint shoe guard/shield touching the turf surface and collecting paint.  Rotate the shoe guards by adjusting the set collar with the Allen head hex wrench for this adjustment. Loosen and then rotate the set collar and retighten the Allen head hex bolt.

- You will likely need to adjust the spray head clamping block to ensure the width of the spray line based on the mowed height of the grass/ synthetic tuf. You'll need to experiment whether to rotate the clamping block or extend or retract the spray nozzle bracket. Once again you'll use a hex head Allen wrench to make this adjustment.

- Since there are two nozzle bodies on the E-100 it may be appropriate to block one of the nozzle bodies. Remove the spray tip and check valve from the front nozzle body and replace it with a brass disc or other circular disc and retighten the brass nozzle cap. This will increase the pressure to the remaining tip to improve the width of the spray fan on the remaining spray tip.

- After completing the line striping operation ensure that the unit is thoroughly cleaned by rinsing the unit with clean water. Also remove the check valve with screen and spray tip for cleaning and then reattach.  You should run water through the system for several minutes. You can use a diluted solution of Simple Green biodegradable cleaning agent in the rinse solution to help remove the paint residue. Also very helpful is a generic product called "Pump Protector" normally sold in paint supply stores.  This product is used by commercial painters to clean their pump compressors. The product helps keep the latex paint from building up in the unit and can be left in the unit until its next use.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

2014 Fall Specials--Graco Field Line Stripers (S90, S100, & R300)

Graco just released their Fall 2014 Specials which included the Field Line Striper line to include the walk-behind airless battery operated S90 and the fuel operated S100 and the riding R300.  You can download the coupon here (2.9 MB PDF) which covers purchases made between August  1st and November 6th, 2014.


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Sports Field Marking Receiving a Facelift

Iowa Sports Turf Managers Association
2009 Summer Workshop
Besides providing safe playing sport field surfaces many field managers, coaches, facility managers, and youth sports association volunteers are incorporating a variety forms of "facelifts". Several trade journals have been increasing the coverage on "tips and tricks" on field marking operations to including painting standard boundary lines, field distance identification, and custom logos and advertising.

The July 2014 issue of Sportsfield Management Magazine has an extensive article with a number of contributors sharing the expertise and lessons learned. Dean Angelo, owner of Sports Lines, highlighted the use of the Pythagorean theorem to establish square corners on sports field. TruMark Athletics has developed several desktop tools using MS Excel functions to produce squared playing field intersection distance calculations for soccer, lacrosse, rugby, ultimate frisbee which can also be utilized for other sports.

Pulling string lines almost ensure consistently straight lines no matter what field marking equipment you might use, e.g., 12-volt battery or gasoline powered airless line stripers. Dean also emphasized that putting down a base white coat is effective in making subsequent color applications more vibrant for logo including another coat of white on boundary lines.

He also mentioned that on synthetic turf fields he would use aerosol chalk as the preferred solution for very temporary field marking.

A July 2014 issue of SportsTurf, the official publication of the Sports Turf Managers Association includes a extensive series of interviews of 4 sports turf managers. They were asked what 3-4 factors do you consider most important for efficient and successful field and logo painting. They were also asked about their worst field paint disaster. Almost to every contributor they emphasized good quality paint and paint sprayer and keeping your equipment clean.

In the same SportsTurf issue an article covered field marking technology for synthetic turf sports fields. Written by one of the industry leaders in synthetic turf field marking products Jim Brady highlighted that importance of understanding the paint and removal agents for the temporary marking solutions as well as recognizing that the synthetic turf fibers change adherence qualities as the fiber ages.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Tru Mark Model E-100 Athletic Field Marker YouTube Video Clip

Tru Mark Model E-100 Athletic Field Marker YouTube video clip helps tell the story for field operations staff on feature and capability distinctions.

