Infinite Discs currently has 20 different plastic variations! Choosing a certain plastic is an important decision when purchasing a new disc. This post is to help you navigate which plastic will be the right choice for you when purchasing from our lineup.
Innova Champion Discs is our mold manufacturer, therefore our plastic types are based on their plastic types. We will indicate the similarities below, but you can read about their plastic types HERE
S-Blend: A somewhat firm, opaque plastic that flies true to the flight numbers. Compare to Innova’s ‘Star’ plastic.
Swirly S-Blend (various swirls within the plastic)
Splatter S-Blend (bits of recycled plastic added to the plastic)
Halo S-Blend (two-toned flight plate)
C-Blend: A firm, transparent plastic that has increased durability and tends to make molds more overstable. Compare to Innova’s ‘Champion’ plastic.
Metal Flake C-Blend (added metal flakes within the plastic)
Metal Flake Glow C-Blend (added metal flakes & glows in the dark)
Glow C-Blend (glows in the dark)
Gummy C-Blend (less-stiff than regular C-Blend)
Luster C-Blend (has an added shimmer)
Concrete (Luster and Metal Flake plastic combined)
G-Blend: A gummier feeling plastic that has added glimmer and grip. Compare to Innova’s ‘GStar’ plastic.
I-Blend: A softer plastic that is made from the recycled parts of S-Blend plastic. The ‘I’ stands for ‘Infinite Blend’ since this plastic is unique to our brand.
D-Blend: A base plastic that is firm and grippy, yet lacks durability. Compare to Innova’s ‘DX’ plastic.
Glow D-Blend (glows in the dark)
P-Blend: A durable and stiff base plastic. Compare to Innova’s ‘KC Pro’ plastic,
Glow P-Blend (glows in the dark)
X-Blend: A midgrade plastic that has a great balance of durability with a tacky, grippy feel. Compare Innova’s ‘XT’ plastic.
N-Blend: A stiff and grippy plastic, with an emphasized stiffness in the flight plate. Compare to Innova’s ‘Nexus’ plastic.
R-Blend: A soft plastic with good grip and some flexibility. Compare to Innova’s ‘R-Pro’ plastic.
*Signature Plastics: When you see plastics on our site labeled as ‘Signature _-Blend’ this means that the plastic price has been slightly increased to support the professional disc golfer who’s stamp is on that specific run of discs. There is nothing different about the plastic, only the price.
What plastic type should you choose?
Here is a breakdown of what each plastic is best suited for:
S-Blend: Any of the S-Blend plastics are versitile and best used for throwing. Ripping an S-Blend plastic off the tee or on an approach will result in an excellent flight.
C-Blend: Most* all of the C-Blend plastics are more durable yet less grippy than the other premium plastics. You will find that C-blend tends to be more overstable than all the other premium plastics., but is also a great choice for throwing.
*Gummy and MF Glow tend to be softer and grippier than the other C-Blend plastics
G-Blend: This plastic is the opposite of C-Blend. It is less durable, has increased grip, and tends to fly straighter. However, this plastic is just as good for throwing as all the other premium plastics.
I-Blend: This is the most basic of the premium plastics, but is still a good plastic for throwing. A fresh I-Blend mold will typically have the same stability as an S, G, or C-Blend mold, but it will be the first of the three to ‘beat in’ and become understable overtime.
D-Blend: This plastic is best suited for putters and approach discs. It is firm and gives you good grip, meaning it will have a better chance of hitting the chains and staying in the basket. This is generally the same for the P, X, N, & R Blends we have available, but with assorted types of grippiness and durability as explained above.
* Note that each run of a certain mold in a certain plastic will fly slightly differently than that same mold in that same plastic type from another run. This is due to the slight inconsistency of manufacturing for each run month to month; Innova can’t make all discs the same every single time. All of our stock stamps have run numbers on them to help indicate the differences.
These terms are used interchangibly, but typically indicate the following:
X-out: Discs that are marked with an x-out indicator on our website mean they are ‘factory seconds.’ These molds did not get formed perfectly in the molding process and have some fundemental flaw in their design/plastic. However, most x-outs tend to fly much like their perfect counterparts. You may also see a small penned ‘X’ on the disc’s front flight plate.
Misprint: This indicates that the artwork on the disc was not stamped perfectly, and is therefore a flawed product. Most misprinted discs come with multiple stamps on them as an attempt to fix the stamping error before finishing the remaining run of discs.
We hope this post has been informative, and that you are able to more accurately choose the discs and plastics that are best suited for your disc golf needs. And as always…
When I started my journey down the rabbit hole of learning about disc golf and buying discs about 2 years ago, Taylor Aubuchon was the first reviewer I came across. I appreciated Taylor’s succinct reviews that had no extra fluff in them: 60-second reviews, a couple throws from different release angles, flight trackers, and good descriptions of the feel and flight of a specific disc.
