Better Billy Bunker

Certification:  Golf Creations has been certified as a Better Billy Bunker installer since August 2012.

Check out this fantastic video by Indian Hills Country Club superintendent, Bob McLean, showing Golf Creations and the Better Billy Bunker process.

Projects:    Anthem Golf and Country Club, Anthem, AZ
                    Big Spring Country Club, Louisville, KY
                    Butte des Morts Country Club, Appleton, WI
                    Gainey Ranch Golf Club, Scottsdale, AZ
                    Glen Oak Country Club, Glen Ellyn, IL
                    Indian Hills Country Club, Bowling Green, KY
                    Laurel Hill Golf Club, Lorton, VA
                    Oro Valley Country Club, Oro Valley, AZ
                    Prairie Landing Golf Club, West Chicago, IL
                    Quail Hollow Country Club, Concord, OH
                    
The BBB Process:  The Better Billy Bunker method involves laying down 2 inches of gravel across the entire bunker “floor”. A spray polymer is applied; it seeps down amidst the gravel profile and hardens into a strong-but-flexible bond, holding the gravel together. This layer effectively holds sand on the steepest of bunker faces and manages to move water through it at a rate up to 350 inches an hour.

Erosion before renovation

1. Existing sand removal

2. Existing draintile testing

3. Gravel layer installation

4. Polymer application

5. Sand installation

A Case Study
Laurel Hill Golf Club

Finished productLORTON, VA — Designed by Bill Love, Laurel Hill Golf Club is indeed a beauty — situated on rolling terrain just outside the District of Columbia and dotted with 120 flashed-sand bunkers. Built by Wadsworth Golf, the construction of Laurel was originally overseen by Matt Lohmann, who is now the construction operations manager for Golf Creations. Recently, Matt and his GC colleagues were invited back to replace the failing fabric liners and contaminated sand in all 120 bunkers using the Better Billy Bunker method, a process Golf Creations has been certified in since 2012.

Polymer application“At Laurel, the BBB application was a 4-5 week process that was done in September,” Matt explained. “We dodged a few golf balls because the course didn’t close — just some temporary greens on affected holes as we worked hole-by-hole through the course. It was a great experience all around, because we put to work our Better Billy Bunker certification, which is a credit to Golf Creations — not every contractor is entrusted with this sort of work — and it was great to come back to Laurel Hill.”

Proof is in the Pudding  Lip service is great, but was it all worth the effort? We wanted to provide an update from Rick Owens, the head superintendent at Laurel Hill Golf Club in Lorton, VA, who experienced the torrential rains of Hurricane Sandy soon after the project was complete.

Per Rick (November 2012): “While Sandy dumped 7 inches of rain on the course earlier this week, the crews at Laurel Hill completed their normal raking maintenance, and then spent a total of 1 extra man-hour cleaning up washed sand in the bunkers. There were just a few rivulets to be smoothed out, with a leaf rake.”

A single hour of clean up on 120 bunkers, after 7 inches of rain? That’s pretty incredible. The Better Billy Bunker method has gained a lot of traction lately, and one of its major claims is a reduction in man-hours related to post-storm maintenance. Sandy and LaurelHills are proof that claim is well founded.

punctuation-marks-quotation-marksWhen Golf Creations left the property one could scarcely see any evidence that a large reconstruction project had just occurred . Now after a large rain event there is little or no washing out of the bunkers. Instead of 200+ repair hours it might take an extra hour at most. The sand simply does not move. I highly recommend both the Better Billy Bunker method of bunker construction and Golf Creations as an installer.”

 – Rick Owens, Golf Course Superintendent C.G.C.S., Laurel Hill Golf Club