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Thread: Another Bowl1820 challenge...ball surfacing question...

  1. #1
    Bowling God Aslan's Avatar
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    Question Another Bowl1820 challenge...ball surfacing question...

    I'm 98% sure Bowl1820 will know the answer to this...because he is a God among bowlers...and not like an Iceman God...which is Nordic and terrifying.

    But...if he doesn't....maybe some pro shop folks will know. Seems like a simple question...but surprisingly difficult to find the answer online.

    So, when I surface my bowling ball....I know of the abralon, siaair, etc... I also used an "Abranet"...but have had trouble finding them lately. I also bought some called "Tru Cut" recently. Are there any I'm missing?

    More importantly, the "fluids". Not so interested in the various "POLISHES"...or "CLEANERS" as I think these are just over-priced formulations that I rarely use anyway. BUT....in terms of the actual finishing compunds....the buffing materials that actually have some grit to them...what are the options??

    I know Brunswick has Royal Compound and I use alot of that. But what about "Rough Buff"?

    I know Storm has it's Step 1, Step 2, and Step 3 series...and I use them.

    What about the other brands? Does Ebonite/Track/Hammer/Columbia300 have finishing compounds?

    Not interested in Motiv products. But what about other brands? I'm sure Storm and Brunswick aren't the only companies that make surfacing products.

    Again...not interested in cleaners or polishes...interested in the products a pro shop or manufacturer would use to go from sanding to buffing compound...before they'd add (or not add) a final polish.

    Thanks!
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    Bowling Guru Amyers's Avatar
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    Well I'm not bowl1820 but Brunswick makes both royal compound and rough buff. One is a regular polish the other has some added abrasive for a little more matte look. Hammer/ebonite has their won versions as does Motiv. Basically all of these will feature a glossy finish think car wax and a more matte finish think rubbing compound. I'm sure they are all slightly different I've used the storm ones and the Brunswick ones they both work not sure I have a favorite. Brunswick has changed theirs a few times over the last few years at least in name. Many of the cleaning compounds will alter finish some in addition if used with a ball spinner and even a little pressure.

    It's been my experience that ball surfacing changes with how used the pad is and how much pressure you use by quite a bit so worry too much about product is a fools errand. You will have as many changes between people and your techniques than you will have in different products. Find a polish and compound you like and stick with it.
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    High Roller vdubtx's Avatar
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    Trucut pads are made specifically for bowling balls. You will likely see more and more of these pads being used on tour as the company Creating the Difference is an approved brand for PBA now.

    I believe EBI uses the PowerHouse brand of polishes and finishes. LINK
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    Bowling God Aslan's Avatar
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    I think there's a lot of confusion about the difference between "cleaners", "polishes", and "compounds".

    To me...and correct me if I'm wrong

    ...a cleaner is just a material that takes minor scuff marks, dirt, and lane oil residue off the ball. It does relatively little to change the surface of the ball. It would generally be used during the surfacing process only to remove the dust/compound residue after surfacing.

    ...a polish contains very little abrasive material and is primarily used to add a layer of "shine" to the ball that will greatly increase the length of the ball. Polish is obviously a final step in surfacing/resurfacing of spare balls and usually a last step for skid/flip balls.

    ...a compound is essentially a liquid sandpaper. It has the consistency of the orange goo handwashing soap for mechanics and rapairmen...although how gritty it is can vary depending on the compound and where it is in the process (i.e Storm Step 1, Step 2, Step 3).

    I think people often confuse "polish" with "compound". Both seem to add "shine" to a ball...and technically both look like they polish the ball....and to some degree...they both do. But if you pour a drop of Storm Step 1 and compare it to Storm's Xtra Shine polish...it's a pretty noticeable difference!

    I don't buy cleaners because they are very expensive and essentially not noticeably better than your homemade versions. I can buy 32oz of Simple Green and 32oz of Isopropyl Alcohol...mix them together and have 64oz of cleaner for roughly $18 total. Or, I can buy two 32oz containers of the Purple Stuff for $48.

    Polishes...similar reason. First, I don't use that much polish. Usually just to shine up the spare ball when I notice it starting to hook a minor amount. Second, bowling ball polish (as well as other polishes) are expensive. I think a tiny 4oz bottle of Storm Xtra shine in a pro shop will run ya about $10. I use an automotive polish specifically formulated for resin substrates. It's not cheap...but it's not as expensive as bowling ball polishes!!

