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TN2 tennis net

Your Ultimate Guide to Tennis Equipment

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Internal or external winder? Double or single net stitching? Base plate or sleeve?TNPSSAT

With such a large range on the market, it can often be confusing when you first start investigating tennis equipment.

In this Ultimate Guide to Tennis Equipment, we attempt to demystify the topic and step you through what you should look for in equipment that will last. 

Tennis Nets

For such a popular sports item, there is surprisingly little information out there to help you make an informed decision to choose the best quality tennis net. You want to make sure you’re not spending your hard earned cash on a net that will need to be replaced after one or two seasons.

Here’s a few handy tips that will help you make the best decision when choosing a tennis net:

What type of tennis net should I get?

First of all – what type of competition will it be used for?

If you just want to have a hit of the tennis ball at home with your friends every now and again – you probably won’t need anything super heavy duty. A standard net with single mesh netting and medium sized head-bands (the vinyl along the top) should do the job – so we would probably recommend something like our championship tennis net (TN3).

Need a net that will get pummeled with tennis balls more regularly? You will definitely need something a lot stronger to withstand the extra stress. It would be best to get a double-layered vinyl headband to withstand extra wear and tear (particularly if you are from a school, tennis club or council).

Don’t forget, you have the choice to upgrade to a double mesh net. This means there is an extra layer of mesh along the first 5 rows of the net. Because this area is hit by the ball most often – it helps extend the life of the net.


What are the key things I need to look for when purchasing a tennis net?

When you are checking out different types of nets, make sure you look for the key indicators that it’s a quality net, not cheap and nasty!

1. The Quality of the Stitching

We’ve all seen those ratty looking tennis nets that have taken one too many mis-hits from the ball, causing the body of the net to come away from the headband. This is a very common issue with poor quality tennis nets. The great gaping hole in the top of the net is usually because the tiny row of stitching (which holds the body of the net to the headband) is not strong enough to do it’s job.

It is important to not only have strong stitching, but also to use UV-stabilised cotton thread to combat inevitable weather damage. Without these fundamental elements, the net will not last and will soon need to be fixed or upgraded – meaning more money in the long run.

2. The Quality of the Headband

The headband of a tennis net is the piece of material that runs along the top from post to post. Poor headbands become weak and quickly deteriorate. Good quality headbands are usually made from vinyl and it is essential when making tennis net headbands that the manufacturer uses a couple of layers of UV-stabilised vinyl. As with the threading used to connect the body of the net to the headband, this area of the net is very susceptible to weather damage and need to be protected.

3. The Quality of the Mesh Netting

When you consider what tennis net goes through, it’s not surprising that many complaints about low quality nets are about the mesh body getting holes in it. The quality of the black mesh netting is absolutely vital when it comes to absorbing a ball being served at it from 70 to 130km/ph. If the mesh netting is not made from the high quality, heavy duty polyethylene, the net will not be durable and will most likely tear.

The moral of the story? If you want don’t want your net to looking like the picture below, it is always best to go for a top quality net. This is a sure way to save yourself paying out big bucks down the line to fix or upgrade your net.


Poor quality stitching and mesh will make your tennis net deteriorate very rapidly 

Should I get a full drop tennis net or three-quarter drop?

All the international tennis competitions use full length nets – so a lot of people like the look of the full length net because it looks more professional. However, for more casual games – people generally prefer the three-quarter length nets (760mm drop). They are much easier to play with as it saves you having to collect the ball each time it hits the bottom of the net.

So as a general rule – unless you have a ball boy to run across the court and pick up your tennis balls – the three quarter length net is probably your first choice!

How do I stop my tennis net from sagging in the middle?

Unfortunately, it is near impossible to keep your tennis net perfectly straight. There is always going to be a slight sag in the middle due to the weight of the net. This inevitable sag is actually accounted for when doing professional installations of tennis nets.

However, if your net is sagging excessively – it may be due to a loose winder. Get your local installer to check whether there is any pieces of the winder missing or worn.

