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    Turf Goaltimate Kit Reborn!


    2011 - 02.27

    Everyone probably knows already that I’ve been the coordinator of Burnaby Ultimate and Disc Sports since it was started back in 2005.  More recently we’ve diversified and have been offering a Goaltimate option as well.  The original kit was donated by Doug, but required modifications to work on turf.

    Brief explanation: Goaltimate is an Ultimate [Frisbee] variant which is roughly the equivalent of half-court basketball.  That is there’s only one goal which can be scored in, and after each turnover you must clear the disc before you can score.  The other key difference is that instead of a football style endzone, you have a much smaller endzone with a croquet wicket on steroids in front of it.  The disc must go through the arch and be caught by someone who is in the endzone.  That’s a simplification, but it gives you the basic concept.

    The regular game is played on a grass field, so they take a hammer, some rebar and pound it into the ground, they then put an arch (typically made of PVC pipe) over top of the two pieces of rebar, which anchor the arch (it’s supposed to be 18 feet wide at the bottom, and 11 feet high in the middle, requiring a total length of 32 feet of pipe).  This is a very simple system that works great, the ground adequately anchors everything, and the anchoring system is internal to the pipe and not exposed.  So why didn’t we use this mechanism?  Well unfortunately we play of field turf fields which you can’t pound rebar into.

    At the beginning of the season we used a creative solution of old tortierre bases with the bottom segment still attached.  This bottom metal piece was big enough to allow the pipe (our set is 3/4 inch PVC) to fit inside.  This worked pretty well, but the lamp equipment wasn’t ideal, as the bases weren’t heavy enough to support the weight of the pipe themselves (we added Ulti bags for extra weight), and they weren’t engineered with the intent of being put together and taken apart regularly, not to mention the strange angular forces we were applying with the arch.  So although a decent solution in the short term, in the long term it was inadequate (we broke 3 bases over the 14 weeks or so we used that solution).

    This past week after having yet another base fail, it was time for a change.  I had frequented Home Depot which is next door in search of a better solution, but failed to find something adequate there.  So I changed tactics and went to Rona, where I found some different supplies which either weren’t at Home Depot or I failed to find there.  A small amount of assembly later, and we had a new working support design that held the arch better than everything else we tried, and didn’t break or fall down even once in our 3 games, despite the fact it was particularly windy (which the old support did not handle well).

    And to the purpose of this post, sharing the design and materials needed to make a viable Goaltimate base for turf fields.  Total cost on the base was$66.48 (after taxes) although I suspect that with a little creativity and comparison shopping you could bring the price down (perhaps dramatically).  So this is what was used:

    • 2 – 4″ to 3″ Toilet Flange (ABS) – $9.19 + HST ea
    • 2 – Reducer Coupling 3″ to 1.5″ (ABS) – $3.99 + HST ea
    • 2 – Bushing 1.5″ to 1.25″ (ABS) – $1.37 + HST ea
    • 2 – 1.25″ x 3′ pipe (ABS) – $6.81 + HST ea
    • 1 – 1″ x 12″ x 3′ laminated pine – $10.77 + HST ea
    • purchased but not used ABS cement (couldn’t get the container opened) – $5.82 + $0.05 ECO fee + HST
    • not purchased but used 16x 1″ wood screws

    To assemble:

    1. cut the pine shelf in half so you have two 18″ by 12″ pieces.
    2. at one end of each piece screw a toilet flange to the wood
    3. put the bushing on the ABS pipe (cement if using)
    4. put the reducer on the bushing (cement if using)

    When at the field, put the wooden base 18′ apart, put the ABS uprights onto the base, assemble your PVC arch and insert into the uprights.  Additional weight is probably required to keep everything stable, Ulti bags work fine.  Because of the stiffness of the ABS pipe you are able to mimic the rigidity of the rebar mechanism, creating a very nice and stable arch.

    As mentioned we didn’t cement anything together, and the friction fit worked fine for us.  One of the nicest things about this design is each piece in the ABS construction has sufficient overlap that if desired (or required) a hole could be drilled through the two pieces and a bolt could be used to secure the pieces at the field.

    If you wanted to reduce the number of pieces and the cost a little you could cut out the bushing and go with 1.5″ ABS pipe instead of the 1.25″ stuff, but I wanted the tighter fit.  Note: the 1.25″ ABS pipe has a large enough internal diameter to support 1″ PVC pipe or the 3/4″ stuff we’re using.

    Overall we’re very satisfied with this solution so far, and the fact that it’s fairly simple, that the pipes should break apart in the event of a collision, and the fact that all the parts should be easy to find, and are replaceable makes this a very attractive and sustainable solution for regular use.

    Hope this helps someone out there who is trying to build one for themselves, let me know how the experience goes for you.

    P.S.  Another solution that we’ve seen used is those giant 18 gallon water jugs (used for water coolers) as the anchors, but we don’t have an easy water source at the field to fill them up with and fundamentally I object to such a waste of water.

    Wait What!??!?!?


    2011 - 02.27

    Growing up was hard enough without having to pull yourself out of whatever mess you got yourself into when your decisions were faster than your brain.  Or your feet. – Kim Harrison, A Fistful of Charms p.131

    So true…

    Catching up…


    2011 - 02.27

    I started to try to use Twitter a while back inspired by the Social Media conference I attended, but I got busy and stopped reading.  Today, I’ve tried to catch up on what I missed, and probably in most cases that’s not really worth doing, but I’m a novice at this point, and I figure how do you intelligently make that determination without trying it first.  I did find a few things which were worthwhile, amusing, or interesting in the mix, which I’ll share now:

    Hmmm, can you tell that I follow a lot of writers/publishers?

