900 Global: Train

by Bob Johnson 0

55 Hook 12.5 Length 15 Breakpoint Shape

Manufacturer’s Intent: “Building on the successful coverstock of the Bank Roll [July 2011], the Train features the S76 cover and NEAT-E finish, combined with a unique core design, that allows for unprecedented on-lane performance,” says Eric Thomas of 900 Global. “The all-new symmetric Combustion core contains extended protrusions from the body of the core that allow the radius of gyration (RG) contours to be manipulated from their normal axis orientations within the ball. The altered RG contours allow for a change in typical axis migration that yields more overall continuation down the lane.”
Core Design: 900 Global’s design team made the new Combustion symmetric core specifically for the Train. The RG level of 2.50 is fast revving and continuous. The new shape also promotes fast revs and stronger axis migration continuation. The .054 differential will help create as much as 6 inches of track flare with stronger pin layouts and weight holes.

Coverstock: The S76 reactive cover is sanded at 1500 grit with the Natural Engineered Abrasive Technology (NEAT) system. The aggressive surface will create added oil traction while tempering its response downlane off friction. The navy solid and silver pearl hybrid cover perfectly blends length and traction.

Test Results: The Train has an aggressive hybrid cover formula with an aggressive surface profile. Speed-dominant types will appreciate the earlier read in the midlane, while power players should embrace the control downlane. We saw an easy five boards more total hook than from 900 Global’s last release, the Nuts pearl (November 2011). We also felt the majority of this added traction was in the oil portion of the lane, specifically the mid-lane area. The core shape also promotes a controlled heavy roll motion toward the pocket.

When to Use: Our best looks were on our medium to heavier volume fresh test patterns, both Sport and house shots. Our favorite layouts incorporated pin positions below the fingers, which slow down the transitions from hook to roll, thereby lengthening the hook zone. When our patterns began to break down in the midlane and carrydown reared its ugly head, we felt the pin positions above the fingers helped quicken the transitions from hook to roll and strengthened the breakpoint shape. These readings were from all three testers who have matched speed-to-rev rate ratios.

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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