  • Tru Mark Model E-100 12-volt diaphragm pump technology is easy to operate and maintain and runs quietly with low volume low pressure output with very little to no safety issues concerning paint injection under the skin. This technology is now being used by the professional baseball leagues to reduce skinned area contamination. (Model EZ-70 baseball infield demonstration image)
  • The 2 angled off-setting nozzle spray applicator provides excellent coverage, no need to cover the line twice thus saving time.
  • The unit features line application between center and outside wheel for direct line of sight striping operations for the operator (toward the end of the video clip). 
  • Tru Mark's Terrain Following Paint Shield Assembly technology ensures a crisp line no matter the terrain, adjustable with shields widths from 2" to 8" using traditional hex head Allen wrench. 
  • The set once shield rotation design through gravity and handle bar control requires no springs thus no recurring adjustment during operations on rough terrain.
  • Recently the E-100 unit has been upgraded to 12 inch wheel configuration on a wide platform deck and ergonomic handle bar assembly improving the control and ease of operation.
  • All steel deck design and major metal operational parts (zinc plating, brass, stainless steel) ensure longevity and endurance.
  • A traditional 12-volt deep cycle marine battery operates 6 plus hours before recharging (charger included, battery purchased by customer).
  • Easy pump maintenance with hand tools (Philips screw driver). 
  • Unit includes spray wand and hose. 

Friday, June 13, 2014

Washable Field Marking Paint (Removable with Water the Same Day)

Liquid Chalk Foot Scuff Test
A recent email presented the following statement. "Can you tell me if you carry field paint that is washable?  We need to stripe a portion of a field for evening practices and then we need to be wash it off that same evening.  Do you have a solution or know of a product that would work?"

So what does Tru Mark suggest?

Are you applying to natural grass or synthetic turf?

If it is the later we have a couple solutions that work well without any cleaning agent required. For natural grass these same solutions will work but removal may not be as effective.

Aerosol chalk is a quick and easy solution if you already have an aerosol line striper (also available). This product performs like traditional powdered chalk once it dries and comes off with water or brush action, no cleaning agent needed. One aerosol can will cover 200 linear feet. This product does come in different aerosol chalk colors (red, yellow, blue, pink).

If you have access to an airless line striper then I recommend our SwitchBack Double Play bulk liquid chalk. The product is diluted 1:1 and then applied. It can be removed with water or brush action. We only have this product in white at the present time. One gallon of diluted chalk will cover 300 linear feet.

When applying these products to natural grass the chalk may ‘cling’ to the leaf tissue depending on the health of the grass. Mowing and applying water will remove the product.

For a removable field marking paint that requires a cleaning agent then we suggest the TrailBlazer Rally Day and Trail Wash. An airless line striper (Titan Powrliner 850, Graco FieldLazer S100 ) that produces at least 900 psi to apply the non-diluted paint. One gallon of this product will cover 300 linear feet. For removal Trail Wash is sprayed on, agitated with a hand or mechanical broom/brush, then rinsed with with water.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Titan Tool Powrliner 2014 Summer Promotion

Looking for Titan Powrliner 850, 2850, 4950, or EazyLiners then the time is now to make our purchase on turf and payment line striping equipment. Savings range from $100 to $800, May 15th to July 31st, 2014. This is the first time in 5 years that I've represented Titan Tool Powrliner line striping equipment that they have offered a summer promotion on a majority of their products.

Check out the many savings on Titan Tool Line Striping Equipment.

In concert with the summer saving program Tru Mark Athletic Field Marker has introduced the Titan Powrliner 4950 two-gun unit to include the 12-gallon Paint Tank Hopper and the Turf Tire options as standard equipment.

Once the Titan unit is purchased we'll provide a serial number(s) along with a receipt/invoice so you can send in the Summer Coupon for 2014 savings, even before the item is delivered.

I have to pass on a little "chest pounding" from our Titan sales representative, "Our TITAN Lazy Liners are selling at record pace and are completely compatible with Graco (same ball hitch, height, etc, etc).  We even sell the hitch for the LL3900 and up if a customer wants to connect an old Graco striper to our Lazy Liner.  It is a fact that we offer the best assortment & features of ride-on driving systems on the market today."

