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ShellCage Multi-Lane Batting Cage Net Basics

The first article in our series devoted to new facility covered one of our most frequent questions from new facility owners. Should I put a ShellCage or individual batting cage lanes in my facility?

That article generated a huge amount of interest in our ShellCages, so let’s take a closer look at how ShellCages work.

ShellCage Batting Cage Net Basics

shellcage-divider-curtain

First, let’s start with some ShellCage basics.

ShellCages are multi-lane batting cage nets. A large tunnel covers a large open area within your facility, creating a shell. This ‘shell’ net is attached to overhead cable lines.

Divider curtains, attached to dedicated cable lines, create lanes within the shell. They can be easily collapsed to open up the space for multiple sports and activities.

Baffle nets, sewn in to the ceiling of the shell, are spaced about six inches on either side of the divider curtain, to help prevent baseball and softballs from traveling between lanes.

Take a look at this excellent introductory video to see exactly how a ShellCage operates:

Now that you’ve seen a ShellCage in action, let’s get to some frequently asked questions.

What material should I use for my ShellCage?

We always recommend #60 Nylon for commercial use, and a minimum of #36 Nylon for high schools. The number refers to the gauge, or twine diameter, of the net. The higher the number, the thicker the net, the longer the lifespan. Learn more.

How many lanes can my ShellCage have?

To determine how many lanes you can have in your ShellCage keep in mind that hitters need at least a 12 ft wide cage so as not to feel constrained. Dedicated pitching lanes can be just 10 ft wide.

What prevents baseball or softballs from traveling from lane to lane?

Ceiling skirts, made from netting or vinyl screens, are sewn in to the ceiling of the shell on either side of each divider curtain. They run the length of the cage and hang down about 18 – 24 inches.

Is having that many lanes so close together safe?

Your players, coaches, and spectators must stay alert any time there is a an active hitter in the cage. For an added layer of protection between lanes, you can install two divider curtains to create a cushion of air between lanes. But even having a double layer of divider curtains is no substitute for exercising personal caution and safety when training in any batting cage.

What size should my ShellCage be?

Height
The higher you can make your cage the better. Having tall ceilings makes it easier to track ball flight, but be sure to stay at least 3 ft away from unprotected lights and windows. You’ll also want to leave about a foot of sag or so on the ground to help prevent baseballs and softballs from escaping.

Length
55 and 70 foot cages are standard lengths, but cages that are shorter than that can still be used for a variety of activities. Be sure to stay a minimum of 1 ft away from wall structures.

Width
Batting lanes should be a minimum of 12 feet wide if possible. Dedicated pitching lanes can be just 10 feet wide. Again, be sure to stay at least 1 ft away from walls.

Be sure spectators are 5 ft away from netting to help ensure safety.

Thanks for reading this month’s ShellCage Batting Cage Net Basics

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