Stepping onto a freshly mowed and striped field is one of the most liberating, awesome feelings in the world. Even turning on a game, or showing up to watch one at the local field, is breathtaking after a long off season full of anticipation of the game you love. You might not think about it that often, but few things are better than a field prepped and ready to go. It’s also quite essential in reality, since you wouldn’t have a very good game at all if the field wasn’t prepared for play. Today, we are going to help you figure out what you need in order to keep the games rolling one by one by taking a look at the best striping machines out on the market. We’ll first examine the ins and outs of them by looking at all you need to know, and then we will review the top selections available in 2019. So, let’s get it done and play ball!
Top Striping Machines Comparison Chart
|Name||Stripe/line width||Price||Where to Buy?|
|Seymour Paint Z-607 Stripe Athletic Marking Machine||2-4 in||$$||Check Price on Amazon|
|Athletic Specialties Field Striping Machine||2-4 in||$$||Check Price on Amazon|
|Sport Supply Group Athletic Field Striper||2-4 in||$$||Check Price on Amazon|
|Tapco Vers-A-Striper Heavy Duty Striper||2-6 in||$$||Check Price on Amazon|
|Ameri-Stripe 550 Liner-X Paint Machine||$$||Check Price on Amazon|
|Rust-Oleum 2395000 Professional Striping Machine||2-4 in||$$$$||Check Price on Amazon|
|Krylon Hand Held Marking Applicator Wand||$||Check Price on Amazon|
|Trueline Stripers Model 20 With 4 Gallon Tank||$$$$||Check Price on Amazon|
|Aervoe Vers-A-Striper Pavement Cart||2-4 in||$$||Check Price on Amazon|
|Alumagoal Heavy Duty Dry Line Marker||$$$||Check Price on Amazon|
Striping Machines Buying Guide
The Game Must Go On
A lot of times, will arrive at a game and the field will not play a decisive role in the outcome of a game. It’s just a normal old field. The conditions are pristine for the game, and that means it’s incredibly easy to see the lines. It also means you don’t give the field much of a thought, if you do at all. But then there are other times when the weather is less than ideal. It’s at those times, when it may be drizzling, when it’s overcast, or a combination of the two, that you need to have a field that is ready to go. The show has to go on, the old saying goes, and so, too, does the game! So why not do it right with the best available striping machine?
Giving It Your Best
A good chunk of the time, especially if it relates to youth sports, you will see a job that is done halfway. The lines might have been painted on a couple of weeks ago, or they just didn’t use the best equipment possible. This is quite an unfortunate thing to note, since it’s not that hard and does have to be all that expensive to get a good machine and some paint to make sure the field is in awesome shape. These striping machines can make a big difference in the way your entire facility looks, and it will ratchet up the level of excitement and produce better games as well, so don’t be afraid to give it your all in this endeavor.
Sports You Can Stripe For
The biggest sports that come to mind in regards to striping will, of course, be football and baseball. Baseball being the chief one, but football is a close second since you have to have so many lines on the field to conduct a half decent game! There are, however, other sports that also will require striping to be done, and without it you could be in a real jam. Soccer also needs lines to be striped. Contrary to baseball and softball, with the only exception possible being the mound area, soccer has a lot of rounded shapes. This means you will need a machine that is capable of turning. We’ll discuss that later. Racket sports are going to be overlooked, but you could also find that you need to do that. So having something that can do that sort of thing might also be an option that you would like.
More Than Just Fields and Courts
On top of fields and courts, parking lots also need to be lined, too. Maybe you want parents, coaches, and fans to have a better experience at parking than they have had in the past. If that is the case, then you will want to look toward something that can also stripe parking lots. Generally speaking you will be paying more for this type of striper, but using a field striper just won’t do for this purpose. So keep that in mind. Most likely, you will not need this, but there are plenty of them out there available on the marketplace should you desire to purchase one.
