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Two-Handed And No-Thumb "Triangle" Bowling Ball Drilling Layout


Originally Posted: 3/8/2016; Updated: 10/28/2021

2021 UPDATE **After August 1, 2020, any and all balance holes must be plugged (filled). Bowlers are allowed up to five holes for gripping purposes but each hole must be used every delivery. A bowler who chooses not to use a thumb hole will scribe the intended center of palm with a plus (+) mark to indicate grip orientation. This triangle layout is now considered ILLEGAL per USBC rules. **

Recently, USBC updated their rules regarding balance holes and thumb holes for bowlers who don't use their thumb. No-Thumb and Two-Handed bowlers (who don't put their thumb in) were both affected. Essentially, bowlers who don't put their thumb in the ball can either have a thumb hole or a weight hole, not both.

These changes seriously limited drilling layout options for these bowlers... until now. A certain layout has recently caught some steam. We've been using a variation of this since the 90's for No-Thumb bowlers. I'm referring to the “Triangle” drilling layout.

As you see in the image above, this layout features 3 holes drilled in a “triangle” pattern around the Center of Gravity (CG). This allows for 6 different layouts in the same ball!

Here's how to lay the ball out:

1. Draw a line from Pin to CG.

2. Draw a line 120 degrees from Pin to CG line.

3. Draw a 3rd line, 120 degrees from 2nd line.

4. Draw 1/4” bridge on each line.

5. Drill 3 finger holes, each touching 2 of the bridge lines. Drill holes with 3/8 lateral (away) pitch and 0 forward/reverse pitch. All 3 holes should be drilled with the size for the largest finger (This will be the middle finger for 99.5% of bowlers).

So, what are the 6 different layouts created when you use the Triangle layout?

If you refer to the image above, here are the layout variations:

1. Pin at 6 o'clock
2. Pin at 10 o'clock
3. Pin at 2 o'clock
4. Pin at 12 o'clock
5. Pin at 8 o'clock
6. pin at 4 o'clock

The pin to PAP distance on each variation will vary based on the bowler's PAP. For more detailed information and to see a visual demonstration of the info presented in this article, please watch the video below.

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