Everything You Need to Know About Buying a Bowling Ball . . .
but Were Afraid to Ask
At McCorvey’s PRO SHOP we only sell pro line equipment from top manufacturers such as Columbia, Ebonite, Track, Hammer, Storm, Brunswick and MoRich . All of the major ball manufacturers offer a wide range of ball choices to suit a particular style of bowler.
Too Many Choices?
For a newcomer the vast selection of ball choices can be overwhelming. We offer many different brands and models to give our customers more choices, but selecting the right ball is not as difficult as it may seem if you understand the basic differences between balls. First a bowler should decide what type of reaction they are looking for in a new ball. From there you will find several models that will satisfy your general needs and all that is left is to decide on the right layout and surface preparation to make the ball exactly what you need. Be careful of choosing a ball by color or price.
What Makes it Hook?
You do. That’s right, bowling balls do not hook by themselves. The bowler must impart the correct force on a ball to make it hook. This is a learned skill. A ball may hook too much for one bowler and not at all for another. This is why it is important to work with a qualified pro shop technician to help choose the ball that will work best for you!
The coverstock is the most important element in ball performance because it makes contact with the lane surface and determines the amount of friction. The coverstock material plays a big part in determining the price of the ball. More friction generally means more hook and will also cause the ball to wear out sooner.
introduced in 1960
Polyester, also called plastic, has the least friction of today’s coverstocks. It is used primarily in entry-level balls. Its features include vivid colors, low price and controllability.
introduced in 1981
Urethane is a durable coverstock with more friction than polyester. While very popular in the 1980s, there are few balls that use a conventional urethane coverstock on the market today.
Reactive resin is a urethane coverstock that has plasticizer additives that increase the friction characteristics thereby increasing a ball's hook potential. Reactive resin is available in many formulations, each with varying characteristics to help a ball perform as desired by the manufacturer. Bowling balls with reactive resin coverstocks are more sensitive to lane conditions and operator error, so reactive balls are generally used by bowlers with higher skill levels. Reactive resin can be easily sanded or polished in the pro shop to alter the hook characteristics to suit the bowler's style and/or needs. This type of coverstock is by nature less durable than conventional urethane or polyester, but offers more striking power.
introduced in 1998
This type of coverstock starts with a reactive resin base with the addition of very small particles mixed in to increase the friction characteristics in the oily part of the lane. The particles can be made of glass, ceramic, rubber, mica, silica, or various other non-metallic materials. Manufacturers can can control the amount of particles they add to the coverstock to create a wide variety of ball reactions. These balls are a must for tournament bowlers and give the recreational and league bowler more options when selecting a ball to work well on heavier oil patterns.
The inside of the bowling ball, the core, has gone through dramatic changes since 1980. All bowling balls are made with some type of weight block to offset the weight removed when drilling holes. Various core shapes and materials are used to alter the ball’s movement down the lane. The two most important numbers used to compare different cores are radius of gyration and differential. A ball with a lower RG will start to roll sooner on the lane while a ball with a higher RG will slide further before it starts to hook. A ball with a higher differential has more flare potential and will be more reactive to the lane.
This is a very brief explanation about bowling balls. The right ball selection is as important as the correct fit. We are always available to answer any question you might have concerning bowling balls or bowling in general. Thank you for choosing McCorvey’s PRO SHOP .