I must say the Titan sales, office, shipping and technical staff have been superb when supporting me as a distributor which translates to better customer service to our patrons.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Three New Titan Powrliner EazyLiners--Self-propelled Rider Options

Three new EazyLiners introduced by Titan Tool in 2014. These units have replaced an earlier Powrliner self-propelled riding model.

Besides incorporating standard turf tires they utilize three different Subaru motors, one with electric start (Elite), and a unit with a single drive wheel (Compact). In addition  Titan has established connection hitches to support multiple Titan Powrliner line stripers as well as one competitor's walk behind line markers.

The Titan Tool Facebook page has several videos with a Lazyliner Elite and Powrliner 4950 in action.

Titan Powrliner EazyLiner Options

EazyLiner Elite


EazyLiner Pro



EazyLiner Attachment Options

Just in, customer testimonial after purchasing two Titan Powrliner 850s, "Look forward to ordering from you guys again, can’t believe how fast they got here.  The check should be in the mail this week!"
City of Florence, SC, 04/21/14

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Soccer Field Layout Tool Testimonial

"This is the greatest tool ever for marking fields.

We have about 35 fields in the Spring season and about 25 for the Fall season.  We also run two tournaments each summer with between fifteen and twenty fields for each tournament.    All of our fields are marked by volunteers.  I try to not mark fields but spend the time to teach others how it’s done.  But it never fails, I always end up marking a couple each season.

As far as time saving.  I’ve marked hundreds of fields and thought I was pretty good.  The very first time I used this I went from four hours to mark a full size field to less than two hours.  I have now been using this  for about four years and tell everyone how great it works."
Thanks, D.B., Northern Utah United

Tru Mark's Soccer Field Layout Tool, a MS Excel template, that uses the Pythagorean theorem, a*a + b*b = c*c. Three points down the center of the field are used, the center point of the field and the center of the goals along with the desired field dimensions, to locate the intersections so staking with string line can be completed. The template allows for entry of the dimensions and it automatically calculates the distance from the two reference points to the intersections using two tape measures. Locate the distances on the two tapes for a particular intersection and you have a staking position. There has been over 2,000 requests for this tool.

Check out the many different field staking solutions.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

What Should You Not Forgot This Spring for Sports Fields?

Deep Tine Aerator
If you are short of funds and personnel then my vote is to fund core aeration of cool-season sports fields. There are many benefits besides relieving soil compaction to include getting more air and water into the root zone and helping decompose thatch which will also release more nutrients into the soil. Healthier turf grass from core aeration requires less fertilization, less pest control such as grab grass and broad leaf weed control, and less watering. The second most important consideration in the health of turf grass is cutting the grass at the same height more frequently and producing less thatch which acts as a valuable fertilizer (read more below on whether to cut the grass shorter early in the season).

(Courtesy of Kansas State Horticulture Department)
"If you are planning to core-aerate your tall fescue or Kentucky bluegrass sports fields this spring, reserve a machine now so you can get the job done in March or early-April. Coring early in the spring gives cool-season lawns a chance to recover before crabgrass and other warm-season annual weeds start to germinate.

Core-aerating is one of the best things you can do for your sports fields. It relieves compaction, hastens thatch decomposition, increases water infiltration and helps promote better root growth. Pay attention to the soil moisture level when coring. The soil should easily crumble when worked between the fingers. If it is too wet, the machine's tines will plug and it will merely punch holes in the wet soil, which increases compaction. If it is too dry, the tines will not be able to penetrate very deeply." (Ward Upham)

If you don't have the time or equipment to do the whole field then concentrate on the high traffic areas, e.g., between the hash marks on a football field, center of the field and in front of the goal area for soccer and the sidelines where the line judge runs, and the area around the lacrosse goal. For those organizations that have the opportunity to move the field lines and goal areas, this helps move the traffic and wear areas around to allow recovery time for the turf grass. Just moving the sidelines in or out will help as well as moving the goal several feet will make a significant difference. The side benefit of moving the boundary lines and internal sports field lines is minimizing any toxicity build up from field marking paints

Soil compaction slide with audio presentation by Ohio State University Turf Grass Sciences. (4:31 minutes) Many of the images show golf course maintenance operations which are also appropriate for athletic sports fields. Courtesy of Sports Turf Managers Association website reference.

