A few of us are starting up a vintage persimmon/blade club to get together once a month for a round. Had anybody seen a manufacturer that can provide new wound core or Tour 90/100 equivalent balls?
Try finding some old Spalding Tour Edition 90 balls from the used ball sellers. They performed pretty much like a balata. I don't think anyone would be able to make a true balata replacement today - too complex. The Tour Edition would spin like crazy on each club in the bag unlike todays urethane balls with better spin separation. Great feel also.
Maxfli HT's from 1999 can be had NIB on eBay. They work just fine. Played several dozen over two years.
Cool. I'm down with using NOS balls just as long as they still function properly and haven't deteriorated in the 30+ years.
Use of balata died several years before wound construction did due to lack of durability and higher cost. No OEMs are producing these anymore because a) there is little to no demand b) higher manufacturing cost c) worse durability and performance vs solid core construction.
Your best bet would be the lower compression 3-piece urethane balls:
Bridgestone B330 RXS/Tour B RXS
Callaway Chrome Soft (2015)
Srixon QStar Tour
Wilson Duo Urethane/Professional
I have found that the Kirkland 3 piece is a nice ball for this purpose - soft and higher spinning.
You can be certain any liquid center wound ball's performance has deteriorated. The ProV1 came out around 2000 and pretty much every manufacturer stopped making wound balls within about a year. So the newest balata ball you will find will be about 20 years old. Actually older yet as the prior Titleist pro ball (pre ProV1) was the Professional and it was out for a few years after the Titleist Tour Balata stopped production. That's why I recommended the Tour Edition as it was a 2-piece ball with a zinthane (zinc/urethane) cover. I played that ball after playing the Tour Balata and Professional. Same great spin and wouldn't cut up or go out of round. Plus solid balls have a much longer life span if stored properly.
I played 50 rounds with 18 year old HT's, aside from the wind knocking them around a bit more and fact they grab the grain of green more they perform as well as Pro V X1's. In fact down wind they flew longer. I use Pro V X1 because they closely replicate late generation 3 piece performance. I have zero problem recommending NOS HT's otherwise.
PM me an address and I can send you some Titleist Professionals I have lying around. I've a few sleeves and have been looking for an excuse to get rid of 'em.
Among modern balls.... Closest in spin to the old wound balls would be the 3 pc Kirkland Signature. It will have a firmer feel, though. Closest in feel (with urethane cover) would be the Duo Urethane or Duo Professional, but they won't spin as much as the old wound balls.
Any NOS wound balls you could find are likely to be at least 16-18+ years old, unless you find something manufactured more recently for the Asian market. And due to that age, they will have not-insignificant performance degradation, even if stored perfectly.
Occasionally, you can find what I call the quasi-wound Maxfli balls on ebay; balls like the A10, M3, or even the Revolution. Because the windings in these balls are so much thinner, little more than the mantle layer of solid core 3pc (or more) balls, they may have lesser performance drop from age. "May" being operative word, I'm only speculating. 🤔
but MCoz says the A10/Slazenger is not wound...
It's not, in the manner the HT/Elite/etc are. That layer of elastic is quite thin. ☺️
There were both hybrid wound and solid multilayer versions of both the Revolution and the A10. The hybrid wound balls had a solid core more in line with modern construction with a wound layer that was thicker than most modern mantles but much thinner and stiffer than past rubber windings.
Maxfli was done with that by the M3 Tour/LT which were the typical modern multilayer construction that all balls are today.
Callaway Supersoft. Srixon Soft Feel. Modern performance but won't damage old club heads.
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