Golf ball technology has changed a lot over the last 20 years. Before the year 2000, players used balls that had a liquid-filled rubber core. The core was surrounded by rubber thread. It looked like tons of rubber bands if you cut one open.
Now, the inside of a golf ball is a solid core that is surrounded by casing layers which means it can have 3 to 5 layers total. The solid core is made out of a material like butadiene.
The early solid core models lacked the technology to provide great spin on high iron shots, but they were able to travel further on drives. While balls like balatas were very soft and provided great spin, they could not get the distance of a solid core and they cut easily. This was an obvious problem for high handicapper golfers who could not make exact strikes on the ball when they played golf. These newer balls had a softer urethane coating which allowed it to have better control.
The newer solid core golf balls changed the game of golf. These new balls had the distance of a solid core and the spin of a balata. To give you an example of how much these balls impacted the game take a look at the year 2000 and 2001.
According to Golf Digest,
At the 2000 Masters, fifty-nine of the ninety- five players used a wound golf ball. One year later, only four players used one. By the end of 2001, not a single tournament champion on any of the world’s major professional tours had won using a wound ball
Inside Of A Golf Ball
The inside of a ball is different based on the company that manufactures it. Each golf ball company like Titleist or Callaway uses a proprietary technology for each of their balls.
Here is what the inside of some Callaway golf balls look like.
Here is the inside of several Titleist golf balls
Golf Ball Guts did a very cool layout of the insides of different Titleist balls over 17 years.
Inside of Taylormade Tour Preferred and Kirkland Tour Performance golf balls
Structure Of A Golf Ball
For tournament play, golf balls are regulated and must meet a certain set of criteria. Golf balls can not weigh more than 1.620 ounces (45.93 grams), and its diameter cannot be less than 1.68 inches (42.67mm).
The Outer coating can be different based on the manufacturer, but for example, Titleist Pro V1 uses a urethane elastomer cover system.
The inner layers are also dependent on the manufacturer, and using Titleist as our example again, it has a casing layer just inside of the cover. Inside of that are two more layers including a 2.0 ZG Process Core.
Check out this look of the inside of a Callaway golf ball.
Is The Inside Of A Golf Ball Poisonous?
This was a common myth that made it rounds due to some older golf balls that had liquid in the center. Titleist has used a liquid center in some of their balls. Was the inside of it poisonous? The inside of it was made from saline water and corn syrup.