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Should Poly Netting be Used for Batting Cage Nets?

What is A Poly Batting Cage Net?

A poly batting cage net may refer to Polyethylene or polypropylene.

We only use polyethylene in our poly batting cage nets. Other manufacturers may use a Polyethylene and Polypropylene blend for their products. Polypropylene is a weaker fiber in terms of both strength and UV protection.

Always ask your retailer if the net is made of pure polyethylene or a polypropylene blend.

At Practice Sports, we only use polyethylene in our poly batting cage nets. So, let’s talk about polyethylene and how it is used to create a batting cage net.

36 Gauge Poly Batting Cage Net

How Poly Nets Are Made

Polyethylene begins as pellets or chips. These chips are melted down, extruded, and then twisted and spun into fibers to make twine.

This twine extrusion process is what creates different qualities of poly nets.

Molecularly Aligned Poly

The harshest extrusion process forces the molecules of HDPE (high density polyethylene) to align themselves in a straight line. You can think of them like BB’s inside of a straw. This creates an HDPE that is stronger than any nylon fiber.

This HDPE is called molecularly aligned PE. You know it by the trade names Spectra and Dyneema.

Spectra and Dyneema are commonly used in bulletproof vests, and are two of the strongest materials available. They’re stronger than Kevlar and 15x stronger than steel.

Semi Aligned Poly

If the extrusion process is less harsh, the molecules of polyethylene spread out; like BB’s in a coffee cup. This process is called semi-aligned PE, and results in a weaker twine than Dyneema.

Semi-aligned PE twine is used to make a fiber called Sapphire. Sapphire is a unique HDPE with tremendous strength and abrasion resistance.

Unfortunately, this form of Poly isn’t currently affordable for sports netting use.

Poly Net for a Batting Cage

Our nets are made of 100% Original Polyethylene. Though not as strong as Sapphire, or Dyneema, our nets have no recycled materials and provide UV protection, water resistance, and abrasion resistance.

As a result, poly is an excellent cost-effective batting cage option.

Breaking Strength and Abrasion Resistance for Poly Nets

Breaking Strength is an important feature in the netting industry as a whole.

Poly netting is known for its high break-strength. However, when used as a batting cage net, breaking strength becomes less important. That’s because batting cage nets are not installed ‘tight.’ As a result, a batting cage will rarely, if ever, be tested to its breaking point.

Instead, a more important factor to consider is abrasion resistance. A spinning baseball or softball eventually wears the netting down with abrasion and heat.

Polyethylene has excellent abrasion resistance, especially when used with poly balls instead of hardballs.

However, poly is inferior to Nylon batting cage nets. In my next blog post, we’ll cover Nylon netting and how it’s used in batting cage nets.

Here’s how poly stacks up against other batting cage material types:

 

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