Costco Penn balls - bad batch?

FedGR

Professional
Hey all,

The Penn (1,2,3,4,5,whatever) balls typically feel amazing and I really enjoyed hitting with them. I mostly used to get them from Costco as you can't beat their price. Now, there is something wrong with the last batch I got. I've opened several cans and the bounce of the ball is so underwhelming. They come out of the can softer than expected and they don't bounce as they should nor do they take a lot of spin. They feel dead.

Has anyone experienced this? Did Penn change the construction of the ball or is it a bad batch for whatever reason?
 

r2473

G.O.A.T.
Old balls. I’ve gotten bad cases from Costco, ***** and Wal Mart. It really just depends on how old they are (how long they’ve been in the warehouse or shelf before sale). This is why many people will say that Costco balls hit like bricks. They’ve just happened to get old balls (which isn’t uncommon)

Best to just buy from a retailer you know sells a lot of balls. I buy from a particular local Wal Mart.
 

FedGR

Professional
Old balls. I’ve gotten bad cases from Costco, ***** and Wal Mart. It really just depends on how old they are (how long they’ve been in the warehouse or shelf before sale). This is why many people will say that Costco balls hit like bricks. They’ve just happened to get old balls (which isn’t uncommon)

Best to just buy from a retailer you know sells a lot of balls. I buy from a particular local Wal Mart.
You think maybe they spent the winter in a cold warehouse and over time got dead? The local Costco carries them seasonally so I would have expected them to be fresher. Have you tried to return them? I know Costco has a very good return policy.

Does Walmart typically carry Penn?
 

AndI

Rookie
Return them back to Costco. You can order a replacement online if your local warehouse no longer has them.


As a thought, even a good batch of balls can bounce poorly if the balls were stored in a cold environment (e.g., below 10 degrees Celcius) and got "frozen", which probably cannot be the case at this time of the year unless you are on the North Pole. But if they are left in a car overnight in late September or October, in our climate they may lose bounce big way until they warm up. Our local tennis center moves all of their carts with balls into a warm lobby from cold courts, every night during winter.

I got 5 boxes in spring, did not notice anything unusual about them.
 

tennis4me

Hall of Fame
I have not had issues with Costco Penn balls, other than the one time when a can from the batch already popped. I called Penn, they sent me a can (but they sent me the Regular Duty version instead of the Extra Duty ones that Costco sells).

I did however played recently with newly opened Penn balls that someone else brought, and the ball was pretty flat. With this kind of pricing, the Penn balls except the ATP Tour are probably not very high in their QC.
 

1HBHfanatic

Hall of Fame
yeah, I also buy from Costco, no issue here
if several cans are flat/depressurized, even through the seal is still on, you could take them back and explain, im sure they would replace them

OP, looks like your the unlucky fella this time
sound like you said "bad batch",,
 

RogueFLIP

Professional
I always use the Costco balls, and every once in awhile I'll get a bad can or even two, but never in all my 15+years of buying cases from there have I had a whole case be bad.
 

darkhorse

Semi-Pro
The last couple Penn Championship cans I've opened did seem a bit softer than normal, but I have had them a while and I live in Minnesota so maybe they were in a cold warehouse somewhere. I didn't realize that could be a factor
 

BlueB

Legend
I had one bad can out of the full box, last year. The rest was fine.
I also had unfinished boxes sit in the cold garage, over the winter, and the balls were fine in the spring.
I'm surprised that you had an entire bad box...

Sent from my SM-G965W using Tapatalk
 

FedGR

Professional
Thank you all for the input! I believe there is a widespread issue with these balls, at least in Chicago. Not only all the cans of my box feel dead but I have played with these balls from 3-4 different hitting partners and at the league that I am playing at and they all feel dead right out of the box. I presume it is a Penn warehouse issue more than a Costco warehouse issue. I guess at least.

Thanks again for your time. ;)
 

tennis347

Professional
Penn Championship balls are terrible in general. Their quality control has dropped significantly over the last number of years. I now use Dunlop ATP Championship which have much better playability and comfort!
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
Hey all,

The Penn (1,2,3,4,5,whatever) balls typically feel amazing and I really enjoyed hitting with them. I mostly used to get them from Costco as you can't beat their price. Now, there is something wrong with the last batch I got. I've opened several cans and the bounce of the ball is so underwhelming. They come out of the can softer than expected and they don't bounce as they should nor do they take a lot of spin. They feel dead.

Has anyone experienced this? Did Penn change the construction of the ball or is it a bad batch for whatever reason?

Penn Championship balls? (Standard duty or XD)?

Many rec players like them cuz they are relatively cheap and a bit softer than comparably priced balls. But the QC on them leaves something to be desired. They used to be manufactured in Arizona but have been made in China for a while now. Quality might be more variable since that move. But even when they were made in the US, they were a bit off... each can always seemed to have one ball different from the others. Same number stamped on the ball but one ball in the can always appeared be a cosmetic reject or, more often, the ball did not bounce quite as high as the other two from the same can.

As others have indicated, the balls from Costco might be older. The other possibility is that they have been mishandled when shipping or at the Costco warehouse. Maybe even at the Penn warehouse (but Costco might be more culpable). One local tennis shop owner told be that when balls where shipped to him via USPS or UPS, there would always be significantly more compromised cans than if they were shipped via FedEx or other carrier.

