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Universal Precast hits homerun with playground feature

UPC Parks, the playground division of California-based Universal Precast Concrete, Inc., designed and fabricated a larger-than-life baseball glove as a centerpiece for Maidu Regional Park in Roseville, Calif. The 8,500-lb. piece is an inspirational focal point at the entrance of the park, and doubles as a playground climber for children.48 Gloveii 400

To create the unique structure, a complex mold with intricate stitching and leather texture details was manufactured at Universal Precast’s Redding, Calif., plant. Garry Schwartz, UPC Parks lead designer, crafted a two-part mold that would cast the glove and ball separate with insets in each to allow seamless attachment.

Due to the complex curvature of the pieces, the mold had to be fabricated with intricate detail at all angles. The stitching on the glove and the ball required workers to spend numerous hours refining the mold to ensure these details were properly represented in the finished casting. Universal Precast’s Full Aggregate Concrete was used for the casting. Once casting was completed, workers grinded the glove to hide the seams made by the mold, then stained and painted the piece.

Under the fitting “Take Me Out to the Playground” banner, the Maidu Park Baseball Glove took first place in the Above Ground Category of the National Precast Concrete Association’s 2015 Creative Use of Precast Awards.