Check out photo album of many different turf grass and sports field management tools that are available by vendors.

(Courtesy of Kansas State Horticulture Department)
"How Low Should You Go?
We often are asked whether it is good to mow lower in the spring. The answer is yes and no. It doesn’t hurt to mow lower than normal the first mowing or two. As a matter of fact, it can actually speed green-up by removing old, dead grass and allowing the soil to warm up faster. But the mowing height should be raised to normal after the first or second cutting to discourage crabgrass.

Crabgrass seed must have light to germinate, and a high mowing height will shade the soil. Also, root depth and mowing height are related on upright growing grasses such as tall fescue and Kentucky bluegrass — the higher the height of cut, the deeper the root system. A deeper root system means a more drought-resistant turf.

So, how low should you go on the first cutting? On tall fescue and Kentucky bluegrass, you can mow as low as 1 to 1½ inches. Be careful you don't go so low that you scalp the turf. Normal mowing height for Kentucky bluegrass is 2 to 3 inches and for tall fescue is 3 to 3½ inches. (Ward Upham) "

Friday, March 14, 2014

Agility and Speed Layout on Indoor Synthetic Turf Facility

What to include in your strength and conditioning facility besides weight training?

Wayne High School, NE extended their existing detached facility to provide more room and equipment for their strength and conditioning program. Besides new strength conditioning equipment provided by NOVA Fitness Equipment Co. [] the facility now includes a padded synthetic turf surface, 92’ x 12’ using a interlocking sections. This portion of the facility is designed to improve agility and quickness drills to include the 5 Dot Drill, Agility Ladders, and Speed Ladder distance lines while replicating a football field. 

Review the photo album of the finished product.

Tru Mark Athletic Field Marker was asked to paint agility and quickness drill areas using permanent field marking paint specifically formulated for synthetic turf surfaces. Tru Mark applied TrailBlazer SolarTrail after lots of measurements, using stencils, measuring tapes, painters tape and a paint roller. At one end of the turf surface is the 6 sets of 5 Dot Drill templates and at the other end 2 sets of 10 box Agility Ladders. In between 5- yard lines were painted, Goal, two 5-yard lines, and a 10-yard line along with 4” x 24” hash marks and sideline numbers. The whole area was outlined with a 4” white border.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Commercial Driver License (CDL) Skills Test Course Markings

StakeAll Marking Whisker
How to layout and mark the Commercial Driver License (CDL) Skills Test Course? The US Department of Highway Transportation issued new rules for each state and county driver licensing boards to increase the requirements on the CDL Skills Test.

While some of the CDL Skills Test courses will be laid out on concrete/asphalt surfaces with pylons and paint there will many courses laid out on gravel and packed lots. How do you mark on these surfaces where paint is not appropriate? One of the marking solutions is using survey like marking whiskers, specifically the StakeAll integrated marking whiskers, along with pylons and rope.

The StakeAlls have a hardened plastic stake that can be driven into a hard packed surfaces using a 1/2 inch diameter rod such and the Tru Mark Hand Driver or the Standup Driver. The traditional marking whisker strands are attached to the top ridge of the plastic stake. The StakeAlls come in multiple colors where course distinctions to need be made. They are sold in set of 5 each with packaged offering of 15 (set of 3) and 25 (set of 5) for additional savings.

StakeAll with 1/2" Diameter
Hand Driver

StakeAll Durability