No one likes to start a project only to quickly find out that they aren’t going to be able to complete the job. They also don’t like to run back and forth to fetch the materials you need in order to finish the work. That’s also going to be the case for you as it relates to striping machines. Depending on the size of the field and the sport, it will require varying degrees of load capacity. Some machines are going to be able to handle a ton of cans of paint, while others will not be able to house as much. What you have to decide is what you need. There are going to be options available to you that have massive capacities, but sometimes that isn’t necessarily what you need to have. It might be too large. This doesn’t seem like a bad idea, but that could end up making the machine too heavy to operate efficiently. That’s not what you want to encounter, so be wise and try to find something that is just right for you and your purposes.
Weight is very much related to capacity, but there is more to the issue of weight than just that. Sure, you don’t want to have a super heavy machine that is impossible to push around, but you also don’t want to make the mistake of having one that is too light. A light machine sounds great on paper, but the trouble begins to brew when you realize that the machine is going to be, most likely, made out of poor materials. In this instance, you could find that the machine doesn’t hold up well over time since the parts are cheaper. Any sort of abuse, intentional or otherwise, could lead to it being damaged and taken out of commission for good. At the end of the day, you need to pick a weight, like the capacity, that is somewhere in the middle and just perfect for you and your uses. No need to overdo it by buying a product that is too much- or too little- for you to get the job done.
Ah, the wheel. One of the inventions we could not live without. Without it, we are stuck, hopeless and helpless, unable to do much of anything efficiently. Wheels help the world go around, and they are an essential element that must be present with any striping machine you find on the market. The things you look for with wheels are numerous.
First, you have to look at the width of them. This is the most obvious thing to take a glance at, but it can be ultra helpful to you as you try to decide on a wheel. The width of them is going to determine how well they do. The wider the tire is, the better it generally is going to be. It’s the same idea with a wheel. It will have better grip and will be able to get through more trouble.
Next up is the materials that are used. While it’s not always possible to figure out what they use to make the wheels, you can always take a good, hard look at them to see what it is you are dealing with. If the wheels look cheap, they most likely are. And it might not seem like a big deal, but this is a very big deal that could end up literally bogging you down and preventing you from getting anything done. Look for wheels that aren’t super slick looking. Sure, you don’t want them dirty, but you also don’t want them to look like they are made out of the same stuff as Legos, either.
The tread of the wheels are also important and very much taking a look at as well. Some wheels are going to have the slicker look, as mentioned above. While this doesn’t always mean they are not a good choice to go with, those are less likely to do well when it is wet outside. The bigger the tread is, or the more that is present, will help grip the ground when it has been raining out. This is a massive help to you, and it generally also means the wheels are going to hold up better over time. If there is some mushiness to them, it means it has some give built in. This is a good thing, and it will contribute to a longer shelf life of your machine.
It should also be noted that the wheels are going to also influence how well the ride ‘handles.’ While it’s true that it’s not a race car and doesn’t have to be perfect, you will also want to see that the machine is able to take bumps decently without killing you or your hands. If it jumps violently because the wheels are made out of plastic, it could throw you off and leave you with a bad line beneath you. Nobody has time for that kind of thing to take place. So, that is another reason why you would want to turn toward a wider, more treaded choice for your wheels. It is by no means a requirement, but it’s a major influence and will make your time all the better.
Depending on what sport you are preparing for, your lines might need to be a different size. That is where having the ability to adjust the width of the lines comes in handy. Whether it be just out of preference, or out of necessity, with a good striping machine, you will have the versatility to switch between one to another. Most of the machines you see out there are going to allow you to change from two to four inches in width. However, there are others that will let you go as far as six inches wide and even possibly wider. The key to this is having a machine that is easy to adjust as well. It does you little to no good if you have the ability to change but it does not function well. So, be on the lookout for this feature since it can be a make or break to you.
Sprayers vs Stripers
The two words above- sprayers and stripers- probably seem like the exact same thing to you. But they are, in reality, two different concepts. And they should be looked at here in more detail to give you a better view of what is going on and why it is that you might just want to go with striping for your ultimate destination.
Sprayers are used by teams, leagues, and individuals that have a lot more experience with lining fields. Sprayers are best for trying to keep the cost of paint down and allow you to pick from any color paint basically. They are usually used for turf settings and they use tanks that are pressurized. Because of all of this, they are very efficient and are best served for painting larger areas like end zones and things like logos and the such, none of which are needed at the most local and smallest of levels.
