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Thread: What makes a ball crack while sitting?

  1. #1
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    Default What makes a ball crack while sitting?

    So back in January when I first started back I bought a Storm Sync off a fellow lefty and used it a couple of weeks before buying my BWG. The ball had a small crack between the fingers and a very small circular crack around the thumbhole. I kept this in my bag and would occasionally pull it out but once I got the Kingpin I pulled it and sat it on a chair in my office. A few weeks ago I picked it up and it was cracked 1/2 way around. I had just used it a couple weeks earlier. No big deal as I was't planning on using it anymore anyway. So today went to throw it out and now it is cracked the whole way around. Nobody has touched this ball. My office is in the basement and we have had the AC running all summer so no real humidity or temp changes. I keep my bag in here too. Should I be worried about my other balls? There are no cracks in any of those.
    Arsenal "15# Brunswick Kingpin" "15# Hammer Black Widow Gold" "15# Brunswick Rhino Black Pearl"
    Rev Rate about 325 @ about 18.5 MPH * High Game: 266 - High Series: ~670ish (both in the late 90's early 2000's)
    Oh, and LEFTY!!!

  2. #2
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    bowl1820's Avatar
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    "Should I be worried about my other balls? There are no cracks in any of those. "

    No don't worry, They'll either crack or they won't. While there are a few things to do , that might help prevent it and let you sleep at night. But Ultimately it don't mean squat. There are bowlers who take great care of their equipment and their balls still crack and others who abuse them and they don't.


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    There are many different theories on why balls crack anyone or a combination of them could be right or wrong such as:

    They crack because the coverstock is placed under tension as it cures and shrinks slightly around a basically noncompressable core.
    (The tension in the cover material is what causes it to propagate around the ball.)

    Temperature Changes
    Gravity
    chemicals in carpets
    chemicals in upholstery
    the glue used to put the inserts in
    the glue was placed on the cover stock not the filler
    too much glue was used
    the holes not beveled
    bad plug job
    the bit they drilled the holes with was dull
    They Drilled the holes too fast
    you let the ball sit too long without rotating it.
    the bridge was too narrow
    the holes are too close to the pin

    Thin covers may be a factor also

    A newer thought going around is that balls are shipped out before they are fully cured and that may be a factor also.

    Undrilled balls just sitting on the shelf in proshops have been know to crack.

    There are also several idea on how to prevent them from cracking. Sealing them in a plastic bag , storing with the holes pointing down.

    Those ideas originally came from a blog post by Jeff Richgels about balls cracking and a article in the Fall 2008 edition of Pro Shop Insider written by Rich Jacobson.

    I think it's combination of factors, It's just balls today have thin, highly porous covers compared to older balls. Their going to crack more easily, when stressed over time.


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    This video is on one of Ron's Facebook page's, he posted it the other day.

    https://www.facebook.com/10000186412...9344229804368/

    I've heard most of this before, But he has a tip to help keep the bridge from cracking I hadn't seen before (or at least I don't remember it if I did).

    The tip is to take your bevel knife and scrape the bridge down so it's flat.

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    Long term Ball storage and cracking

    Came across a interesting blog post by Jeff Richgels about balls cracking and a article in the Fall 2008 edition of Pro Shop Insider written by Rich Jacobson.

    Click here for The 11th Frame: The Ebonite article that tells you how to keep resin balls from cracking – and how I got it wrong

    Click here for the Ebonite Article

    The main points of Rich Jacobson's "Ask Ebonite.com" article were that while there are other factors in balls cracking, the main reason for it happening during long term storage were gravity and leaving a ball in a static position for a long time.

    The recommendation to help reduce the chance of cracking is to rotate the ball a quarter turn every few weeks.

    The second factor is open air exposure, which has to do with the curing process of the balls. While the ball surface is fully cured when it leaves the factory, They will still continue to cure for month or even years.

    The recommendation to help reduce the chance of cracking is to store the ball in a ziplock bag or wrapped with plastic wrap or a plastic bag. You want as tight a fit as you can get, to insulate the ball from the outside air and store at room temperature.

    Thinking about it, balls do typically have a plastic bag around them when they come from the factory.


    While this won't stop cracking totally, it could help reduce it.
    Last edited by bowl1820; 09-13-2018 at 04:25 PM.