How do I fix my broken tennis net?

The most common issues for tennis nets are broken cables, worn head and side bands, and damaged mesh.

If the wire cable has been snapped, you will need to replace it with a new one. Unfortunately, they are a little tricky to install yourself as the vinyl headband that runs along the top of the net needs to be unpicked. The cable is then threaded through the top and sewn up again with an industrial sewing machine.

Damage to the head or side band can also be fixed by replacing the vinyl strip lining the mesh with a new one.

If you have damage to the net itself – this is quite difficult and often expensive to repair. It is usually best to cut your losses and invest in a new tennis net.

Tennis Posts

What do I need to think about when buying tennis posts?


Number one. How do you plan to install your tennis posts?

If you are starting from scratch – the most common way is to concrete sleeves into the ground for the tennis posts to slide into. This means they can be removed at will. Handy if the court needs to be used for other purposes, or you want to store the posts away when you’re not playing.

If you already have sleeves set into the ground – that’s is a different story. You will need to carefully match the correct measurements so the new post will fit neatly inside it.

So, in summary – when buying new tennis posts, you need to plan ahead a bit to account for correct installation. If you are unsure about anything – contact your local installer first, or give us a call to discuss.

square sleeves and caps

Tennis post sleeves are usually set into the ground with concrete, allowing your post to slide in and out for easy installation and removal. Sleeves with caps can be purchased to cover the hole in the ground when tennis posts are not in use. See here for more information of sleeves and caps.


Number two. Will your tennis posts last?

Unless you store your tennis posts under cover every time you aren’t playing (and realistically – who can be bothered?), you will need posts that are weather proof and durable.

Make sure you choose tennis posts that have been made from galvanised steel, as this reduces the risk of rust. (For those who are interested – galvanisation is the process of applying a protective zinc coating to steel to protect it from weather damage.) As an extra layer of protection – tennis posts are usually powder-coated with paint, which seals it further against rust.

So make sure you choose quality tennis posts that will last – and save yourself paying out for them down the track.

Winder system

You need to decide whether you want an internal or external winding system for your tennis posts.

What’s the difference? Glad you asked.

4. What’s the difference between an internal and external winders?

The easiest way to see the difference is to check out the following images…

Internal vs External WInders

So as you can see – these are basically two different ways to attaching and tension the tennis net.

An external winding system means the cable and winder remains outside the post. Whereas, an internal winder means the tennis net cable is fed into the top of the post and the winder operates from inside.

Most people prefer the internal winding system as it looks a lot neater and professional. However, if you are on a tighter budget – the external winding system works just as well. The handle can also be removed and stored elsewhere as a security measure.

What’s the best tennis equipment to get for kids?

Kids have specific requirements when it comes to tennis equipment. For a start, they need the net set at an appropriate height to hit the ball over.

Thanks to a joint promotion by ANZ and Tennis Australia to increase young player participation in tennis, Tennis Hot Shots is hugely popular in kids’ sport at the moment.

So how does it work? The courts are smaller, the racquets are lighter and the balls are low-compression so that don’t bounce too high. It is a fun and easy way to learn for primary school-aged kids.

There are three stages in Tennis Hot Shots – Red, Orange and Green. Each stage uses different balls appropriate to children’s skills and confidence. Children are able to progress at their own pace, moving on to the next stage when they are ready.

Want to set up a Tennis Hot Shots court for your school, club or home? All you need to get started is a Grand Slam Tennis Hot Shots kit. This consists of a portable mini 6m tennis net and post system. It includes a carry bag for easy storage and transportation, and assembles in just minutes!

Click here to get an online quote for a Tennis Hot Shots Kit.



We hope you found this tennis goal post guide useful.

