Took it out for its first full league night tonight. I used it for the first two games of a three-game set and finished with a Roto Grip Silver Streak SE in the third game.
To try to better describe the drill pattern on this ball, the "storm" symbol is about an inch and a half below the ring finger, straight down, while the pin is above and to the left of the ring finger. I'd had someone complain to me that I wasn't specific enough about the drilling pattern, but that's what you get when the reviewer is a newspaper editor and not a pro shop operator.
Our league shot has been fairly wet as late, with heavier-than-usual concentration and length on the outside boards. The biggest problem that I and my teammates have had is backend reaction. The opinion tonight of most of us was that the shot was a little dryer than usual.
What I saw was a medium shot with a nice backend, but it was speed-sensitive. There was definitely out-of-bounds area down the lane if you threw it too fast. Slower-than-desired shots were not holding.
I was hoping to use the ball for the entire set, but things simply got too dry as the night went on.
I began by playing my usual line, which is to put the ball down around 14-17, swing to 5-8, with about 16-16.5 mph and play a power arc. The ball did fine with this approach, but I could tell it wanted me to move left and give it more room, so I did.
Once I got my speed corrected, I found I could target 17-20, swing to 4-6 FAR down the lane, and still get a good reaction. The coverstock (it's in box condition, ~1000 matte) also allowed me to play much tighter if I wanted to (down on 20-22, swing to 13-15). I carried well on all shots.
Tonight simply backed up my first impression of the ball I got on drilling day: If you're a Storm fan, this ball is pretty much a must-get.
Just drilled this ball up today. The ball had a 2.5-3 inch pin with about 1.5 oz of top weight. I play mostly the right half of the lane and prefer to play equipment that arcs rather than skids/snaps. The ball is 14lbs, the result of me moving down from 16lbs due to wrist health issues.
Rarely am I floored by the reaction of a ball. The first time was with the original Thunder Storm, and it happened again the first time I drilled up a X-Factor. I have to say it happened again today. This ball hooks, and it keeps hooking. Even though only 14 lbs, there was no deflection through the pin deck and I covered all corner pins during the set I used this ball.
It's a shame this ball is so rare. Storm should release this one nationwide as soon as possible. I was able to play in, out, cross board, go down and in, basically whatever line I wanted to play. It did not over-under like the original Thunder Storm had a tendency to do some of the time, and it's extremely easy to manipulate axis tilt to get a different set of reactions down the lane if you want to.
This is probably the best ball I've had drilled up in five or six years, if not longer. Or at least, it fits my game better than any other.