Meanwhile, stripers are best for the opposite group of people. They are great for the weekend warrior that volunteers at the local youth club. They are also good for the general worker since they aren’t that hard to get used to and become proficient at. Because of their lack of weight compared to sprayers, they are easy to port around, which also serves well for new users. Unlike with the sprayer, there is no mixing of the paint or anything of the such. The down side is that the cost of the paint is higher and that it can be very time consuming to try and do those larger areas, as we referenced above.
The question over which is best for you isn’t the hardest to answer for you. If you are a less professional outfit, and there is nothing wrong with that, then the striper is the way to go. It’s cheaper, easier to push around, and you don’t have as much fuss about the whole process. It might take you longer, depending on what it is you are doing exactly, but you will be left happy with the job and the price that you paid when you are done with it. A sprayer is ideal for a bigger operation, but it’s not always necessary if you just want a few lines to be done. It can be better, though, for keeping you going and minimizing your time, so the two options do have to be weighed against your own expectations.
Wet or Dry
One thing that you might see online while doing research is that there are different methods to laying down lines. You can either do it via the dry or wet methods. Most of the fields that you see will use the wet method, but that doesn’t have to be what you end up going with. This means that when you line the field, you will need to stay off of it for a little while so that it will settle in. Failing to do so will result in the lines being smeared. This is not ideal for immediate play, but if you can get out there and do it the day before, then you will be good to go. Generally speaking, wet application of lines will last longer for you than dry application will, however, so that is the advantage that you gain by putting up with tip toeing around the edges for a while. The biggest advantage of dry application, which is used more for baseball than in soccer or football, is that you are ready to go quicker. This is used in the pro leagues, but the disadvantage is that it will not last very long. It also won’t hold up too well when ran on, either, so that is the main problem you will be seeking to overcome with that form of application.
A very important aspect to lining your field is being able to successfully maneuver the machine in various directions. Some sports don’t need as much specification as others. For example, doing lines for football and baseball are quite easy. You just make straight lines that either run seemingly endlessly or you make rectangles. However, soccer is a different animal and has some circular shapes that have to be made. This is where having a machine that turns well comes in handy. The truth is that some machines just don’t do well when turning. This is why you see stripers that are used for parking lots cost so much more as they go up the chain. It’s because people don’t wan to have reset their machine constantly in order to accomplish the job. So, turning radius, as we will call it is important if you are going to be making circles, or semi circles of any kind. If it doesn’t turn well, it could negatively impact you and your enjoyment of the whole process, and we’ll make sure to point that out if and when it comes up.
We talked previously about the possibility of getting a striper that will help you line courts, for tennis or pickleball, for example, or for lining parking lots. This is something that can be found, and you don’t have to pay a ridiculous, through the nose premium for it, either. Instead, you can find a striper that will do parking lots. But, if you look hard enough anyway, you could just find a machine that is able to service all of your needs in one sitting. You could find a versatile machine that will do lines for your field, the court, and the parking lot, freeing you up to just get to work and not have to juggle multiple machines. It might seem a little too good to be true, but there is a chance you could find it!
Buying a good striping machine to line your fields doesn’t have to be super expensive. In fact, most of our list is quite affordable, meaning you will be able to buy them and won’t notice that your wallet is hurting at all. This means that you can get a decent quality machine for a low price, and it makes your job all the easier. There are options on the higher and lower ends of the spectrum, but they are specialty items really, and those are a little bit off kilter from what we have going on. Just know that price isn’t going to hold you back too much, or at least it shouldn’t.
Don’t Forget the Paint
One thing that you should not forget to buy is the paint for your lines. A lot of people would assume that this is not a big deal, but in reality it’s a much bigger deal than the machine is since the cost can be so high. Most of the items on our list come in around the triple digit mark but not much higher. A 12 pack of cans runs about half of that cost. Depending on how much you use, that can run out a whole lot quicker than you might think and will end up costing you a lot of money. Just be alert to the issue, since you will not find many- if any at all- machines that will offer paint along with it for your lines.
