Recently, Kyle brought these cool looking toys to my attention:
Today I was out running errands and couldn’t help but do some looking for some. Target stocks them so I picked up these:
I was curious if the steel bearing inside was hopelessly epoxied inside, or if it could be extracted and these could be used as some sweet balltops:
Upon close inspection, a seam is visible on both units:
I tried slipping a fresh exacto blade into the seam, to separate the halves , but it didn’t feel like I was accomplishing anything. I then decided to simply drill into the bottom to better understand the construction:
As you can see inside the hole, the plastic portion of the ball is actually hollow. The distance from the outside surface of the ball to the steel core inside is about 0.3". I began trying to pry the two halves apart by inserting a tool into the hole I just drilled and moving it around. The seem barely spread with much force applied. I resorted to inserting a strong blade into the seem and twisting (kids don’t try this at home). I was able to successfully separate the two halves:
I was amazed that the two plastic halves were held together so strongly purely by press fit parts. There are a couple foam sheets that keep the bearing from shaking around inside.
The bearing extraction process is not as easy as I had hoped, resulting in a bit of damage
along the seam:
I suppose there are better/safer ways to reliably separate the two halves, but I’ll leave that to you guys to figure out That being said, without a way to reliably take these apart without damaging the plastic, I can’t say they are a great option for ball tops. If a great way of taking these apart is discovered, the process would likely be:
- Drill a hole in the bottom
- Separate the halves / remove bearing
- Re-assemble the halves
- Fill with epoxy
- Install brass fitting
Let me know if anybody finds a slick way of using these!