If you have any further questions or feedback, don’t hesitate to give Grand Slam Sports Equipment a call on 1800 773 461, email, or request an online quote for our tennis equipment

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Court Builder Insight: How to avoid the client call back about malfunctioning sports equipment

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It’s the moment all court builders dread.
You’ve poured your heart and soul into delivering a primo sports court. Everything looks fantastic and the client is happy. The bill’s angry_phone2been settled and everyone moves on to the next project.
But then you get that dreaded call…
“There seems to be an issue with the sports equipment. We need you to come check it out.”
Nooooooo! Not this week! You’ve got tons of other projects to oversee, tender deadlines to meet, and invoices to chase up.
The issue might be that the post sleeve is rusting, or the powder-coating has chipped off, or the welded joints are showing cracks.
Either way, you simply do not have time to be chasing up the one aspect of the court you don’t have quality control over.

Court builder, David Jones of Sports Construction Group says this is a major consideration for him when choosing sports equipment

“With the quality of the build – it’s important that I’m not getting called back to fix something. I need something that’s hard-lasting.”
The image I want to set is I want my courts to be quality courts, not cheap courts so I only give them one option…a product that is going to last.”

So how do you make sure the only call backs you get involve raving reviews of your work?

Here’s a list of things to double check before purchasing your sports equipment:

Does the sports equipment meet appropriate manufacturing requirements?

It’s very important that your sports equipment meets minimum manufacturing requirements – particularly if you are supplying to schools. For example, Education Queensland has strict specifications for basketball equipment:

“Ring shall be steel with a minimum Grade 300 . 

Backboard shall be:

External / Severe Environment: Marine grade plywood or Crezwood

Internal / Mild Environment: Plywood or Crezwood or suitable transparent material

Frame shall be steel with a minimum Grade C250.”

They also stress the importance of protecting the sports equipment against corrosion.

For external/severe environments, the steel should be:

“Hot dipped galvanized after fabrication having a minimum nominal coating mass of 390 g/m2 for removable equipment and 500 g/m2 for sleeves cast-into concrete.”

For internal/mild environment, the steel should be:

“Paint or metallic coating system as defined by AS/NZS 2312 to achieve a life to first maintenance of 25 years.”

Before purchasing your sports equipment, it pays to double check they meet legal manufacturing requirements. Otherwise, you could unfortunately be liable for any issues that may arise.

Additionally, a lot of suppliers do not hot dip galvanise prior to powdercoating, meaning they are not adequately protected from corrosion (and safety issues that could arise from this). So insist on high quality protection when purchasing your sports equipment to save yourself hassle down the track.

Has the equipment been certified by a registered professional engineer?

Your sports equipment should be issued with a engineer certification by a registered professional engineer to make sure it is up to the necessary wear and tear. The engineer certification is only issued if the equipment is sufficiently prototype load tested and cyclic load tested.

Prototype load testing:

Load testing basically figures out how the equipment responds under an enormous amount of stress.
This might occur, for example, if a player hangs off a ring. This slam dunk action is never recommended for safety reasons – however, you still need to know that the basketball ring will not give way if it ever occurs.
Prototype load testing applies weight to the ring – ensuring that the permanent deformation does not exceed the maximum amount of 10mm.
The structure is also examined for any signs of cracking or buckling, and if it is not up to scratch, the certification will be withheld.

Cyclic load testing:

A cyclic test is when the basketball tower is subjected to repeated testing of how it handles weight. The goal of such testing is to confirm that the product will perform reliably when used in real life scenarios.
To be issued with an engineer certification, the structure must withstand 100,000 load cycles from zero imposed action to the prototype cyclic test load. The prototype cyclic test load is 1.2kN applied downward at the face of the backboard. The equipment is acceptable after test if the permanent deformation is less than 10mm and no cracks are present.


Not only do you want to avoid the inconvenience of a client call-back, but you also need to remember that it is a serious safety concern if your court contains below-average sports equipment.
It’s important to be wary of sports equipment providers that do not adhere to these rules, as the slightest malfunction with a piece of equipment could end in tragedy.

We all want to be as safe as possible when participating in sport – so make sure you choose a reputable sports equipment company when purchasing your sports equipment.