The more knowledge I gain, or think I gain, I still find myself looking forward to and immediately clicking on any new videos from Taylor. Taylor can pack just the right amount of information into a short and easily digestible video. Most of Taylor’s videos also end with a discount code to be used at infinitediscs.com.
I reached out for a brief interview to better introduce Taylor to other Infinite followers that may not be aware of his content, social media presence, and mission to grow the game.
What is your disc golf origin story?
In late middle school/early high school (2007/2008), my group of friends and I were introduced to the game through our church’s youth group. I also took my dad and brother out to play and we were all hooked instantly. We were really lucky to have a great course just a few minutes away and started to play relatively seriously early on. Our youth group started a weekly bag tag series, and I even started to run a small doubles charity tournament within that first year.
How long have you been working with Infinite Discs?
Fortunately for me, Infinite started to support me after just my first review video, which was in March 2019. I’ll never be able to thank Dylan enough for believing in the plan I had for a different take on review videos! It’s pretty crazy to see how far I’ve come and how much it’s grown since then.
When did you start posting disc golf videos?
I started posting in March 2019, right when the first run I-BlendEmperors came out. This was a disc I was really excited about and thought it needed some more light shed on it. It was a mediocre video, to say the least, but it got some great feedback and I’ve been trying to improve and refine my style ever since.
How did you develop your signature and succinct review style?
I think as most content creators develop their style it starts out being mostly self-serving. After taking an extended hiatus from the game, my brother introduced me to the Infinite brand. I was hard-pressed to find any reviews or really any content focused on their lineup. Most YouTube reviews I was watching seemed quite long for their purpose, and I couldn’t find any review content on Instagram at the time. I saw an opportunity to create a more concise format that would be able to be pushed to the more underutilized avenues of social media. The original plan was actually to only post them to Instagram. I only created a YouTube channel to be able to share the reviews in Infinite’s comment section.
What disc surprised you the most after reviewing it? (You weren’t expecting to like, flew differently than expected, etc)
Definitely the Aztec. I had never really thrown that kind of straight control driver that still had good distance potential. When the I-Blend test run came out I loved the feel and flight it had, but it beat in just a little too quickly to be super reliable. Thankfully, the color glow run came out shortly after and I’ve had at least two in my bag ever since. The Aztec gives me the control of the Exodus, while not sacrificing much of the extra distance I’d get from bumping up to an Emperor of Pharaoh. If they’re ever looking for a name to put on the color glow Aztec, I know a guy that’d be pretty interested.
What is your favorite Infinite disc?
The Tomb without a doubt. I power grip everything but putts, so the Tomb is a perfect throwing putter for me with its shallow rim. Right now I’m bagging a Splatter S-Blend for overstable, C-Blend for stable, and D-Blend for understable throwing putter slots.
I’ve had a full infinite bag for a bit over a year now, but the hardest disc for me to take out was the Westside Discs Pine. I enjoy a taller, more overstable feeling Midrange that beat into straight fliers. Taking the time to beat a disc into that perfect spot gives you a level of confidence and trust in it that can’t easily be replaced.
Who is your player on tour?
I always look forward to watching Drew Gibson shred out there. Best backhand form on tour!
Do you compete in tournaments? Discuss some local events, results, experiences, etc.
Unfortunately, it’s been a couple of years since I’ve played a local event, but I’m hoping to get back out there soon!
What are some of your disc golf goals?
Since really diving into content creation, most of my goals center around growing my presence to be able to share these awesome discs with as many people as possible! It’d be awesome to hit 1000 YouTube subscribers someday, but I try not to focus too hard on any specific avenue as there are so many outlets to push to. As far as disc golf specific, I’m always tweaking something in my game. Right now the goal is to develop a more consistent forehand, there’s a reason you’ve never seen me throw a forehand in any video…
What are some of your hobbies outside of and other than disc golf?
Before disc golf, my biggest passions were music and video games. I played in local bands throughout high school and dove pretty deep into music production afterward. I’ve also streamed via Twitch off and on since around 2015. Although music has taken a bit of a back seat recently, I still stream regularly at twitch.tv/ursapls and would love to talk disc golf, gaming, or music with anyone that wants to stop by!
Be sure to Subscribe to Taylor’s YouTube channel and Follow him on Instagram(tayloraubuchon)!
We will be continuing this series, spotlighting members of Team Infinite from all 4 levels: Signature, Elite, Ambassador, and Core Teams. Please share this article and comment below which player(s) that you would like to hear from!
Get outside and throw some discs. Have an awesome day!
For this week’s Focus Friday we are shining the spotlight on Gateway’s Wizard. Over the weekend you can use the discount code: FOCUSWIZARD to save 10% on any Wizard.
