15 vs 16 lb Bowling Ball: Know the Differences

Bowling is a rapidly growing indoor sports activity, especially in Western countries. People of all ages fantasize about becoming a good bowler. Many people are very bowling enthusiasts and participate in all local, regional bowling tournaments.

The bowling ball weight is a major issue for both professional and newbie bowlers. Professional bowlers use heavyweight bowling balls such as 14lb, 15lb, and 16lb. They must know the comparison of 15 vs 16lb bowling balls.

The weight will increase your strike rate. With that, it will also help to build up confidence in you about handling the ball. Besides, your body physique and bowling technique highly depend upon the weight you choose for your ball.

Difference Between A 15lb and 16lb Bowling Ball

15lb Bowling Ball16lb Bowling Ball
Medium to the high radius of gyration.The lower radius of gyration.
Low rating in a durometerA high rating in a durometer.
Less powerful pin-carrying actionMore Powerful pin-carrying action.
Easy to get a grip.Hard to get a grip.
Lower initial speedHigh initial speed.
Low spin rateHigh spin rate
Lower differential max valueHigher differential max value.

Top 6 Best 15lb and 16lb Bowling Balls

In-depth features and specifications of 15lb and 16lb bowling balls would be discussed in this section.

1. Motiv Forge Fire Bowling Ball


Forge™ Fire model from the Motive is one of the latest collections in the performance level bowling balls. Its fiery outlook and color blend make it look so destructive and is best suited for aggressive bowlers.

The Infusion™ Hybrid Reactive cover-stock enables it to react earlier but run longer than other types of reactive cover-stocks. It makes the ball travel smoothly on oiled lanes and learns the oil pattern in no time.

It has been released with five variable versions of weight for you to pick the best one. The 15lb version of the Forge Fire maintains the course very smoothly on the lane that goes straight to the pins.

This bowling ball possesses a radius of gyration value of 2.47 in the 15lb one. It is rated as the lowest RG value which helps to spin the ball consistently without interruption. Besides, the continuous spin on the minimum surface area reduces the effect of friction. As a result, the ball doesn’t deviate much from the pattern.

Moreover, due to the heavyweight, the differential value also increases as high as 0.055. Therefore, it delivers relatively high flare potential to the bowler. Again, a higher flare means the minimum surface of the ball touches the lane. Finally, the ball experiences a lesser length (16) on the lane for better accuracy.

The Forge Fire is installed with the flagship Detonator™ core from the Motiv. This core’s weight distribution is very optimized. It stores very high kinetic energy during its movement and releases all of it destructively on the deck of pins.

Its Detonator™ is symmetrically aligned. Therefore, you would find it very balanced and stable on the lane. Moreover, it will be easier for you to generate spins initially that would be consistent till the breaking point. It also results in relatively high potential.

This bowling ball comes with a factory finish done by 4000 Grit LSS. It makes the surface non-porous and even everywhere without any bumps. Simply polishing it with Crown Compound shall make it ready to use instantly.  

You can use this ball on any low to medium oiled lanes. Its sharp teeth perfectly cut through oiled lanes. Moreover, it recognizes the lane pattern quite early and responds faster to the friction of the lane.

Motiv’s Forge Fire is suitable for players having moderate physique. Bowlers with a one-arm swing bowling action generating high speed with medium rev can use this ball comfortably on any oiled lanes in the bowling alley.

What We Like

  • Suitable to use as a primary striker.
  • Stable curved motion on the lane.
  • High rolling power.
  • Gives a good grip.
  • Easy to generate speed and rev.

What We Don’t Like

  • Not recommended for newbies.

2. Brunswick Crown Jewel Bowling Ball


Brunswick’s roughly playable balls are very popular for their durability and increased endurance. Its sparkling and glittery gold color profile makes it look very premium and of high quality. Easy maintenance and regular polishing keep it usable for a longer period.

The cover-stock of this bowling ball is made up of high-density plastic material. Its polyester cover-stock enables it to run as straight as possible. It doesn’t comply with angular spins and late rolling. Earlier rolling makes its impact on the pins with a good amount of power.

Crown Jewel from Brunswick is released with Five different weight options. You can conveniently pick the best available ball suitable for you and your bowling style. The 15lb bowling ball will offer you a medium Radius of gyration and differential value.

Its RG value is rated medium on the scale. You cannot put a high initial rev in this ball. Therefore, you can play straight shots at high speeds without any difficulty. On the other hand, the high differential value increases the friction on the ball’s surface. As a result, it responds way too much earlier and starts rolling to put extreme thrust on the pins. 

This bowling ball has a Bullet grade core inside of it. It’s a moderately heavy weight block that stores immense potential energy. However, when released with a quick throwing style the velocity increases the kinetic energy aggressively. This results in a smashing impact down the lane. 

You can easily control the ball in a straight path on the lane. All you need is to give enough initial thrust and this bowling ball will do the rest using its symmetric type of core.

General factory finishing has been applied to this ball. The relatively rough surface of the ball forbids it to skid on the lane. Besides, the pre factory polishing using the crown compound gives the bowling ball a very glossy, shiny, and sparkling surface. It also saves your money for further polishing after the purchase.

Extremely dry and short lanes are highly compatible with these types of polyester balls. Just the swing and throw policy will amaze you and enhance your initial bowling experiences.

Beginner level of bowlers with simple and straight throwing bowling action would love to get this ball. Intermediate bowlers who want to shift on challenging oiled lane bowling can use it as a spare ball for rough usage.

What We Like

  • Roughly usable.
  • Requires minimal maintenance.
  • Very durable and sturdy condition.
  • Straightforward to use.
  • High reaction rate on dry surfaces.

