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Discussion: HELP---I just don't get it!

Posted Discussion
Nov. 22, 2014
?
121 posts
HELP---I just don't get it!

Can anyone explain to me how a tacky bat barrel makes any significant difference to the bat/ball contact?

I can't understand how a bat/ball contact being so fast that the human eye can't see it, is in anyway changed.

If there is a major difference in performance in ball flight, then how did the bat get approved?




Nov. 22, 2014
Marv19
Men's 60
497 posts
The theory is the sticky, or in the case of the Nightmare with a textured, finish will create more spin on the ball. A smooth bat surface will create less friction when hit. The theory is two balls hit in the same area of the bat with the same bat speed the bat that causes the ball to spin more will yield less drag in flight thus more distance. This is just a theory mind you probably backed up with some white board equation by Sheldon Cooper :O)
Nov. 22, 2014
smooth01
Men's 50
128 posts
It means you CAN put pine tar on your bat, as sticky bats have been approved by SSUSA.
Nov. 22, 2014
SSUSA Staff
2727 posts
smooth01 ... Actually, it doesn't mean that at all ... Please take a look at Rulebook 3.4 E. on page 14 ...

"...Resin, pine tar or spray substances placed on the safety grip to enhance the grip are permissible on the grip only..." [emphasis added]

SSUSA has not approved "do-it-yourself sticky bats", and the penalty is spelled out for the use of an illegal bat at Rulebook 3.4(7) on page 16 ... Generally, the penalty is the player being called out and ejected from the tournament ...

Nov. 23, 2014
BruceinGa
Men's 70
3182 posts
Dave, would not a bat with user added pine tar to the barrel be considered altered and not just an illegal bat?
Nov. 23, 2014
hemi racer
Men's 65
237 posts
Altered-Illegal? Is there a deference in the eyes of the SSUSA staff? Is the penalty not the same for either?
Nov. 24, 2014
SSUSA Staff
2727 posts
Yes, there is a difference ...

ALTERED EQUIPMENT - Equipment that has been modified in any manner, other than by normal wear and tear through usage as the manufacturer intended, that changes the technical performance specifications of the equipment from the time it was manufactured ... Examples include, but are not limited to, bat rolling, bat shaving, hammering a bat or striking objects other than softballs for purposes of "break-in", opening a bat to add or remove material internally, chilling softballs, etc.
ILLEGAL EQUIPMENT - Equipment that does not meet the technical specification(s) as defined in the rulebook for that equipment, or are specifically excluded from usage ... Examples include, but are not limited to, specifically excluded bats (pre-2014), bats not appearing on the Approved Bat Policy list (post-2013), bats not meeting the certified BPF=1.20/1.21 testing criteria, fast-pitch bats, gloves exceeding dimension specifications, introduction of non-official softballs, etc.

The SSUSA Rulebook already prohibits the introduction of substances to the barrel of the bat, and the SSUSA Rules Committee will very likely clarify when it meets next month at the Annual Convention whether doing so falls into the category of ILLEGAL as opposed to ALTERED equipment ... The penalties for the use of an ALTERED bat are more severe, involving eligibility suspensions, than those for use of an ILLEGAL bat, generally limited to game/tournament ejection.

Nov. 24, 2014
BruceinGa
Men's 70
3182 posts
Thanks Staff for you attempt at clarification of the difference in Altered and Illegal. I will be watching for results from the Annual Convention.
Nov. 24, 2014
0
69 posts
So how or why is that tacky material allowed on bats?
If the bat collects dirt and is not cleaned off, does that make it technically altered and possibly illegal?
Is it ALTERING by removing the tacky material?
Nov. 24, 2014
SSUSA Staff
2727 posts
In response to your inquiries:

1. The Dudley bat is manufactured with that tacky feel and is, accordingly, not considered either altered or illegal since that's the way it comes out of the factory ... Other bat makers could, subject to potential patent infringement implications, decide to use the same or similar processes, but to date have not done so ... End user attempts to recreate that tacky feel are currently not permitted ...
2. No (Fits the definition of "normal wear and tear")
3. Yes (Changes factory issue technical specifications)

Nov. 24, 2014
wdodge22
Men's 50
104 posts
As I understand the Dudley bat with the tacky barrel, is for the bat to generate more backspin. Much like a golf ball, the more backspin generated on impact, the longer it will stay in the air.

At least that's what I have been told.

Nov. 24, 2014
hemi racer
Men's 65
237 posts
I have found that it being able to grip the ball for that mille second it not only gives it more spin at times, but more inclined to hitting knuckle balls.
Nov. 26, 2014
Snot Nose Kid
67 posts
Is there anybody out there that has any real proof or evidence that a tacky barrel on a softball bat will actually change the spin or flight of a softball any more than a non tacky bat?

A video would be nice!
Nov. 26, 2014
hemi racer
Men's 65
237 posts
No scientific proof, just see more knuckle balls off my bat during batting practices. Have no idea about increased spin speed though. Video would have to be one of those super slow motion cameras like they use on MLB games to capture contact moment, then don't see how to evaluate spin speed.
Nov. 26, 2014
Snot Nose Kid
67 posts
hemi racer

Your statement "No scientific proof, just see more knuckle balls off my bat during batting practices." indicates to me that your tacky bat is giving you LESS SPIN than a non tacky bat.



