Mounting Basketball Ring to Steel Carport - Advice Needed!

Think I need some advice on this one…

I have got a basketeball backboard/ring and height adjustable mount for my kid for Christmas. Plan is to mount it on out steel framed carport, but I need to rig a flush surface or plate of some sort to bolt the adjustable mount to as there is no area on the carport frame that is directly suitable.

Backboard and mount are these, total combined mounting weight around 40kg/80lbs:

How this needs to mount is roughly mapped out below:

  • Vertical and angled carport beams are around 35mm square bar
  • Horizontal carport beam is 75mmx35mm rectangular bar
  • Green squares are the adjustable mount brackets that need to be bolted to a flush surface.
  • Red square us a rectangular mounting plate I imagine bolting to the carport frame to provide a flush surface
  • Red circles are proposed bolt positions.

So the questions…

  • Carport will be strong enough to mount a basketball ring to, right? I mean, I am not really worried about that, I’d hang on the crossbar for days without worrying about it, but I’d be cautious mounting something that heavy if I could only mount to the smaller square bar. And nobody is going to be dunking on this thing anyway.
  • What material do you suppose I need to build the red mounting plate from? Could I use wood? Structural pine, 35mm or 45mm front and back and bolted through? Marine ply at 18mm, also front and back, bolted through?
  • Or do I need to use iron or steel plate? I don’t think I’d get cast plate around here, so it would probably be steel and harder to work with hand tools, particularly as I would likely need to do some cutting and drill work myself…
  • I also have a length of some rather heavy duty aluminium U tube that I could cut and stack into a rectangular shape. It’s again, around 75mmx35mm and around 5-7mm wall thickness.
  • If I have to cut steel or aluminium it would be with a jigsaw or grinder. Drilling would be usual powered hand drill.

My gut feel is that a wood option would be fine, but I’d rather avoid ay potential of this coming crashing down on someone’s head…


Instead of drilling through the carport beams, mount the adjustable brackets to a plywood or steel plate. Then use bolts through the plate to your U tubes on the other side of the beams and sandwich the beams in between. You shouldn’t need to drill holes in the beams if you tighten the bolts enough.

There is no particular problem drilling through the carport beams, I have done that before and the metal is not hardened appreciably. I am more worried about having to drill through a steel plate if whatever I can get locally is even moderately hardened, as opposed to a wood plate being sufficiently rugged enough to take the load.

While I think it’s likely possible to drill through the beams, I personally wouldn’t do it because it makes it easier/more likely for the beams to bend. I like ddtibbs’ proposed solution.

Yep, definitely recommend attaching the backplate with U bolts instead of drilling into the beams. Drilling holes in the beam not only introduces a weak point in the structure, it also exposes the metal to potential rust. Not really worth it in the long run, just to install a basketball goal.

This is how it ended up. None of those carraige bolts are through the steel, but they are all through both front and back blocks of wood, which are 50mm thick ‘sleepers’, but really just mill ends of almost certainly structual MGP10 pine.

The brackets are not straight because those bolts are not tightened yet, pending install of the backboard itself on Xmas eve.

Bloke two doors down and over the road is a retired woodworker and furniture maker was walking past on his evening walk and popped back to ask why I wasn’t just using 3/4" marine ply and tek screwing straight to the steel beams. Lol, maybe it is over engineered.

Only other addition I made after these pics was a 3m length of 25mm square steel brace between the front and middle steel beams of the carport to limit sideways flex of the main horizontal beam.

As long as you drill holes in it you’re probably golden.

Is that just a general outlook on life? :)

Pretty much! A hammer, some duct tape, a drill…what more do you need? I’m pretty sure that’s how we got to the moon!

If in doubt, give it a clout - the bigger the doubt, the bigger the clout!

Thanks for shopping local and supporting @ArmandoPenblade 's business.

That’s not a basketball hoop!
(Psycho theme)


Mission accomplished. If it hasn’t fallen by morning, will tick it off as a success! Unsurprisingly, took longer than expected and in around 32C heat this evening. 42C forecast for Xmas tomorrow!

Excellent work. Looks professionally done!