One of the most popular putt & approach discs that we sell. This is a great overstable putter, allowing for some good drives and reliable putting. With a vast variety of plastic types you’ll be sure to find the one that suits you the most. While putting with the Wizard from the circle’s edge, you can expect a solid straight line. After that point, is when the disc will start to fade out. When it comes to driving the Wizard, you can expect a pretty straight flight path that ends with a decent fade. This can hold anhyzer lines for a while, but it will generally fade out.
This weekend is a great time to get your favorite Wizard, or to try it out. Again, use the discount code FOCUSWIZARD to get 10% off.
Head on over to https://infinitediscs.com/Gateway-Wizard to select your Wizard. Once everything you want is in your cart, you can apply the discount code FOCUSWIZARD and get 10% off all Wizards in your cart.
Note: After placing your discs in the shopping cart and before checking out, click on the “Discount Code” box under the shopping cart and enter that code. Then proceed to checkout.
Every year at Infinite Discs we put together a unique, fun list of gift ideas for disc golfers. Let’s take a look at the 2020 holiday ideas that we feel would please any disc golfer. This is your 2020 Disc Golf Gift guide!
Of course, no disc golf will turn down more discs for the holidays. But where do you start if you don’t know which specific discs they need in their bag? You might as well get something that is fun to throw and collectible, or that shares a little holiday spirit. That way, whether they throw it, or keep it as a memento, they’ll be happy. Here are a few holiday discs you might consider:
SPECIAL EDITION DISCS — One of the fun gift ideas for any disc collector or player is a limited edition disc, or a signature edition supporting a professional player. In 2020, signature editions became something of a rarity and sold out quickly whenever they became available. But you might be able to snag a good one if you hurry. Plus there are other limited editions and special editions, including fun tournament stamp discs. Infinite Discs has a great selection of Pro Tour Championship Discs that make great mementos and throwers!
HOLIDAY EDITION DISCS — Several different disc manufactures make holiday edition discs. If your disc golfer prefers more of a spooky edge, we have a lot of discs that were released as Halloween discs. Or, if you want a more traditional “Happy Holidays” or “Season’s Greetings” style, we usually have a few of those as well.
DISC DEALS BOXES — Every year, without fail, one of the most popular gift purchases from Infinite Discs the Infinite Deals Box. These are 7-disc package sets with a variety of different disc models from different brands, including stock stamps, tournament stamps, misprints, and more. The downside in 2020 is that the disc supply ran so low with the top manufacturers that there were simply not many discs to use for Deals Boxes. So, our supply of Deals Boxes has been extremely limited. The most popular two packages are the following, and you can check back from time to time and see if you’re lucky enough to snag one:
MISPRINT DISCS and X-OUT DISCS – Sometimes you can find some real treasures at a discounted price by browsing the Misprint and X-Out discs that Infinite Discs keeps in stock. “Misprints” are discs that have stamp flaws, double stamps, or some kind of messed up artwork on them. “X-Outs” are factory seconds that have minor flaws in the plastic that shouldn’t effect the flight of the disc. You can even grab a bunch of these misprints and factory seconds as white elephants for disc golfers.
If you want to impress your disc golfer for the holidays, hit them with a big ticket item that they will love but might not have felt ready to purchase on their own. Here are a few ideas:
ZUCA ALL TERRAIN CART — One of the most popular disc golf carts for the frequent disc golfer is the Zuca cart which is built to carry a maximum quantity of discs, provides a place to sit during long rounds, and carries a variety of accessories. There are also many other features which can be added to the Zuca cart, like padded seat cushions, more drink holders, putter pouches, and more. There are color combinations available for any taste.
MVP ROVER CART — Maybe you don’t want to spend two or three hundred dollars and your disc golfer already has a backpack that he or she likes. You can simply grab them the new MVP ROVER CART to essentially give their backpack a set of wheels so it can be pushed or pulled around the course with ease. There aren’t a lot of bells and whistles with this option, but it gets the job done.
CART ACCESSORIES – If the disc golfer on your list already has a disc golf cart, there are many accessories that can be added. One of the newest and most exciting add-ons for a player who wants to carry more discs around than anybody else is the POWER POCKET POUCH which can be added to the handle of existing carts to carry more putters or disc favorites. It’s super handy, and yes, excessive!
PORTABLE PRACTICE BASKETS — Any disc golfer would be utterly impressed with a new portable disc golf practice basket. There are a wide variety of baskets available on the market by a lot of different manufacturers, all with the intent to provide an easy way for players to practice in their yard, set up small courses, or take with them on camping trips, etc. Here are some of the newest and most popular options:
Black Hole Pro with Transit Bag — The Black Hole Pro is a very popular practice basket by MVP and this year they’ve added a Transit Bag as an easy way to carry the broken-down basket from place to place.
Viking Discs Royal Basket – The Royal Basket by Viking Discs is one of the newest additions to the family of portable baskets. It is a heavy duty basket that is built to last, but not too heavy to move around. It’s a great option for a basket that will catch discs as well as many course baskets.
