Like all other straight bowlers, you put in a significant amount of muscle power into your shots to ensure that the trajectory of your shots is unchanged. Straight shots are easy to master, but there’s always the challenge of not being able to hit all the pins. However, you could increase your chances of success easily by investing in the best straight bowling balls.
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Now, if you have been bowling for some time now or have been observing bowling tournaments, you’ve observed that the straight bowlers tend to hit the bowling alley after a tournament or later in the day after everyone else leaves. Ever wondered why that is so? Well, it all has to do with the straight bowling technique. By starting off at the dry lanes, it’s easier to make the powerful, straight shots because the dry lanes don’t create much curving.
So, which are the best bowling balls for straight bowlers?
Comparison Charts of Straight Bowling Balls (Top Picks)
Top 5 Best Bowling Balls For Straight Bowlers in 2020
1. Brunswick Tzone Deep Space
On top of our list of the best bowling ball for straight bowlers is this Brunswick Tzone Deep Space ball. This ball will roll precisely on the dry lane, and it’s the perfect bowling ball for beginners who are always striking the ball with a straight shot.
What’s really special about this bowling ball, however, is its symmetrical core, which means that the ball is perfectly balanced and the ideal option for anyone learning the ropes. With the core’s symmetry, you will have more control over the ball, but the coolest thing is that you will be able to predict the movement of the ball once you throw it. This symmetrical shape of the ball’s core is also a crucial factor, and it provides for the ball’s mass distribution, which enhances your performance. Note that the core design also enhances your performance using this bowling ball because it gives the ball a good hook potential and length, along with a very low differential when you shoot it on the dry lane.
The other reason why this ball makes a great fit for beginners is its polyester coverstock, which is lightweight, has minimal friction while the ball glides on the dry lane, and faces little resistance, making for faster mastery of the game. Top that with the stiffness of the coverstock, and you have a ball that slides all the way to the bowling pins smoothly. The overall lightweight design of this bowling ball makes it more maneuverable, easy to use, and control.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t come with predrilled or customized holes.
- Easy to use
- Symmetrical bullet core for great balance and stability
- Ideal for beginners and intermediate bowlers
- It glows under blacklight, and you can use it comfortably at night
- No pre-drilled holes; hence a custom fit
- Beautiful royal shine finish
- The polyester coverstock is flimsy
- It’s fragile
2. Pyramid Path Rising
Encased in a sturdy Path Reactive Pearl coverstock, this Pyramid Path Rising bowling ball is super-versatile, lightweight, and an ideal fit for straight bowlers at the beginner level. The ball rolls with a delayed or an angular reaction, which, when coupled with the finished 1500-grit factory polished feel, leaves you with an extended length on the bowling lane. These features also make this ball a good fit for use on the medium-dry lanes.
It also makes a great fit for beginners because of its affordability, as well as its New Era 139 Symmetrical core, which enhances your control over the ball. This core also offers numerous drilling options. This ball boasts a perfect scale rating of 181.30, and it could also be used by intermediate and pro bowlers, thanks to the combination of the Path Reactive Pearl coverstock and the New Era 139 core.
- The core gives numerous drilling options
- Versatile ball
- Symmetrical New Era 139 core enhances ball control
- Great straight bowling ball
- Entry-level ball
- Great performance
- It comes with a 2-year warranty
- Drilling once it’s delivered means better customization and a glove-like feel
- It comes undrilled, and you have to pay more to get it drilled
- Chips fast
3. Brunswick Rhino
Another straight bowling ball by Brunswick, this Brunswick Rhino bowling ball, is one of the top-performance entry-level balls. It boasts a great deal of power and even higher performance thanks to the high level of control you will have over the ball, along with its R-16 Reactive Coverstock and the Light Bulk Core. As a result of these features, this bowling ball boasts a super low differential of 0.030”, which is an indication of its top performance. This R-16 Reactive Coverstock is one of the best because unlike other coverstocks for the straight bowling balls, this coverstock works the oiliness or the dryness of the lanes notwithstanding. Add these to the Light Bulb symmetrical core, and you have a balanced ball which will also simplify drilling of holes.
