How much does Bowling Pin weigh? [A Look into Bowling Pins]

Bowling Pin

If you think hard about it, the life of a bowling pin is quite tough. Well, it literally does not have a life. It stands up to fall back down while we, humans, fall down to stand back up.

The sole purpose of bowling pins is to fall back down. It may stand through a few rounds but that never lasts long, does it? However, do you know what makes the bowling pins precious? Their strength of course. They are made in a way so that they can take the beating they keep taking.

Have you ever wondered what makes the bowling pins so strong? How much do bowling pins weigh? Well, you should. Because that is what makes the bowling pins the bowling pins. So, let’s find out everything we can about bowling pins!

how much does Bowling Pin Weigh?

 Minimum: 3 lbs and 6 ounces.

Maximum: 3 lbs and 10 ounces.

The Base Diameter of the Pin: 2 1/4 inches is the standard base diameter.

A Look into Bowling Pins

 What exactly makes the bowling pins so durable? It is definitely the build. In fact, bowling pins are made of maple wood and then covered with a plastic coating. Apparently, it is the maple wood that is responsible for the strength of the bowling pins, while the plastic coating protects it from the various weather conditions.

So, that is the secret behind the strength of the bowling pins. Now, let’s talk about the shape and size. Apparently, the pins usually have a wide bottom with a thin top. This is the ideal shape to give the pins balance. Furthermore, it makes it easier for the machine to arrange them back after they fall down.

When it comes to height, the bowling pins are 15 inches even though they may look way shorter. As you already know the diameter of the base is 2 1/4 inches and the pins are usually 4.75 inches wide.

As for the weight, the standard weight of bowling pins has always been 3 lbs and 6 ounces. 4 to 5 ounces are added with the the combination of laminated maple, plastic coating, and thicker neck.

In this case, you will now find three types of bowling pins.

The first kind is the standard Vulcan Vultex 2. They follow the standard size and weight and are made with a coating of surlyn. Apparently, they are quite heavy duty and meant to last a while.

The second kind is the Brunswick PBA gold pin. Apparently, these are the heavier pins weighing 3 lbs and 10 ounces. They are used in the tournament by PBA and have a PBA logo on them as well.

Finally, the third kind is the Wimsom Pin. It is also made by Brunswick and has the Brunswick logo on it. These are also quite great in how they perform.

The bowling pins  specificationactually follow a standard and need to be approved by ABC- American Bowling Congress to be used in tournaments. Apparently, ABC has quite clear instructions on how the bowling pins need to be made. You may think it’s only the weight but bowling pins are universal in size, material, and weight everywhere you go to a bowl.

How to aim in bowling?

 When you finally learn how to hold and throw a bowling ball, you have to focus on throwing it where you want to throw it. In other words, you have to aim your ball.

Now, you think you have already aimed your ball just by looking at the pins and throwing the ball. Most people do, no worries. But, that is not really the best approach and this is the exact approach why most people tend to miss their target.

Let’s first find out what you should aim at.

1. The Pin Bowling. 

There is a term in bowling called pin bowling and it has more to do with aiming than you could ever imagine. Apparently, bowlers who look at the pin to aim are pin bowling. While yes, it works, but it does not work best.

Because the pins are at least 60 feet away from you and that is quite a long way to be aiming your ball from. The center of pin spots is located 2.75″ away from the end of the lane. Thus, yes, at first you could go with pin bowling by instinct. But, it is best if you do not from the very beginning to resist forming a habit.

2. The Spot Bowling. 

This is the aiming approach we will be focusing on and it is far more effective than the pin bowling approach. Apparently, if you notice carefully, you will find lines or dots on the bowling lane. You will find dots in the complete center of the lane that leads to the number one pin- which stays at the center of all the other pins.

In the spot bowling approach, you focus on these lines that are closer to you rather than the pins that reside so far away from you. That is why there lie higher chances of you succeeding in scoring a strike. Because it surely is easier to be more accurate in hitting a closer target than a target that is far away.

A few more considerations

You could just aim at the centerline to score a strike but in all honesty, that just would not be enough. This is because there are quite a number of other factors to consider when you are aiming. And, these factors are:

Your Bowling Style: 

Do you always throw a straight ball or do you hook your ball very well? Does your ball always go where you aim it to go? Consider these after practicing and evaluating your own aims and shots.

Because in most cases the ball does not go straight. If you are a right-handed player, it is best to aim in the pocket between the 1 and 3 number bowling balls. On the other hand, if you are a left-handed player it is best to aim in the pocket between and 2 number balls.

So, you are staying quite close to your target. If your ball does curve a bit, it is alright to aim at either side of the centerline but not the centerline. Because your ball will most likely not move in a straight line.

The Lane Conditions. 

Time and again in bowling you have come across the terms heavily oiled or dry lane. When the lane is heavily oiled, the ball will have a different course of direction. On the other hand, when the lane is dry, it will have another. The same in the case of moderately oiled lanes.

You see, the level of oil in the lane will play a huge role in how much control you have over the ball. Thus, it plays a huge role in how you aim your ball as well. In some lanes, the ball will move faster along the right and left side than it does along the center. In others, it may move differently in the back end while it has a different path along the middle.

So, consider these and be flexible in your approach. It is good to know your standard aiming style but to be a better bowler, you need to be able to adapt to the various conditions as well. The professionals do not play in the same lane forever.

They face new conditions more often than we can imagine and they take their time to find out how to change their aiming and swings to get the best results in the lane they are bowling on.

So, the key is to observe and adjust. Know what to do when situations change.

How much do bowling pins cost?

 There is no specific answer to this particular question. Apparently, while the size and weight of the bowling pins are pretty much the same, the material and design are not always the same. This is why you will find that the price varies quite a lot.

When more durable and expensive materials are used in the build, the pins will cost more. And, when lighter and less durable materials are used, it will cost less.

You can find bowling pins starting from 4 dollars to extremely expensive ones that have no limit. However, the general range is 100-170 dollars. Within this range, you can find durable ones that also perform just the way you want them to perform and ticks the other boxes of being a standard as well.

In conclusion

Phew! Bowling pins are not as innocent and simple as they look and they are not same as bowling ball dimensions, are they! Quite a lot of effort goes into the build and design of each of these pins and one wrong measurement and they get rejected.

Now you know that they are not simple and they have their standard sizes, materials, and all that for the better. The strict standards are what keeps the pins from cracking despite the amount of beating they take every day. You can even use the pins for generations. The ones that get old can be used for the practice sessions easily. So, just know which ones to buy.


I’m an aspiring bowler with an immense love for bowling. I started playing the game at a very early age and it’s been an integral part of my life ever since.

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