Dynamic Discs Scout Basket — This is the latest folding, portable basket option and was released in 2020 by Dynamic Discs. It is collapsible and easy to carry around in the bag which is included with your purchase.
DGA Mach Lite— This is our favorite and by far the best-selling collapsible basket. It is easily folded and transported inside a shoulder carry case, yet is very sturdy and well constructed. The color availability tends to change from year to year, so you may find it in green, blue, orange, or other colors that DGA introduces from time to time.
Viking Discs Battle Basket Pro – For a lighter weight basket that is very easy to move around and set up for casual backyard play, the new Battle Basket Pro is extremely affordable. The chains are thinner, allowing for more “splash-out” putts, but it is a fun target at a low cost for casual play and practice. It’s also a great option for young players who are just picking up the basics of the game of disc golf.
HYZER DISC RACK — Maybe you’re looking for a way for your disc addict to store their copious amounts of discs. You can help them keep their extra discs or collection organized with the new Hyzer Disc Rack. Think about it… you’ll be helping your disc golfer stay organized while also keeping your own domain a little less cluttered with discs. It’s a win win!
There are a couple of different designs available, including one with the Hyzer Disc Rack branding and another with Infinite Discs logos and branding. The shelf is very easy to build without tools and is designed especially for discs while also including extra hooks on the front for hanging towels and bag tags. The top shelf holds a bag or trophies for display. While this is an item that might be a little bit outside of the casual disc golf budget, it definitely stands out as an impressive gift for the holiday season.
One of the most exciting things you can give to any hard-core disc golfer or disc collector is a one-year membership in the Infinite Discs VIP Club. That way, the disc golfer you love will receive a unique, collectible disc every month, automatically, as well as discounts on the Infinite Discs website and access to exclusive releases in the VIP Club Store.
Maybe you don’t have a huge budget, but you want to get your favorite disc golfer something nice that is under $100. Here are a few fun ideas that will fit the bill…
INFINITE DISC SLINGER BAG — The Infinite Disc Slinger is designed for affordability, ease, and comfort for quick disc golf rounds. It provides a quality bag option for beginners as well as experienced players who simply want to grab a dozen discs and hit the course. This is the perfect crossover between traditional shoulder bags and backpacks. You can throw it over your shoulder (the strap can be adjusted for whichever shoulder you prefer), carried in your hand, or slung across your body like popular sling bags. It is available in a variety of different colors. See the Disc Slinger Bag HERE
DISC GOLF PUZZLES AND BOARD GAMES — Maybe you’re stuck inside for the winter months. Or maybe you just like disc golf enough to watch to play it on the table top. There are actually some fun board games now which are built around the disc golf experience. Plus there are 500 and 1000 piece puzzles that are a real challenge to put together, featuring every disc golfer’s obsessions…piles of colorful discs! Check out Disc Golf Board Games and Puzzles HERE
THE KWIK-STIK RETRIEVER — Disc Retrievers have always been a good gift idea because pretty much every serious disc golf plays near water or trees and needs a way to get back the discs that have flown astray. The Kwik-Stik is one of the most popular options on the market with a telescopic pole that can extend to an impressive reach and a couple of different ways to trap and pull in the hard-to-reach disc. Some players are hesitant to spring the cash for a retriever even though it will save money time and time again when counting the number of discs saved. That’s where you come in– give one as a gift and that player will find endless occasions to use it!
INFINITE DISCS HUCK PACK — A great choice as an entry-level backpack for new players, or for experienced players who want an affordable option to carry more discs, the Huck Pack just came out in 2020. It features great disc storage capacity and two water bottle holders to keep you hydrated. Though it is affordable, it still manages to be a rather comfortable choice. But if the Huck Pack isn’t for you, there are other very good, affordable backpack options as well, like the Dynamic Discs Trooper, the Prodigy BP-3, The MVP Shuttle Bag, Latitude 64 Core bag, and more!
ProPull DISC GOLF TRAINER — The ProPull resistance band training kit has become a popular item for serious disc golfers who want to improve their throwing speed and strength. It can be used anywhere that the bands can be secured to a pole or tree. Check out the demo video HERE and see if this is the perfect gift for your disc golfer.
THE POWER POCKET POUCH — If you need a great gift idea for somebody who uses a disc golf cart, then the Power Pocket Pouch should do the trick. This handy cart accessory attaches to the cart handle and carries and additional 4-8 “go-to” discs as well as other items, like a cellphone, scorecard, mini marker, and more. See the Power Pocket Pouch HERE
These small items would be fun for little gifts to any disc golfer. They don’t take a lot of space, they aren’t expensive, and they can add a little fun to your Christmas morning…
Flight Towel — The Flight Towel is one of the latest trends in disc golf. These towels come with a fob attached, and each fob is made out of the rim of a popular disc. That way, the towel isn’t only good for drying discs, but it can be used as a warm-up tool where the player whips the towel through the air in a throwing motion. That helps warm-up the throwing arm with the player gripping the disc that rim that they love. It’s an interesting and fun accessory that should make any player pleased.
