900 Global: Black Eagle

by Bob Johnson 0

53 Hook 14 Length 16 Breakpoint Shape

Manufacturer’s Intent: “The Black Eagle is a re-creation of the Break [October 2007] / Break Out [February 2010] / Eagle [May 2011] just in time for the 2012 USBC Open Championships,” says 900 Global’s Eric Thomas. “Based on prior performances, the lower RG (2.48), higher differential (.058) core, matched with our benchmark S70 shell, has proven to be the perfect ball to use on the demanding lane conditions year after year at the Championships.”

Core Design: The low-RG Break Out core supplies fast-revving action from the 2.48 RG, .058 Diff. and .024 mass bias. This strong asymmetric design also is used in the original Eagle. Testing showed 6.5 inches of track flare with large flare layouts. Have your favorite driller use the powerful .024 mass bias to help shape the desired hook motion.

Coverstock: The solid black S70 reactive cover is textured with a 4000 grit using the neaT pad system. We found this cover to supply above-average traction in oil with a quick and strong response off friction areas. Scuffing with the neaT 750 grit earned a hook rating of 56. The Ra was at moderate at 3.1.

Test Results: 900 Global has found a way to balance hook and backend with surprising performance on a wide range of oil patterns. The core shape and S70 cover ease through the fronts, read the mids and explode on the back-end friction areas of the lane. Roll is predictable, yet quick off friction with the 4000 grit. When polished, the Black Eagle will rival the best skid/flip balls available. Hitting and carry power also are very good for our low and medium rev rate testers.

When to Use: Use on most medium to heavier volume patterns, as the Black Eagle handles oil with ease and rewards you with an angular move downlane. Even our 1-to-1 ratio (50x4x50 dual angle) layout produced an angular move when leaving the oil patterns. The 60x4x30 layout excelled from inside angles between 12- and 25-board for the entire test staff. That said, we had to play well inside the oil line on most patterns when using our normal hand release. When lowering our axis rotation (staying behind the ball more), we could play closer to the friction, but only with added speed.

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.

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