    Right handed Stroker, high track ,about 13 degree axis tilt. PAP is located 5 9/16” over 1 3/4” up.Speed ave. about 14 mph at the pins. Medium rev’s.High Game 300, High series 798

    "Adjust too soon and maybe ruin one frame, adjust too late and ruin a game."

  3. #3

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    I experienced one ball cracking on me and it was a Storm Vivid, which is from the same manufacturing time frame as the Sync. When it failed, it was probably 8 years old and all it was doing was sitting on the basement floor on a ball cup. Hadn't used it in a long while. Picked it up one day and couldn't believe it had crack all the way around.
    Called Storm technical hot line about the issue. Bowling balls are best kept being used every now and then. If they're not being used, rotate them every so often (like once a month or so). Shift them 90 degrees or something as gravity works on the core and cover I guess.
    The biggest culprits are probably getting some cracked surfaces around or near drilling holes or having had them plugged and redrilled. My Vivid was dropped one time on to a cement floor. That could have been enough to fracture something at that time.
    Have had no other ball crack on me and I do move things around a little every now and then. Guess I'll keep doing that... Good luck and hope this helps...

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    Thanks guys. Like I said, I bought the Sync off another bowler so not sure of its history or how he stored it. He is a 220 average bowler so I'm sure he knows how to take care of them.
    I currently have the Kingpin and the BWG that I use each week. The Rhino hardly comes out of my bag but maybe I will start throwing it a few frames a night (or at least in warmups) just to get it rotated in.
    Arsenal "15# Brunswick Kingpin" "15# Hammer Black Widow Gold" "15# Brunswick Rhino Black Pearl"
    Rev Rate about 325 @ about 18.5 MPH * High Game: 266 - High Series: ~670ish (both in the late 90's early 2000's)
    Oh, and LEFTY!!!

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    I've had a few crack on me over the years. I will say that Storm has a bad reputation for it, but I also think that is because they sell a TON of balls. Ever since the scented balls came out from Storm, I have seen it to more problematic. Then I decided to take a tour of the factory in Brigham City (Alex Hoskins gave me the tour, great guy, bowl against him fairly regularly). I will agree with bowl1820 on this one, I think the biggest thing is cure time. While taking the tour, I asked the question of how long it takes for the entire process to make and get ready to ship. 3 DAYS! That's it! 1.5 days for the core to "cure" (FYI, not fully cured before pouring the remainder of the ball). So, the core is still somewhat swelling before they pour the filler and cover (cores should take almost a week to fully cure btw). I was astonished to see just how quick the turn around is.
    • Current Arsenal: Storm Timeless, Storm Phaze II, Storm Pitch Black, Storm Drive, Rotogrip Hot Cell, Rotogrip Show Off, DV8 Turmoil Pearl
    • High Game: 300 (3 11 in a row) / High Series: 799
    • Current Average: 202 / PAP: 5" over, 1/8" up
    • Rev Rate: 425rpm / 2-Hands

  6. #6
    Bowling God Aslan's Avatar
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    I agree with Bowl1820.

    Leaving them in plastic bags and trying to rotate them from time to time will help.

    I've noticed drilled balls that I store on my bowling ball rack are more likely to crack...I think it's a gravity issue where the ball is not fully supported in the middle.

    Because I am known for buying balls on clearance and keeping them for years, undrilled...I've experienced a great deal of undrilled bowling balls cracking as well.

    Drilled balls that I've had that have Cracked:
    - Storm Frantic
    - Brunswick Slingshot
    - Radical Reax Pearl

    Undrilled balls that I've had crack in storage:
    - DV8 Thug Life
    - Track 706A
    - 900Global "The Nuts"

    Those are just the ones that I remember it happening. There were probably more. It's such an issue...that I decided to slim down the "closet of destiny" and stop hoarding bowling balls. All it takes is a couple of them to crack before you can use them and it defeats the purpose of the money you save. I am really excited about my next arsenal (planned debut Fall 2019) and I'm really, really, really hoping none of them crack between now and then.
    Last edited by Aslan; 09-15-2018 at 04:20 PM.
    In Bag: (: .) DV8 Thug Life; (: .) Ebonite Warning Sign; (: .) Hammer Scandal Pearl; (: .) Track 300A; (: .) Brunswick Guardian
    USBC#: 8259-59071; USBC Sanctioned Average = 177; Lifetime Average = 168;
    Ball Speed: 16.55mph; Rev. Rate: 240rpm || High Game (sanc.) = 300 (267); High Series (sanc.) = 725 (689); Clean Games: 134

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