Ball Reaction and Surface Adjustments

Duration: 8:00

Abralon pads, Mirka pads, and TruCut sanding pads are used to adjust the bowling ball’s surface. The lower the grit on the sanding pad, the earlier the ball will hook down lane. Conversely, the higher the grit, the later the bowling ball hooks down lane.

Gold Coach and Bowler Development Lead at Bowlersmart Richard Shockley and Silver Level Coach Dan Triske explain how to apply different grit abralon pads to a bowling ball and demonstrate how it affects the bowling ball on the lane.


We took a bowling ball with a shiny finish and threw it down lane. It hit the 13 at the arrows and 7 board down lane at the breakpoint and the result was a strike.


1000-Grit Sanding Pad

Using the same bowling ball, we applied a 1000 grit abralon pad to the surface of the bowling ball.

1000 Grit

The result was a 4-9 split. That’s ok. The purpose of this demonstration is to show that the bowling ball hits the same place at the arrows, 13, and that the breakpoint changes from the 7 board to 9 board.

1000 Grit in Action

You’ll also notice that the bowling ball begins hooking earlier down lane than the polish. This demonstration shows that by changing the surface of the bowling ball, you can change ball reaction to better match up to the lane condition you are competing on.

500-Grit Sanding Pad

Continuing on with the demonstration, we hit the same bowling ball with a 500 grit sanding pad and targeted the same 13 board at the arrows.

500 Grit

The bowling ball’s breakpoint is at the 10 board down lane and it began to hook earlier than both the polished and 1000 grit bowling ball.

360-Grit Sanding Pad

For our final shot, we applied a 360 grit sanding pad to the same bowling ball and targeted the same 13 board at the arrows.

360 Grit

The bowling ball hooks even earlier down lane, hitting the 12 board for the breakpoint.

Regular maintenance of your equipment requires changing the surface of your bowling ball in addition to cleaning it to get the most out of your equipment. Check out “Impact of Bowling Ball Surface Adjustments” and see how the lane surface you are bowling on makes a difference in “Bowling Lane Surfaces” to better prepare you for success the next time you hit the lanes.

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2 Responses to “Ball Reaction and Surface Adjustments”
  1. William Kelly
    William Kelly

    How often can you adjust the surface of the ball? Will it affect the life of the ball if you do it too much?