Many people enjoy honing their hockey skills, but paying for ice time can be expensive. Constructing a rink in your backyard can be a great way to gain access to the ice you need to improve your hockey game. A properly maintained backyard rink will last the entire winter, so it's essential that you take the time to learn how to keep your rink in top shape.
Here are three tips you can use to ensure you have a successful backyard hockey rink in the future.
1. When filling or flooding your rink, be sure that you use hot water.
In order to maximize the availability of your backyard rink, you want your ice to freeze as quickly as possible. Using warm water will help you gain valuable time that can be used to improve your hockey skills. Scientists attribute the fact that hot water freezes faster to a phenomenon known as the Mpemba effect.
As water is heated, the hydrogen bonds holding separate molecules together begin to stretch. This allows the covalent bonds within each molecule to release energy, which cools the water at a faster rate. Using hot water to fill or flood your rink will reduce the amount of time you have to wait for fresh ice in your backyard rink.
2. Join pieces of plastic together with acoustical sealant when creating a liner.
You will need to join two or more pieces of plastic tarp together in order to create a liner large enough to cover your entire rink. This liner will help keep the water that will become your ice in place during filling and flooding of your rink. Joining plastic tarp pieces together is best done by using an acoustical sealant. These types of sealants maintain their flexibility over time.
This flexibility prevents the sealant from becoming brittle when exposed to the cool temperature of the ice in your rink. Joining plastic tarp pieces with an acoustical sealant will allow you to create a liner that won't leak in the future.
3. Use cardboard as a buffer when stapling a plastic liner to your rink's frame.
Keeping your rink's plastic liner intact is important when it comes to keeping enough water inside the rink. When water leaks out through holes in the liner, the surface of the ice in your rink can become uneven.
Since stapling through plastic can create holes that stretch over time, using cardboard as a buffer can be a simple way to keep your liner intact. Once you have determined how large to make your rink and constructed a frame using pieces of 2" x 4" wood, lay your liner so it covers the bottom of your rink. Bring the liner up and over the sides of your frame, and place a piece of cardboard on top of the liner before stapling. The cardboard will prevent the staple from slipping, which tears the plastic lining and can leave holes in your backyard rink.
Constructing a backyard hockey rink doesn't have to be difficult. Remember to use hot water when filling or flooding your rink, add a cardboard buffer before stapling your plastic liner in place, and use acoustical sealant to join plastic pieces together to form a liner, and you will be on your way to a rink that can be used throughout the winter months.
To learn more about backyard ice rinks, contact a company like Iron Sleek.Share
4 September 2015
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