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Ball Review


Brunswick: Melee Hook 52 • Length 15 • Breakpoint Shape 15


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Manufacturer’s Intent: “The Melee is a solid ball designed for versatility on multiple patterns, either freshly oiled or broken down,” says Brunswick’s Billy Orlikowski. “With the new Savvy solid coverstock, the projection and friction addi- tives were increased to give more length through the front and improved traction on the backend. The enhanced core design, along with the coverstock, will make the Melee the first ball out of the bag for many players.” Core Design: The Melee has a sym- metric core with a medium RG level of 2.54. The differential is strong at .050. We saw 5.5 inches of track flare with a 50x4.5x65 dual-angle layout with a pin under the ring finger and a lower quad- rant weight hole. Coverstock: The red Savvy solid cover is factory sanded with 500 grit, and polished with polishing compound and finally a high gloss. Response time is moderately quick and oil traction is slightly limited. The Ra measurement is 2.2 with an effective surface grit reading


of 4800. If there is an all-purpose Big B cover, this could be it. Test Results: The Melee is a ball players can use to help determine the exact nature of a given oil pattern. It can tell you if a stronger ball is needed, more length/ flip is called for, or if it’s just right. In other words, it’s a benchmark type of ball. We saw a controlled roll in the midlane with a subdued read of the friction area. Even with its high-gloss finish, the Melee never displayed a violent angular reaction


downlane. It did, however, create enough angularity for above-average pin carry from as deep inside as the fifth arrow on our THS pattern of 23-ml. of oil at 42 feet in length. When to Use: The Melee will play well on many freshly oiled patterns with medium amounts of oil. Controlled roll is its strong suit, as we found it easy to read the pattern and use it through oil transition. With a minor surface tweak, sanded to 500/1000, the Melee rolled up great on heavier volumes and matched up better for our speed-dominant tester. We also tested the Melee with a Rico layout, which gave us earlier roll with an even slower, more tempered reaction when leaving the oil pattern.


TIPS AND TRICKS TO MAKE YOU A BETTER BOWLER


Brunswick: Ringer Platinum Pearl Hook 48 • Length 16 • Breakpoint Shape 15


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Manufacturer’s Intent: “The Ringer Platinum has been designed to give bowlers another option when length is need- ed,” says Brunswick’s Billy Orlikowski. “The new CPT Flip coverstock has a different base than the original Ringer [February 2013], with more projec- tion additive to promote length through the front, thus saving more rotational energy for the backend.” Core Design: The Ringer symmetric core has a medium RG of 2.53 and a .038 differential. We saw 4 inches of track flare with our strong 70x4x30 dual-angle layout with the pin posi- tioned above the ring finger. Coverstock: The CPT Flip pearlized coverstock is formulated to glide effort- lessly through the fronts and midlane. The color is platinum pearl. The ball comes sanded with a 500-grit pad and polished with Royal compound and Royal high-gloss shine. Response time is quick off friction and very limited in oil. The Ra measures 1.5 with an effec- tive surface grit reading of 5400. Test Results: Brunswick-made pearls have long enjoyed a reputation


for length with a strong, yet controlled, move downlane. This, coupled with Brunswick’s above-average durability and longevity, help make the Ringer Platinum Pearl a great choice on light to light-medium oil volumes, on which it carried very well. On medium oil, we felt the Melee gave us better all-around looks, especially for those with a touch of extra speed. We came to the conclusion that the 1-2-3 punch of the Mastermind, Melee and Ringer Pearl would equip most bowler styles with a highly effective three-ball arsenal for almost any type of oil pattern. When to Use: Since the Ringer Platinum Pearl requires adequate friction for it to strut its stuff, stay away from the medium to heavy oil unless you possess slower ball speed. Higher rev rate-to-speed players may also enjoy the back-end motion shape created by the RPP at box finish or with a light surface scuffing. Our favorite skid/flip layout was a 70x4x30 dual-angle, which struck at will on the burn during testing. On fresh, lighter volume patterns, we preferred our 40x4x65 layout and a light surface sanding, because the ball rolled earlier and it controlled the move downlane better.


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