Lady holding a bowling ball

Bowling Ball – Compound Vs Polish – The Ultimate Comparison

In bowling, the condition of the bowling ball is a very essential aspect. The bowling ball’s surface changes the entire performance of the ball. To make the surface of the ball better it needs products like compound and polish. 

What to use depends on how you operate the bowl and your throw speed. You need to try different compounds and polish to see what works best for the lane and the ball.

The ball usually comes with a compound or polish. The effect of these can wear off with time or after 8 to 10 games. This makes the ball harder to strike and roll the lane smoothly. With a compound and polish, the ball can give better performance with a shiny look.

Similarities And Differences Between Compound And Polish

Compound and polish are closely related and identical things. Both have liquid abrasives and grit levels. Many companies provide both of the products with different grit options. 

Both compound and Polish give some level of length and backhand motion. Both redeem the tackiness of the ball.

Compounds create a mid-lane read than the polish. The compound doesn’t provide much shine like a polish.

Both the compound and polish can come with abrasives and polish that almost gives a similar effect.

Polish has finer grits than the compound. A polish can have abrasives that can smooth out the surface and polish that can provide shine.

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Some polishes don’t have abrasives. It only has to polish that just provides a shining effect without changing the grit level.

It’s not required to use both the products on the ball. Still, some like to use compounds first and then polish to give their desired outcome.

Compound Effects On a Bowling Ball 

Compounds have a coarser abrasive that resurfaces the bowling ball. The compound should be brought according to what you want to do with the ball. Different products have various grit levels. In some compounds, there is no polish so it does not give a high shine look. Most compounds work on urethane, plastic and reactive balls.

If the product has an 800 or 1200 grit level that can give the ball this level of grit smooth finish. Some have 1500 grit levels that can smooth out the high-level polish reaction. Some compounds leave the bowling ball dull looking after the finish.

The compound can be a rubbing one that has abrasives in them with some amount of polish. This smooths out the ball and also can give a shiny finish. The previous surface grit also matters in applying any compound. It all relies on the aftermath you want. 

Polish Effects On a Bowling Ball

Polishes can shine up the ball and also can give grip and strength with a stronger backhand motion. Companies that make Polish make two different kinds of polishes.

Extender polish and factory polish that gives a slightly different outcome. Different grit levels give different finishes and outcomes. polish gives a more flip and slide reaction. Most of the polishes don’t clog the pores and keep the ball reactive. Most polishes also clean the surface of a ball.

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Some extender polishes provide a 4000 to 5000 grit level that makes the ball shine sufficiently. The extender provides extra flow so the ball goes much down the lane before hitting the pocket. The extender can give 4 feet of an extra skid on the ball. 

There are factory polishes that give a finish of approximately 2500 grit levels. This also shines the ball very well. The factory polish has some amount of coarser grit that helps the ball surface adjustments.

Choosing a Polish is dependent on the previous ball grit level and the aftermath you want. Polish can be applied with a hand by using a cloth.

When To Use Compound For Bowling Ball

Maintaining the bowling ball needs sanding and after that some compound. If you want full control of the lane application of the compound is helpful.

If the bowler is fast and can throw the ball easily. Then a lower grit compound can be used. In this way, the ball vacates more surface on an oiled lane.

Using high-level grit compound products gives more control over the ball. This gives length to the ball hook level and the ball will leave less surface on the lane. 

The compound helps to keep contact with the lane. So if the ball is going out of the lane then the compound can make it more to stay in connection with the lane.

For continuous backend, motion compounds work best. compounds and their specific effects can be varied with different companies.

When To Use Polish On Your Bowling Ball

After continuously using the bowling ball, it becomes dull. Then you can apply Polish to restore the surface of the ball.

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The ball can get backend and lose its shine with time. It can get difficult to get a pocket so applying polish can make the ball hard to strike and take off more corner pins. To keep this performance consistent the Polish can be applied.

To get a fast shine on the ball and make the shine long-lasting polish is the best option. If the hook is needed to be more aggressive then polish can do the job.

If you are a slow blower and want the ball to skid down more then applying polish is required. It will make the ball look new and make it more consistent.

Don’t overuse polish on a bowling ball, this can cause inconsistency in the skid and hook. The ball pores will be clogged and it can hook easily and too much.

Lastly, Most Bowling balls already comes with a finishing touch with compound and polish so make sure to use the grit level that suits your ball and bowling style. 

The usage of compound and polish varies according to usage and grit level. You can use both the products on a ball but if the compound and polish have similar quality then it’s reasonable to use any of them.