Batting Cage Turf Educational Overview:
Purchasing a batting cage turf begins with educating yourself on some of the basics of sports turf. If you don’t understand what you are buying, how can you be sure you are getting a good deal? Kodiak gets calls everyday from someone thinking they found some wonderful turf for $1.00/sq. ft. or less…when in fact, they just don’t understand what they are purchasing. In the world of batting cage turf, you always get what you pay for, no exceptions.
The primary backing could be considered the skeleton of the sports turf. It is the black poly backing in which the actual turf fibers get sewn through…much like the primary backing of a carpet. Kodiak primary backings are always a heavy duty 22oz primary backing; but on cheaper turfs; some companies use a lighter backing, saving them money and costing you strength, durability, and quality in your sports turf.
Artificial Turf Face Fiber Overview:
The face fiber is the biggest variable in the cost and quality of a sports turf. There are many kinds and styles of fibers; and to compound the problem, there are 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade of yarns. Extruding yarn is a difficult process to perform properly and consistently; so when the yarn mfg. makes a mistake, they sell that yarn at a discount. Sometimes the discounts are color related and not performance related; other mistakes in texturization cause premature field failure. So next time you think you are buying something 1/2 price, you’ll know why…it was a 2nd, 3rd or even 4th quality yarn.
Artificial Turf Face Fiber Types:
There are 3 basic yarn/face fiber types. Polypropylene (PolyP), Polyethylene(PolyE) and Nylon.
PolyP – Olefin/PolyP is used in lower grade carpets and lower grade astro turf/foam padded sports turfs. That does NOT mean that there aren’t great turfs made of PolyP fibers. What it means is that if you compare a 36oz PolyP to a 36oz Nylon turf, the Nylon will outlast the PolyP. There are also different grades of yarn, multi-filament and monofilament yarns. Monofilament are higher grade and will last split/wear as easily.
PolyE – PolyE yarns are used on outdoor athletic fields due to their softness. They do not perform well without rubber infill, as they have very little rigidity and durability without rubber. It is possible to texturize/spring set a PolyE yarn and use it in a foam padded turf; however the face weight needs to be a minimum of 40oz to have any lasting durability.
Nylon – Nylon is the toughest/longest lasting and most expensive fiber used in sports turfs. Nylon has high abrasion resistance, excellent UV characteristics and typically is only extruded in monofilament yarns. Nylon is also mixed in some higher end turfs with PolyE to provide durability in a turf that is also soft. See the Kodiak Arena Turfs line for hybrid turfs mixing nylon and PolyE.
Texturized (Spring Set) or Straight Fibers:
Texturized Yarns: Texturization is a process in which heat, steam, tension, and other methods are used to create a “jerry curl” or spring set in the yarn. Spring set yarns are more durable and resist crushing/traffic patterns because they spring back into place when used. Spring set yarns will outlast a straight fiber yarn in a similar face weight product by 40-60%.
Straight Yarns: If a yarn is not texturized, the fibers are basically straight. Straight yarns are cheaper and do not resist traffic patterns well. They are often marketed by companies as a good product, but will not wear well. The cost different in a straight fiber yarn on a 36oz poly product may be as much as 50 cents per sq. ft. ! So if you are shopping for 36oz poly turfs, you better know what you are buying, or you may get stuck with a low grade straight fiber turf.
Buying a Turf:
Kodiak is the nationwide leader in indoor sports facility turf and rubber flooring. Don’t be fooled by cheap products and fake low prices; buy a sports turf from Kodiak knowing you purchased a quality product.
Kodiak’s artificial sports turfs are made from USA yarn that is lead free. Kodiak Sports produces approx. 28 types of sports turf; offering various grades and qualities to meet your business needs and budget.