Bowling Ball Surface Grit Pads
If you are not an experienced tournament bowler and do not frequent the local pro shop, there are still things you can do to take care of your bowling ball surfaces.
Not everyone owns a high speed ball spinner
like the ones used in pro shops or are in the habit of applying texture
to the surfaces of their own bowling balls
. But you can quickly and easily learn to do so if you familiarize yourself with the items available on the market to help you care for your own equipment.
In order to keep the bowling ball surfaces prepared to get you consistent ball motion, you can screen these surfaces yourself with a very small investment in grit pads, ball cleaner, and polish.
You can use a technique to clean and texture your ball surfaces by hand simply enough. Just acquire inexpensive grit pads, cleaner, and polish and do the work at home or at the center upon completion of bowling.
It helps to first get acquainted with the various grit pads available at pro shops or online and what the various grits accomplish. Here is a simple list of ball care grit pads
below which are itemized from producing the earliest roll up to the latest break point down the lane:
180 Abralon pad...this pad produces a highly textured surface for maximum gripping power.
360 Abralon pad...slightly less texture producing pad but very good on extremely oiled lane surfaces.
500 Abralon pad...a step closer to a smoother ball finish with sufficient gripping power.
1000 Abralon pad...produces sufficient amount of gripping power on most lane conditions.
2000 Abralon pad....produces a medium grit texture providing good skid with back end bite.
4000 Abralon pad...the finest texture of all pads and extends bowling ball skid length.
If you find yourself in need of tweaking your ball surfaces between the ranges Abralon pads produce, there are intermediate scuffing pads available in hardware stores or perhaps online which fill in between these Abralon pad ranges. For example, there are scuff pads with textures of 400 grit, 600, 800, 1200, 1500, and 2500 grit.
Depending on how involved you wish to become in applying texture to your ball surfaces, you can choose any of the above mentioned pads and prepare your equipment for use in competition as you deem appropriate.
The smoother the ball surface, the longer the ball skid. The rougher the texture, the quicker ball reaction you will get on the lane surface.
Use of a ball cleaner is advised before using the Abralon pads. After using pads, you can use polish to further extend ball skid on dry or medium dry lanes, if needed. Polish will give the bowling ball a more skid/snap reaction than the same texture with no polish.
High speed screening with Abralon pads will generally produce a smoother and shinier finish than by hand. If you use pads by hand, try to use consistent pressure on the pads and work the entire ball surface as evenly as possible.
In general, using the six listed Abralon pads will give you sufficient ranges in ball surface texture capabilities matching lane conditions where you bowl. You can experiment with layering textures by using multiple pads to fine tune the process until you get the ball skid and back end reaction you seek.
There are multiple methods, resurfacing mediums, and grits of screening pads available for use on the market. These various methods of preparing the coverstock surface of your bowling balls will yield slightly different results so your personal experimentation can prove important in getting the best results for your game.
If you don't get to the pro shop frequently, consider taking care of your own ball coverstocks. Getting consistent ball reactions is a big step toward improving your scores.