Brunswick: Paranormal Aura

by Bob Johnson 0

56 Hook 13 Length 15 Breakpoint Shape

Manufacturer’s Intent: “Our target was the strongest hook motion for a Brunswick ball,” says Billy Orlikowski, Brunswick’s product manager. “The Paranormal Aura continues a new age of ball motion for Brunswick, never seen before with exceptional hook potential, quick response to friction and a strong continuation on the backend. The Paranormal Aura, with its 2000-grit SiaAir Micro Pad finish, reaches the highest hook potential of any Brunswick ball to date on medium to heavily oiled lane conditions.”

Core Design: This is the same core used in the original Aura (December 2012). The ultra-low 2.48 RG revs quickly and smoothly. The .052 differential can provide up to 6 inches of track flare and the .015 PSA can help shape the break-point motion.

Coverstock: The newly formulated Optimum-Hook solid reactive cover is designed for heavier oil. Colors are a blend of black and blue solids. The ball is factory sanded with 500/2000 SiaAir pads. We saw above-average oil traction with a moderately quick response off friction areas. The Ra is 8.0. The surface grit is 2800.

Test Results: We decided to drill the Paranormal Aura the same as the previously released Aura. Since the only differences are coverstock and factory surface prep, we were excited to compare the two side by side. The Paranormal proved to be the “big brother,” as it hooked a few boards stronger and about a foot earlier on most oilier patterns. It also handled oil carrydown much better and read the friction areas smoother (more arcing). Hitting and carry power were vintage Brunswick, and one would also think longevity will be much better than average, based on past history.

When to Use: We found the Paranormal to be the better choice of the Auras on fresh and heavier varieties of lane conditions. Its stronger mid-lane motion allows for a better read and predictability. We also saw less oil sensitivity on more wet/dry lane patterns, another bonus. We did prefer the original, however, on slightly broken-down patterns as we chased the oil line inside. Our favorite layout on fresh was a 45×4.5×50 dual angle, as this controlled the breakpoint and backend the best.

Bob Johnson

Bob Johnson has received more national writing awards than any other bowling writer — close to 70 over the course of his 40-year career. He began at age 16 as a staff writer and then assistant editor for the weekly Pacific Bowler newspaper in his native California, and within three years was writing feature stories for Bowlers Journal. He has written for the magazine ever since, except for a five-year span when he was hired as the founding editor of another magazine. He moved to Chicago in 2000 and spent 13 years in the Windy City, including five as Bowlers Journal’s Editor. In 1975, Johnson received the Robert E. Kennedy Award as California’s top undergraduate high school journalist. Five years earlier, on the lanes, he had shared the Bantam Division Doubles championship in the Orange County Junior Bowling Association Championships. Today, he continues to work full-time for Bowlers Journal as its Senior Editor, to write his popular “Strikes Me” column, and to edit Luby Publishing Inc.’s weekly business-to-business Cyber Report.