2020 ---- John Fabanich

History does not list who invented the bowling ball, but it might as well list John Fabanich of Lorain as the man who perfected it.

John converted his basement into a sort of lab, which his wife jokingly referred to as “the Dungeon” the proceeded to develop his equipment. Back in 1965 they were looking to design a ball to assist in driving out the five pin on a pocket hit. By using a three-piece ball design with a retractable center weight block, Fabanich, working with Charles Linden (also an Ohio Bowling Hall of Fame member), did just that. Then in 1968 came the revolutionary change into the first two-piece ball. The ball was made of 74 hardness polyester shell with a unique center located weight block. And this the “Faball” was born.

In the fall of 1982, the “Faball” was now a urethane ball which was bought out by a company in St. Louis. They sent 24 of the urethane “Faballs” to the 1982 World Open. By the following year, the “Faball” – now known as the “Hammer” would become the majority choice among professionals.

The importance of the development of new bowling ball technology that today’s bowlers know, are the direct result of the “Faball” and the ingenuity of John Fabanich. His contribution to the sport of bowling as we know it today merits the name of John Fabanich for enshrinement in the Ohio Bowling Hall of Fame as an outstanding Friend of Ohio Bowling.

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