If you’re always looking for new disc golf discs that will give you a competitive edge, this article is for you.
With 24 new disc golf discs approved by the PDGA since November 2015, we’ve taken our usual analytic approach to determine if any of them truly deserve a place in your bag. In this article we’ll cover:
- The four reasons companies introduce new discs
- PDGA disc approval process
- New Technology for 2016
- Our analysis of 2016’s 24 new discs
New Discs and the PDGA
Based on my experience in consumer product development and marketing, there are four primary reasons Disc manufacturers launch “new” products:
- To introduce new technology (rare)
- To fill an existing “hole” in their product line
- To reproduce a popular competitor’s disc
- To sell discs via hype and marketing, because “new” products sell well
FACT: All of the major disc manufacturers know exactly how to make a disc that flies further than anything currently on the market. However, to ensure competitive parity, player safety, and (strangely enough) tree safety, the PDGA has placed multiple restrictions on disc design. For example, to be approved by the PDGA discs must fall within the size and shape guidelines shown here:
Unfortunately these restrictions make revolutionary innovations incredibly difficult, and as a result the majority of new technology introduced offers minimal or no actual benefit.
The New Tech Offering for 2016: Andro 1
Manufacturer: Ozone Discs
Top understand the potential benefits of the Andro 1, one must first understand three concepts:
- Top PDGA players all carry 2-6 duplicates of each their favorite discs.
- Disc golf discs become increasingly understable with use, as the rim shape changes from impacts with trees, poles, etc.
- Disc stability is strongly affected by the percentage of its total weight near the perimeter (VIDEO)
If you look in the bags of the Top PDGA pros, virtually all of them carry “duplicate” discs. For example, current PDGA Champion Paul McBeth carries 6 Innova Destroyers. Why? As with most sports, consistency is the true key to success, and the easiest way to ensure you drive with repeatable consistency is to stick with the same disc mold. By carrying multiple Destroyers (each with a different level of wear), McBeth can get the flight pattern he needs for each specific fairway without having to change the mold he is using.
This strategy for consistency is where the Andro’s new technology comes into play, as players can purchase multiple new Andro’s with identical molds but with each designed to have a different stability level.
How? Here’s the manufacturer’s claim:
“One of our goals for 2015 was to bring a brand new take on a disc golf disc. A disc where one mold can produce discs that have multiple shot shapes. Same plastic, same run, same mold but slightly different flight characteristics. This is achieved through a patent pending idea of altering the density of solid and foam inserts that are added to the disc post injection molding.” Ozone Discs
The science here is undeniably sound. A high-density center insert ring paired with a lower-density perimeter insert will decrease stability while the opposite will produce a more overstable flight pattern.
Should you buy one? Our recommendation for players is to purchase one Andro-1. If you like the way it feels and flies, then (and only then) you can expand your arsenal to 2-3 Andro’s with different flight characteristics. There is obviously no point to having multiple versions of a disc that does not fit your throwing style, but if you do like how it flies this technology could significantly improve your game.
UPDATE: Ozone is reporting that the Andro has temporarily been pulled from shelves to increase the adhesion of the inserts. We’ll keep you updated on their progress!
Complete List of New Discs for 2016
|MANUFACTURER / DISTRIBUTOR||DISC MODEL||Rim Thickness (cm)||Rim Config.||Category*||Notes*|
|Black Zombie Disc Golf||Chainsaw||1||66.5||Initial Launch|
|Discraft||Roach (Ace Race 2015)||1.1||58.75||Update|
|Element Discs||Iridium||0.9||66||Extension||High KG Flex|
|Innova-Champion Discs||Colossus||2.5||29.75||Competitive Match||"14 Speed"; Similar to Nuke SS|
|Innova-Champion Discs||XT V-Aviar||1||55.75||Extension|
|Kastaplast||Reko||1||61.25||Extension||Does not use drag reduction rim system|
|Las Aves Disc Golf||Wo-Hoo||1.5||37.25||Extension|
|Latitude 64||Gauntlet||1.1||61.75||Competitive Match||Beaded Rim Putter|
|Latitude 64||Bite||0.7||80.25||Specialty||Dog Disc|
|Ozone Discs||Andro 1||1.5||26||Initial Launch||New Technology|
|Prodigy Disc||A2||1.4||41.75||Extension||"Approch Discs"|
|Prodigy Disc||A3||1.4||50.25||Extension||"Approch Discs"|
|Prodigy Disc||A1||1.4||41.75||Extension||"Approch Discs"|
|Reptilian Disc Golf||Ptero||1.8||33.25||Extension|
|Vibram Disc Golf||Onyx||1.8||30.75||Extension|
|Vibram Disc Golf||Vamp||1.9||34.75||Extension|
* These are the observations/opinions of BDGD.com only
Thanks for reading! If you have any questions, please let us know using our Contact page, or if you’ve tried the Andro please share your experiences in the Comments below!