Thanks to David Jones from Ziebell Jones for providing information for this article. For more info, check out on sports court construction

For more information on sports equipment, please contact Grand Slam on 1800 773 461 or



Court Builder Insight: What to Consider When Installing a Multi-Court

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So you’ve decided to install a multi sports court. However your mind is boggling at all the different issues to consider.

Surface type. Legal considerations. Sports equipment…

Where should you begin?multi-court

First up – your best bet is to get some advice from a professional court builder. They can advise you how to best tackle each issue and get your multi-court ball rolling (pun unintended!).

To set you on the right track – we recently spoke to court builder Malcolm Parkes from Dynamic Sports Facilities.

Here are some of the things he recommended:

Check out regulations for courts and equipment

One of the most confusing issues about installing multi-courts is wading through the guidelines for each sport.

There are subtle details that you will need to consider. For example, the standard run-off area for most sports court is 2m. However, Netball Australia’s specifications advise that netball court run-offs needs to be 3.05m. That means when you build a multi-court that includes a netball court – you must provide a 3.05m run off for all sports.

Not only that – each state is different as well.

Queensland schools have some of the strictest regulations when it comes to sport equipment compared to the rest of Australia. The responsibility for setting these regulations lies with the Department of Education for each state – so it is worthwhile checking out what rules you must adhere to.

If you are working with quality court builders, they will advise you on these regulations – however, it is always good move to inform yourself of what is involved as well. This will mean you won’t be in for any nasty shocks that don’t fit in with your original plans.

Carefully check scope of work before signing contract

Your court builder will always provide you with a scope of work when outlining on the terms and conditions of a multi-court installation.

Important: it is up to you to check that the specifications meet your requirements before signing the contract.

If the specifications do not meet your requirements – now is your opportunity to make changes. Unfortunately, once work has begun – it is very difficult to undo if the specs are incorrect.

Insist on quality sports equipment

9 times out of 10 clients will go with the sports equipment that their court builders recommend. And in general, know their stuff.

However, it is very important that you know what you are getting. And you need to consider the quality of equipment you are getting for your money.

Firstly, make sure it is strong.BB829

The sports equipment you have been recommended can often be flimsy and on the ‘just legal’ side of things. This is a bad move both for safety reasons and financial reasons. You may need to take  extra precautions to ensure your equipment meets safety standards (for example, adding extra weight to the base a free-standing volleyball post so it does not get knocked over). Also, will probably find you’ll need to replace cheap, poor quality sports equipment a lot sooner.

Secondly, check it is certified.

You should always be hesitant when considering sports equipment that has not been given an engineer certification. This means it has withstood vigorous testing to make sure it meets the safety requirements.

Click here to see if your sports equipment meets safety requirements.

Thirdly, check that your sports equipment is flexible enough to meet your multi-court requirements. For example, you may not have the storage space for a netball post when it needs to be removed to make way for a basketball game. So a better option might be a reversible basketball/netball tower that can simply be swung round to cater for different sports.  Be aware of the different options on the market, and find something that will suit your situation the most.


Make sure you get a good overview of what you need to consider before giving the go ahead to install you multi-court. This includes making sure you adhere to sporting specifications, double check your scope of work, and ensure your sports equipment is durable, certified and suits your specific needs.

By doing a little research of your own first, you will save yourself a lot of hassle down the track. You will find these details will help to deliver your multi-court on time and on budget.

Article advised by Malcolm Parkes from Dynamic Sports Facilities.

For court building advice, please contact Dynamic Sports Facilities on 1300 653 130 or

For sports equipment advice – please contact Grand Slam Sports Equipment on 1800 773 461 or



Abbott’s plans for sport funding

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For those of us in the sports and recreation industry – we’ve got one question on our minds at the moment.

What are Abbott’s plans for community sport funding?329909-abbott

With all the prophecies of economic doom and gloom over the last 12 months, the conversation about sport isn’t high on the political spectrum.

In fact, the only time sport really got a look in during the election was when the teeny-tiny Australian Sports Party surprised everyone with the potential of winning a Senate seat.

But no such luck there either.