    Bob Ross


    2011 - 02.24

    Karin did a nice painting at her pro-d last week, and well she hasn’t posted anything about it yet.  That said, it has prompted us to start taping The Best of the Joy of Painting, so that she can learn some new techniques.  We’ve started to read up on him a little bit, and it’s kind of interesting, there’s some definite confusion out there, where they talk about how long the TV show was on (12 years) and they talk about how many seasons there were (31), so it falls more under the current scheme used by reality television where multiple “seasons” may happen during any given calendar year, whereas something like Law & Order aired for 20 seasons and 20 years.

    Anyway, who else wants these t-shirt, at least a little bit?

    The Law of Nines


    2011 - 02.16

    Because of the book-jacking earlier in the wek, I read Terry Goodkind‘s The Law of Nines instead of starting the Kim Harrison series.  Strange strange book, if you read the book jacket it tells you that it’s a thriller, and I suppose that it is.  There little mention of his long standing, and at least theoretically finished series: The Sword of Truth (although his next book The Omen Machine, is labelled as being a Richard and Kahlan novel, the first in a new three book deal with TOR).  I don’t really want to say much about the book, as it would be difficult to do that without including spoilers, but what I do want to make clear is that although the book is a present day thriller there is a relationship to the Sword of Truth series in it (which was completely unexpected by me), and if you haven’t read the Chainfire trilogy (Books 9-11 of the Sword of Truth), then The Law of Nines actually contains spoilers, which is totally weird.

    I guess I liked the book, after all I read it pretty quickly, but it definitely was not what I expected, so that’s probably the real reason for my weird reaction to it.  Maybe after someone else I know has read it, and we can talk about it freely, maybe then I’ll be able to better appreciate it and come to a fully formed opinion.

    Bourne’s Lack of Identity


    2011 - 02.15

    Karin has a copy of The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum, and I read it last week.  Good book, I’ve seen all the movies, but this was my first encounter with the books.  After finishing the book, I wanted to watch the movie again, which I did a couple of days ago.  Turns out my impressions while reading the book were correct, the movie and the book are far from identical.

    I can’t speak for other fans, but I enjoyed both despite the fact they only bare a passing resemblance to each other.  Clearly they needed to be quite different, unless one were to do the movie as a period piece, given that the book takes place 30 years before the movie.  Much of what happens in the book wouldn’t exist in a world with cell phones and the internet.

    I’m curious if the other books in the series align more closely with the plot of the movie or not… but that’s a task for another day.

    I Got Book-Jacked!


    2011 - 02.14

    Went to the library today, actually two different branches of the library to pick up a few books today.  I’ve read a few books off of Karin’s 100 Book Challenge, but found that I needed something a little different.  It just seemed like although the books on the list are technically books (which you can prove because you can touch them, and they look like books) and they are presumably novels… but some of them really really don’t seem like they are stories.

    So in needing something new to read, I resorted to the library.  Karin had mentioned a book by Kim Harrison which she had bought, as the author had been recommended, but it turned out not to be the first book in the series (actually it’s book 5).  I read a couple of pages of it to get a feel for it last night, and then picked up the first four books at the library today.

    When I got home I showed Karin the books that I brought home, and she was excited to see the Kim Harrison books, I leave the room for a few minutes and when I returned, there’s Karin curled up on the couch reading the first book in the series.  That’s right, she book-jacked me, but because she’s cute and not feeling well I let her get away with it.  So now I’m reading a non-fantasy novel by Terry Goodkind: The Law of Nines, I’ll let you know how it goes, interesting so far (5 chapters in).

    Going Greek


    2011 - 02.13

    Last night we had a nice Greek inspired meal, one of the major deficiencies in our large collection of books, is that we completely lack a Greek cookbook, and that as far as we’ve been able to tell none of our ecclectic cookbooks have a recipe for souvlaki, Greek potatoes, or Greek rice.  Given that these are things we enjoy, it’s pretty irritating, as they really don’t seem like things which should be impossible to make at home, and given the overwhelming similarity between them when you go from restaurant to restaurant, well you’d think there’d be a recipe out there in the public domain somewhere that did them justice.  And well there might be, but I haven’t found it yet.

    We did get one step closer though in a Martha Stewart recipe for potatoes which although not a perfect recreation of the restaurant style Greek potatoes is close enough for now.  But if someone wants to hook us up with a good Greek cookbook, or even just recipes for souvlaki, rice and potatoes we’d be pretty happy.

    Taking the Stairs


    2011 - 02.11

    We live on the 16th floor, which means that we don’t usually take the stairs.  The first reason is pretty obvious, we live on the 16th floor, the second is that stairwells in high rise buildings really aren’t designed for everyday use, which really is too bad.  That said I have been enjoying the extra 200+ steps that I’ve been getting lately by taking the stairs down.  I don’t do it all the time, but if I’m not in a hurry, or if I’m not carrying too much stuff, well it’s one of those little things that helps, right?

    Banking can be this comfortable…


    2011 - 02.10

    I’m at Kensington Square returning $8.00 worth of bottles and cans, when I notice a sign in the bank (RBC) advertising that they are now open on Mondays.  This contrasts rather dramatically with a new TD Canada Trust ad campaign announcing that they’ll be open on Sundays (or 300 branches will).  I’m a TD customer, Karin’s with RBC, but seems like quite the dramatic difference when one bank is advertising that they will be open on a traditional non-business day, not just a traditional non-banking day, whereas this other one is advertising that they are no longer slacking off and are now working on Mondays too… not that I’m biased ;-)