What We Don’t Like

  • Cannot be used on oiled lanes.

3. Motiv Fatal Venom Bowling Ball


“Fatal” version of the Venom lineup is a flagship killer bowling ball from the Motiv brand. It comes with high-grade specs in a budget-friendly tag. The unique Venom logo design on the Neon Green color blended with black makes it look very distinctive.

Its outer layer has been engineered with the high-quality Infusion™ Pearl Reactive material. This cover-stock makes it go longest on an oiled lane. It offers good angular motion and length down the lane of the alley.

Out of 5 selectable weight options, the 16lb is the highest. It is highly suitable for a bowler with a strong both arms swing and body physique. More weight makes it more devastating down the lane.

A minimum of 2.48 radius of gyration value is seen in the 16lb version of this bowling ball. It helps the ball to keep the spin consistent which helps in secured angular motion with negligible deviation from the course.

Despite having a heavyweight, this bowling ball possesses a very low differential value, which is only 0.031. Lower flare potential is thus achieved which causes less of the ball surface touching the lane. Therefore, it causes the ball to get more length due to the surface rolling.

Motiv’s original Gear core has been installed in the Fatal Venom bowling ball. This weight block increases the durability and power of the ball. The heavyweight block helps the ball to maintain its course without any deviation and thus the ball hits the pins with utmost accuracy.

The symmetric Gear core is easy to handle. It responds well on the lane and shows a great reaction at the backend. You can steer and direct the ball towards the pins conveniently using this bowling ball. Besides, it rapidly enhances the hook potential and backend which is calculated to be 52 and 18 on the scale.

Factory finishing by 5500 Grit LSP makes the outer surface of the ball a very smooth one with no bumps at all. It helps to reduce the friction between the lane and ball for a negligible loss of energy during its course.

Pearl reactive cover-stock with 5500 Grit factory finishing makes this ball highly suitable for low to medium oiled lanes. You can also use it on heavily oiled lanes after properly polishing it with high-quality compounds.

This ball can be selected by experts and professionals as a secondary striker ball. But intermediate bowlers can use it as their primary ball for regular practicing and facing challenges of oiled lanes.

What We Like

  • Travels longest on an oiled lane.
  • Early reaction time.
  • Powerful hit point on the pins.
  • Travels smoothly in curved angular motion.
  • Easy to steer and control the ball.

What We Don’t Like

  • Comparatively expensive.

4. Storm Parallax Bowling Ball


Storm brand is a renowned brand especially for making performance bowling balls used by experts and competitive bowlers. The Parallax has a classical color blend with Black, Steel, and Marine making it an eye-catching bowling ball. Apart from that, the funnel cake fragrance makes it a soothing ball for all.

Its Traction X7 cover-stock has a hybrid reactive grade covering. This hybrid cover-stock is usable for both low and medium oiled lanes. It breaks slightly earlier than Pearl Reactive cover-stocks but runs longer than Solid Cover-stock.

The radius of gyration value for the 16lb version is 2.50. It can be rated as a mid-range RG which makes the bowling ball decently stable on all types of lane conditions. The spin rate of the ball remains consistent for a longer time.

Besides, the high differential value offered by this ball is 0.052. This high flare potential causes less of the ball surface to touch the lane. You can even get a good amount of length from this bowling ball.

The asymmetrical core type increases its impact power. This ball can store a very high amount of kinetic energy throughout the course. It releases the energy at the breaking point for smashing up the pins.

You will get a 1500 Grit and polished factory finishing. This makes the ball usable straight out of the box. Moreover, you need not spend more on this ball after the purchase.

This ball’s hardness rating is 73-75 calculated on a durometer. That means, the ball can offer you good build quality and durability for a long time.

Low and medium oiled lanes comply with this bowling ball very effectively. Serious bowling enthusiasts wanting to play local and regional tournaments can pick this ball for a long time of use.

What We Like

  • Very early breaking point.
  • Intense impact on the deck.
  • Consistent speed and spin on the course.
  • Higher hook potential.
  • Powerful down-lane motion.

What Don’t We Like

  • Very tough to handle and control.

Things You Need to Understand Before Making A purchase

Every specification of a bowling ball plays an important role in a bowler’s skill development. There are several facts a bowler must keep in mind. These are-

Read to know about: BOWLING BALL MOTION: THE BASICS

The Finishing of The Ball

The finishing of a bowling ball determines its usability on different types of lane conditions. Besides, a good factory-finished and polished ball can save some of your bucks for maintenance.

Cover-stock Material

The type of cover-stock used in a bowling ball is responsible for many factors. These are spin rate, breaking point, responsiveness, hook potential, and back end. All these are important for developing your bowling skills.

Core Type and Alignment

The weight of the core and its characteristics will help you to steer and direct the ball on different variations of bowling lanes. However, the durability and lifespan of a ball also rely on the core’s endurance.

Weight

The weight of a bowling ball is responsible for the rate of impact and consistency. Your body physique and bowling technique will decide the weight of the ball you require. Besides, more weight of a ball results in more aggressiveness of the ball down the lane.

Conclusion

Heavyweight balls can show an artistic performance in a bowling alley. They are more consistent, accurate, and powerful than the low-weight bowling balls.

However, the performance of a bowling ball depends highly upon the skill level of the bowler. It is quite tough to handle heavy-weight bowling balls.

You would require an average height and good body physique to get a hold of the ball. Besides, the swing, speed and rev generating style of a bowler play a vital role as well.

The difference between the 15lb and 16lb bowling balls means a lot for a professional bowler. This slight change in weight causes massive changes in the bowling ball’s behavior. Therefore, a bowler should be cleared of all doubts before choosing one between 15lb vs 16lb bowling balls.

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