Other Disc Golf Towels — Towels are frequently needed by disc golfers to keep their discs dry, and we’ve got a variety of different towels, from lightweight to thick and absorbent. They can easily be stuffed into any stocking. Plus, there are towels that are branded for just about any manufacturer, so no matter which brand the player likes, there should be a towel just for them.
Pyrohyzer Glass Mini Discs — Another fun product that Infinite Discs started carrying this year is the unique glass mini discs by Pyrohyzer. Each mini is handmade and entirely unique. The prices vary depending on the amount of extra features, like “shatter” patterns, swirls, glow-in-the-dark, and etching. Though these glass minis are nice enough to display, they can be used as mini markers during disc golf rounds. They’re definitely a top-notch gift idea that fits into the stocking. Also available in MICRO MINI sizes.
Many Disc Golfers like to play in the dark, and to do that, they often prefer to throw glow-in-the-dark discs. The easiest and fastest way to charge up a glow disc is with a UV Flashlight. We have a simple, affordable UV flashlight in stock that is just the right size to carry in a pocket or in a bag. Plus, we have other tools for night disc golf, like LED lights that can be taped to the bottom of discs, or glow-in-the-dark tape rings to stick on non-glowing discs.
Infinite Discs Chalk Ball – The Infinite Discs Chalk Ball is one of the newest grip enhancers on the market in 2020. Other grip bags have filling like beads, sawdust, or dirt, etc. However, this one features the equivalent of climbers chalk which enhances the player’s hold on the disc in all kinds of weather. Plus it can easily be clipped onto any backpack or cart with the carabiner that is included.
Friction Gloves — While these might appear to be somewhat expensive gloves at first glance, they are actually worth every dollar for disc golfers who want to play when it is cold outside. They take the bite out of the cold air, but more importantly, they provide extra grip on the disc, even when the plastic is wet. That way, disc golfers can play in the gold without taking gloves off to throw and putting them back on again to warm up. If you don’t want to buy a pair of the Friction Gloves, they are also sold separately for single hands, so that the throwing hand can have the enhanced grip.
We also have the newest line of WARM FRICTION GLOVES which are thicker to keep hands and fingers warm in even lower temperatures which still providing the grip to play the game.
Disc Dots for Putting Practice – The DiscDot is a new product that is focused on helping players to focus. These little plastic balls attach to the chains of a basket– the player picks the chain. Then when practicing putting, the player can focus on the little colored balls to hit exactly where they’d like. The 2-packs come with bright, neon colors that are easy to see when focusing on the chains.
Kneepad Stress Minis – Another easy, useful stocking stuff is a Kneepad Mini marker made out of stress foam. These multipurpose minis come in handy in several ways. First of all, they can mark your lie just like other minis, but they also provide a soft pad for when the player needs to take a knee to throw from under a low-hanging branch. In addition, since they’re made out of stress foam, they can be squeezed to release tension before or after putting. Plus, they are fun to throw and won’t cause damage when they hit something (or someone) because they’re light and soft. Put them on the ground, kneel on them, throw them, or squeeze them– these are fun little mini discs!
Nobody saw the surprises, challenges, and often bizarre events of 2020 coming. It has been a very unexpected year. On top of the obvious heartbreak of sickness, death, job losses, and disrupted lives, even small sports like disc golf and pickleball have had its disappointments with the cancellation of major events. But let’s really dive into the effect of the Covid-19 pandemic on disc golf in terms of growth and the marketplace.
“Skip the Course. Stay Home”
A lot of people, especially tournament directors and touring professionals, felt an acute sting when the PDGA (Professional Disc Golf Association) suspended all sanctioned events starting March 14th. It felt like much of the year was ruined for competitive disc golf. And yet, many players still felt like they could enjoy recreational play to some extent, especially since many jobs were sending people home, schools were switched to online courses, and other public events were all cancelled. People had time on their hands and parks seems a safe place to socially separate while doing something fun.
Then on March 23rd, the PDGA sent out a letter to registered members to please “skip the course and stay home.” They encouraging leagues not to gather and basically requested that all players avoid their local courses. It wasn’t long before many courses in the most populated cities started pulling their baskets out, just to make sure nobody would gather to play. The request made total sense. After all, the world was in a panic, Covid-19 is very contagious, and staying away from one another is a good way to avoid the spread of disease.