Although this is an ideal straight bowling ball, it comes with slight reaction hooks that enhance the performance of the ball, also making this ball a good fit for beginners and pros alike, whether on the dry, medium, or the light-oil bowling lanes.
On top of its promise of top-performance, the ball sports a stylish design with a smooth, durable finish made of 500 Siaair or the royal compound.
- Great balance of power and control from the light bulb core and the R-16 Reactive coverstock
- Can be used on dry and oily lanes
- Stylish and durable
- An ideal beginner bowling ball that could also be used by pros and intermediate-level bowlers
- Great price
- Hooks are inconsistent
- Takes a bit of time to control this ball
4. MICHELIN Storm Ice Storm
If you are looking for a bowling ball that lives up to its names, this MICHELIN Storm Ice Storm is as close to that as it gets. The ball with unleashes the storm at the bowling alley, freezing all your opponents in an instant.
How? This ball features a 3-piece pancake core encased in a pearlized polyester coverstock, both design features that enhance the performance of this ball ten-fold. This pearlized polyester coverstock provides for the smooth, but powerful sliding of the ball down the bowling lane because its design features ensure that the ball pinpoints in whichever direction you direct it. Cap the powerful pancake core and the polyester coverstock with the ball’s 3500-grit polish, the ball promises maximum length and zero loss of accuracy. So, whether you bowl for fun or cash and are a straight bowler, this Storm Ice ball will give you all the power you need to hit the pins every single time.
- The ball will not move off its trajectory
- No more guesswork when shooting
- A high degree of accuracy
- Fairly good ball speed
- Great for use by players in all skill levels
- Ideal for use on all lanes
- No hooks needed for pro-level performance and power
5. Brunswick Twist
Last on our list is this Brunswick Twist straight bowling ball. Available in different weights, this bowling ball boasts a different kind of twist on its reaction, and the ball matches the needs of bowlers at different skill levels and ages.
This ball combines the Proven Gear Will-16 Reactive coverstock with Brunswick’s New Twist Low-Diff Twist core to give you a straight bowling ball that provides you with an easy length, along with a strong, controlled backend reaction on the dry lanes. Given its features, this bowling ball is a good fit for anyone looking for a spare or a plastic bowling ball.
- Excellent grip
- Good beginner-level bowling ball
- Could be used as a hook bowling ball too
- Works on light oil lanes too
- It rolls well
- Not fit for advanced bowlers
Things to Consider Before Buying Straight Balls
Choosing the best straight bowling ball is so much easier than choosing a bowling ball if you were a hook player because there are fewer considerations to keep in mind. For example, as a straight bowler, your main focus is the ball’s coverstock and the core; but if you were a hook bowler, you’d have to think about the RG, core, Rev rate, and the coverstock among other features. But even with these differences in the bowling players, a straight bowler cannot pick any ball they find.
If you are a straight bowler bowling across the oily lane, for example, you’d have to choose/ invest in the bowling ball that comes with an aggressive coverstock and good traction on its surface because you can control such a ball much easier. On the other hand, if you are bowling on the dry lane, you’d have to opt for the balls with stiff, pearly coverstocks because this coverstock won’t overreact on the dry lane, and also, it conserves energy when rolling, giving the ball more force to hit the pins.
That said, there are several considerations for you to keep in mind when choosing the straight bowling ball.
Bowling Straight Ball Vs. Hook Bowling ball
The biggest difference between the straight and the hook bowling balls is that the straight ball is ideal for the bowlers who prefer hitting the bowling pins with significant force, specifically on the dry lanes. A straight bowler throws the ball by swinging it like a pendulum to make the shot at the pins, and the trajectory of the ball will not change.
The hook balls/ shots, however, represent the curving of the ball. It’s more difficult to learn and master how to take a hook shot than a straight one, although the hook shots often hit all the pins. For the perfect hook shot, you need a good grip on the ball, and that takes time.