It’s been a hard few years for our industry – particularly with the scrapping of Labour’s BER Scheme in 2010 which provided 200,000 jobs building and upgrading facilities in schools.  More recently, uncertainty with the economy has the private sector sitting on their hands with their wallet clasped firmly underneath.

There are also several reports of school and council budgets being slashed. A recent article in the Coffs Coast Advocate reported a $100,000 cut to the council’s sport budget, despite the fact that investment would bring about $3 million in local spending.

So does the new Abbott government present any silver lining for developing sport and recreation in Australia?

Positive signs

There are many welcoming the new Abbott government with open arms – dreaming about restoring Australia to the so-called ‘glory days’ of the Howard/Costello economic power force. They believe that the mere presence of a conservative, economic focused government is enough to boost business sentiment, and get people spending on sport and recreation again.

Then there are the TV images of Abbott sweating it out in fun runs and donning the cycling shorts every morning. Apart from the obvious shudder we experience when we see this – surely this is a sign that he is a man who values sport and fitness.


But then again, maybe not.

Negative signs

There are plenty of other signs that Abbott does not feel that sport is particularly important in the grand scheme of things.

First of all, he has axed the position as Minister of Sport. Instead, rolling it into the broader umbrella of the Department of Health. The incoming Minister for Health, Peter Dutton, has defended the move by saying that consolidating these responsibilities would “break down some of the silos” between the different policy areas in health.

This may be true – however, consolidation of departments means consolidation of budgets. With funding to hospitals, the elderly and disability holding such a huge focus in the public’s eyes – investment in sport is likely to get lost in the big black budget vortex.

A further black mark can be traced back to when the BER was in full swing, Abbott heavily criticised the program for its “waste and mismanagement”, indicating that he believed this funding would be better invested somewhere else.

What does the future hold?

It will pretty much be a game of ‘wait and see’ when it comes to Abbott’s stance on sport and recreation funding.

Investment in health features strongly on their agenda. Hopefully they will take a ‘preventative approach’ rather than a ‘curative approach’ unlike past governments, as this is where investing in sport and recreation truly comes into its’ own.

The jury is out on Minister Peter Dutton’s statement; “We want sport to be a key component of people’s daily lives”.

Let’s hope he means participation in sport, rather than stimulating the economy through betting odds.


Basketball Court Dimensions

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Basketball court dimensions

The playing court dimensions are 28m long by 15m wide (Note: measurements are taken from the inside edge of the boundary line).

If the court is indoors, the height of the ceiling or the lowest obstruction above the floor should be at least 7m.


Click to expand

Basketball court lines

All lines should be 5cm in width and in the drawn in the same colour (usually white)

Boundary line dimensions

The minimum space around the court for run-off is 2m. Any obstruction (including team bench seats), must be installed at least 2m from the playing court.

Spectator seating must be at least 5m from the outside edge of the boundary lines of the playing court.

Centre circle dimensions

The centre circle is measured from the outer edge and has a radius of 1.8m. If painted, the inside of the centre circle should be the same colour as restricted areas.

The radius of the free-throw semi-circles should be 1.8m (which is measured to the outer edge of the circumference) and with the centre in the middle of the free-throw line.

The free-throw line is parallel to each end line.  It’s furthest edge is 5.80m from the inner edge of the endline and is 3.60m long.

The Key dimensions

The Key measures in a rectangle of 5.8m by 3.6m.  The restricted area must be painted for international competitions.

The rectangle areas represent the restricted areas and are marked on the playing court finished by the endlines. The extended free-throw lines and the lines originates at the endlines, their outer edges 2.45m from the mid-points of the endlines and terminating at the outer edge of the free-throw lines. These lines, excluding the endlines, are part of the restricted area. The interior of the restricted areas must be painted.

Free throw and restricted area

Free-throw rebound places along the restricted area, reserved for players during free throws and are marked in the diagram to the right.

Three point goal area dimensions

The three point line has been extended from 6.25m to 6.75m.  Basketball Australia recommends that the courts should be marked with both three point lines (6.25m and 6.75m).

