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  • Writer's pictureChris Davies. Edited by Martin Galley

Why making a golf disc is hard, and why copying a disc is harder still

We see it every day: discs by different manufacturers which appear to be practically identical. And yet copying a disc is not as easy as you might think. The image below demonstrates the radical difference between a mould and a disc ejected from that mould.

The difference between the mould and the shape of a disc ejected from the mould. It’s the Speed-9 RPM Pekapeka fairway driver with a 20mm wing.
Figure 1: The difference between the mould and the shape of a disc ejected from the mould. It’s the Speed-9 RPM Pekapeka fairway driver with a 20mm wing. Click to zoom.

Figure 1 shows the top of the flightplate. The blue line is the actual die shape while the purple line represents the average measured Pekapeka. Thanks to friend Simon Feasey @RPM for sharing this fascinating technical information. Please note: the squares are simply a background and not a scale, in order to protect RPM’s IP. Although we're informed the Parting Line Height of the Pekapeka moves vertically around 1.5mm depending on Things™.* And so from the above image it is easy to see why making discs is hard, and why attempting to copy or clone another maker’s disc is an uphill battle.

We don't know how lucky we are, mate! It is for these reasons that here in New Zealand we should appreciate and celebrate RPM rather more forcefully and frequently. Disc golf is a hugely competitive international market, and RPM are now producing discs of such quality that they easily match or even exceed discs made with Latitude 64’s ultra-premium “NexEdge” and “NexFeel” processes. And yet RPM Atomic and Cosmic discs sell at a little more than half the price. RPM’s recent innovations now mean most manufacturers would do well to take a close look at RPM, so they can attempt to keep up with RPM’s relentless pursuit of perfection in both quality and attractiveness.

Take the Takapu vs Trust Challenge at the Vortica Disc Golf store Next time you visit us at 697 Gloucester Street, in Ōtautahi/Christchurch, grab a random Latitude 64 Royal Grand Trust, and a random Atomic Takapu and you tell us which disc feels better to you. And if you pick a Swirly Atomic item, also tell us which disc looks better. To further demonstrate RPM’s pursuit of Platinum plastic perfection, we invite you to take a look at some examples, below. "Platinum"discs are hand-picked as the most beautiful of the swirly Atomic discs, and are considered too gorgeous to sully with a stamp, and so they are all bottom-stamped. Platinum discs are truly a celebration of the injection moulder's art. Note: If zooming the slideshow to full-screen, take care to avoid drooling on your device.

* We’ll soon do some short articles about the other things which affect how discs change shape after they're ejected from the mould, with more help from Simon. Ta muchly, bro. Kia tika te rere – Enjoy the flight! Chris & Martin

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