Understanding How They Change the Logos on Artificial Turf
While watching an NFL or NCAA game, many fans notice the logos, text, lines, or colors on the field change between games to reflect the teams that are playing. Modern-day teams are going all out with the flexibility of artificial turf sports fields to do more than mark the field. For example, it’s common to see sponsor logos, the use of loud colors to replace the traditional green tinge, or the display of specific messages to support different causes.
Many people wonder how they manage to get such clear images on the football field, and how they change between games. Keep reading to find out how field maintenance crew get football turf ready for the big game.
How Do They Change the Logos on Turf Sports Fields Between Each Game?
Let’s begin by dispelling a popular myth. The lines, colors, and images on artificial grass fields are not built-in fixtures. Rather, the turf is painted with lines, logos, and other field markings. These are then removed and repainted for the next game.
It’s easier to remove and replace logos and lines on synthetic grass than natural grass. Unlike natural grass, which has uneven length and colors, and can wilt or become easily damaged, synthetic turf is consistent and durable. This allows you to paint crisp, evenly-shaped logos, lines, numbers, and colors, remove and replace them with relative ease.
To make this possible, field maintenance crews use a water-soluble or chalk paint specifically made for painting turf. When it’s time to change the lines or logos, the turf can be treated with a chemical to loosen the paint then a scrubbing machine agitates the paint to remove it. To scrub it off, the field maintenance crew uses a scrubbing machine that goes over the painted logo several times until every trace is removed.
Next, the field is allowed to dry, the paint chips are raked out, and a new paint job begins.
How do They Paint Logos on Turf Sports Fields?
There are a number of tools and methods used to paint logos, lines, and markings on turf sports fields. Below are the common methods and pro trips to how you can paint your own turf field to get it ready for game day.
Turf Paint Templates, Stencils, & Guides
The turf painters will use stencils or templates to form any number of logos, letters, numbers, shapes, lines, icons, and designs. These can be a thin sheet of cardboard, plastic, metal, wood, paper, or other material with a pattern or shapes cut out of it, and used to produce the cut design on the surface of the turf below by the application of paint through the holes. They arrange the stencils or templates in an order that reveals the paint design in the spaces between.
The idea is to spray paint over the stencil to reveal a dotted logo outline. These dots must be joined so that each portion of the logo’s distinct shape or color is clearly defined. With a clear outline, you can spray paint into the different parts before allowing it to dry. Having one person hold a board as you spray is advisable to prevent painting over one paint color with a different one.
Prep your stencils beforehand by labeling or numbering their position or color to make laying them out in the correct design easy. If the logo comes with letters, or more simple lines, the best idea is to start by measuring out the lines with a tape measure. Next, tie marking strings in a straight line from end to end to get an outline.
Once you’ve measured out the field and locations for logos and designs, secure the stencil in place with tape or a weight. Measure and section out the surface of the field with string line for perfect alignment.
Turf Paint Machines
Aerosol paint machines are often used when the logo covers a large surface area, such as the turf in football stadiums and baseball stadiums.
For lines, they use a turf paint stripe machine. Some stripe machines use an aerosol can inserted upside down in the middle, or use a striping wheel in direct contact with the surface of the turf.
There are also wands or handheld aerosol paint spray machines. Wands are often attached to a machine that contains the paint. After the outlines are marked, you need to step inside (or stand over) the logo space and fill it in by running the wand in lines until the entire area is covered.
Aerosol Paint Cans
If you’re painting a small area of turf without precise lines, an aerosol can is enough to do the trick. Start by laying out the stencils or templates and paint them over. Next, lift the stencil to reveal a dotted outline, then fill in the paint by spraying the aerosol can.
It’s a good idea to work with a helper. They can help you lift the sketch gently without spilling paint in the wrong places. They can also help hold stencils and templates against the outlines to prevent paint from spreading.
Custom Turf with Logos
Some athletics field management teams opt for custom turfs that feature permanently inlaid logos, believing they are better than painted logos. The problem is that a typical custom inlaid logo for soccer turf costs about $6 to $12 per square foot.
Suppose you’re installing an artificial turf for a football field and want to add a custom inlaid logo. If you’re having different games and different teams playing on the same field or stadium, custom turf with a logo becomes an unnecessary additive to the costs of an artificial turf for a football field.
Even if you can afford it, removing the logo would require removing the entire turf panel or securing another panel of turf on top of it, making your field uneven and more prone to damage.
Additionally, painting over the logo is not recommended, since piling paint on top of paint on any surface is not ideal. The new paint inevitably wears off, and there’s a high chance you won’t be able to cover the old logo completely.
Painting, removing paint, and repainting is more economical. You can differentiate between one team and the rest and help instill pride in the players and fans as often as needed.
Turf Factory Direct for Your Sports Turf
You have higher chances of finding shared sports fields than you would dedicated ones. If that’s the case with yours, you have to keep up with the demands of a shared field, such as differentiating your space from everyone else’s. This could mean removing and replacing logos, lines, colors, and markings between games.
Logos are unique identifiers. They have to be done right every time to keep up with the original logo shape and the color shades. An artificial turf affords you more benefits than natural grass.Turf provides an even and consistent surface, which offers easy painting for attractive lines, logos, and colors, while also helping to conserve water that is normally spent on natural grass. For high impact games like football, the components that make NFL turf make it sturdier. As long as you understand how to maintain your artificial turf field, you’ll have a much easier time applying and removing logos.
Turf Factory Direct is the go-to place for artificial turf. From turf for indoor facilities to putting green turf for your small golf course, to batting cage turf and landscaping turf, we stock high quality turf with pocket-friendly prices. Contact us to order artificial turf from Turf Factory Direct.