September 2013

SportsTurf provides current, practical and technical content on issues relevant to sports turf managers, including facilities managers. Most readers are athletic field managers from the professional level through parks and recreation, universities.

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Page 33 of 48

Tools&Equipment DETAILS ON NEW ROLL-UP TURF AT COWBOYS STADIUM H ELLAS SPORTS CONSTRUCTION'S TURF DIVISION recently installed its patented SoftTop turf technology combined with its Matrix Turf system at Cowboys Stadium in Dallas. This system allows the artificial turf panels to be rolled up and stored, and then later unrolled and reconnected, to accommodate a wide variety of sporting and nonsporting events. The system in Dallas features interchangeable panels that make up three separate fields: NFL, NCAA/high school football, and FIFA soccer. Bruce V. Layman, vice president of Hel- las' Turf Division, answered these questions for us: SportsTurf: What if anything is unique about the specific system installed at Cowboys Stadium? Layman: What is unique about Cowboys is all of the markings are installed without disturbing the integrity of the manufactured backing system. The end zones are completely computer tufted. There are no inlay markings in the end zones. ST: What ancillary equipment is needed to operate the roll-up system? Layman: The Hellas Hopper, which is an apparatus attached to a forklift. This device is used to carry the rolls to and from storage. It is also used install and remove rolls. ST: Is there a similar product available to facilities that don't have the same resources as the Cowboys? Layman: There are several. The Alamodome, the University of Idaho, Northern Arizona University, and Idaho State University all have the system. ST: Describe the process for removing the field—how long does it take, how many people, etc. Layman: It takes 650 labor man hours for turf installation, and 350 labor man hours to remove the turf. n OWNING A TOPDRESSER M ANY SCHOOLS, universities, and city parks have never done their own application of topdressing of sand or compost. They have always paid someone else to do the topdressing for them which may mean that it does not get done at the optimum time for their turf. At some point the turf manager might find himself considering the purchase of a topdresser and wondering what he needs to know to make a good decision. There are four important things to consider when deciding whether the time is right to purchase a topdresser. 34 SportsTurf | September 2013 The area, in square feet of the average fields to be top dressed The size and capacity of the topdresser The size of the loader bucket The logistics of making the trips from the stock pile to the field If you are only doing two or three turf fields, perhaps less than 90,000 square feet, the cost of owning and operating a topdresser may not be justified. If you own or manage more than three fields the cost of hiring a custom operator for 3 to 6 years starts to match the cost of buying a topdresser for your own use. Generally the purchase of a topdresser will be worth considering as you approach the use of about 400 tons of sand a year. That is the equivalent of ¼ inch of sand spread over four football fields. Size or capacity of topdresser There are many sizes of topdressers on the market, from less than 1 cubic yards to more than 6 cubic yards. In general a 4 cubic yard unit will take about 4 to 5 hours to spread 100 tons on a football. A 2 cubic yard unit will take about 8 to 10 hours to spread the same amount of material. Turf

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