What are plastic bowling balls?

Plastic bowling balls are budget-friendly bowling balls perfect for children, beginners, and those looking for a good spare bowling ball. No matter what country you’re in and what bowling ball brands you prefer, there is a plastic bowling ball out there for you.

(We’ll get to our recommendations for your plastic bowling ball search later!)

Compared to the newest wave of reactive resin bowling balls, plastic balls deliver a different level of control and straight-line security for fledgling bowling aficionados. The surface of a plastic ball lakes the pores of a reactive ball. Thus, a plastic ball is rarely the answer for deep oil conditions or long oil patterns with complex transitions.

However, you’ll be happy with your plastic bowling ball if you’ve purchased it with the right ideas in mind. To keep you from purchasing one in error from your favorite website, let’s dive deeper into these polyurethane wonders.

Is a polyester bowling ball plastic?

Yes! When you see a ball with a polyester coverstock, it’s just another version of a traditional plastic bowling ball. Polyester bowling ball products are definitely of interest for those bowlers looking to save money compared to high-performance reactive resin balls. When you order and receive a plastic ball compared to the higher-end options, you’ll likely save nearly $100 or more!

When should you use a plastic bowling ball?

Stock a plastic bowling ball in your ball collection if you’re looking to take a stand against troublesome spare conversions. Plastic balls are great choices for straight-line conversions when you need to knock down a single pin or a split. That’s because they’re not as reactive as other balls and tend to go where you throw them. This helps you pinpoint a pin at the right time and right moment.

Loading a plastic ball into your shopping cart is also a good idea if you’re a straight-line thrower. Plastic bowling balls don’t over nearly the sort of hook potential that reactive balls do, and that’s a good thing for those bowlers who want to keep things straight and narrow.

That’s not all, though. Keeping with the theme of comparing plastic balls to reactive options, here’s a list of things you should know about the difference between the two.

Here are six things to expect from plastic balls (compared to reactive resin balls)

1) The price is usually cheaper, but the reactivity is much different.

As we stated before, reactivity is not a part of a plastic ball’s game. If you’re looking to post high scores with a wicked hook shot, be sure to add a reactive ball to your cart. Only use a plastic ball if you’re looking for straight-line impacts or spare conversions that don’t require angularity and wild breakpoint reactions.

2) If you like to bowl without a hook or need a ball for shooting spares, plastic is for you.

Filter out plastic balls when you’re looking for a new hook monster. Plastic is better for spare shots and hitting pins without much of a curve. They’re also better suited for open bowling conditions with a house shot oil pattern. If you find yourself playing on more complex oil patterns, you might want to consider a high-performance ball with a reactive coverstock.

3) If you’re learning the game, a plastic bowling ball isn’t a bad addition to your shopping cart.

This page is just as much about getting new bowlers interested in the sport as it is for seasoned bowlers. If you’re new to the game and haven’t bought a bowling ball before, a plastic ball is a good tool for teaching yourself the sport. A reactive resin bowling ball will often be too wild and off-kilter for a newbie, regardless of whether you get free shipping on it or not. If you’re not ready to change your password to something bowling-related yet and you’re just figuring yourself out at the lanes, plastic balls aren’t a bad way to go.

4) You need to play the pins much more conservatively when you purchase a plastic ball as your strike option.

Reactive resin bowling balls allow you to vary up your entry angles to the pin pocket thanks to their back-end reactivity and mid-lane length. Plastic balls are more of a one-to-one proposition. The way you throw it is often the way it goes, depending on lane oil conditions. Be smart about how you play with a plastic bowling ball and rely more on your form and overall power.

5) When you ship a new plastic ball home, you need to protect it differently than a reactive ball.

Since reactive balls are made with tactile coverstock technology made to absorb oil, you need to maintain them differently than a plastic ball. For reactive bowling balls, baking is a smart option to release oil from deep within the coverstock. That’s a bad idea for plastic balls because it’s unnecessary and might irreparably damage the ball. Use proper cleaners for your plastic ball and be sure to wipe it off with a microfiber cloth after every throw.

6) Plastic balls make great toys for kids just learning the game.

There are plenty of plastic bowling balls out there made for kids. This includes balls made for the local bowling alley and toy bowling balls made for home use. If you want to get your kid involved in the sport of bowling, find a plastic bowling ball set that piques their interest.

Looking for deals on the best plastic bowling balls? Here are 4 of our favorites for immediate shipping orders right now!

Brunswick TZone Deep Space Bowling Ball

Brunswick Tzone Deep Space Bowling Ball, 6 lb
  • Features bullet point core
  • Finished with Royal shine Compound
  • Great ball for kids, beginners and spare Shooting
  • Ball Finish: High Gloss Polish

Last update on 2022-11-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Brunswick TZone Deep Space Bowling Ball, by all rights, is one of our favorite plastic bowling balls ever produced. Whether you’re cosmic bowling with it as a strike ball or using it primarily as a spare option, this universal classic hits hard and true every time. When you see the Brunswick copyright on a ball, you know you’re getting quality. And thanks to a low price point, you can experience the Brunswick difference on a budget.

DV8 Zombie Bowling Ball

DV8 Zombie Spare Viz-A-Ball 12 Pounds
  • Leave a few pins standing? Pull out your Zombie
  • Unlike the human undead this Zombie is easy to control
  • With trance like motion the Zombie heads straight towards any uncooperative pins and puts them down for good and when it is done it comes right back to you

Last update on 2022-11-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

If you’re cool with spending a bit more money for a plastic bowling ball showstopper, might we suggest the insanely cool DV8 Zombie Bowling Ball? With a grotesque undead fellow living inside your ball’s coverstock, you can gross out and impress your friends on your next bowling night! It’s one of the coolest-looking bowling balls we’ve ever profiled, plastic or otherwise.

Ebonite Maxim Northern Lights Bowling Ball

Ebonite Maxim Northern Lights 12lb
  • Product Type: Sporting Goods
  • Durable & Long Lasting
  • Package Weight: 13.0 Pounds
  • Country Of Origin: Mexico

Last update on 2022-11-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

While Ebonite doesn’t have the reputation with casual bowlers that Brunswick does, they are one of our favorite bowling ball manufacturers when it comes to balancing value and performance. The Ebonite Maxim Northern Lights Bowling Ball is a sterling example of this. It’s an aesthetically-pleasing plastic bowling ball that hits like a ton of bricks when slotted into the pin pocket. Easy to maintain and extremely fun to throw, this is simply a beautiful ball at a fair price.

Storm Ice Blue Bowling Ball

Storm Ice Storm Blue/White ( 15 lbs )
  • The Storm Ice Storm Blue/White will freeze your opponents in place whenever you pull this out of the bag
  • A 3-Piece Pancake Core is surrounded by a Pearlized Polyester Coverstock that will allow the ball travel down the lane, pinpointing wherever you direct it
  • Finishing this ball in a 3500 grit polish, Storm wants this ball to have maximal length while retaining the accuracy a Polyester ball should have

Last update on 2022-11-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Sometimes, simple is better. The Storm Ice Blue Bowling Ball isn’t gimmicky, nor is it that flashy. We love the color, but this ball is less about looks and more about how it hammers the pins. If you want a spare ball for nailing tough-to-convert splits, you can’t do much better than this one. It keeps its line with ease and has a nose for the pins that other plastic bowling balls can’t claim.

Closing Thoughts

Plastic bowling balls are a classic solution for straight-line bowlers. If you’re looking to keep hooks to a minimum and accuracy at a premium, grab a polyester ball from the list above! You’ll love the durability, the looks, and the pure pin-flattening power they provide.