When the cans are compromised they lose some of the container pressure. The can are supposed to be pressurized to nearly double that of ambient (outside) pressure at sea level... the cans should have a gauge pressure of 12-15 psi is my guess. Squeeze the can before you attempt to open it. A good can will feel like it is pressurized. If the can feel too soft, don't open it. Take the unopened soft cans back to Costco and complain about them.

If the can has lost it pressure, after a while the balls will also lose some pressure. At some point, the pressure inside the ball will be the same as the pressure outside of the ball... the same thing that happens to balloons (or tires).
 
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SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
On 2nd thought, if you can squeeze the cans before you purchase them at Costco, that might be even better. Don't buy any soft, suspect cans. And report them to customer service at Costco. Perhaps they might take some action. But perhaps not.
 

Ronaldo

Bionic Poster
On 2nd thought, if you can squeeze the cans before you purchase them at Costco, that might be even better. Don't buy any soft, suspect cans. And report them to customer service at Costco. Perhaps they might take some action. But perhaps not.
Squeeze their box, eh?
 

kimguroo

Legend
When you buy the box then open the box and squeeze every can. If it has bad can, just return the box.
Old boxes have several bad cans of balls.
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
When you buy the box then open the box and squeeze every can. If it has bad can, just return the box.
Old boxes have several bad cans of balls.
(y)
Might be old boxes or they might be compromised cases that were tossed around by shipping or warehouse gorillas
 

undecided

Semi-Pro
Hey all,

The Penn (1,2,3,4,5,whatever) balls typically feel amazing and I really enjoyed hitting with them. I mostly used to get them from Costco as you can't beat their price. Now, there is something wrong with the last batch I got. I've opened several cans and the bounce of the ball is so underwhelming. They come out of the can softer than expected and they don't bounce as they should nor do they take a lot of spin. They feel dead.

Has anyone experienced this? Did Penn change the construction of the ball or is it a bad batch for whatever reason?
Both I and a buddy of mine have gotten cases from Costco where EVERY can was bad. It was pressurized but the balls won't bounce.
 

nn

Hall of Fame
Hey all,

The Penn (1,2,3,4,5,whatever) balls typically feel amazing and I really enjoyed hitting with them. I mostly used to get them from Costco as you can't beat their price. Now, there is something wrong with the last batch I got. I've opened several cans and the bounce of the ball is so underwhelming. They come out of the can softer than expected and they don't bounce as they should nor do they take a lot of spin. They feel dead.

Has anyone experienced this? Did Penn change the construction of the ball or is it a bad batch for whatever reason?
I stop buying costco ball because of low quality. Propenn works out better even for $3 can (last much longer and enjoy playing tennis)
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
Both I and a buddy of mine have gotten cases from Costco where EVERY can was bad. It was pressurized but the balls won't bounce.
Are these Penn Championship balls or are they a lower grade rec ball? When you say the cans were pressurized, were they somewhat firm or were they very firm? How much sound (pressure release) did you hear when you first opened the cans.

I've NEVER come across balls that dont bounce properly if the cans were fully pressurized... unless the ball were a very low grade rec ball (lower grade than Penn Champs). Or if the environment (weather) was very cold when playing.

Have seen some variation in reports from posters in the past 2 years or so with Penn balls from Costco. Some say they've never had a problem. Others say they frequently have seen a problem. But, whenever the balls have a substandard bounce, the can had not maintained it's full pressure prior to opening
 

sredna42

Hall of Fame
I used to buy a box of penns every few months to fill the hopper, and got a bad box once too. Every can was half flat. Just dead.

Must just be one of those things
 

undecided

Semi-Pro
Are these Penn Championship balls or are they a lower grade rec ball? When you say the cans were pressurized, were they somewhat firm or were they very firm? How much sound (pressure release) did you hear when you first opened the cans.

I've NEVER come across balls that dont bounce properly if the cans were fully pressurized... unless the ball were a very low grade rec ball (lower grade than Penn Champs). Or if the environment (weather) was very cold when playing.

Have seen some variation in reports from posters in the past 2 years or so with Penn balls from Costco. Some say they've never had a problem. Others say they frequently have seen a problem. But, whenever the balls have a substandard bounce, the can had not maintained it's full pressure prior to opening
One case was bad were the cans were firm but not very firm. Another case the can were very firm but balls did not bounce. I've had good cases in between the bad cases. I stopped buying from Costco after 2 bad cases for me and 1 for a buddy of mine.
 

mcs1970

Hall of Fame
Hey all,

The Penn (1,2,3,4,5,whatever) balls typically feel amazing and I really enjoyed hitting with them. I mostly used to get them from Costco as you can't beat their price. Now, there is something wrong with the last batch I got. I've opened several cans and the bounce of the ball is so underwhelming. They come out of the can softer than expected and they don't bounce as they should nor do they take a lot of spin. They feel dead.

Has anyone experienced this? Did Penn change the construction of the ball or is it a bad batch for whatever reason?
I have opened new cans and been surprised by the lack of bounce. It's some subpar stuff being peddled by Penn. I have always accepted it and never complained. Maybe I should. Costco is pretty good about companies trying to cheat consumers.
 
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