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The Very Basics Curling is played on ice with (approximately) 42-pound granite stones. The size of the playing surface (a 'sheet') is 138 feet long by approximately 14 feet wide. The goal is, after all 16 stones are played (8 by each team), to have a stone of your team's closest to the center of the house, called the 'tee' (see above). This is accomplished by sending your stone to rest in scoring position (a 'draw'), by knocking your opponent's stones outof scoring position (a 'takeout'), and by guarding your own stones with others. The team with the closest stone, inside the house, scores a point, or more if they also have the second closest stone and so on. Each round is called an 'end' and consists of two stones delivered by each player on each four-player team. The stones are delivered from the hack on one side of the sheet to the house on the opposite side. This consists of the player pushing off from the hack with the stone and releasing it with a spin, or 'curl', which gives Curling its name.-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The Curling Stone The curling stone originated in Scotland from large chunks of rock bowled across the ice, none having any particular size or shape (see curling history). They evolved into what are now matched sets of fairly uniformly made stones. The are all made of pure granite, and they are amazingly hard. The best stones come from a single granite mine on an island off the coast of Scotland. Shipping is quite expensive due to weight (16 stones in a set at 42 pounds a piece, not including packaging), and manufacturing is expensive because of the toughness of the material, which is ground with diamonds.The stone is concave on both the upper and lower surfaces. On some stones, the degree of concavity is different on both sides to allow for reversing the stone for 'faster' or 'slower' ice. A handle, usually on a circular plastic disc, is bolted onto the stone through a channel running through the middle of the stone to a bolt on the other end, as shown in the red highlighted region in the cross-sectional diagram. The figure on the right shows the top of the stone, more obviously concave, but without a smooth running surface. The handle is affixed onto this circular surface.In the figure above, part A is the bottom of a curling stone, which is concave, although you can't see it well in this picture. The red circle is the actual running surface of the stone. This allows the stone to go farther, more accurately, and pick up more 'curl' than would be possible on a flat surface.There is a lighter-colored band in a ribbon around the curling stone. This is the 'striking surface'. In manufacturing, the entire stone if very highly polished. This surface is dulled down for the purpose of improving collisions with other stones, both so that there will be a larger contact patch in the collision and so that the stones will not...

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