Pitchmark supplied line markers for all the pitches in the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, so we reckon the company should know a thing or two about line marking. This wheel transfer marker was designed by a turf professional, so we are expecting a lot. We are not disappointed.
Manufactured from scratch in Bristol, the Classic-100 uses high-quality materials. For instance, 2ml and 3ml steel is used throughout and the frame is triple powder-coated for durability. The one-piece tank is fully seam welded and polished. It comfortably holds 18 litres of paint - enough for two adult pitches - and has a tip-back drain hole at the rear.
The centre wheel is solid rubber on a steel shaft. Pitchmark calls it a polyroller. There should be years of life in it and, importantly, it eliminates rattle as it moves against the two steel transfer wheels. These wheels have spokes for weight reduction and the front wheel has a sturdy but adjustable scraper.
To avoid the nuisance of punctures, Pitchmark has opted to ride the machine on solid wheels. Slightly soft and very broad, they make flat contact with the ground to leave no depressions or marks. A clever detail is the shaft blocks to prevent the rotating wheels from damaging the tank.
"It looks easy to maintain. That's important," notes Hopkins. "Everything you need to work on can be easily removed with R-clips and I like the height-adjustable handlebars. No one wants to be uncomfortable when they are marking." He is also impressed with both the stability and manoeuvrability of the unit. "The wheels are wide and softish so they ride well, even over muddy ground."
While Pitchmark is targeting all levels of sports provision, Hopkins believes mobile crews might find this one a little heavy to lift in and out of vans. But he does see it being a hit with site-based grounds staff and particularly with stadia. The Classic-100 is also available in 120mm version
Line widths: 100mm
Price: £400 + VAT
Tel: Pitchmark - 01454 776666
Tested This Issue
Fleet Kombi 3
Supaturf TXE 353 & TXE 606
Rigby Taylor iGO Advance & iGO Mini
Pitchmark Eco Club & Eco Pro
Trevor Hopkins, head groundsman, Farnborough Sixth-Form College, Hampshire
For many groundsmen, line marking is one of those tedious jobs that has to be done - and done all too regularly. But with the right machine for the job, the conditions and the operator, lines can be produced effortlessly and accurately.
Transfer or wheel-to-wheel markers remain hugely popular, perhaps partly because of their attractive price but also because of their simplicity. There is little to go wrong and if you look after the machine it will give you many years of service. That does not mean they are not without issues. Metal ones can rust. Some can be difficult to clean. In this test we look at two of the newest transfer markers to see what improvements have been made.
When you only want one marker to do all sizes of lines, on all types of surfaces and in all sorts of conditions, you cannot beat the spray marker. Easy to adjust to give lines of 1.5in up to 6in, capable of working on turf, hard and synthetic surfaces, and less likely to get bogged down in muddy conditions, the spray marker is seen as having advantages. Eight such markers join our test.
The test was conducted on the sports ground at Farnborough Sixth-Form College, where the excellent condition of winter games pitches and the summer cricket field bears witness to the expertise and skill of the grounds staff. Conditions on test day were warm and sunny.