With these differences in mind, the straight balls are ideal for beginners, while the hook balls are the preferred shots for professional players. While you need less power to make a hook shot, it takes longer to master it.
Straight Bowling Ball Considerations
The coverstock refers to the outermost-layer of the bowling ball, and it determines the overall motion of the ball. The super-smooth and solid coverstock made of reactive pearl or plastic is a good coverstock for straight balls because this material gives you and the ball more control.
Core Type/ Weight Block
Besides the coverstock, you also need to consider the core because it affects the balance and momentum of the ball as it rolls down the bowling lane. The core can be symmetrical, asymmetrical, or pancake type. Most straight bowling balls have symmetrical and pancake-type cores. The symmetrical core means more freedom with regards to the positioning of the holes, and it also offers more balance. The pancake-type ball also offers a more reliable momentum and stability.
The asymmetrical balls, on the other hand, are not suitable for straight bowlers because they are more aggressive and difficult to control. The pros prefer them. The asymmetrical balls have a weight block.
Regarding weight, the ideal weight of the ball is the weight that will not throw you off-balance. For the best performance, observe the 1lb of the ball to 10lbs of body weight rule.
Oil Patterns/ Lane Conditions
The condition of the lane affects the balls’ performance. Straight ball bowlers are, therefore, advised to opt for the dry lanes. The dry lanes work well with plastic or reactive pearl balls, while the proactive balls are ideal for use on the heavily oiled lanes.
Opt for the ball design/ style that represents your style, personal brand, or personality.
The finish affects the friction created by the ball as it rolls down the lane. The performance and level of friction depend on the grit rating. The balls with the highest grit rating have the smoothest surface, and they provide more backend response and skid.
Is your grip more traditional, or is it specific? Your grip determines your play style.
The pitch/ holes on the balls should offer an excellent grip for good performance.
The hook potential of the ball is determined/ affected by the friction created on the bowling lane. The balls with a super-smooth finish will not hold on to the lane while the balls with some tread grip on the lane better. With this in mind, the balls made of resin or urethane covers have a more powerful hook, and they hit more strongly than the plastic-covered balls.
The ball must be durable. Check the coverstock material and also your play style to determine if the ball will last long or not. The proactive balls are not very durable because of the coverstock material used.
For a ball that fits in your arm like a glove, you need to buy a ball that comes undrilled. And if you choose to buy one that is pre-drilled, ensure that the holes are customized.
At the end of the day, your choice boils down to your budget. The cost of a bowling ball for the straight bowlers varies depending on the brand, quality/ durability, features, and whether you prefer a customized ball or not. There are many affordable options, though. Also, buying an undrilled ball is a good idea because you will have someone do it locally to perfection, and also, it’s not very expensive. However, keep in mind that you might have to spend more for the best bowling balls.
Bowling Tips for Straight Ball Bowlers
Where to aim when bowling a straight ball
As a straight bowler, you should always aim for the center arrow because this position corresponds with the headpin. Beware that hitting the headpin directly is a terrible idea because it results in splits. So, hit the headpin at a slight angle or The Pocket, for more strikes and maximum pin action. If you are right-handed, hit the right of this center arrow and the left of the center arrow if left-handed.
How to throw a bowling ball straight
Always approach your shots by striding towards your target straight on. Maintain a 90-degree bend at the elbow then keep the ball moving forward along the lane. Make sure to hold your wrist and your upper body straight in the shot motion. Avoid the temptation to swing your arms.
Your muscles must be fully relaxed because the tension in the muscle will negatively reduce the speed of the ball, and it also puts too much stress on your arms. A relaxed shot transfers efficient energy towards the shot with ease.
Establish the perfect initial alignment with the pocket when starting out at the bowling lanes.
Stick to the dry lanes as you learn and master more complex moves. Also, use the right ball for the dry lanes.
Even without advanced skills, investing in the best straight bowling ball allows you to play at the pro level. The 5 balls reviewed above are among the best, but you could also pick any others, as long as it ticks all the boxes for the best features discussed above.
Last update on 2021-01-16 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API