How To Polish A Bowling Ball Like A Pro

How to Polish Bowling Ball

Bowling the perfect game is a significant priority for all bowlers, whether with friends or in a tournament. However, if your Brunswick ball has an oily buildup, this friendly competition swiftly shifts in your opponent’s favor. We demonstrate how to polish a bowling ball and deep clean the surface in a few simple steps.

A favourite pastime is to spend a day at the bowling alley. It’s a thrill to hold the smooth ball in your hands as you take position and aim, to hear the bowling ball roll down the lane like thunder, and to hear the pins fly with a boom and clatter.

Occasionally, the ball will miss its target, maybe due to oil and dirt residue on the ball’s surface or clogged pores in a urethane or reactive bowling ball.

While it’s convenient to take your ball to a pro shop to have it polished in a ball spinner and adjust the surface, there are techniques to clean and polish the ball’s cover at home to maximize its length and backend reaction.

Components of a Bowling Ball

Bowling balls of the current age are frequently categorized as three-piece or two-piece balls. Historically, a ball’s categorization was determined by the number of parts needed to make it; however, this is no longer always the case with two-piece balls.

Three-piece balls continue to be made up of three components: a thin coverstock, a filler substance, and a pancake weight block.

On the other hand, today’s two-piece balls frequently contain more than two components due to the addition of weight blocks to an outer core that is distinct from the coverstock. This means that a two-piece ball is often composed of three components: a coverstock, a body, and an outer core.

Whether you have a three-piece or two-piece bowling ball, the coverstock has a more significant impact on how your ball performs on-lane than any other component. Indeed, the coverstock accounts for between 60% and 80% of your ball’s on-lane performance. In comparison, just 20% -40% of the version of your ball will be related to its core, drilling arrangement, and other physical properties.

Read More: How to Buy a Bowling Ball

Take Care of Your Bowling Ball

While you cannot modify the hardness of your bowling ball, you can maintain it to ensure it performs optimally. You are wiping your ball clean before each shot is considered essential maintenance.

Wiping your ball frequently will help it roll more consistently and help prevent the ball’s coverstock from absorbing oil. When you’re finished with a game, you should also clean your bowling ball with an industrial cleaner.

After around 75 games, it is usually recommended to clean your ball with a liquid detergent properly. Naturally, it’s prudent to clean your bowling towel as well. It is controversial how frequently a bowling ball should be surfaced or resurfaced for optimal performance.

Some sources say you should resurface your ball after 60 games, while others claim you can play more than four times that amount of matches without resurfacing.

Numerous aspects, including the track area of your ball, affect how frequently and when you’ll need to resurface it. When the track area begins to show symptoms of wear and tear, it is usually necessary to resurface the ball.

Read More: How to Dispose of a Bowling Ball?

Self-Cleaning and Polishing Bowling Balls

Cleaning bowling balls every six games and polishing them every 15 to 18 games is recommended, especially if playing on oily lanes.

Self-Cleaning and Polishing Bowling Balls

Learn how to quickly and thoroughly clean your bowling ball, as well as how to polish and resurface it to achieve the ideal bowling ball motion.

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Sanders vs. Polishers

Given how much your ball’s coverstock affects your play, it’s critical to understand how it affects your ball’s performance in the lane. Bowling balls typically have a sanded or polished coverstock. Said, a rough or sanded alley will cause more friction with your bowling ball.

Sanding coverstock is better than polished if you want your ball to hook earlier in the lane’s oil pattern. If you want your ball to travel down the road before joining, a polished ball is a way to go.

You can treat your ball’s coverstock to better match your specific playing style and the condition of the lane you’ll be playing on. When modifying your ball’s surface, consider that modifications will affect the amount of friction your ball generates online.

Following are some of these characteristics:

  • Roughness:

The distance between the peaks and valleys on the surface of your ball, the height and depth of those highs and lows, and the chemical composition of the coverstock and finish all contribute to the roughness. As previously stated, a rougher surface area often results in increased lane friction.

  • Absorption Rate:

Today’s reactive resin coverstocks are porous, absorbing liquids such as lane oil. Balls with a higher absorption rate cause more friction during play.

  • Hard Surface:

While surface hardness is less important today than it was decades ago, the hardness of your ball’s coverstock can still affect its overall performance in the lane. As a general rule, the softer the ball’s surface, the less friction it creates with the road.

