Difference Between Acrylic and Glass Basketball Backboards

Glass vs. Acrylic Basketball Backboards.

An ongoing question that we have not visited here on this blog before is the difference or the benefit between glass and acrylic backboards. We will try to give you a non-watered down or overly-wordy, or salesy, explanation. First, we will consider rebound.

Glass Backboards Produce A Better Rebound.

Glass backboards are much more rigid than Acrylic backboards. Because of this, when the basketball hits the backboard, the ball will bounce off better. Acrylic flexes when the basketball hits it, thus dampening the bounce. Why do you care? Shots that require the backboard – bank shots – will have to be shot differently if a player trains on an acrylic backboard and then plays games on a glass backboard. Lifetime updated their top of the line Mammoth brand from acrylic to glass and they have an amazing bounce and rebound. We have played on them at Bear Lake Idaho and they are phenomenal products. Next, we will consider susceptibility to damage.

Acrylic Backboards Are More Resilient to Abusive Use.

Because acrylic backboards can flex, they are less susceptible to damage from what I call point impact – damage that is done in a concentrated area like when a rock is thrown at the backboard. Glass basketball backboards are tempered glass, the same material as your care windshield. Just like your care windshield, if a rock hits the windshield, it can chip the glass; then, if water freezes in the rock chip, the crack can splinter and spider web just like your windshield; lastly, if enough force is the applied to the backboard from, let’s say a basketball, the backboard can shatter. If you think your basketball system might be in an area where it might be used abusively, or vandalized, acrylic backboards are more likely to withstand that type of use. Lastly, we will consider cost.

Generally, Glass Backboard Basketball Systems Cost More Money.

For nearly all basketball system manufacturers, glass backboard systems are more expensive than acrylic backboard systems. Largely, this is due the more expensive cost of producing the backboard material for glass backboards as well as the increased strength in the pole structure required to support the heavier material from glass. However, one distinct exception to this rule is Goalsetter. Goalsetter acrylic backboard systems are more expensive to their comparably-sized glass backboard counterparts. Goalsetter’s stated reason for this is acrylic, being an oil-based material, is more expensive to produce than glass backboards. Whether this is true or not can hardly be determined. However, one thing to note is that in the case of Goalsetter, they will warranty the backboard of an acrylic basketball system when used commercially, but will not for a glass backboard basketball hoop being used commercially.

glassbouncecompareThe picture shows an inground device system and demonstrates the bounce provided by 3 different backboard types. The concept is the very much the same between surface areas. The least expensive choice is the polycarbonate. Polycarbonate is remarkably strong.

Acrylic is fantastic. It is thought about the middle ground surface for portable basketball goal. It is the next best thing to glass. It is not as strong as poly carbonate, however it is much quieter in the rebound is nicer.

Glass is the finest choice for a basketball unit. Individuals typically prefer acrylic in the intermediate line, or poly carbonate in the newbies line.

All of the product climates weather effectively. That is, every one of them have actual UV protectants in the product that protect it from the sun and severe weather conditions. No matter which backboard you select for your basketball system, they will likely all last you around 10 years approximately.

Kindly be careful to make sure that they do not tip over in a windy storm. Please check out our winterizing suggestions too for more details.

View YouTube Video “Lifetime Basketball Systems, Performance”

“Michael Sweeten, Lifetime’s Sporting Goods Product Manager, describes the various kinds of basketball systems, backboards, and rims, taking the guess-work out… ”


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2 Responses to “Difference Between Acrylic and Glass Basketball Backboards”

  1. admin says:

    I have played on many indoor gym glass backboards and many outdoor acrylic backboards and it seems to me that the acrylic backboards absorb backboard shots more than glass. It seems like the glass provides a harder, bouncier rebound so you have to be softer on your backboard shots on a glass backboard than an acrylic backboard.

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