Nov. 26, 2014
STL0
Men's 55
166 posts
I haven't really paid attention to the spin of the ball off the bat but I will just say that both the balanced and the 13" barrel Dudley bats performed very well when I used them compared to other bats I have used. Maybe I should be worried more about what the spin was but I really only care about what the performance was that I experienced and how the bat feels to me when I swing it. I intend to swing Dudley in 2015.
Nov. 26, 2014
Home Plate
34 posts
I have a Dudley and it does seem to make the ball exit the bat contact like a knuckle ball more often than other bats. If so then that means the tacky material is actually slowing the spin when the ball is hit dead on.

It seems that the tacky barrel is more "gimmick" than serious hitting aid.

The tacky barrel goes along with the "holes in the upper handle" bat that was being sold a few years ago, as a sales gimmick. Nice ideas that really don't do much. Which would explain why all the softball associations allow them.

Bottom line....it's all about MONEY!

Nov. 27, 2014
DieselDan
Men's 70
322 posts
Several power hitters have told me that if contact is made near the bottom of the ball ( 4 or 5 o'clock) it creates back spin which will allow the ball to travel farther. Sooo, the tacky Dudley's, when contact is made correctly, assist in creating the back spin.
Nov. 27, 2014
hemi racer
Men's 65
237 posts
Both assumptions I think are correct. When hitting the ball head on it is more likely to knuckle, thus being harder to field. While striking the ball on the lower half is more inductive to back spin, thus caring further. Both are positives in my eyes. How much more spin and how much more distance is very debatable.
Nov. 28, 2014
mad dog
Men's 65
4172 posts
tell ya this...if any hitter wants to hit that low on the ball(4-5 on a clock) i would pitch to him/her all day long...nothing but long pop-ups at best for the hitter....for back spin all you need to be is an 1/8-1/4" below center of the ball(aka 3 on the clock)....anything lower gets nice pop-ups and fly balls for the defense
dead center gives you knuckle balls off the bat....1/8-1/4" below gets back spin....the same distance above dead center gives you top spin..
Nov. 28, 2014
Az Iz
64 posts
I remember a few years ago, seeing some guy selling a strange looking, non-senior bat that had holes in the area just below the barrel. He claimed the holes were there to make the bat swing faster because it had less air resistance like on tennis rackets. I can't remember the model or brand of the bat right now.

Does anybody remember this bat?

Nov. 28, 2014
BruceinGa
Men's 70
3182 posts
Reebok Vector-O
Nov. 28, 2014
Az Iz
64 posts
BruceinGa

Thanks..

I never used it.

I'm guessing the bat didn't live up the hype.

Was the bat any good?




Nov. 29, 2014
BruceinGa
Men's 70
3182 posts
The bat I used was a utrip bat that belonged to a friend. I wasn't impressed. It looked awesome though.
I was thinking it was much like the ax handled bat, only two sides of the barrel would be used. Imo just a novelty.
Nov. 29, 2014
tg69
372 posts
it was a piece of junk that reebok would not stand behind their warrantee on.
Nov. 29, 2014
BruceinGa
Men's 70
3182 posts
Tell us how you really feel Tom. lol
Nov. 29, 2014
tg69
372 posts
You know how I feel about Reebok.How are you doing? Thought we were going to TOC but guess he couldn't round up enough to go.See ya in the spring.
Nov. 29, 2014
BruceinGa
Men's 70
3182 posts
I'm good. Now I'm disappointed.
May 17, 2016
tjparris
6 posts
Is there a way to ADD something to an older Dudley, to make it tacky again? Is that legal?
May 18, 2016
BruceinGa
Men's 70
3182 posts
I would think that you could clean the barrel, using warm water and soap.
May 18, 2016
tattooball
750 posts
Marv hope all is well with you. Un the Nightmare bat it is not for ball spin at all,it is for a specific reason but not ball spin. With all of your knowledge and past history you should have been able to figure it out by now.

Always good to hear from you if you want to talk feel free to call.
May 18, 2016
SJV
Men's 60
21 posts
As HOFer Clyde Poindexter Phillips has always said ,
It not the wand , its the magician ! Tournament Championship,4 homers 4 different bats !
May 18, 2016
Bubble Gum
122 posts
Over many years of playing softball and watching countless balls being hit in my direction during batting practices and games by all levels of players. I can honestly report that as having played infield and outfield while hitters were using Dudley Lightning bats, that I DO NOT see any difference in the ground ball or fly ball coming at me. If that sticky stuff radically changed the way the ball came off the bat, it would be unsafe and probably outlawed.

The Dudley Lightning Senior bat is a great bat that really doesn't need that "Gimmick" to make it any better.

At this point in time I have not heard anybody calling out to their team mates, "Watch out the batter is using a Dudley Bat", because they think the ball reacts to the differently to the sticky stuff on the bat.





May 18, 2016
Omar Khayyam
1289 posts
Hey Bubble Gum, don't pour cold water on Dudley's sales pitch. I agree with you. In fact, other than the dramatic improvement of the Miken Ultra over the previously "hot" double-walls, I notice little difference in any bat. As SJV noted, it is not the wand but the magician, and magicians with confidence in their stick will usually perform better...even if no advantage can be proved by the latest "hot bat".
May 18, 2016
16wood
Men's 65
76 posts
Most Dudley users that I know just use it as they do any other bat. They don't clean it, etc.
I've seen lots of guys using the new Adidas, bal and end load, and it has a smooth finish... still hits knuckleballs... as does the Dudley and Reeboks... and others.
Omar is 100% correct... if the magician is confident in his wand he'll perform better whether it offers a physical advantage or not. Most of softball is played between the ears.
BW
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