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How Much Does It Cost to Drill a Bowling Ball?

The bowling ball drilling cost can vary for each of the colorful balls pictured.

Most people think bowling balls come with holes, but that’s not the case. When you go to your local pro shops or order a ball online, you’ll usually find that the balls come without them.

Because of this, they need drilling after the fact, and that’s where this article will come in handy. Just how much does it cost to drill a bowling ball?

This article will tell you how much it costs to get your bowling ball drilled and everything else you need to know. Let’s get right into it! 

How Much Does It Cost to Drill a Bowling Ball?

The cost to drill a bowling ball is anywhere from $20-$50+ to get a bowling ball drilled at a bowling pro shop.

However, the price you’ll pay may differ depending on the shop you go to, how many holes need to be drilled, if you need a thumb hole, or if you opt for additional services along with the drilling.

Bowling balls that are custom drilled bowling balls sit on the ball return.

Factors Affecting the Cost to Drill a Bowling Ball

Bowling ball drilling costs are not the same across the board, and we’ll talk about why in this section. There are four primary factors that affect the cost of drilling a bowling ball, and they include:

The Bowling Ball Driller (Bowling Documentary)
  • The Number of Holes – As you might imagine, the number of holes you need drilled will have the most significant impact on the cost. If you’re just looking for the three-finger holes, you’ll pay less than you would if you need additional holes drilled to change the ball’s behavior on the lane.
  • The Location of the Shop – The location of the shop will also play a role in how much you’ll pay. If your local pro shop is in a big city or expensive area, you can expect to pay more than someone who lives in a small town.
  • If You Opt for Custom Drilling – If you want your ball drilled to your unique hand measurements or want a particular type of hole, you’ll need to shell out more money. It takes more time and effort to drill a ball to specific measurements vs. a standard drilling job.
  • If You Have Inserts Installed – If you need finger inserts installed, this will also add to the cost. After a bowling ball is drilled, there may be rough protrusions inside that can make bowling uncomfortable. To fix that, you can install finger inserts to smooth out these protrusions.
You can bring your own bowling ball into a pro shop for a professional drilling service.

Drilling Protection Is Another Cost to Consider

A drilling protection fee acts sort of like an insurance policy. It protects your ball in case of damage during the drilling process.

It’s not required, but we recommend getting it because you never know what can happen. If your ball is damaged, you’ll have to pay to replace or repair it, which will cost you more money in the long run.

Most bowling pro shops will charge you $5-$10 for drilling protection, so it’s a small price to pay for peace of mind.

New bowling ball sitting on the shelf for a custom drilling services will include span and hole sizes.

Additional Services That May Be Offered

Upcharging is common in bowling pro shops, as they usually offer several different services for additional fees.

In addition to drilling your bowling ball, some pro shops may offer other services like the ones below:

  • Resurfacing – To ensure that your ball performs optimally, keeping the surface free of dirt and debris is essential. When you take your ball in to be drilled, the pro shop may also offer to resurface your ball for an additional fee. The resurfacing process involves sanding the ball’s surface to smooth it out.
  • Polishing – Polishing can be considered an extra step in the resurfacing process, but it can also be done alone. Polishing adds shine to your ball and makes for a smoother overall descent down the lane. 
  • Cleaning – Many pro shops will also offer to clean your ball for an additional fee. The cleaning will most likely be done with a special electric ball spinner to save time and maximize the effectiveness of the cleansing session. 

Why People Get Their Bowling Balls Drilled

People get their bowling balls drilled for a few main reasons, and knowing about these reasons can help you decide whether you need your bowling ball drilled.

  • Improve Bowling Scores– The most common reason people get their bowling balls drilled is to enhance their game. The thought behind this is that if you have the proper hole placement and grip, you can improve your accuracy and control.
  • Change the Ball’s Reaction – Drilling additional holes in your ball can also change how the ball behaves on the lane. If you’re unhappy with your ball’s performance, drilling a new hole or changing the weight distribution can help.
  • Lighten Up the Ball – People also get their bowling balls drilled to fix an issue they’re having. For example, drilling a new hole can help if your ball is too heavy. Drilling one hole in a bowling ball can decrease its weight by up to 5 ounces.
  • Get a New Ball Ready for Play – You might also need to get your ball drilled if you just bought a new one. We touched a bit on this earlier. Some people also redrill an old bowling ball to better fit their hand. 
  • Enhance Comfort – When your bowling ball’s hole placement is off, your hands pay the price. Bowling with hand pain can put a real damper on your game. You can improve your comfort and enjoyment while playing by getting your ball drilled to fit your hand.
Bowling ball is drilled now what

Things to Keep In Mind When Getting Your Bowling Ball Drilled at a Pro Shop

Now that we’ve answered some common questions and gone over the basics of drilling your bowling ball, it’s time to share some important things to keep in mind. These tips will help ensure that you have a positive experience when getting your ball drilled and that you end up with a ball that meets your needs.

  • Do Your Research – You first need to research the pro shops in your area. Find out what they charge for their services, what type of balls they service, and whether they offer any additional services you might be interested in. You should also read any reviews you can find online to get a good idea of what to expect from each shop.
  • Know Your Needs – It’s also important to know what you need before you take your ball to the pro shop for drilling. Do you need a new hole drilled? Does your ball need to be cleaned or polished? You’ll need to know these things to get an accurate quote from the pro shop.
  • Ask Questions – Don’t be afraid to ask questions at the pro shop. The staff should be more than happy to answer any questions you have about their services or the drilling process.
  • Get a Warranty – Most pro shops will offer some type of warranty on their services. This is important in case something goes wrong with the ball post-drilling. Remember, it’s not mandatory, but it’s good to have. 
  • Follow Instructions – Once you’ve had your ball drilled, follow any instructions the pro shop gives you regarding care and maintenance to ensure your ball lasts for many years to come. 
How to Drill a Bowling Ball with Andrew Anderson

How Long Does It Take to Drill a Bowling Ball?

Drilling a bowling ball takes around 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the complexity of the drilling pattern and the expertise of the professional doing the work. It involves precise measurements and careful execution to ensure the holes fit the bowler’s fingers comfortably and provide optimal performance on the lanes.

Can You Drill a Bowling Ball Yourself?

Drilling a bowling ball yourself is technically possible, but it’s only recommended if you have the proper knowledge, skills, and equipment. Drilling requires precision to ensure the holes are the right size and at the correct angles for your grip. It’s usually best to have your bowling ball drilled by a professional to ensure accuracy and safety.

How Many Times Should a Bowling Ball Be Drilled?

A bowling ball should ideally be drilled once to fit the specific bowler’s hand measurements and grip style. However, it can be redrilled if adjustments are needed or if the ball is passed to another player with different hand sizes. Each redrilling should be done cautiously to avoid compromising the ball’s integrity and performance.

What Is Drilling Insurance on a Bowling Ball?

Drilling insurance on a bowling ball is a small additional fee that protects your ball in case of damage during the drilling process. It acts like an insurance policy, offering peace of mind that if something goes wrong, the costs for repair or replacement will be covered. This fee typically ranges from $5-$10 and is offered by most professional bowling pro shops.

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Getting your bowling ball drilled can be a great way to improve your game and make playing more comfortable. Luckily, it’s a service that’s affordable on just about any budget!

We hope that you found this article to be helpful, and we wish you the best as you get your equipment in tip-top shape! Happy bowling!