Hammer 3D Offset Ball Review by Jeff Ussery
Layout: 60 degrees x 5 1/2" x 40 degrees
Surface: 2000 grit sanded
Core shape: Asymmetric
The ball’s appearance is almost identical to the 3-D Offset from 25-years ago. The Blazing Violet stands out as much today as it did then, and Hammer's branded it the same way with yellow Hammer logos on the right and left side and the orange 3-D Offset logo above the pin, or D.O.T. in this case. A minimal amount of Pearl was added to the Neoflex 25 cover to create optimal performance for today’s conditions. The new 3-D Offset is finished at 2000 Siaair, yet it easily gets through the front of the lane and has a strong and continuous move throughout the backend and pin deck.
I punched mine up with my pin up layout, but the lower asymmetric value in the core shape (.008") made me consider something different. I don't normally like anything but pin up layouts in my asymmetric pieces, but this core is more versatile in that aspect and would allow for some different looks without the fear of the ball just blowing up in the mid-lane. I left the surface at the 2000 grit factory finish as well.
3D Offset has the high revving core motion that Hammer users will remember from the late 90s. This ball revs easily off of your hand and sets up for a strong and powerful mid-lane reaction. The backend is very continuous in shape, much more so than previous Hammer releases from the last couple of seasons. I really liked the 3D Offset once it took on just a game or two of lane-shine, getting it through the front of the lane just a touch easier. Once that change occurred, this ball became extremely usable in a wide variety of conditions. I find it at home on medium to slightly heavier oil patterns. I wouldn't call this a huge hooking ball, but it does enough that you could throw it on heavier oil if you wanted to. The Hammer Obsession is probably the better choice on truly heavy oil though. 3D Offset will be next out of the bag after the Obsession begins hooking too early.
The Offset has also been surprising across different zones of the lane. I expected this ball to be best in the 2nd to 4th arrow range, but maybe not as useful left of there. But I was definitely mistaken. 3D Offset is very usable further left, and even over the left gutter if you dare go that far. The backend continuation improvement allows this ball to be in play for a far longer time period than some of the previous Hammer releases.
I've not tried any polish on this one yet, as I like the reaction just the way it is. I could see some polish being useful for heavier handed players, or those who want to use a 3D on slightly drier environments.
We'll be recommending this ball to a lot of people travelling to the Greater Ozarks, state tournaments, and even USBC National Tournaments. It's going to be in play on such a wide variety of stuff that it will be really useful at several tournaments. If you're looking for something just a touch more hook than a Widow 2.0, this is going to be the perfect complement.
Stop by TBG and learn about the hottest ball in the market - the new Hammer 3D Offset!