Columbia 300: Violent Eruption

by Bob Johnson 0

50.5 Hook 15 Length 16 Breakpoint Shape

Manufacturer’s Intent: “The Violent Eruption is clean through the front and provides the greatest length in the Columbia 300 lineup,” says Bugsy Kelly. “The sharp move it makes off the friction, along with its length, make this ball a great choice on most medium to medium-dry lane conditions.”

Core Design: The Resurgence symmetric core has proven to be one of Columbia’s finest ever. The RG is low at 2.46, which creates a quick revving action with a smooth finish. The .040 differential supplies enough track flare for most medium oil volumes. We saw 4.5 inches of flare with our 3- and 4-inch pin distance layouts.

Coverstock: The Lava Red pearlized New Era SF (skid/flip) Plus coverstock formula supplies easy length with a hard arcing finish. The surface is sanded with 800, 1000 and 2000 grit prior to the factory polish. Oil traction registers a medium rating, while response time off friction is quick and strong. The Ra level is low.

Test Results: The Violent Eruption was easily our favorite new ball from Columbia 300 this month. Winning such an accolade was no easy task, as every new ball was unique and performed very well through the testing rigors. What made the Violent Eruption special were its release friendliness, condition friendliness and exceptional pin carry. When compared to a like-drilled Eruption (July 2011), the new ball hooked 2 to 3 boards more on most patterns. When pitted against the Wicked Encounter, we saw 2 to 3 feet more length and 5 to 7 boards less hook in medium-heavy to heavier oil. Both new products displayed very good pin carry and user longevity.

When to Use: The combination of the proven low-RG core and the New Era SF Plus cover is a perfect marriage of power and control. We felt it could be used as a strong pearl benchmark ball to help read patterns and strike at will. The low-RG core will help speed-dominant types in oil and on longer patterns. The pearl cover will help rev-dominant types combat early hook and burn. Those with matched speed-to-rev rates will find many uses for the Violent Eruption when a strong back-end motion is warranted.

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.