How to Measure for Tennis Court Windscreens
When measuring for tennis court windscreens, the tools/items you need is a pen or pencil, notepad and a measuring tape (a 150’ tape is best). You should draw a court diagram so that as you are taking the measurements you can write the measurements down with the corresponding location of the fence. This will also be of benefit when it is time to install the windscreens as you will have the locations of each piece instead of having to re-measure again.
Start at a corner post on the tennis court. The beginning measuring point at the corner post is the outside of the tension bar. The tension bar is the piece of (usually) steel that slides into the diamonds of the fence fabric which the fence hardware attaches to at the corner post.
With the measuring tape on the outside of the tension bar, measure to the outside of the tension bar at the next corner post. It is important to pull the measuring tape tight so that there is no slack. Write down the exact measurement at the corresponding location on your tennis court diagram.
Now is an important time to discuss the measurements. First, it is a general rule of thumb that no measurement should be over 60’. One reason for this is that it makes the handling of the windscreens much easier during the installation process. Also, most tennis courts are 120’ in length, therefore it works out to two pieces of 60’ windscreens, or very close to that (never assume). Another consideration is that if you need to replace a panel for whatever reason, it will be cheaper to replace a 60’ section versus a much larger section.
Second, once you have your final measurement, you may want to consider subtracting 6” from each side (or 1’ off the total length). The reason is that the windscreens are custom made to your size, so if you had some slack in your tape when measuring, or the windscreen is made 1” longer than requested, you will have a problem in that the windscreen is too long and there is no way to hide that. At least hide it so that it looks good. If you know going into the process of installing the windscreen that the windscreen is 1’ short in length, you can adjust the starting installation point by moving the placement over a picket or two on both ends. It looks good and no headaches!
Now that you know how to accurately measure for windscreens, go around the perimeter of the tennis court, or to the sections of the fence in which you want to install windscreens and measure from outside of the tension bar to outside of the tension bar. Do not assume the fence lengths are the same. You must measure each section. Write each measurement down immediately on your tennis court diagram.
To measure for a windscreen on the gate itself, for the width measure from inside of the tension bar to inside of the tension bar. In our experience, the majority of people/clubs do not put windscreens on the gate itself but you certainly can. One scenario to factor in if you are installing windscreens on the gate is what is the height of the fence windscreens? If you are installing 6’ high windscreens, that generally means (based on preference) that the windscreens will be centered on the fence and therefore installed 2’ up from the bottom of the fence. Therefore, do you want the gate windscreen to match the installation height of the windscreens on the fence?
To measure for windscreens at the area on top of the gate (called the transom), measure from the inside of the tension bar to the inside of the other tension bar. For the height measure from the bottom of the top rail to the top of the bottom rail. Again, consider how you want the final product to look versus the other windscreens. If the windscreens on the fence are being installed 2’ from the top, do you want to adjust the height of the transom piece to match accordingly?
Helpful hint: be careful when measuring for the gates. There is nowhere to hide an error in such a small space, and you don’t want a mistake at the area in which the players enter the courts since it will be seen by just about everyone! Round down an inch or two.
While windscreens can be custom made to any height, the most common heights are 6’ and 9’. Most fences are 10’ high but you should measure the height at least once to confirm. If there are varying fence heights, measure each different height and note it accordingly on your tennis court diagram.
The installation of the windscreens is covered in another article, but it is important when measuring to understand how you are going to install the windscreens. If you are installing 6’ high windscreens, will the windscreens be centered on the fence or installed from the top of the fence down or bottom of the fence up. As we discussed previously when measuring for the gate pieces, this information is important to have and clearly thought out before placing the order.
Good Luck! We hope you find this information useful. If you are looking to purchase windscreens or windscreen supplies, please visit our website. Or if you need tennis court supplies, accessories or equipment, such as tennis nets, net posts, ball hoppers, scorekeepers, tidi courts and much more, we have it all at www.tennissuppliesandequipment.com