Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

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Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby mgilbert » Thu Jul 18, 2013 7:45 am

I have a Sidewinder DX at 162 grams that I can throw fairly straight if I get everything right - but I can never make it turn over. If I don't throw it exactly right, it hyzers the whole way. In other words, I can just barely throw it. I thought a lighter disc might be easier to throw, so I bought a 125 gram Sidewinder DX. It is so light I can't get it out of my hand. If I do manage to throw it, it turns completely over and heads for the ground. Obviously, it is too light. I've thought about getting another one at about 150 grams in Star plastic, but I'm worried it would be more stable than the same disc in DX plastic, and I can barely throw the 162 gram DX I already have.

I have a Latitude 64 Pearl and Latitude 64 Diamond in their "best" plastic. Both are about 150 grams, and they are Latitude's most understable discs, and I can just throw them. I basically can't throw anything that is stable or overstable. I'm beginning to wonder if I need to stick with course, grippy plastics due to my 51 year old arm and lack of skill.

Does the type of plastic really make that much difference?
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Re: Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby PMantle » Thu Jul 18, 2013 7:48 am

They do, but I'm going to be that guy. Your energy would be better spent watching vids on form and doing field work. The discs that you're not turning should turn with barely any power at all. X-step, reach back, close to the pects etc etc. Those you have will turn into rollers in no time.
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Re: Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby mgilbert » Thu Jul 18, 2013 8:00 am

Well, I've watched, and re-watched, dozens and dozens of videos on form, read everything I can get my hands on, and practiced until I'm blue in the face - I've been playing this game for years. I can turn over a Cobra and throw it 250' most of the time. I just can't do anything with anything faster. I'm way too uncoordinated to do an X-step, and was told to practice from a standing position until I could do that consistently (and the guy that made that recommendation was a pro). I've been doing that, and my aim is much better that way, but I'm still not there. Any attempt on my part to add a step of any kind to my throw ends in disaster. It seems I'm doing everything right. I just can't improve. It may be my age and lack of coordination.
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Re: Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby jubuttib » Thu Jul 18, 2013 8:19 am

mgilbert wrote:I thought a lighter disc might be easier to throw, so I bought a 125 gram Sidewinder DX. It is so light I can't get it out of my hand. If I do manage to throw it, it turns completely over and heads for the ground. Obviously, it is too light.
The relation ship between weight and stability isn't as straight as you'd expect. I have a 136 g Blizzard Boss that flies just as stable as every 175g Champ Boss I've tried (admittedly all have been dyed, which I understand aren't exactly the meathooks the regular ones can be). The shape of the disc is so much more important to the stability than the weight, but there is a tendency for lighter plastic to come out with a lower PLH than heavy plastic. However if a light disc has a higher PLH than a heavy one, the light one will be more stable/overstable. This is with a totally clean throw.

What lightness does however is it makes the disc more susceptible to form flaws. If you do something wrong during your throw the light disc will likely be much more affected by it than a heavier disc. Add to that the fact that suddenly switching to a very light disc can easily mess up your form because it just feels so different, and you have a good chance of light plastic flying worse, even when looking at the shape alone it should be as stable or even more overstable.

So it's entirely possible that the 125g Sidewinder is not at all "too light", just so much lighter than normal that it throws off your timing, and you'd need to learn how to throw that specific disc. Probably not a good solution, because the skill would be of limited use anyway.

By the way, what's your average distance on a good throw?

To put it quite harshly, overall it just sounds like the actual problem is that you have to learn how to throw better. A DX Sidewinder should turn even with 200-250' power on a clean throw, especially if it's been used for any amount of time. For now I recommend you focus on form practice (great videos on YouTube and great articles on this site, and even better discussion on the technique forums), and try to get along with discs that are naturally neutral or slightly understable. Most putters, mid ranges like the Discmania MD2, Discraft Comet, Buzzz, possibly Zombee, MVP's Tangent or Axis, Innova's Coyote or Mako, Latitude 64 Fuse, there are a whole bunch of mid-range discs that want to fly straight even when you don't throw them hard, so at least they shouldn't fade out on you too early. Putters and the Comet are especially fantastic discs for this, and the Comet in particular should finish about equally straight whether you throw 50' or 300'. On top of that it'll let you know when you throw it badly, because it won't mask any of your form flaws.