If you intend to compete in a USBC-sanctioned event, your ball’s coverstock must match the following requirements:

  • The Average Peak-to-Valley Surface Roughness:

A ball’s coverstock is frequently referred to as “Ra.” To compete in a USBC bowling match, your ball’s coverstock must have a Ra of less than 50 micro-inches at a 500 Abralon surface finish.

  • Dry Lane Coefficient of Friction:

Also known as “COF,” your ball’s dry lane coefficient of friction must be less than.32 when measured by the USBC under specified conditions.

  • Hardness:

To compete in a USBC bowling contest, your ball’s hardness must be 72 or greater when measured with a Type D Shore durometer. It must have a Mohs hardness of 6.0 or less.

How to Quick Clean Bowling Ball

The simplest method of polishing a bowling ball is to clean it after use to remove excess oil and ensure good playing action. This is a simple method of preventing fat from forming on the ball’s surface.

  1. Microfiber Wipe: Maintain a microfiber cloth in your bowling bag and use it after each game. Assemble a soft, lint-free towel to avoid particles from gathering on the ball surface and interfering with your game.
  1. Alcohol Rubbing: After each throw, wipe the ball to eliminate any remaining oil and replace it with a clean towel during extended play. After bowling, dampen the cloth with rubbing alcohol, clean the entire surface, and dry it thoroughly before repackaging it in its bag.

How to Deep Clean and Polish a Bowling Ball

While taking your bowling ball to a pro shop is the best method to polish it, soaking it in warm water is an excellent technique to deep clean the coverstock and remove oil and dirt.

  • Deep Cleaning of Bowling Balls
  • Waterproof tape
  • Warm water
  • Big bucket
  • Microfiber towel

Cover the bowling ball holes with waterproof tape to protect the ball’s interior, and ensure that the video is smooth and without gaps. Soak the ball in a large pail of boiling water for 20 minutes.

Remove the bowling ball from the water and pat dry the entire surface with a soft, lint-free towel, leaving the tape in place to prevent dripping water from entering the holes. Remove the tape and dry the area around the finger holes after completely drying.

A Homemade Bowling Ball Polish Deep Cleans

The most effective method of cleaning a bowling ball is to use a solvent. This DIY bowling ball polish combines the cleaning power of Simple Green with the abrasiveness of rubbing alcohol to remove oily residue effectively.

Self-Cleaning Bowling Balls

  • Simplicity Green
  • Alcohol rubbing
  • Water
  • Spray bottle
  • Waterproof tape
  • Microfiber wipe

To make this homemade bowling ball cleaning, fill a spray bottle halfway with Simple Green, water, and rubbing alcohol and gently shake. Cover the finger holes on the ball with waterproof tape to guarantee that no cleaning polish enters.

Clean and polish the ball’s surface by spraying the cleaner and buffing it with a microfiber towel. When finished, remove the tape off the ball and clean the area surrounding the holes.

Tools for Resurfacing Bowling Balls

With the cost of single-speed and multi-speed ball spinners decreasing, many bowlers are exploring do-it-yourself bowling ball resurfacing procedures. Whether you plan to resurface a bowling ball without or with a spinner, you’ll need a few essential pieces of equipment to accomplish the task properly.

The following products are required to resurface your bowling ball:

1. The Sanding Agent

The Sanding Agent

You have an option in terms of the sandpaper you use to sand your bowling ball. While some individuals choose to surface their balls with sandpaper or 3M Scotch Brite pads, the Mirka Abralon air sanding pads and discs available at National Abrasives, Inc. are also popular choices.

Depending on your resurfacing objectives, you may want varying degrees of grit, which means you may require more than one sanding agent. SIA air discs are available in spirits ranging from 240G to 4,000G. The following determinations are available in Abralon pads:

  • 180G
  • 360G
  • 500G
  • 1,000G
  • 2,000G
  • 3,000G
  • 4,000G

2. Water

You’ll need a dish large enough to rinse your sanding pads in. Additionally, you’ll want to keep a spray bottle of water on hand to spritz your bowling ball as needed. Utilizing water during the resurfacing process has two advantages.

To begin, it keeps your ball and hands lubricated and cool when sanding. Additionally, it assists in preventing the dust generated as you rub your ball from spreading needlessly.

3. Towels and Pads for Polishing

If you’re planning to polish or compound your bowling ball after resurfacing it, you’ll also need numerous towels or polishing pads.

 Apply each product you use for your ball with a separate towel or pad. For example, use one towel to apply compound, another to polish, and a third to clean your ball.

