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Radical Trailblazer Solid Ball Review by Jeff Ussery

Layout: 60 degrees x 5 1/2" x 25 degrees

RG: 2.50"

Differential: .052"

M/b: .020"

Surface: 2000 grit sanded

Core shape: Asymmetric

Radical’s newest addition to the Top Shelf lineup is The Trailblazer Solid. The Trailblazer Solid features the all-new MOtion Magic Solid cover. This cover is one of Radical’s most aggressive covers yielding lots of hook on even the heaviest oil patterns. The Trailblazer Solid is one of Mo Pinel’s cores and was designed to respond quickly to friction, evident by an intermediate differential of 0.020. The core numbers you see above reflect the power and continuation of the Trailblazer Solid.

I was so happy with the new DV8 Hellcat that I immediately looked for a product that could serve as a "complimentary" reaction to that one. Hellcat is a big ball designed for medium to heavier oil volumes. I thought the Trailblazer Solid might be a good choice to try out to meet the purpose. I decided on two things before I drilled it. First, I wanted the reaction shape to be similar to the Hellcat, but I also wanted slightly less overall hook. I chose to use the exact same layout as I did on the Hellcat. Then I altered the surface on the Trailblazer Solid before I even drilled the ball, taking it to 3000 grit on our resurfacing machines at the store. This gave the ball a light glazed look, while not adding any polish to the cover. One trick that I use often to increase length in a ball reaction is to use very fine grit Abralon (ex. 3000, 4000, 5000), without using polish. This gets the ball much farther down the lane without jeopardizing the chemistry and texture of the cover by adding polish.

This ball ended up matching up perfectly for me. It's in the neighborhood of 4-5 boards weaker than the Hellcat. It's more than enough to be a distinguishable difference. But the shot shape is very similar since I used the same layout. My guess is that the Trailblazer Solid would be similar overall hook to the Hellcat if I would have left the surface alone. I also think it would be just a tick earlier and smoother than the Hellcat based on what I've seen. With the 3000 grit finish, Trailblazer Solid is much longer down the lane than the Hellcat, and a bit sharper off of the breakpoint. I find the Trailblazer Solid to have very impressive continuation through the backend. You can see this demonstrated in my First 50 Shots video here:

In the original finish, Trailblazer Solid is going to be best on medium to heavier oil volumes. This one is also incredibly good at playing extreme wet/dry conditions with its strong core numbers. It seems to just roll off of the wet/dry, and then make the subtle continuation you'd look for on that type of pattern. When the lanes are very open, this ball can be a lot of fun to throw (again, watch the video!). This is a ball I could easily see myself drilling another layout on. The color, the reaction, the continuation just all match up to my game extremely well. I think it's going to match up for several players this way.

Radical's Trailblazer Solid is available now at Total Bowling Gear, and we have them in stock in both 14# and 15#. Come by today to check out Radical's newest product. It's sure to be one of the best balls this bowling season.


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