Measuring Your Field
Whether it’s a field, court, or parking lot, or whatever it is you have going on that needs to be marked, you always need to make sure you take special care and mark where you intend to go first. This can only be done the right, best possible way if you measure the field right off the bat. Failure to measure the field or court could result in you producing some very crooked lines. If you are already a person that isn’t good at this sort of thing, that will make your lines look awful and subject you to (rightful) criticism and mockery. After measuring, it’s wise to try and use some rope or twine, too, to help keep you in line. This, of course, isn’t necessary if you have the lines already laid out in front of you, but it will be helpful if you are getting a fresh start for the first time. Keep in mind the objects that might be on the field, too. If you know where a goal is, you should base your markings off of that and then go from there. This will give you the best possible looks with the least amount of fuss at the same time.
Let’s Review The Top 10 Striping Machines!
1. Seymour Paint Z-607 Stripe Athletic Marking Machine
If you want a good, heavier than usual duty marking machine, then this is the kind of choice for you. Best for use on grass due to having a higher clearance than the asphalt varieties, this machine is sturdy enough to not break down on you while still being very easy to push around. The tires are of adequate size and they have a decent tread to them to make life easier. It’s also going to come to you at a very manageable price as well, making your day at the field a breeze as a result and not forcing you to have to fork over too much money. There are a couple of minor things, starting with the handle to look out for. It can come loos, which is frustrating, so that should be kept in mind.
- Great for grass
- Sturdy yet compact
- Very good price
- Handle can come loose
2. Athletic Specialties Field Striping Machine
In much the same vein as the Seymour, this one from Athletic Specialties is going to offer you many of the same qualities while being just a tad bit more expensive. One of the things that is an upgrade is the wheels, which have more tread to them than the previous listing above. This will give you a little bit more grip on the ground, allowing you to get done quicker and more carefully in poorer conditions. With room to store 12 extra cans, the capacity is very large and it means you don’t have to waste time lugging one can after another to and from the machine all day. Another major factor for this one is the dependability of it, which is exquisite. It’s not going to make you go over lines over and over again, meaning you don’t waste your paint, time, or money. It’s a win-win-win then!
- Very dependable
- Extra storage available
- Additional tread on wheels
3. Sport Supply Group Athletic Field Striper
Like the previous two above, this one is splitting hairs with them for the best of the bunch due to its dependability, ease of use, and it’s price tag being quite low, too. This striper also allows up to 12 cans extra to be held, allowing you to get the job done in our ‘sitting’ so that you don’t have to waste your time. Like the the last one, it’s got good treaded, grippy wheels to them that will help you roll easier and take bumps just a little bit better than most out there. Despite being slightly less heavy than the others so far, it’s still just as sturdy, ensuring you will not be forced into buying another one anytime soon. On top of that, the handle collapses down so that it’s very easy to store, like a box with wheels on it, taking up very little space so you can store the other vital things you need to have put away.
- Sturdy but lighter
- Handle folds down
- Wheels roll easily
4. Tapco Vers-A-Striper Heavy Duty Striper
If versatility is what you want, then this one doesn’t disappoint. And it shouldn’t with the name it has. This striper will let you paint fields and parking lots alike, all while giving you the ability to run over grass, gravel, and dirt with no problems. Because of all of this, you’d expect it to cost more than the rest so far, but that is not the case at all, with it being very competitive with the others we’ve seen so far. It is a bit heavier, about ten pounds, than the others, but that just comes with the territory of having more versatility. The wheels, it must be said, are quite thin compared to the others and are a little shiny looking, but they have proven to hold up, so they will get a pass here. On the whole, it’ll be hard to beat this choice if you have an array of work to be done in your department.
- Very versatile machine
- Handles lots of conditions well
- Large capacity, too
- A little heavier
5. Ameri-Stripe 550 Liner-X Paint Machine
It will cost you a bit more than any of the others we have seen on the list so far, though not much more, but it will offer you something a little bit different from the others as well. Featuring very wide, treaded wheels, this is going to be excellent for absorbing shocks and for having a smooth ride (or push, rather) while getting the hob on the field done. They have constructed it so that the sprayer is right in the middle of the machine as well, helping to cut down on the effect of the wind on it. The biggest issue that appears to be present, however, is that the machine is only going to hold a single can. This can become annoying quickly for you, so that might just prevent you from making this the choice that you go with at the end of the day. Despite that fact, it’s the second heaviest we’ve seen so far, too.