But did everybody get that memo? Conditions can vary greatly in the many different parts of the country. In more rural areas, things pretty much continued as usual because cases of Covid-19 were barely present, if detected at all. More densely populated areas had to take more drastic measures. But it would be incorrect to claim that everybody everywhere was staying at home. Many disc golfers continued to play, whether in small groups, with family members, or alone. Disc golf, in many ways, it a socially distant sport when tournament and league play is removed.
With all that said, there are many people who know nothing about the PDGA. They aren’t members, or they play casually, or they discovered disc golf while looking for a way to pass the time. Those people obviously did not hear or head the call to stay home. How do we know? Because disc golf exploded.
A Great Way to Pass the Time
Maybe it was the number of people in forced quarantine from work, school, and other events that fed the interest in disc golf. Maybe the outdoors simply feels safer than staying pent-up in a building. Whatever it was that created the perfect storm, disc golf suddenly became a very popular way to pass the time during the pandemic.
Infinite Discs has a unique perspective into the disc golf growth and interest trends, being a seller of disc golf products. Here is a look at website traffic that hit the InfiniteDiscs.com website from the end of 2019 to the present (June 5th).
The candlestick in June is shorter than the others because the week was not over when the chart was made. We’re not sure if the apparent growth will settle to a new plateau or if it will continue in an upward trend. But the increase in traffic, even dwarfing 2019 holiday sales, shows an obvious increase in interest. The dark blue represents “organic searches,” meaning that those are people who found and visited the website through their own searches and exploration. That is where most of the increase was generated– new people looking for discs.
Disruption in the Supply Chain
While the growth and interest in disc golf and the coinciding desire to purchase discs increased, the ability to supply those discs dropped. With the declaration of a worldwide pandemic, many states in the USA mandated the complete shutdown of “non-essential” businesses and manufacturing. Disc golf apparently is non-essential, but that did not stop people from wanting discs. More people were spending more time either on the course or playing in the backyard. Most of the major manufacturers and distributors of discs and targets (baskets) were forced to shut down or operate on a skeleton crew. Suddenly, manufacturers like Innova, Discraft, MVP, Prodigy, and others were unable to feed the growing demand. Not only could they not keep up, but they were falling behind on previously scheduled manufacturing runs, meaning that the supply would take a long time to catch up, even when allowed to turn the machinery back on again.
For an visually stunning look at the conundrum of disc golf supply vs demand during the pandemic, take a look at the following graph. It shows the sales trend at Infinite Discs from October 2019 through May 2020. The red shaded area roughly designates the time period that several major manufacturers were forced to close and had very limited ability to ship restock.
So, during the steepest time of growth, the disc manufacturers were unable to continue functioning. The obvious effect of that pattern is a drastic drop in inventory levels at disc golf retailers. When new supply is unavailable, old supply drops precipitously.
Infinite Discs took up a mantra of “More the 50,000 discs in stock” in 2017 when we were able to move into a larger facility and increase our inventory levels. It was our goal to stay well above that level for the long term. We printed thousands of promo cards stating that mantra. But the supply chain challenges of 2020 made it impossible. Here is a graph showing Infinite Discs disc inventory levels starting in November of 2019 (the peak of inventory before Black Friday sales kicked in) to the present.
When we combine the sales levels with the decrease in inventory levels, you can easily see the correlation. Again, when interest and sales increase, but the ability to restock is removed, the balance of supply vs demand is broken.
Sorry, We’re Out of Stock
One easy product to discuss when pointing out the effect of the pandemic on disc golf purchases is baskets (or “targets”). With many people taking up backyard putting to pass the time, the demand for disc golf baskets sky-rocketed, quickly clearing retailers out of inventory. Much of the time, large items like baskets are drop-shipped from the manufacturers when they are ordered through online vendors. That is a logical way to avoid the issues of storage and the high shipping costs of moving heavy items around the country. A customer buys a basket, then the online retailer sends an order to the manufacturer to ship directly to the customer.
But if the manufacturers are closed…then drop-ship orders are no longer available. So even if the baskets are technically in a warehouse, they aren’t accessible. Infinite Discs tried to battle that problem as things started to shut down and immediately ordered large shipments of baskets that in some cases took weeks to arrive. Suppliers were basically piling baskets on pallets and shipping them out before having to lock up and go home for an indefinite period of time.
So in many cases, the choices were few when it came to obtaining portable baskets at a time when people most wanted portable baskets. That lack of supply existed with other products as well.
Where Are the Popular Discs?
For many years, Innova has been the highest-selling brand at Infinite Discs. Without making detailed comparisons through the years, it is safe to say that they represent a large portion of the disc golf market. Innova’s manufacturing facilities are located in California, and that was one of the first states to shut down businesses because of the pandemic. If the discs in highest demand were not being manufactured for a couple of months, then how do you think things are looking for Innova now that they are back in business and trying to catch up?