4. Compounding, polishing, and cleaning agent

Compounding, polishing, and cleaning agent

Assemble the compound, polish, and cleaning items you’ll use after sanding your ball.

5. Spinner for Bowling Balls

Spinner for Bowling Balls

If you do not have access to a bowling ball spinner, a home resurfacing kit can be used to resurface your bowling ball.

A Spinner to Resurface a Bowling Ball can resurface a bowling ball indefinitely until the manufacturer’s name fades. Whether you’re learning how to resurface a bowling ball at home for the first time or have mastered the technique after resurfacing your ball numerous times, the method is essentially the same.

Lower Grits Vs. Higher Grits

The first step in resurfacing your bowling ball is to choose the desired outcome of the process. Your final goals will determine the grit and sanding technique you use.

In general, smaller grits assist your ball in performing better in heavily oiled lanes and are recommended for players with a high ball speed and a short number of revolutions, as they leave your ball with more surface area. Higher grits leave less surface area on your ball and are recommended for players seeking better control, as they prolong your ball’s hook phase during play.

Techniques for Sanding

Depending on the sanding technique you apply, you can make an early or later hook, an increased or lowered hook, or change length. The most frequently used sanding technique is to cross sand at a 90-degree angle to the initial sanding pattern on your ball.

If you sand with your ball’s original track, you’ll get more length and aggression in the rear of the lane. To get an early roll with a less forceful backside, sand against the first track of your ball.

Unless you’re attempting to accomplish a specific aim with a particular technique of sanding, it’s usually a good idea to set your bowling ball in your spinner with the center of its grip at the top when you’re ready to begin sanding. After sanding the exposed surface, spin the ball 180 degrees. Once you’ve completed your work on that surface, rotate your ball 90 degrees.

Finally, you’ll rotate the ball 180 degrees and continue sanding to ensure that you’ve filed all of the coverstock on the ball. Another approach to consider the rotation pattern you should adhere to is as follows:

  1. Label
  2. Opposite label
  3. Top and then the bottom of the label side
  4. Label right then left

The Final Resurfacing Steps

Following your sanding, complete the following steps to complete your resurfacing:

Use compound:

After you’ve finished sanding, it’s time to apply compound, if desired. Compounding ensures that your bowling ball makes complete contact with the lane throughout the play. Increase the speed of your spinner and use a cloth to evenly distribute the product on your ball as you continue to rotate it in the manner described previously.

Polish the surface:

After applying the compound, polish the area using a different cloth. While combination imparts a sparkle to your bowling ball, polish imparts a sticky surface. When you bowl, polishing your ball also helps it react sharply on the backend.

Wash your ball:

Cleaning a bowling ball is the final step in resurfacing it. You are not required to polish your bowling ball with your spinner. Spritz it with cleaner and wipe your ball with a clean, unused cloth. Keep in mind to clean both the finger holes and the ball’s exterior.

FAQs about Bowling Ball Resurfacing

How to Avoid a Dirty Bowling Ball

While using a DIY bowling ball polish is an excellent method to keep your ball clean, there are other ways to keep your ball performing at its best. Here are some tips for preventing your ball from gathering an excessive amount of oil and dirt.

Is Resurfacing a Bowling Ball Helpful?

Pores on bowling balls aid the ball in gripping the greased lane. There is increased friction between the ball and the road due to these pores.

 The bowler can achieve a more compelling hook with increased friction. Resurfacing your bowling ball is an excellent idea to deep clean these pores, as they can become blocked with oils over time. Additionally, resurfacing sharpens the edges of the pores, improving the ball’s grip.

How Do I Increase the Aggressiveness of My Bowling Ball?

Smoother ball surfaces tend to glide around more than softballs on an oily lane. As a result, resurfacing your ball with a low-grit pad provides the essential roughness for a more forceful grip on smooth roads.

 For instance, if you’re bowling on oily lanes, you can consider using a 500 grit Abralon pad to add texture to your bowling ball.

Is it Safe to Cook a Bowling Ball in the Oven?

Many bowlers have used baking their bowling balls as a home treatment for cleaning oily bowling balls to extract the oils from the ball’s pores.

This procedure is useless and perhaps dangerous. You run the danger of burning yourself or harming your ball in high temperatures.

 It’s vital to care for your bowling ball properly, which you may still accomplish at home with products from National Abrasives, Inc.

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