- Massive tires
- Wind won’t bother application
- Very sturdy
- Only holds one can
6. Rust-Oleum 2395000 Professional Striping Machine
Coming from one of the most trusted brands in this corner of the market, this machine is the cheapest on the list we’ve seen so far and still packs quite the punch that will keep you happy for a while. With a handle that collapses down easily, it won’t take up much room. Loading will be simple and painless, too, while the wheels used are treaded very decently and will roll well on just about any surface you come across. The grip they use on the handle’s trigger is even made with your comfort in mind, increasing your level of enjoyment greatly. The best use is to pair it with their own paint, but you can still use your own. Some have stated that doing four inch lines are tough and had to make two passes at it, so be aware of that.
- Storage made easy
- Easy to get going
- Comfortable handle
- Might not spray as wide as you like
7. Krylon Hand Held Marking Applicator Wand
If you want something much smaller and cheaper, then this is the go-to for you to turn to. This is a hand held model, so it will not be able to get nearly as much done. But, if you have just a place or two that you want to touch up, or you just want to make a small line or two, then this is the way to go. Convenience is king with this product, and that is what makes it great. The best use for this could actually end up being making markings after you measure, cutting down on your time between jobs and all of that guess work, while still keeping the price down and saving a body or two extra. The wheel on it is virtually useless, so don’t expect to be able to use it. It’s also going to not be as durable when treated roughly, so keep a watch on that, too.
- Super light
- Convenient and easy
- Great for small markings
- Not for big areas
- Wheel isn’t useful
8. Trueline Stripers Model 20 With 4 Gallon Tank
If you are going to be doing some super huge areas and want a truly professional look and touch, then this is the way to go. With a massive cart and a huge bottle to hold paint in, this hand pumped machine is going to turn some heads and grab attention while you finish quicker than ever. With one pump, you are able to stripe between 30 and 60 feet at a time, making life easier. With this sort of model, you will be able to do end zones and logos much easier than anything else on the list. The one big negative is that it’s going to cost you an arm and a leg compared to the others on the list, which are very much affordable in nature.
- Great for larger areas
- HUGE capacity
- Very, very sturdy
- Extremely expensive
9. Aervoe Vers-A-Striper Pavement Cart
If you are just wanting to get some pavement striped outside of the facility, or if you want to try it out on a tennis court or something similar, then this is one way that you can turn. This machine is the cheapest on our list, is very light but also sturdy enough to keep you happy provided you treat it well. With seven inch wheels, you can tell why it has been designed to stick to the parking lot and comparable places. It has a radius wheel to help you turn, something that many don’t do such a good job at in this field. The handle is a little shaky on this model, so be careful with that.
- Great for pavement
- Very light and fairly sturdy
- Turns well
* Handle isn’t best quality
10. Alumagoal Heavy Duty Dry Line Marker
Unlike most of our other listings, this final one is going to lay the paint down via the dry method of application. This means it is best used for baseball fields, since that is the best use for it. With very thick tires that have good tread built on, you will have a good, smooth ride and be able to get the job done easily. With a 100 lbs capacity, you will also be able to accomplish it without a whole lot of fooling around and waiting on materials to arrive and be reloaded. This does mean that it is heavier than most others, but that should just be expected given that extra capacity capability. Shipping and customer service is not the best, with many reporting that it arrived dinged up and that they won’t work well with you, so be aware of that possibility.
- Great for baseball
- Big capacity
- Very smooth ride
- Not the best customer service record
Conclusion And Final Striping Machines Recommendations
At the end of the day, there is a whole lot more to picking out a striping machine that meets the eye. There are so many factors to weigh in your mind that it comes down solely to the kind of experience that you are looking for. If you have just a small field to do, you will want to go with a different choice than someone that will be working on multiple fields. From size to capacity, to the wheels and even the handle, there are just so many possibilities that you could go with. Thankfully, after today you will have a much better understanding on what it is that you want and need and you will be able to make a good, informed decision on your purchase. So, stop waiting and get to work so we can get to playing!