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What are my options if I have a roof? I want a basketball system so my kids can play, but I don't want to mount it to a wall.

The good news is that you have several options to choose from. When it comes to roof mounts they come in both adjustable and fixed height. The adjustable option is nice if you need to lower it or raise it so younger kids can play. It's also nice for another reason-it allows you to reach 10 feet since many roofs vary in height and the adjustable brackets allow you to fine-tune it to regulation size 10 feet. Many parents like to go with the fixed height, but they find themselves somewhat limited since the height of the roof over the garage may be taller or lower than 10 feet making it impossible for the rim to be regulation height of 10 feet. In most cases the adjustable option is ideal for a roof mount. If you are looking for a wall mount, that's a different story. Mounting to the wall of the garage can often reach 10 feet whether you use a fixed or adjustable bracket. For more information on mounting to a wall click here.

There are three options for a roof mount. Spalding makes two brackets and Lifetime makes one bracket that mounts to a roof. Spalding's brackets are nice. Model 316 is by far the superior bracket leaving model 8839S as a cheaper alternative option.
What is the difference between model 316 and 8839S? Model 316 uses a crank mechanism as shown below.  If you think about it the only way to create movement in that bracket-for the most part-is to turn it to the left and lower it or turn it to the right and rated higher. The picture below shows it mounted to a pole, but it's the same adjustment and works on a roof just as well.
Model 8839S is a little bit different. It is held into place using gravity as shown in the illustration below. That may sound strange, but here is how it works. You push up on the back of the rim (using a broomstick) to raise it to the desired height. As you push it up you can feel it click into place. Once it clicks into place at the desired height you are set. To lower the height you you place the broomstick behind a backboard and engaged the bracket allowing it to lower down to 7 1/2 feet.
Essentially, you can physically push up on the backboard-nothing but gravity is locking it into place. If you take a three point shot and it hits the rim you are likely to see a lot more movement, because his bracket allows the back to bounce up and down slightly in such a case. The 316 U-turn lift system-that doesn't happen. It isn't gravity that holds that into place, but it's the bracket itself.
From that explanation you can imagine most people purchase model 316 as it is the superior bracket with the most ability.

If you are considering the Lifetime brand (a requirement if you have a lifetime brand backboard), then you have one choice when it comes to a roof mount-model 9594.
It may look like a small bracket, but don't be deceived. It is very heavy duty. If you need a fixed height bracket this is the one to go with (assuming you have or are interested in a lifetime brand backboard). Please keep in mind that Spalding brackets are only compatible with Spalding backboards. Lifetime brackets are only compatible with Lifetime  backboards. Even then there are some exceptions. For example, not all lifetime brackets work with all lifetime backboards. You will want to take a look at our charts below to check compatibility.

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