When equipment is constantly used, dirt and stain can accumulate over time. However, when it comes to outdoor sports, sometimes cleaning can be neglected since it is natural to get things dirty while playing. For disc golfers, the discs used to see a lot of action but less in terms of maintenance.
So, if disc golf discs are to be cleaned, what is the best method? That would be a thorough cleaning through water and soap. If you want it to be sparkling clean, you might consider adding a lot of elbow grease to scrub the plastic equipment.
What Are Disc Golf Discs?
If you wish to maintain the equipment, you have to be familiar with the equipment. The discs are the main tool for the sport of disc golf. If you haven’t seen one, it is similar to Frisbees, but it is used for golf gameplay.
The discs used in disc golf are a bit smaller in size, measuring typically 21 to 22 cm in diameter and weighing around 130 to 180 grams. Events that follow the PDGA, or Professional Disc Golf Association, standards use PDGA-approved discs, which are measuring 21 to 30 cm in diameter and weighing at most 200 grams.
The discs are designed in order to be controlled easily, thrown at optimum speed, and traversed with accuracy. If you are not aware, there are 3 categories of disc golf discs: the drivers, the mid-range discs, and the putters. Similar to the types of golf clubs, each disc has its own purpose in the game.
What Are Disc Golf Discs Made Of?
As mentioned, disc golf discs are similar to Frisbees. Thus, the material used in creating them is plastic, specifically polypropene. This certain plastic is a thermoplastic polymer resin. Obviously, they are durable types and definitely fit for outdoor usage.
The quality of plastic comes with a cost, of course. The higher the quality, the more durable the disc is but, the more expensive it will be. Plastic discs like DX, Pro-D, J-Pro, D-line, X-Line, and R-Pro from companies Latitude 64°, Discmania, Innova, and Discraft are some of the examples of lesser quality plastic discs. They are great as starter equipment, though.
From the same aforementioned companies, there are also high-quality plastic discs. Some of the examples are Champion, FLX, Titanium, GStar, Tournament Plastic, Gold Line, Fuzion, and Star. Aside from durability, they are far much lighter yet still adhere to the PDGA standards. They are also available in various bright colors.
When it comes to maintenance, higher-grade plastic discs are more manageable. They can resist significant damages and noticeable stains. Knowing the brand and quality of your disc golf discs can save you some decision-making time in terms of cleaning.
How to Clean Disc Golf Discs?
Now that you are informed about your disc golf disc’s material, it is time to learn how to clean them. As mentioned, the best way to clean the discs is through thorough washing with soap and water. Nevertheless, you can still utilize other cleaning methods depending on the situation.
Method 1: Deep Cleaning
This method is highly encouraged if you want your discs to be spotlessly clean. Suppose the equipment is usually used for formal tournaments, then as a maintenance procedure. In that case, you might want to note this method down.
- Fill the bucket or sink with warm water. Refrain from using boiling water since the material is plastic. Although polypropene is a thermoplastic polymer resin, which is meant to withstand a hot environment, it can still get warped or be deformed under prolonged heat exposure.
- Drop in the container full of warm water and an ample amount of regular dish soap.
- Soak the dirty disc in the water mixture.
- Scrub the disc to your contentment. To help you in scrubbing, use a dishwashing scrub, a brush with strong bristles, or an abrasive pad. If you find any bothersome dents or nicks, use sandpaper to trim them down.
- If you are content with your scrubbing, rinse the soapy disc until it is clean.
- Dry the disc through air drying. Avoid having it exposed to the sun directly as it may cause the material to warp or deform.
Method 2: Cleaning While You’re Bathing
If you are looking for a more convenient way, try to use the shower. Utilizing the soapy water as you rinse during bathing can even be seen as environmentally friendly. Make sure to keep an eye on the following things:
- Prepare a separate scrub dedicated to removing the dirt on the disc golf disc.
- Keep the water temperature at a warm level at most. If you are into steam baths or hot spring-type of bathing, do not utilize the excess water for cleaning the plastic discs.
- Avoid using this method in considering cleaning the discs with very stubborn stains and muddy dirt. These impurities might hurt more on your draining pipes due to the aid of accumulated soap residue.
- Dry the discs simply with a towel.
Method 3: Quick Cleaning
If you are in such a hurry, then just use the quick cleaning method. This is preferable if the disc is in constant use but not exposed to too much dirt or stain. Here’s how to maximize your time in cleaning the disc:
- Prepare a water hose that has an adjustable nozzle at the end.
- Make sure that the water coming out from the nozzle can be adjusted for a narrow opening so that the speed of the water flow will increase. In the absence of the nozzle, try using your thumb as the cover.
- Spray the water onto the disc. Let the force coming out from the water hose do the cleaning. The stronger the force, the more chances the dirt will be removed.
- In order not to waste the scattered water, do this method in a driveway or in the garden.
Why Should Disc Golf Discs Be Clean?
It’s only natural for the disc golf disc to get dirty while using it outdoors. If you see how disc golf is played, then you can understand how important it is to keep the disc in its best state. Any deformation can lead to your or your opponent’s disadvantage, and that can be a source of conflict.
When discs accumulate dirt, it will become difficult for a player to maintain his/her grip over time. If there is a loose grip, the throwing method will be compromised. Also, if the dirt is solid, like mud or stuck debris, that can affect accuracy due to the additional weight.
In short, if the disc golf discs are clean, they will be non-factors to the players’ performance and promote fair play. The players’ meticulousness will become greater on larger and more important events such as a tournament with a cash prize.
How Often Disc Golf Discs Be Cleaned?
As long as the disc golf disc becomes dirty, it is already subjected to cleaning. But sometimes, the dirt and stain can be tolerable, and so you might want to check your gameplay first. If you can still grip the disc and maintain the accuracy as you perform your usual throw, then that disc can still be used without cleaning.
If the disc stays that way for 6 months, it might not hurt to subject it to deep, thorough cleaning. Remember that deep cleaning requires effort and time even though it is the best cleaning method. If you have your discs dirty every time you play, maybe the other methods can be more convenient to apply frequently.
Also, since the material of the disc golf disc is plastic, dirt and stain may not only be your problem. Plastic can degrade under constant heat exposure. When the plastic disc starts to change its color, you can expect an annoying sticky texture in the future. It can be removed through a more thorough cleaning, but bear in mind that the plastic is already degraded.
Can Dishwashers Be Used In Cleaning Disc Golf Discs?
You might be tempted to use the dishwasher for cleaning since the discs are similar to the shape of your plates. However, do not attempt to use such. The dishwasher is designed to handle food waste only, and it utilizes warm water regularly.
Your disc can encounter different kinds of dirt. Aside from soil and mud, the disc might even be exposed to animal manure. Having it clean through a dishwasher compromises the state of the interior. Plus, the wastewater from washing the discs can clog the filters.
As mentioned many times, deep cleaning is the best method for cleaning disc golf discs. However, there are situations that don’t warrant such a cleaning method. Sometimes, it will be more convenient to apply quick cleaning or more practical to clean the disc while you’re bathing. You can also use a special cleaning liquid that is beneficial to the plastic material.
Avoid at all costs utilizing dishwashers to clean your disc golf discs. Additionally, inspect from time to time, as you are cleaning the discs, the state of the plastic material. If it starts to become sticky and discolored, you may need to adjust your cleaning methods.