How Long Does It Take to Plug a Bowling Ball?

Have you ever wondered how long it takes to plug a bowling ball? Whether you’re a casual bowler or a serious competitor, knowing the time frame for this common maintenance task can be helpful. Let’s explore the process and find out just how long it typically takes to plug a bowling ball.

What is Bowling Ball Plugging?

Bowling ball plugging is a process where any existing holes in a bowling ball are filled and then re-drilled to fit the bowler’s hand size and grip preferences. This process is necessary when a bowler’s hand size changes, or when they want to adjust the grip on their ball.

To plug a bowling ball, you will need a few essential materials such as plug material, a plug cutter, a drill press, and safety equipment like goggles and gloves. The plug material is typically a two-part epoxy resin that hardens to provide a strong filler for the holes in the ball.

How Long Does it Take to Plug a Bowling Ball?

When it comes to plugging a bowling ball, it usually takes around 30 to 45 minutes, depending on various factors such as the number of holes to be plugged, the experience of the person performing the task, and the drying time of the plug material.

The process involves mixing the plug material, filling the existing holes, and allowing it to dry before re-drilling the new grip holes in the desired position. Once the new grip holes are drilled, the ball may need additional sanding and polishing to ensure a smooth finish.

In addition to the time it takes to plug a bowling ball, it’s important to factor in additional time for any adjustments or customizations that may be needed to achieve the perfect fit and feel for your bowling ball.

For more detailed instructions on how to plug a bowling ball, you can check out this helpful guide on They provide step-by-step instructions and helpful tips to ensure a successful plugging process.

Steps for Plugging a Bowling Ball

Whether you’re looking to repair a crack or customize your bowling ball, plugging it is a crucial process. To plug a bowling ball, you’ll need to follow these key steps:

  1. Preparation: Begin by cleaning the surface of the area you intend to plug thoroughly. Remove any dirt, oil, or residue to ensure a strong bond between the plug and the ball.

  2. Drilling: Use a drill press with the appropriate bit size to create a hole in the desired location on the bowling ball. Be sure to measure carefully to ensure accuracy.

  3. Mixing the Plug: Prepare your chosen plug material according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Ensure it is thoroughly mixed to guarantee a proper seal.

  4. Filling the Hole: Carefully pour the plug material into the drilled hole, ensuring it reaches the desired depth. Be cautious not to overflow or create air pockets.

  5. Finishing: Once the plug material has set, use sandpaper to smooth down the surface. This will ensure a seamless finish and proper functionality.

Factors Affecting Plugging Time

The time it takes to plug a bowling ball can vary depending on several factors:

  • Type of Plug: Different plug materials have varying curing times, affecting how long it takes for the plug to set properly. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for optimal results.
  • Condition of the Ball: If the ball has significant damage or requires extensive preparation before plugging, it may take longer to complete the process. Assess the ball’s condition before beginning to gauge the time needed for repairs.

Considering these factors can help you estimate the time required for plugging a bowling ball accurately. Remember to prioritize quality and precision to ensure the best results.

Tips for Efficient Plugging

When plugging a bowling ball, time is of the essence. To speed up the process without compromising quality, try these tips:

  • Use High-Quality Plugs: Invest in high-quality plug materials to ensure a secure and long-lasting repair.
  • Prep the Surface: Clean and dry the affected area thoroughly before applying the plug to promote better adhesion.
  • Work Quickly: Once you start the plugging process, work efficiently to prevent the plug from drying out prematurely.
  • Smooth Finish: Take the time to smooth out the plug once applied to ensure a seamless and professional look.
  • Practice Makes Perfect: The more you plug bowling balls, the faster and more proficient you’ll become.

