Brunswick: Ringer

by Bob Johnson 0

48 Hook 16 Length 15.5 Breakpoint Shape

Manufacturer’s Intent: “Our target was to replace the Karma brand name with new technology,” says Brunswick’s Billy Orlikowski. “With its high-gloss box finish, the Ringer Burgundy Pearl will provide excellent length with a medium to quick response to friction at the breakpoint. The Ringer Burgundy Pearl is a great ball for rev-dominant and slower ball speed players on light oil conditions.”

Core Design: The new medium-RG symmetrical core boasts an RG level of 2.53 with a .038 differential. We saw nearly 4 inches of track flare with 3.5- and 4.5-inch drilling layouts. This core shape revs easier than one would expect from a medium-RG design.

Coverstock: The Ringer’s cover is derived from Chemical Projection Technology. Coloring is a deep burgundy pearl. The factory surface is 500 sanded, and Rough Buff and high-gloss polished. Response off friction is moderately quick, while oil traction is limited with box finish. The Ra is 1.6 and the surface grit is 5300.

Test Results: The Ringer proved to be a fan favorite with my test staff, as it played great on most of the five test patterns after some early transition. The pearlized cover and tame core easily glided through the fronts and drier mid-lane areas, and rewarded us with very good pin carry. On fresh patterns with medium volumes, we found slight oil sensitivity was present, yet back-end motion was consistent. On severely burnt patterns, we simply bumped deeper and found the Ringer responded very well with its strong motion downlane. This is a definite upgrade from the Karma line it replaces.

When to Use: The Ringer will produce great matchups on most broken-down and lighter volume oil patterns. Its easy length and strong backend will create the visual many like to see when facing such patterns. Our best looks were from inside lines, where our increased launch angles helped subdue the breakpoint motion shape, which in turn helped us maintain the pocket. Higher rev rate players may find a light surface scuff will mellow out the back-end shape and add some traction through heavier down-lane carrydown.

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.