For most tennis enthusiasts, having a tennis court at home is a dream. You can make that dream into a reality by building your own clay court. You will need to have a wide expanse of flat property to build it on and large power tools. If you don't own this machinery, you can rent them from larger hardware and home repair stores. All of the necessary materials can be found in these stores as well. Do research into the best brands for your soil.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- 4-inch tile pipe
- Heavy roller
- Crushed rocks
- Wire mesh
- Tennis court net posts
- Garden sprayer
- ¼ inch mesh sieve
Clear out the area where the tennis court will be built and mark the perimeter for the court. A standard size is 78 feet by 36 feet.
Use an excavator to dig the entire area within the perimeter. Make the hole 12 inches deep.
Make a trench down the length of the dug out area. The trench should be 10 inches deep and 12 inches wide.
Lay a 4-inch tile pipe down the entire trench. This will provide drainage and keep the court from flooding.
Fill the trench and the first 10 inches of the hole with cinders. The cinders will settle after being rolled.
Add 1-½ inches of crushed rocks, followed by 1 ½ inches of gravel over the cinders.
Lay wire mesh over the rock layers. The mesh should cover the entire bottom of the hole.
Set the net posts into the ground. They should be pushed into the ground 3 feet deep.
Pour the clay mixture into the hole. The mixture should be 1/3 clay, 1/3 sand and 1/3 silt. The clay layer should measure 3 inches deep.
Wet down the clay with a garden sprayer and settle it with the roller. Let the clay dry.
Prepare another batch of clay mixture and run it through a ¼ inch mesh sieve. This is the surface mixture.
Spread the surface mixture over the set clay. The surface layer should be laid on 1-inch thick.
Spray the surface with water and roll it down until it is smooth. Let the surface set before walking on it.
Dig a hole for each post. The holes should be 42 feet apart. Make sure that each hole is 2 feet deep and 6 inches wider than the diameter post.
Mix 1.36 Kilogram of concrete with 2 litres of water and mix it together with a shovel in a bucket.
Insert the poles into the holes, and pour concrete into the holes until the concrete is even with the edge of the holes. Allow the concrete to dry for 24 hours.
Tie the tennis net between the two poles.
Paint lines on the court. The perimeter lines should be 78 feet by 36 feet. Paint the singles lines, which run parallel to the 78 foot lines, but are painted 9 feet closer to the centre of the court.
Find the middle of the net. Starting there, paint a line that extends straight for 21 feet toward the back of the court. Do this on both sides of the net.
Locate the end of one of the lines that you painted in Step 2. Paint a horizontal line that runs perpendicular to the end of the line. Stop painting when you reach the singles line. Repeat this procedure on the other side of the net.
Tips and warnings
- Use specially formulated tennis line paint for clay tennis courts.
- Only knowledgeable and qualified adults should use power tools.
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