Once again, here at Infinite Discs, we can share a little bit of insight into that problem. We have an algorithm which calculates the number of discs we need for each disc model and in each plastic type based on 30-day vs 90-day sales vs discs in stock. That way we can restock based on the sales trends in an attempt to keep the right quantities in stock for every disc. We recently placed a restock order with Innova for nearly 16,000 discs based on that algorithm because the demand was so high and the inventory levels so low after the shutdown. At the time of this blog post, our current inventory level for all Innova discs in stock is 3,975 discs. That means that the shipment that we’re still awaiting should have four times our current inventory, just in restock! But Innova is struggling to meet those quantities as they have spent days putting the shipment together, because they have many more retailers making similar demands, and they too are at very low inventory levels after having a couple of months without manufacturing.
Take a look at popular Discraft disc models. In the case of Discraft, where signature Paul McBeth discs are a huge boon to the brand, keeping certain discs in stock at all is a challenge for the same reasons. Last week, Infinite Discs had these totals available for certain models:
Luna = 0
Malta = 0
Anax = 0
Zeus = 0
Zone = 0
Those are some of the hottest discs in the current Discraft line-up, aside from the Buzzz. None of them were in stock. Not a single disc in any kind of plastic. After a small restock, we’re back to zero again this week.
In May the new Paul McBeth Hades was announces as soon as Discraft was able to open up their operations again, along with a slew of other signature discs. With nearly 1,000 Hades in stock at midnight of the release day, Infinite Discs was sold out by morning. One of the most hotly anticipated signature releases, the Paul McBeth Tour Z Swirly Luna, was one that we’d asked for 1,200, but received just short of 100. To this day, we’ve still received no more than 300 total of the disc after two small, follow-up shipments. Why? It is Discraft’s fault? Nope. They also cannot keep up with the new demand and the depletion of inventory when they too are trying to make up for lost time.
When Will Things Turn Around?
Basically, the Pandemic caused a huge increase in interest, when it comes to Disc Golf. The cancellation of tournaments and the plea not to assemble in groups didn’t stop new players from picking up the game. The new increase in demand has drained the market of discs and other supplies. How long will it take for the market to catch up to the new demand and eventually normalize? We don’t know. We’re struggling to keep discs in stock, but people won’t stop buying them. Will there be an eventual shortage? Will it take months or years for disc makers to meet a new surge that was never anticipated or expected?
What are your thoughts on the pandemic and it’s effects on disc golf? Did you see an increase in interest in the game? Are more people on your local courses now? Share your experiences in the comments below.
Infinite Discs opened up a survey in February 2020 to the members of Team Infinite in order to see which Infinite Discs brand putters they liked the most. We also asked which plastic blends they wished to have with those putters. While Infinite Discs had released four putters in D-Blend plastic, not all of those putters have seen premium plastic releases yet. Since the brand is still new and we’re trying to discover what the players want most, we felt that feedback would be valuable.
THE FIRST FOUR PUTTERS
First of all, let’s introduce you to the putters in the Infinite Discs line-up. At the time of this survey there were four primary putters. The RUIN has just been introduced, and while it has the dimensions of a putter, it is designed primarily as an overstable approach disc, so it is excluded here.
The MYTH was the first putter in the Infinite Discs brand lineup and we wanted to start strong. The Myth is a dependable, beaded putter with a comfortable rim that can be used for precision putting, or as a driving putter and approach disc. The Myth has a slight end fade and only moderate glide.
The TOMB is a flat-topped, low-profile, putt-and-approach disc with a comfortably smooth, beaded rim. The Tomb has just the right amount of stability to cover ground while threading the needle on approach shots, whether thrown forehand or backhand. It can also be used as a crossover mid-range, driving putter, or to hold the line while putting for distance or in moderate headwinds.
The SCARAB is a beaded putter that has a similar rim configuration to the Infinite Discs Myth, but with a different flight plate that provides a longer glide for longer putts and approaches. If you love throwing putters for distance, or you’re seeking pinpoint accuracy gets the job done. It has less fade and more glide than the Myth with a similar feel.
The COHORT is a unique putt-and-approach disc that is a great, beadless option for mid-range and approach shots with a comfortable rim for either backhand or forehand players. The revolution toward smaller-diameter discs for mid-range shots continues and the Cohort is stable enough to hold the line when thrown with confidence. When in a firm plastic blend, it makes a great putting putter for players who prefer a beadless rim.
These are the flight numbers:
WHICH ARE THE FAVORITES?
As of February 2020, the players surveyed picked their favorites of these four putters. The results were quite interesting, showing that a lot of the players preferred the two putters which double more as approach discs. The Tomb and the Cohort are both very effective approach discs– one with a bead and one without. While the Tomb has been available in several plastics, including premiums like C-Blend and S-Blend, the Cohort was only introduced in D-Blend (base plastic) and R-Blend (a soft, flexible blend). Here is a look at a chart showing the favorites:
The popularity of the COHORT is particularly interesting since it was only released in limited editions to the Infinite Discs VIP Club and Team Infinite members in 2019 with remaining R-Blend discs sold to the public with a bottom stamp. Apparently those few people who have the disc ended up loving it! The TOMB, on the other hand, has a longer history and has been released in multiple plastic blends due to its popularity.