Anyway, discs that fly straight with any power would probably be the most helpful ones, considering they don't fade out too early when thrown softly (like overstable discs and drivers overall tend to do) and they don't suffer from some of the problems of understable discs (unpredictability with varying power). But form practice is key, the discs are just tools.

EDIT: Just read the second post. If you're currently stuck at those distances then it's probably wise to favor discs that were designed for shorter distances, you should get more consistent results easier with them. I wouldn't stray above anything speed 7, with possibly one or two exceptions. Your best bets are most likely going to be discs that have as much glide as possible (large diameters can help), and as little fade as possible as well. Those will help max out the benefits of any speed you can give them.
Last edited by jubuttib on Thu Jul 18, 2013 8:26 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby mgilbert » Thu Jul 18, 2013 8:25 am

Typical throw with a 175 gram Cobra DX is straight, with some right turn 100' or so out. It usually goes 225' to 250'. I can throw a DX Roc about 225'.
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Re: Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby PMantle » Thu Jul 18, 2013 8:27 am

Do you release flat? My wife has issues with all stabilities of discs because she just naturally releases with lots of hyzer.
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Re: Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby mgilbert » Thu Jul 18, 2013 8:31 am

I'm sure I often release with a little hyzer. I've tried changing the angle I hold the disc during my reach back, but it doesn't seem to translate to the angle at which I release the disc.
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Re: Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby jubuttib » Thu Jul 18, 2013 8:38 am

mgilbert wrote:Typical throw with a 175 gram Cobra DX is straight, with some right turn 100' or so out. It usually goes 225' to 250'. I can throw a DX Roc about 225'.
OK, favor slower plastic (Cobra is a good disc) with lots of glide, and... I guess you just gotta try, you know? Have you/can you post a video of your form on YouTube, that might actually help more than any disc suggestions? Quite often when I've seen people stuck at around that distance they've needed either A) grip harder so they can transfer their power to the disc properly, or B) just plain throw harder/faster. If discs are getting stuck in your hand then the latter might be closer to home, generating low arm speeds and at the wrong time can lead to that.

And w.r.t. the hyzer thing, usually the best way to modify angle of the disc is to modify the angle of your body, not try to hold the disc angled. Want to throw hyzer? Lean forwards a bit. Want to throw anhyzer? Lean backwards a bit. Want to throw flat? Stand up straight. Often (not always, not for everyone) the angle of the disc is about perpendicular with the spine, especially if your pull height is about level with your pects (it's not a direct link obviously, but often I see higher pull lines lead to anhyzers and lower pull lines lead to hyzer). Posting a video of your throw would again be very helpful.
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Re: Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby Mark Ellis » Thu Jul 18, 2013 8:39 am

Change the plastic and you change the disc.

As plastic comes out of the mold it dries. As it dries it changes shape. The top may pop up or sink down which changes the nose angle of the disc. Even tiny changes in shape change how the disc flies. And a disc flies differently at different speeds and with different degrees of flutter, so a disc may be changed but not noticeable by you.

Plastic formulas are constantly tweaked by manufacturers and no one knows how the next formula will fly-until it is thrown. So sometimes certain trends are noticed: a particular mold comes out more of less stable in certain kinds of plastic, but this is only a general rule and no true certainty exists until YOU throw a disc and learn what it does.
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Re: Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby JR » Thu Jul 18, 2013 12:52 pm

For flat shots jubuttib is right but read my sig about leg placement too. So movi g the right leg a little left may rectify your posture to enable flat releases. You get good cobra distance so axis in eclipse or warship fuse and comet possibly coyote too should fly farther. The real answer is to add steps. It is not easy and everyone needs to practice that. It may take months to get the thing working. Starting with slow speedvand one step helps. Once that works add speed before adding another step and so on.
Flat shots need running on the center line of the tee and planting each step on the center line. Anhyzer needs running from rear right to front left with the plant step hitting the ground to the left of the line you're running on. Hyzer is the mirror of that.
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Re: Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby jubuttib » Thu Jul 18, 2013 9:56 pm

JR wrote:For flat shots jubuttib is right but read my sig about leg placement too. So movi g the right leg a little left may rectify your posture to enable flat releases.
Personally I've found absolutely no correlation between disc angles and how I align my run up, the angle comes from my body and the direction from my run up.
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Re: Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby iacas » Fri Jul 19, 2013 6:43 am

jubuttib wrote:
JR wrote:For flat shots jubuttib is right but read my sig about leg placement too. So movi g the right leg a little left may rectify your posture to enable flat releases.
Personally I've found absolutely no correlation between disc angles and how I align my run up, the angle comes from my body and the direction from my run up.