The new 6.75m three point line should be marked in white (or the same colour as the rest of the basketball court line) and the old 6.25m three point line marked in an alternate colour, ie yellow, red, green, blue or black.

The three point field goal area (see diagram on the next page) is the entire floor area of the playing court, except for the area near the opponents’ basket., limited by and including:

  • Two parallel lines extending from and perpendicular to the endlines, with the outer edge 0.90m from the inner edge of the sidelines.
  • An arc of radium 6.75m measured from the point on the floor beneath the exact centre of the opponents’ basket to the outer edge of arc. This distance of the point on the floor from the inner edge of the mid-point of the endline is 1.575m.  The arc is joined to the parallel lines.

The three point line is not part of the three-point field goal area.

Throw-in line dimensions

A throw-in line 15cm long, outside the playing court, will be marked 8.325m from the end line (at the top of the three point arc) on the sideline opposite the scorer’s table.  Previously this throw-in was administered at the half way line, opposite the scorer’s table.

No-charge semi-circle dimensions

The no-charge semi-circle lines shall be marked on the playing courts, limited by:

  • A semi-circle with a radius of 1.25m measured from the point on the floor beneath the exact centre of the basket to the inner edge of the semi-circle.  The semi-circle is joined to:
  • Two parallel lines perpendicular to the endlines, the inner edge 1.25m from the point on the floor beneath the exact centre of the basket, 0.375m in length and ending 1.20m from the inner edge of the endline.
    The no-charge semi-circle areas are completed by imaginary lines joining the ends of the parallel lines directly below the front edges of the backboards.  The no-charge semi-circle lines are not part of the no-charge semi-circle areas.

*Please note: these guidelines have been obtained from the Department of Sport (WA) who provides the following warning: The information in this guide is general in nature and cannot be relied upon as professional advice concerning the design of, or marking out for, sporting facilities and playing areas. No assurance is given as to the accuracy of any information contained in this guide and readers should not rely on its accuracy. Readers should obtain their own independent and professional advice in relation to their proposed sporting activity.

Tennis-court dimensions

Tennis Court Dimensions

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Court Dimensions

The tennis court is 23.77m long and 8.23m wide for single matches. For doubles matches, the court is 10.97m wide.

The court is divided across the centre by the tennis net attached to two tennis posts 1.07m high. The height of the net is 0.914m at the centre, and is secured to the ground by a centre strap.

For doubles matches, the tennis posts are 0.914m outside the doubles court on each side. For singles matches the centres of the net posts are 0.914m outside the singles court on each side.

Tennis-court dimensions

Tennis Court Line Markings

Note: All court measurements are made to the outside of the lines.

All lines of the court are the same colour clearly contrasting with the colour of the surface (often white lines against a green surface).

Baselines are lines at the ends of the court. Each baseline is divided in half by a centre mark, 10cm long and parallel with the singles sidelines. The baseline is up to 10cm wide.

Sidelines are the lines at the sides of the court.

Service lines are two lines between the singles sidelines 6.40m from each side of the net, parallel with the net.

The centre service line is on each side of the net.The area between the service line and the net is divided into two equal parts by the centre service line and is called the service courts. The centre service line is parallel with the singles sidelines and halfway between them. The centre service line and centre mark is 5cm wide.

Space around the tennis court

International competitions: minimum distance between baselines and backstops is 6.4m, and the minimum distance between side lines and sidestops is 3.66m.

Recreational and club play: minimum distance between baselines and backstops is 5.48m, and the minimum distance between sidelines and sidestops is 3.05m.

Indoor tennis court: minimum height to the ceiling is 9.14m. Where courts are constructed within the confines of a common enclosure, the distance between sidelines is not less than 3.658m.

*Please note: these guidelines have been obtained from the Department of Sport (WA) who provides the following warning: The information in this guide is general in nature and cannot be relied upon as professional advice concerning the design of, or marking out for, sporting facilities and playing areas. No assurance is given as to the accuracy of any information contained in this guide and readers should not rely on its accuracy. Readers should obtain their own independent and professional advice in relation to their proposed sporting activity.