    I might wanna give that powerhouse stuff a try...but I don't see any powerhouse buffing compound...only their two polishes. Does EBI just use sanding discs and then maybe a polish?

    And I'd like to try the Brunswick rough buff...but I don't really know where it fits with the Royal Compound? Do you use Royal Compound and then Rough Buff? I've heard rough buff leaves a 1200-1500 abralon finish....so why not just sand to 1200-1500 with Abralon pads?
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    USBC#: 8259-59071; USBC Sanctioned Average = 199; Lifetime Average = 168;
    Ball Speed: 17.2mph; Rev. Rate: 240rpm || High Game (sanc.) = 300 (268); High Series (sanc.) = 725 (689); Clean Games: 137

    Smokey this is not 'Nam', this is bowling. There are rules. Proud two-time winner of a bowlingboards.com weekly ball give-away!

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    High Roller vdubtx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aslan View Post
    I don't buy cleaners because they are very expensive and essentially not noticeably better than your homemade versions. I can buy 32oz of Simple Green and 32oz of Isopropyl Alcohol...mix them together and have 64oz of cleaner for roughly $18 total. Or, I can buy two 32oz containers of the Purple Stuff for $48.

    I might wanna give that powerhouse stuff a try...but I don't see any powerhouse buffing compound...only their two polishes. Does EBI just use sanding discs and then maybe a polish?

    And I'd like to try the Brunswick rough buff...but I don't really know where it fits with the Royal Compound? Do you use Royal Compound and then Rough Buff? I've heard rough buff leaves a 1200-1500 abralon finish....so why not just sand to 1200-1500 with Abralon pads?
    For cleaner, I do exactly the same. I buy a gallon of Simple Green at HomeDepot or Lowes etc for about $10, then buy a $1.50 large bottle of isoprpyl alcohol and mix 50/50 and it cleans really well. Better I have found than That Purple Stuff.

    I keep my surfaces simple: use Trucut pad to desired surface and leave dull or add PowerHouse Factory Finish polish to those balls I want to have some shine on them. I don't get into all the rough buff or compounds etc. I also don't use any of Storms Step(1-2-3 etc) products.

    Also, when I get a new ball, I always want to try and put my own fresh surface on the ball. That way, I know I can get it back to my "out of box" surface exactly as I had it when new.
    High Sanctioned Scratch Game - 300(12) Hi Sanctioned Scratch Series - 822(3)
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    Rev Rate 400. Speed 18 at heads, 16.5-17 at pins. Axis tilt 10, Axis Rotation 55. PAP 5 5/8 x 5/8 up

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    When it comes to Brunswick Ruff Buff (which is similar to Storm Step 2), has pretty much been phased out.

    Brunswick Royal Compound (2500 grit) basically replaced it, There is also Royal Shine (5000 grit). Then after those came out there's the Brunswick Crown line products, Factory Compound, Factory Polish and Scrubbing Gel. (Here's a video about them https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9DshwabyZuQ )

    CTD has added a new product called TruCut Hand Applied Polish Powered by Turtle Wax. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4HPE_3sW5XA

    Powerhouse has Factory Finish and also has Ultra Shine.

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    Bowling Guru Amyers's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bowl1820 View Post
    When it comes to Brunswick Ruff Buff (which is similar to Storm Step 2), has pretty much been phased out.

    Brunswick Royal Compound (2500 grit) basically replaced it, There is also Royal Shine (5000 grit). Then after those came out there's the Brunswick Crown line products, Factory Compound, Factory Polish and Scrubbing Gel. (Here's a video about them https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9DshwabyZuQ )

    CTD has added a new product called TruCut Hand Applied Polish Powered by Turtle Wax. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4HPE_3sW5XA

    Powerhouse has Factory Finish and also has Ultra Shine.
    From what I have been told Rough Buff / Royal Compound/ Factory Compound are pretty much the same thing Factory Polish and Royal Polish are about the same it more has to do with naming right with different companies that they have make them.

    This gets confusing but using a compound with a 2500 grit base is not the same as if you had a 2500 grit pad. You will always have less surface when using compound or polish than you will with the finest grain pad. Just to make numbers up if you finish a ball with 1000 grit and add compound (2500 grit) you probably get a surface around 4k but if you take the same ball put the same 1k surface then hit it with your choice of pad (2k,3k,4k,) the ball ends up around 3k grit or so.
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