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Ball Review

Motiv: Ascent Pearl Hook 46 • Length17 • Breakpoint Shape 15

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“The new Ascent Pearl bowling balls will provide two new color options, with a slight performance variation, at the entry-level price point for Motiv,” says Motiv’s Scott Hewitt. “While the coverstock formulation is MOTIVator-Z Reactive on both, some bowlers may find that the Green-Purple Pearl Ascent is slightly cleaner down the lane than the Red-Black Pearl, due to

chemistry differences in the pigmentation systems used. While color itself does not directly affect performance, changes in the chemistry of pigmentation packages can have an impact.” Core Design: The Ascent has the same golf tee symmetric core used in pre- vious Ascent varieties (July 2012). This tall core design has a 2.59 RG with a minus- cule .025 differential. We could muster only 3 inches of maximum track flare with a 4-inch pin above the ring finger. Coverstock: The MOTIVator-Z pearl- ized reactive cover provides the mod- erate amount of lane traction for the new ball colors — red/black or green/ purple. The factory finish is 2000 polished. Response time is moderate off dry, and

limited in oil. The Ra measures 1.60, with an effective surface grit reading of 5300. Test Results: If you’re looking for length with a smoother break- point shape when leaving the oil pattern, the new Ascents may be the perfect choice. The balls provide even easier length through the front and midlane, coupled with less flip than the earlier editions. These two attri- butes make playing closer to the friction area more effective, and this can help increase pin carry on burnt and broken-down oil patterns. Hitting and carry power were both excellent when we sent the ball toward appropriate amounts of friction. When we tugged the ball into the oil pattern, the results were less than desirable. When to Use: Use on dry to lighter oil amounts and on shorter patterns when fric- tion is high. In fact, the more friction we saw, the better our looks became for most of the test staff. We even found that taking some hand out at release still resulted in very good pin carry (and this is often not the case, except for the higher rev rate testers). Our 3.5-inch pin next to the ring finger hooked about two boards stronger than our 5-inch pin positioned just above the bridge, yet the ball with this configuration was still very playable on the driest of patterns. The Ascent offers another great option for the burn.


Hammer: Nail Titanium Hook 47 • Length 16 • Breakpoint Shape 15.5

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“The Nail Titanium extends the success of our Nail series from last season by using the most popular polished coverstock in Hammer’s history,” says

Hammer Brand Manager Jeff Ussery. “By adding GTR III Pearl — a pearl version of the Taboo Jet Black

[February 2012] coverstock — Hammer has created a big back-ending ball at one of the most popular price points in the market.”

Core Design: This Nail, as does the Nail Smoke and Fire (July 2012), utilizes a modified Doom symmetric core. The RG is medium at 2.55 and the differential conservative at .042. Testing resulted in measured track flare up to 4 inches with our 60x4x40 dual-angle drilling using a P3 weight hole.

Coverstock: The GTR III pearl reactive cover is stronger than the Smoke and Fire’s Shredder cover. The factory finish is 4000 grit and high polished. Colors are a fusion of purple, silver and yellow. Oil traction with factory polish is limited, yet dry-lane responsiveness is quick and strong. The Ra measures 1.35. The effective surface grit is 5400.

Test Results: Those who prefer lower flaring pearlized symmetric cores should give the Nail Titanium a serious look. Its beefed-up GTR III cover will add back-end response, which improves pin carry. The advan- tage of lesser hooking pearls: One can play close to friction areas, providing some rev-challenged or slower speed players added hitting power. When we tested the Nail Titanium against the Nail Smoke and Fire, we saw similar length but a quicker, more defined breakpoint motion and about two boards more total hook.

When to Use: The Nail Titanium will work great on all light to medium oil volume house shots and many Sport varieties. The only mis- match for us was on extreme wet/dry side-to- side ratios when misses inside our intended target displayed too much over-skid. When we used the ball on the intended broken-down lane condition, our results were quite impres- sive; lots of strikes were thrown, and we saw plenty of recovery on misses outside our intended targets and even on slightly missed releases. Any well-equipped ball arsenal should employ at least one ball such as the Nail Titanium for broken-down or toasty lane con- ditions. We used a Blueprint-inspired pin above the ring finger for our skid/flip breakpoint, and a pin below the bridge for our long and smoother breakpoint motion.

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