Bowlers have many choices when looking for a new bowling ball. Bowling balls with long back-end capabilities go a long way down the lane before hooking toward the head pin, provided that rotation is applied with the wrist and fingers. Long back-end bowling balls are ideal for bowling on lane conditions with little oil, as they can skid past the dry parts of the lane before hooking. These balls also work well for bowlers who have a lot of natural hook.
The drilling of a bowling ball greatly affects how long it will go on the lane. Get a ball with a high RG (radius of gyration) to get it to go long and hook at the end. All bowling balls have an indicated pin that lets you know where the center of gravity of the weight block is. To make a ball go long and get a good back-end reaction, drill the ball with the pin positioned high and above the finger holes.
The cover of your bowling ball helps determine its length as well. Bowling balls that generate the best length are those with polished coverstocks. Polished or pearlized bowling balls create less friction on the lane than sanded balls, so even if you create a high rate of revolutions with your hand, the ball will not react as strongly. The ball will travel relatively straight down the lane before snapping back toward the pocket (the space between the one and three pins).
Grips, Inserts and Style
You can change how effective your ball is in terms of length by altering the grips and inserts. Try throwing without lift inserts, or adding a pinky hole to reduce the amount of early roll you are able to put on the ball. Doing this will force the ball to react and cause friction at a later point on the lane. If you add loft to your shots the ball is not able to hook on the lane. While it will hook sharper upon hitting the lane, this reduces early roll.
In early 2011, some of the new bowling balls with long back end capabilities included the 900 Bank Pearl, Storm Victory Road, and Columbia 300 Outburst. All of these balls provide length before reacting strongly as they get to the final 15 feet of the lane. Older balls (which might be less expensive) that meet these qualifications include the Storm Reign, Tropical Storm and Ebonite Clash.