Ok guys, need some help. Since coming back from 2 years off my release has seemingly gone down the crapper. 2 years ago I was bowling 4 nights a week in league, then practicing on the other days of the week, now I'm bowling 1 league, rarely practicing, and my consistency shows it. I used to be smooth as butter and now have a tendency to hang up on some shots. I checked all the spans/pitches and everything fits correctly, it's just something I'm doing. I've also always had problems with my hands sweating, even in the past, so that has caused my release to get grabby at times.
I've read reviews about thumb inserts giving you a cleaner release and just being smoother in general than a typical thumbhole. I'd really just like to have a little more information on them.
I know some of the disadvantages I've seen are cracking, and obviously price, as right now my thumbhole is essentially free, although I'm willing to pay 5-10 bucks for an insert if it helps my game at all. I've also read that certain brands are better than others, and that vinyl is for sure a no-go.
Advantages as I've seen are cleaner release, better feel, easier to change thumbhole size/pitch as you can just drill the old one out and replace it. Then of course, there's the switchgrips which would be much easier to make changes, just don't know if I want to drop that much more money for an experiment as the ones at our shop cost about 4-5 times what one urethane slug would cost.
I'm just looking for things that might help me out so any info would be appreciated. I know what I really need is to get back out and practice on a more regular basis, but resources are tighter this year than they have been in years past, especially with all these holidays. Any past experiences with different kinds/brands would be helpful. Thanks guys!
Today's balls are very grabby, so I find that if a slug isn't installed, my thumb would hang more than it usually would. I don't have this problem since I switched to 2 handed, but I still get slugs installed, in case the lanes are really cooking, and I need to grab a 10 pin.
It's nice to feel the same surface in every bowling ball, and that's what a slug gives you.
thumb inserts suck, but thumb slugs are nice Vise is the best. But adding an insert wont fix your game
I understand that adding an insert won't fix my game, I'm just looking for a cleaner release at this moment. To fix my game I need to pick up my spare shooting, which has been dismal all year. Probably in the 75-80% range, which is the worst it's ever been. My current avg is 204 in league, but I average 4-5 opens a night, sometimes upwards of 6-7. With a few more made spares I'd be back in the mid-220's to low 230's where I was before I had to quit. I think a cleaner release would help with spares some too, I've been pulling my straight ball a bit due to the thumb hanging up. Getting out of the ball cleaner is just my first step towards recovery. I've also considered doing away with my finger inserts to help this. Been eyeballing Bas' 45 degree drilling too, but haven't grown enough of a pair to change one of my balls yet.
i know the thumb insert change over is high in cost but with the switch grips it is worth the money. easy to change out to bigger sizes and pitches.and the driller only has to drill for the outer sleve and in most cases the outer is alittle bigger than the slug going in. i changed over my balls and seen a better smother release in my thumb my spare shooting came up. and i don't hang as i did and when i start to i just move to my next size insert. i had my driller do two of my balls to start then i changed the rest over as funds showed up. their are alot of guys that say this brand that brand. most shops would cut a deal if doing more than one ball. the shop i deal with runs 35 for the first set outer and inner then 15 for each inner the same charge for a reg thumb slug.
so it is still up to you on how you want to go.
but the guys that went the road of switch grips loves them less work on the thumb whole just map out the ball drill fingers, thumb whole insert outer and off you go.no fine tunning the thumb whole same feel in every ball you use.
It seems from all your posts that you are a good enough bowler to recognize it yourself, but I thought of something while reading your post. Have you checked if your timing has gotten a little too late? You know, I'm sure, that late timing can cause tugs and thumb hangs. Just asking. Bowling once a week, it's hard to keep great timing.
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I - I took the one less traveled by and that has made all the difference (Robert Frost)
I know for a fact that's one of my issues too. Most of what my issues are come back to the fact I don't bowl enough to get any type of rhythym in my game. I've always had issues with my hands sweating though, not just while bowling; they're sweating as I type this actually. Not dripping in a nasty way, but they perspire. I've tried ezslide, but when you sweat on ezslide it turns into this chunky, nasty glue. This is more of just wanting to experiment with something that may, or may not, help fix an ongoing issue. My next course of action will be to actually get my ass up to the lanes and make an effort to be a bowler again. Thanks everyone for the input though.
I've been using the Turbo 2in1 thumb slugs for the past 9 or 10 years and really like them. I get pretty much the same feel out of every ball.
Even tho they cost me $10 a ball extra to have them installed, I've always felt they were worth it because my hands sweat during bowling, and I can still remember the sticking problem I had before.
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I have been using urethane thumb slugs for more than 15yrs and I love them. Before them, when I was bowling like every night of the week and tournaments, I would tear my thumb up pretty bad. Since switching to urethane slugs, I have had no problems whatsoever, and the size of my thumb has went back to nearly the same as my other thumb.
A little reverse pitch in the thumb wouldn't hurt either.
Kevin D. Berry
Lane Masters Regional Staff