Why SMC basketball backboards last longer

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Sheet moulding compound (SMC) is the new white sliced bread of basketball backboards. So what is SMC and why is it better?

What is SMC?sheet moulding compound (smc)

Sheet molding compound (SMC) is fibreglass mix that is incredibly durable. It is comprised of several materials including fibreglass, polymer resin, release agents and thickeners.

Why are SMC backboards better?

  • Much stronger and more durable than timber alternatives
  • Will withstand years of wear and tear
  • Will not corrode over time
  • Increased water resistance
  • Increased UV resistance
  • Very low fire retardancy
  • Expected to last up to 10 years (depending on the environment)
  • Safer to use with electric indoor basketball systems

How is SMC made?

SMC fibreglass is covered by either polyethylene or nylon plastic on the top and bottom. This stops the material from adhering to surfaces automatically. To form it, the SMC mixture is spread on the bottom layer of polyethylene, and small portions of fibreglass are mixed into the paste. The top layer of polyethylene is then placed over the top and rolled into the desired thickness.

What else is SMC used for?

Other than basketball backboards, is often used for cars, boats, heaters, air conditioners, and so on. The major advantages of SMC are that it is extremely durable, and can be moulded into different shapes and sizes. It can withstand intense heat and is flame retardant which is a great safety feature. It also does not corrode in wet environments which extends its life dramatically. SMC is a poor conductor of electricity which makes it perfect to use as electrical appliances.

To learn more about SMC basketball backboards, call Grand Slam on 1800 773 461 or email

budget pic

The Federal Budget: What does it mean for court builders?

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Currently, we’re facing an impending election and massive fluxuations between what the government says and what the government delivers.budget pic

It is no wonder that many court builders are getting nervous about how this will impact on the amount of work available over the next few years.

On Tuesday night, Wayne Swan handed down his sixth budget. Talk about a stark contrast to last year! In the space on 12 seemingly short months, the government has back-flipped on their promise to deliver a surplus. Instead, Australia is facing an $18 billion deficit.

So how does this impact on the sports equipment industry?

Here’s a brief outline on how the recent budget could be interpreted for court builders:

  • Middle-high income families have taken a number of hits – including delayed increases in the Family Tax benefits and the abolition of the baby bonus. All of these elements will make them think twice before purchasing equipment for private use.


  • State governments will be forced to tighten their purse-strings as they are hit up for revenue to pump into Labour’s NDIS and Gonski reforms. Although these are both great reforms, it channels income away from other areas of the economy. For example, council work may not come as thick and fast as it once did.


  • The milking of the resources boom will continue as the government squeezes as much out of mining companies while they still can. It is unlikely mining companies will take this lying down.

For example, the recent pull out of Woodside Petroleum’s $40 billion gas project at James Price Point has meant a massive loss in revenue.

Loss of major projects is likely to keep occurring as mining companies realize they can no longer remain competitive under the government’s current regulations.

In a bid to remain competitive, staff recreation facilities may fall on the list of priorities.


  • It’s not all doom and gloom! $9.8 billion has been promised for schools over the next six years for the new Gonski reforms. A good percentage of this is likely to be channeled into sports equipment for schools programs.


  • $3.7 billion will be spent on the ‘Living Longer Living Better’ aged care reforms. This focuses on providing a better quality of life for an ageing population – including better access to exercise and recreation facilities

No matter which way you look at it, a $19 billion write-down in revenue does not sound promising for anyone – let alone court builders.

The best strategy, as always, is to adapt and adjust. Times may get a little tougher but by reviewing a few of the facts and figures, it is possible to identify the opportunities for court builders.

Price competitiveness and supply of high quality products and service remain as important as ever.

When all’s said and done – Australia’s economy is in much better shape than the majority of countries around the world. And with the more realistic promise of returning to surplus by 2016/17, more optimistic economic times are certainly not out of sight.