Antique Trades Dept.: As A.G. Sulzberger reports, blacksmiths for New York’s parks department still hand-build hoops for the city’s basketball courts. The dare-we-say artisan rims are sturdy, and hence cost-effective.
They have survived endless rounds of slam dunks, and occasionally served as chin-up bars and, for the especially nimble, even as spectator seating. Once, the blacksmiths strung a cable around a rim inside the workshop, which they used to tow a van halfway off the ground.