How Many Dimples Are On A Golf Ball?
You may be surprised to learn that dimples are a very important part of a golf ball’s design. The size, shape and dimple count are all carefully planned to produce a ball that performs in a particular way.
Golf ball manufacturers spend a lot of time developing their dimple patterns to give golfers the best possible golf ball.
The number of dimples will vary from ball to ball but most balls have between 300 and 400 dimples. One ball did have over 1000 dimples!
Why Do Golf Balls Have Dimples?
Dimples are added to the cover of a golf ball to make it more aerodynamic. The indentations on the surface of the ball cause turbulence in the airflow around the ball which creates more lift. This turbulent boundary layer around the surface reduces drag which allows the ball to fly further.
The backspin on the ball creates lower air pressure above the ball which increases the lift force making it fly higher. Dimples increase this effect.
Golfers had noticed that used balls with nicks and scuffs on the cover performed better than brand-new smooth balls. This led to raised patterns being printed on early mass-produced balls in the late 1800s and early 1900s.
After finding dimples worked better than raised markings William Taylor registered a patent for dimple design in 1905.
Is It Better To Have More Or Less Dimples On A Golf Ball?
The dimple count is not what will affect the performance of the ball.
Ball manufacturers will adjust the depth, shape and size to alter the ball flight for different ball models.
Dean Snell, who knows a thing or two about producing golf balls says that having deeper dimples will lower the flight of higher spinning balls. If you are making a ball that is going to spin less then you would apply shallower dimples in order to increase the height of its flight.
Do All Golf Balls Have The Same Number Of Dimples?
Different models of balls will have different dimple counts.
Ball manufacturers want to produce balls to suit different types of golfers. Some will need more help getting the ball airborne while others will need their trajectory brought down.
Balls for beginners might be designed to fly higher since new golfers will struggle to get the ball airborne.
A ball targeting better players is likely to be high spinning so you might adjust the dimples to lower the flight of the ball slightly. This will help when playing in windy conditions.
Examples of dimple counts for some premium (Pro V1 like) balls:
|B RXS, B RX
|B X, B XS
|Chrome Soft (all versions)
|RB Tour, RB Tour X
|MTB, MTB X
|Z-Star, Z Star XV, Z-Star Diamond
How Many Dimples Are There On A Titleist Pro V1 Golf Ball?
The original ball had 392 dimples if I remember correctly. The current version has 352 dimples. The Pro V1x has slightly fewer dimples at 328.
Are All Golf Ball Dimples The Same?
Each of the larger ball companies has its own R&D team working on the aerodynamics of their products. They will try to determine the best size and depth to produce the effect they want for that ball model.
Where manufacturers usually differ is in the size of the dimples and the pattern used to distribute them across the surface of the ball. Some use the same size dimples across the whole of the ball while other models might employ different sized dimples for different effects.
Dimples depth is usually in the region of 0.010 inches.
Are All Golf Ball Dimples Circular?
Early dimples were sometimes square. Other designs have been tried down the years but eventually ball producers settled on circular dimples.
One reason that modern golf balls tend to have circular dimples is that non-standard dimples have not tended to fare too well in the marketplace.
Callaway currently uses hexagonal dimples because they prefer the extra surface coverage that you get compared with circular ones.
According to the Rules of Golf laid down by USGA and R&A dimple patterns must be symmetrical. If the pattern is not symmetrical then it can’t go on the conforming list of balls and you can’t use it in competitive play or when playing for handicap purposes.
How Many Dimples Are On A Golf Ball: Conclusion
Knowing the number of dimples on your ball is actually not important. You should just try to find a ball designed to suit your game.
Whether you need a ball with a lower or higher flight tendency or not just find one that best suits your overall game.