Hammer Black Widow Urethane Bowling Ball Review

The Black Widow Urethane is Lethal…

Hammer Black Widow Urethane Bowling Ball

First Impressions
The Black Widow Urethane is one of if not the strongest urethane ball on the market. This ball can find its place into many bowlers’ bags.

Our Tester:

Justin Kleinspehn (Righty)
Style: High Rev
RPM: 475 rpm
PAP: 5 & 1 1/4 up
Average Speed: 19.5 mph (at release)
Axis tilt: low
Axis rotation: medium
Test Equipment: 15 Pounds
Layout: 40 x 5 x 30
Intent: Quick roll with a quick transition at the breakpoint

Thanks to Greg Bickta and Perfect Aim Pro Shop for drilling our equipment.
Thanks to Limerick Bowl in Limerick, PA.

Buy the Hammer Black Widow Urethane at PerfactAimBowling.com.

“Keep in mind that coverstock accounts for 70% of ball reaction, but the core creates the dynamic shape of the reaction. Your driller will alter the shape to suit your game.”

Test Pattern:
THS: 40ft, 23ml

Value
B
Value again is based on versatility and usability vs price. Bottom line is this ball gets a decent score due to reasonable pricing and it’s market competition.

Specs
The Hammer Black Widow Urethane uses the Gas Mask core wrapped in a urethane coverstock.
15 pound = RG of 2.50, diff of .058, mb of .016
14 pound = RG of 2.49, diff of .056 mb of .016
Coverstock finish: 360/500/500 abralon

Overall
THS: B

It’s not news any longer to see urethane balls released. What’s old is new. Amazingly, Hammer has 4, count’em 4, urethane pieces plus the urethane like Burgundy Hammer. The Black Widow Urethane is the strongest one. This is an aggressive piece with lots of surface. So you see lots of early motion and then a very smooth motion downlane that is the hallmark of urethane. Basically you have the most aggressive ball in the first 30 feet and then a urethane ball the rest of the way. Where did we see this before?? Oh yeah, in the Roto Grip Hot Cell. We have a similar formula here. Hammer uses the extremely successful Gas Mask core at the heart of this beast. That’s a strong asymmetric core That’s wrapped in urethane. So you have the early strong motion of a very gritty surface and the transition is aided by a huge asymmetric core. But because this all happens early, it creates a very smooth motion down lane. Add that to the rev rate of a bowler like Justin and you have a very potent and controllable option.
In the end here’s what Justin had. Remember this is a house shot which means friction to the outside, lots of oil in the middle. So initially, Justin tried playing a bit further in and the ball wouldn’t make it back. It’s still urethane. Then when he moved into the friction, the ball would not hold pocket because it is so strong in the first 30 feet of the lane. So up the boards was out. He finally found the sweet spot around 12 to 5. He needed some open angle but also needed to get it to the friction to get some bounce. The volume of oil on this pattern is a bit too much to pull the breakpoint in with urethane.

Once you find the right zone, those with experience know, urethane is forgiving. Misses tend to give you some room in both directions. Missing in tends to leave flat corners or 4 or 6 pins. Missing out could be flat corners or buckets. The dreaded bucket…yes it’s common with urethane.

Final Thoughts
Nowadays with the average rev rate creeping upwards, urethane is almost becoming a must. Having a strong urethane like the Black Widow Urethane is a good option when it’s hard sometimes to find a stepdown to the medium reactive pieces. Urethane does simplify the game. It takes away some of the tricky nuances that arise when bowling on tough patterns when reactive is finicky. So flat corner leaves are better than leaving designer splits. With a reasonable price for the strongest urethane out there, the Black Widow Urethane is a no brainer for Hammerheads and great option for any bowler needing urethane in the bag.

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