By following these tips, you can plug a bowling ball efficiently without sacrificing the quality of the repair.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

When it comes to plugging a bowling ball, it’s essential to steer clear of common mistakes that could negatively impact the outcome. Here are some missteps to avoid:

  • Insufficient Preparation: Failing to properly clean and dry the surface before plugging can result in a weak bond that may not hold up over time.
  • Overfilling or Underfilling: Applying too much or too little plug can lead to an uneven surface or weak spot in the ball.
  • Rushing the Process: Trying to rush through the plugging process can result in a messy repair that doesn’t hold up well.
  • Ignoring Instructions: Not following the manufacturer’s instructions for the plug material can lead to a subpar repair job.
  • Lack of Patience: Taking the time to ensure the plug is applied correctly and allowed to cure fully is crucial for a successful repair.

By avoiding these common mistakes, you can plug a bowling ball effectively and ensure a long-lasting repair.

For more helpful tips on bowling ball maintenance, check out this resource.

Maintenance After Plugging

After plugging a bowling ball, it’s crucial to properly maintain it to ensure optimal performance on the lanes. One key step you should take is to clean the surface of the plugged area regularly with a ball cleaner to prevent dirt and oil buildup that can affect the ball’s motion. Additionally, periodically inspect the plug for any signs of cracking or separation. Regularly monitoring the plugged area can help catch any issues early on and prevent further damage. Lastly, consider having the ball professionally resurfaced every 30-50 games to maintain its peak performance.

Professional vs. DIY Plugging

When deciding whether to plug a bowling ball yourself or take it to a professional, keep in mind that DIY plugging may save you time and money initially, but it requires skill and precision to ensure a proper plug without affecting the ball’s balance. On the other hand, opting for a professional service guarantees expert handling, accurate drilling, and a high-quality plug that maintains the ball’s integrity. If you’re confident in your skills and have experience with plugging, DIY could be a viable option. However, if precision and long-term performance are your top priorities, investing in a professional service might be the way to go.

Additional Unique Insight:

Choosing a professional for plugging can also provide the added benefit of personalized advice on maintenance and care tailored to your specific bowling style and frequency of play, ensuring your ball’s longevity and optimal performance.

Interesting Bowling Ball Trivia

Did you know that bowling balls are typically made of a material called reactive resin or urethane? These materials help the ball grip the lane better, enhancing the bowler’s control and accuracy.

In a standard bowling ball, there are finger holes drilled into it to help the bowler get a secure grip. But did you know that there are also weight blocks inside the ball to help with its overall balance and performance?

Another fascinating fact is that professional bowlers often have multiple bowling balls in their arsenal, each with a different weight, surface texture, and drilling pattern. This allows them to adapt to various lane conditions and maximize their chances of success.

Overall, the process of plugging a bowling ball typically takes around 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the complexity of the plug and the skill level of the person doing the work. It involves removing the existing plug, preparing the surface, applying the new plug material, and shaping it to fit perfectly.

So, next time you’re at the bowling alley, take a moment to appreciate the technology and craftsmanship that goes into creating these essential tools of the game.

Steps to Plug a Bowling Ball

  1. Prepare the Ball: Begin by cleaning the area around the existing plug and ensuring the surface is smooth and dry.
  2. Remove the Old Plug: Carefully drill out the old plug, being cautious not to damage the surrounding area.
  3. Apply New Plug Material: Mix the plug material according to the manufacturer’s instructions and apply it to the hole.
  4. Shape and Smooth: Once the plug material has cured, shape it to match the contour of the ball and smooth out any rough edges.
  5. Finish and Test: Sand and polish the plug to match the rest of the ball’s surface, then test it out to ensure a proper fit and feel.

Remember, if you’re unsure about plugging your own bowling ball, it’s always best to seek the assistance of a professional to ensure the job is done correctly.

For more in-depth guidance on plugging a bowling ball, check out this comprehensive guide from How to Plug a Bowling Ball Guide

  • Alex Mitch

    Hi, I'm the founder of! Having been in finance and tech for 10+ years, I was surprised at how hard it can be to find answers to common questions in finance, tech and business in general. Because of this, I decided to create this website to help others!