WHICH PLASTICS IN THE FUTURE?
The surveyed Team Infinite members definitely had a lot to say when explaining why certain putters needed to be released in specific plastic types. There were too many requests and comments to share here. As a few examples, these were some thoughts:
“I would love to see the Cohort and Tomb in Metal Flake Glow C-Blend!”
“Myth in S-Blend (and some more max weight P-Blend), and a Scarab in P-Blend, Swirly S-Blend, and Splatter are always cool too.”
“P-blend Scarab and S-blend cohort.”
“Stiff P-Blend Tomb. or X-Blend Tomb, please.”
“Myths and Scarabs in C-Blend, R-Blend, and any other premium plastic. Also more Myth X-Blend runs please.”
“I’d like to see more tacky grip, but medium to firm stiffness on a putter. The X-Blend
works great for that in my opinion, but I haven’t been able to putt comfortably with
any of these putters yet.”
“Cohort in C-Blend or Swirly S-Blend.”
“Myth in premium, like S-Blend,C-Blend, Swirly and Splatter.”
There’s usually just as many requests are there are different tastes. But we tallied up those requests and found that the following were the most requested for future releases (top 6 in order of most requested):
Luster C-Blend TOMB
Metal Flake Glow C-Blend TOMB
FAVORITE PUTTER COLORS
We also thought that it would be fun to ask our Team Infinite members which colors they prefer for putters. They were allowed to name any color and vote for more than one if they have several favorites. This is what they picked as their favorite colors for putters:
We will continue to seek feedback from our team members as well as the public when it comes to the types of discs and the types of plastics used, as well as the preferred colors.
If you have any feedback on these putters or would like to request a special plastic type, feel free to comment below.
Infinite Discs and the State of Disc Golf 2020 sponsors would like to thank all of those disc golfers who took the survey this year. Your input really helps us to get a great overview of how the sport is evolving and growing. We look forward to sharing the information that we’ve gathered with the public and with the brand sponsors who are providing prizes for randomly selected survey participants.
Some of the 2020 Survey Sponsors:
MVP / Axiom
WHO TOOK THE SURVEY THIS YEAR?
We had 6,541 disc golfers who took the survey this year. As usual, most of the survey participants are based in the USA, though the numbers are growing in other countries as well. Of course, we launched the survey primarily to the market in the USA and it is in English, which may limit the number of people in other countries who are able to participate. Here is a look at the breakdown by state. The map displays a darker shade of green in the states that had the most participants. The color is more faint in the states with fewer participants.
If we remove all of the survey participants from the United States of America, then this chart shows the percentage of remaining survey participants from other countries.
Originally, we had under 4% of survey participants who were female, so we put out a last call request for more ladies to participate. They heard the call and we received a good number of last-minute female participants to give us a better, more rounded collection of opinions and feedback. We finished with 7.4% of participants being female. Thanks ladies!
How Old are Disc Golfers?
Disc golf is known as a sport that is playable by people of all ages. You don’t have to be in your prime to enjoy a round of disc golf. Nor do you need to be particularly athletic. The learning curve is fast and there are discs designed for players at any skill level. With all of that said, let’s take a look at the average ages of the people who took the time to answer the 2020 survey questions.
What Skill Level Do You Consider Yourself?
When a player needs to definite their own skill level, the results can be pretty mixed. Some of us have been playing for several years, yet always consider ourselves as recreational or intermediate at best. Some of us are involved with the sport for a very short time, yet our competitive nature drives us to claim advanced skill levels. When looking at how we rate ourselves, one person’s “beginner” can be another person’s “advanced” depending on the severity of levity of our self evaluation. But it’s still a fun question to ask. We’re always surprised at how many participants call themselves “Professional.” Do they actually make money playing disc golf? We hope so!
Thanks again for participating and we look forward to parsing the data and sharing what we’ve learned! Feel free to leave any comments below.
The voting has been finalized for the first round of Stamp Wars 2020. Theses are the results with total votes cast for each stamp design. The list on the LEFT are the stamp designs that are moving onto the 2nd Round and the list on the RIGHT are the ones that are not moving on.
The Great Horned Owl got the most votes in the first round. Let’s see how the 2nd round comes together with only half of the surviving submissions. After the 2nd round, the 3rd will feature the final 16 stamp designs for voting.
Once again, the voting will take place on the Infinite Discs Facebook page and on this round you’ll be able to select and vote for your favorite 8 designs. You’ll also be able to see the vote tally during the entire week. The voting for round 2 will continue until next Friday, January 31st, and then we’ll narrow the field again.