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Golf Balls

All the Information you need about Golf Balls

The type of golf ball you use is almost as important as the kind of golf club you are hitting it with. It may look ordinary from a simple perspective, but what it is made of can actually affect how you perform in a game.

There are a lot of factors you need to consider before deciding on a particular type of golf ball. From overall construction, to the spin rate, and its compression, these aspects can create a huge impact on how a particular ball is handled. If you have no idea what these ball types are, then you have come to the right place.

To have you a better understanding on how the inner workings of a golf ball comes together, please carry on reading. This article will break down the basics of an ideal golf ball, down to the last layer.

Golf ball: What is it made of?

Before we get into specific details, it will be best for you to at least get a general picture of what golf balls looks like.

A top quality golf ball is usually made up of an inner core, which is then layered over with a mantle, before finally being encased by a protective cover. However, this only ever applies to a 3-piece ball or higher, since anything below that only makes use of one or two of such parts, usually the former and latter, which will be explained in detail later on.

A typical core is normally made out of rubber or resin, while the outer shell can come in either surlyn, polyurethane, or balata, covers. Depending on the cover used, the firmness of the ball is also determined, with the former providing the harder consistency, and the polyurethane with the softer feel.

Furthermore, have you noticed those dimples on the outermost layer of your golf ball? Well, they are not just for show. Although these dimples may vary from depth, quantity, symmetry, and etc., depending on their manufacturers, their goal more or less remains similar, and that is to reduce drag and improve the overall lift of the ball during flight.

Getting an In-Depth Look on a Golf Ball’s Construction

As hinted above, a golf ball can have multiple layers, and depending on how many there are, or if there is even any at all, the ball’s performance and price will also differ. Most modern constructions of the golf ball rarely ever exceed 5 layers. Here is a list of all golf ball builds you can deliberate on:

  • 1-Piece Ball

Just as the name suggests, this ball type only uses 1 type of material. It its simplest form, this is a golf ball made up of just hard plastic, and nothing more. Because of this straightforward construct, it is also the least expensive out of all golf ball types.

In a competitive scene, this type is hardly ever used, since it does not offer much in terms weight and travel distance. However, if you are just starting out, or playing on a casual golf course, then this ball is durable enough to be handled in such scenarios.

  • 2-Piece Ball

A bit on the heftier side, the 2-piece golf ball definitely covers a lot more distance than the 1-piece ball, thanks to the addition of a core. Its core is usually made up of a rubber material that varies between resin and high-energy acrylate, which is then covered by a hard enclosing, typically in surlyn or other durable special plastic materials.

With the addition of a solid core, this type tends to be harder and firmer, which produces a lower spin rate, thus giving you less control. Although, its long travel distance and durability are what makes it so popular for most everyday golfers. So if you are just out playing with friends, and want an accessible and reliable golf ball to play with, then this type will suffice.

  • 3-Piece Ball

The 3-piece golf ball is much like the 2-piece type, but with the addition of a new layer in between the core and the outer covering. However, the cover of the 3-piece is actually softer compared to that of the latter, since it now uses a soft synthetic plastic, which will provide you with a better spin rate.

As for the added layer, it is generally made up of enhanced liquid rubber, which also contributes to the overall rotation of the ball. The innermost part the 3-piece golf ball on the other hand, can come in either a solid rubber or liquid core. Moreover, you can even tell the difference of this type compared to the previous two, by simply touching and squeezing it.

  • 4-Piece Ball

If you combine the impressive travel distance of the 2-piece golf ball, and the improved spin rate of the 3-piece golf ball, what you essentially get is this ball. The core of the 4-piece golf ball is made of a soft rubber material, which maximizes the force of impact applied to ball, from outer to inner.

The purpose of the additional outer layer in the 4-piece golf ball is to absorb and transfer the impact energy into the inner layer, which the inner layer then sends to the core, all without losing spin rate. Moreover, the thin, yet durable, outer shell of this ball type optimizes your swing’s impact, giving you that long ball travel.

  • 5-Piece Ball

The 5-piece golf ball is the latest, and probably the most advanced out of all the other types. Although it is quite expensive, you also get the most out of this ball type. Because of its soft and low-compression core, along with its soft cover and first layer, you can basically get access to two spinning rates, low and high, when using long iron and short iron golf clubs, respectively. 

Hopefully you now have an idea of what type of golf ball will suit your common game setup. Always remember, you don’t have to go for the most expensive ball just to have a fun casual golf game. Competitive scenes, however, are a whole different story.

Also make sure you always have enough spare golf balls in your golf bag. Just in case your ball ends up in a water hazard or gets lost in the rough. Most golfers use a golf trolley anyway to avoid carrying their heavy golf bag around.

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