Finding the Perfect Adjustable Basketball Hoop
Up until 20 years ago the option to purchase an adjustable basketball goal did not exist. With modern day advancements and technology the great game of basketball can be enjoyed at any level. Many different basketball hoop manufacturers now offer an adjustable option. There are a few different methods to raise and lower the backboard so this article should help you decide which one will be best for you.
When the idea to create an adjustable basketball goal came about the method of choice was to use a cable, pulley, and wench. The original Sport Court goals were made this way back in the 70’s. The design was to attach a cable to the lower extension arm over the main pole via a pulley and onto a wench located on the back side of the pole. Turning the handle on the wench would then raise or lower the backboard. The drawback to this method is that the teeth on the wench wear out over time and eventually lead to system failure. Secondly the cable would become unraveled and get stuck in the actual wench causing it to seize. Believe it or not there are still major manufacturers that utilize this design today.
Engineers eventually created another design idea to raise and lower the backboard on an adjustable basketball hoop. The incorporation of the crank made height adjustment much easier. Most people are familiar with a crank that is installed on a trailer. Turning a handle spins an internal screw mechanism which will extend or retract causing the item to be raised or lowered. This design was more aesthetically pleasing and seemed to do the job well.
Backboards have evolved from wood to fiberglass to acrylic to full ½” tempered glass. This evolution has brought with it increased weights of both the adjustable basketball hoop for support and the backboard itself. The internal tooling of a crank is designed to withstand a certain amount of weight or pressure. Once this threshold is exceeded height adjustment can be physically challenging as it requires a great deal of strength to turn the handle. Furthermore, this increase pressure begins to cause excessive wear and tear on the crank mechanism and will eventually lead to failure. Some manufacturers simply adjusted the gear ratio inside the crank but the problem it creates is that it can take an extreme amount of time to actually get the backboard to go up or down.
The necessity to reduce the pressure on the adjustment crank birthed lift assist mechanisms. This refers to an assembly that reduces the amount of weight being transferred to the crank. Some manufacturers have incorporated a pneumatic cylinder and others have used a spring method. The purpose is to neutralize the weight of the basketball system and make adjustment much easier. Many box store brands simply use thinner and lighter backboard materials in conjunction with lesser grade steel to keep the system weight low. The result is you don’t get an arena like experience on your adjustable basketball goal.
If you want to practice like you play then I would strongly recommend getting an official system that has a pro-view ½” tempered glass backboard and break away rim. This backboard will weigh in excess of 200 lbs. so it is important that the adjustable basketball hoop system uses a heavy duty 7 gauge steel support pole. In order to raise and lower the system from 5’ to regulation 10’ you will want to purchase a hoop with both a crank actuator and lift assist mechanism to make raising and lowering your adjustable basketball hoop easy enough that a child could do it.
Resource Mega Slam Hoops
1141 N Loop 1604 E #105-117
San Antonio, TX 78232
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