Sports Surface Testing 106: Rolling Load

barbell plates stacked on top of a rolling load testing device
Rolling Load Testing

This article provides owners and architects with a review of the Rolling Load testing that is included in EN 14904, as well as the legacy standard DIN 18032-2. These rolling load tests are both designed to determine how the sport surface reacts to a rolling load.

Regardless of the standard, this test seeks to determine if a sport surface will permanently deflect, or crack under general loads, i.e. chair carts, or tables. Loading is insufficient to simulate larger loads such as telescoping bleachers, portable basketball goals, or man-lifts. A floor can meet the rolling load of these standards and still not be appropriate for a given installation, or high load areas may need to be modified to support the more industrial loads.

DIN 18032-2 and EN 14904 are very similar in the methods they use to assess the effect a rolling load will have on a sports surface.

  • Both use the same standard to perform the tests: EN 1569 – Surfaces for Sports Areas, Determination of the behavior under a rolling load.
    • A steel wheel is used – 100 mm diameter, and 30 mm width
    • A mechanism to center the applied weight directly over the test wheel
    • The wheel must make 150 cycles (300 passes) across the sample @ a 1m/s velocity
    • All passes must be within an area no wider than 100 mm
    • At the conclusion the system is checked for deformation within 15 – 20 minutes of testing, it is also checked for cracks in the surface or supporting layers
    • If more than 0.5 mm of deflection is present or if the system is cracked or damaged, then it fails both EN 14904 and DIN 18032-2.
  • The two standards do slightly vary on the load (or weight) applied to the wheel
    • EN 14904 requires that 1500 N (337 lbs) be applied to the wheel on all surfaces (wood and synthetic)
    • DIN 18032-2 requires that 1000 N (224 lbs) load is to be used to test point elastic surfaces, but all other surfaces are tested with a 1500 N (337 lbs) load.

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