Ditto. My run-up is in the start direction. In a different word, forward. Forward along the starting direction.

It just so happens that anhyzers tend to need to start left (they curve right) and hyzers need to start right (they curve left) for RHBH.
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Re: Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby JR » Fri Jul 19, 2013 12:26 pm

jubuttib wrote:
JR wrote:For flat shots jubuttib is right but read my sig about leg placement too. So movi g the right leg a little left may rectify your posture to enable flat releases.
Personally I've found absolutely no correlation between disc angles and how I align my run up, the angle comes from my body and the direction from my run up.


You filmed me in slo mo at the previous eo when framing the first tee and i threw like arthur haverkamp with the arm going hyzer and the body being upright and the legs placed for a flat shot as per my sig. It can be done but the difference is the length of the arm. The arm moves the longest route when it is fully straightened in the end at a 90 degree angle relative to the torso. Change that angle and you will shorten the lever that the arm is. Why one might ask. Looking down from above it woyld be easy to see the range the arm moves. It is analoguos to pirouetting with the arm at different distances from the body which has the largest arc? The answer is the way that puts the arm the farthest away from the body aka 90 degrees from the torso.

If you want to compromise arm power generation it is perfectly fine to not align different body parts with each other as per my sig. There are exceptions to the sig that produce more power with a more difficult to learn and reproduce accuracy. That have been detailed earlier. Their added power does not come from maximizing arm lever length but other movements.
Flat shots need running on the center line of the tee and planting each step on the center line. Anhyzer needs running from rear right to front left with the plant step hitting the ground to the left of the line you're running on. Hyzer is the mirror of that.
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Re: Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby JR » Sat Jul 20, 2013 12:03 pm

It is often a must to shape flight and at times there are more important considerations than optimizing the arm leverage and the resulting launch height. Because discs glide and there are all sorts of curves in fairways the rules of thumb do not always produce as good results as flight shaping does. Then it is perfectly fine to mismatch the movements of different body parts. But it is not a great idea to limit oneself to a non shaped or obe shaped shot. Each shot should be in the arsenal because you never know when you are gonna need them. I saw a shot today that i have not seen anyone try before on the beast hole 12. I do not yet know even which kind of throw it was other than super high all the way over the trees on the left. Could not see the details on the camera viewfinder standing far away. Weird uphill over a loooooot of tall trees with great height clearance. The options are many if not limitless.
Flat shots need running on the center line of the tee and planting each step on the center line. Anhyzer needs running from rear right to front left with the plant step hitting the ground to the left of the line you're running on. Hyzer is the mirror of that.
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Re: Effect on Stability of Different Plastics

Postby JHern » Thu Jul 25, 2013 10:22 am

Mark Ellis wrote:Change the plastic and you change the disc.

As plastic comes out of the mold it dries. As it dries it changes shape. The top may pop up or sink down which changes the nose angle of the disc. Even tiny changes in shape change how the disc flies. And a disc flies differently at different speeds and with different degrees of flutter, so a disc may be changed but not noticeable by you...


I have to make a clarification, and edited Marks' statement according to my understanding...discs are not made of epoxy (which dries), but rather they are made of thermoset plastics, with compositions derived from thermopolyurethane, polyethylene, etc. (vibram rubber is an exception). Therefore this should read (changes highlighted in bold):

Change the plastic and you change the disc.

As plastic comes out of the mold it cools. As it cools it changes shape by shrinking. Shrinkage is non-uniform owing to the non-simple geometry of the disc. The top may pop up or sink down which changes the nose angle of the disc. Even tiny changes in shape change how the disc flies. And a disc flies differently at different speeds and with different degrees of flutter, so a disc may be changed but not noticeable by you.


Also, I completely disagree with this statement...

Mark Ellis wrote:Plastic formulas are constantly tweaked by manufacturers and no one knows how the next formula will fly-until it is thrown. So sometimes certain trends are noticed: a particular mold comes out more of less stable in certain kinds of plastic, but this is only a general rule and no true certainty exists until YOU throw a disc and learn what it does.


It isn't true that you can't predict the shapes/properties of plastics processed by injection molding, there is an entire field of engineering that is devoted to exactly this task. Entire suites of industrial software have been written to do exactly this job. Disc manufacturers simply don't use it because they don't want to pay for it, and probably the market isn't anyways big enough to justify the expense.
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