Bowling gear is most certainly not as expensive as it was years ago. Nowadays, bowling balls are much cheaper and the price you pay will rely much more on what you expect to get than the bowling ball itself. Professional bowling balls and professional gear can cost you a fortune, but there are some cheaper alternatives available.
The bowling ball prices have been slowly plummeting, with the reason being so much competition. However, the top bowling balls have also been increasing in prices with the latest technology upgrades potentially changing the game.
I love bowling as a sport and have been a part of the bowling journey for many years, allowing me to test some of the best bowling balls while striking out with many cheaper versions. In this article, we will focus on what you can expect to pay for a top quality bowling ball, as well as a few of the features that make the bowling balls expensive.
After reading this, you should know exactly what you are paying for and how much you will be paying for this specific bowling balls that your eyes have been on for a while:
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Bowling Ball Types And Their Prices Explained:
Aside from helping you get the costs down of your bowling ball, we need to have a look at each bowling ball type. The type of ball or coverstock is the most expensive and it also outweighs the prices that one might think they pay for the inner core. Here are some of the general bowling ball types and what you can expect to pay for them:
The polyester bowling ball is commonly referred to as the plastic bowling ball as well. These are the cheapest bowling and they are also commonly found on the shelves of your local bowling alley. They have such an affordable price due to the construction process and plastic does not have so many issues or hassles when it comes to rounding it off.
A polyester ball is by no means a “Bad” bowling ball and many of the experts carry them along as part of their backups. Since they do not have much of an intricate core, you don’t get as much hook on them as the others. They tend to go much straighter and be more consistent, allowing for better accuracy when you have to play with split pins.
The typical selling price is around $40, with some of the better brands having them for around $70 at their most expensive.
Vanity Bowling Balls:
We all have that little bit of vanity inside of us and having a bowling ball that is custom is just a little better. When it comes to performance, the vanity bowling balls are not much different from any other plastic bowling ball. The only difference might be the look and some of the embossed logos that have been placed on them.
These bowling balls are loved by newcomers who want people to perceive them as being professional. However, you will pay more for the logos and the additional features than the bowling ball itself. I have seen the general price range for a vanity bowling ball to be in the range of $70-$200. However, this will depend on the brand and the ball quality.
The Entry-Level Performance Bowling Ball:
These bowling balls are generally made with a urethane coverstock and they are a slight upgrade from your polyester option. They are a little better for beginners that take the sport seriously, with a custom inner core that could potentially help to get more of a “hook”. However, lane conditions do have an impact on this as well.
Much like the vanity bowling balls, you can have these embossed with your favorite logos and they are not all the same. These bowling balls tend to look spectacular and professional, but when you play with them, they are not up there quite yet.
Since your casual players that have higher aspirations will commonly prefer one of them, they will cost you up to $200. Once again, this price can vary with many brands offering top quality bowling balls for entry-level players at a much more affordable baseline price.
High-Level Bowling Balls:
When we start looking for something that will elevate your game to the next level, you have the intermediate to professional bowling ball. It might not be ideal for a beginner looking to improve on straight shots, but for a top player, the urethane coverstock can make a massive difference on lanes with heavy oil.
These bowling balls are not only above the $200 mark because of the urethane coverstock, but many of them have custom cores as well. The asymmetrical core is one of the rarest you can play with, but it also features an exhilarating hook. However, the symmetrical cores are a little more affordable, while still offering a lot of value.
These bowling balls are commonly recommended to the elite players. They take a lot of practice to master and you can have a hard time with the hook if you don’t master the right techniques. I did mention, most of them will cost you more than $200 for the bowling ball only.
Additional Things That May Influence The Cost:
I did mention technology improving and with it, new additions to bowling balls are being made. If you want to get the best of the best, you might need to look at a few of these things. They can also have a major effect on the overall cost of your bowling ball:
- Reactive Resin: A reactive resin compound can be added to your bowling ball and it will allow you to control it a little better. This is definitely perfect for individuals who are playing on medium and heavy-oil lanes.
- Urethane: While we have mentioned urethane, the grade and the quality of it is currently advancing really quickly. The type and quality of the urethane will have a profound effect on the costs of your bowling ball.
- Particle Balls: One of the latest additions to the world of bowling is the particle bowling balls. These urethane balls have small ceramic or glass particles embossed to give you more control. They are still being experimented with but will affect the price.
- Hole Drilling: Lastly, your bowling ball needs to have the holes drilled to be perfected to your needs. For every player, this can be different. You can have the holes drilled at home, but having a professional assist you just make it so much better and safer.
These are the main factors that will determine the price of your bowling and you definitely need to keep them in mind. Newer models are all marketed with fancy names for these new types of technology and if you don’t do some of your own research, you could end up with something you are not comfortable playing with.
What You Need To Think Of Before Buying A Bowling Ball:
While you have a better understanding of the prices and what makes them expensive, you should know what to think of before buying a bowling ball. These three things can help you a lot when it comes to buying the bowling that suits your budget:
- Skill: If you are not particularly skilled at bowling, you don’t need to spend a fortune on the bowling ball of your choice. It is much safer to find something cheaper. On the other hand, professional players will lose out a lot on the lanes with a cheap ball.
- How often you play: if you play a lot, you can go for something a little better. However, many people choose to play bowling on a casual occasion and have some fun. You need to decide how often you play before choosing any ball.
- Can I afford it: Last but certainly not least, your budget will be the final nail in the coffin when selecting the best bowling ball. Try to stick to your budget and as you improve or even win some prize money, you can improve the quality of the bowling ball.
Do your homework and make sure you don’t overspend. There are many more things that a bowler needs when it comes to the game of bowling. Your shoes and your bag can often be expensive as well and you need to look at that to stay in your budget.
The world of bowling has never been more affordable than it is today and the variety is also much higher than it has always been. If you want to be a bowler, now is the time to find a bowling ball and doing so online is a cheaper way generally with all the discounts and specials.
Let us know how much you paid for your bowling ball and if you are happy with your purchase. We would gladly help you to find the right bowling ball for your game.