1. What is a beach ball?
A beach ball is an inflatable ball for beach and water games and other recreational fun. Their large size and light weight take little effort to propel; they travel very slowly and generally must be caught with two hands, making them ideal for lazy games and for children. Their lightness and size make them difficult to use in even moderate wind. The beach ball's invention is usually credited to Jonathon DeLonge in 1938.
Beach balls range from hand-sized to over 3 feet (1 m) across or bigger. They generally have a set of soft plastic panels, with two circular end panels, one with an inflation valve. A common design is six panels in six different colors using vertical solid colored vinyl stripes. Some are printed with advertisements or company slogans.
Beach balls are designed to be inflated by mouth or hand pump so it's easy to inflate when you're on a journey.
Beach balls are wonderful for displays, parades, parties and many other fun activities and events. Beach ball sports include water polo and volleyball. While they are usally less expensive than the balls used in professional sports, they are also much less durable as they are made of soft plastic and not leather. This makes them prone to punctures from sharp objects and/or abuse. Beach balls may be hit around at outdoor rock concerts and baseball games, and the bigger ones are great fun rolling around a field, at the beach or fun play in a pool. They are also thrown about at cricket games... On October 17th, 2009 a beach ball was used to assist Sunderland A.F.C. in defeating Liverpool F.C. in a football match in the English Premier League when a Liverpool fan threw the beach ball onto the pitch and a shot from Darren Bent that would otherwise have been stopped by keeper Pepe Reina took a deflection off the stray beach ball causing it to change path and hit the back of the net.
2. How are beach balls measured?
Beach balls (and inflatable pool toys) are made in China and diameter there is measured from end to end (pole to pole) laid out flat and deflated. (manufacturers approx. deflated size) They have been measured this way since the 1950`s as it`s how they come off the production line.
The true or inflated diameter of the ball will therefore be somewhat smaller. IE: a 36" beach ball is about 25" tall (true daimeter) a 48" beach ball is about 33" tall (true diameter) and a 72" ball is about 46" tall (true diameter) We always try to list both the manufacturers approx. deflated size and the true inflated diameter for less confusion. We sell beach balls made in China in 16", 20", 24", 30", 36", 42", 48", 60", 72" and larger sizes. These sizes may vary slightly from ball to ball depending the factory that made them. Please remember all sizes of China made beachballs are "approximate" and are more of a general sizing guide than rigid, set standards. I wish they`d set a true industry standard for sizing but this is the way it is - sorry! As before, we always try to list all the relevant specs and include quality pictures to show the true, accurate size of the product being sold.
3. How do you inflate them?
You can inflate by mouth, use a hand pump or use an electric inflator, either 12 volt DC or 110/220 volt AC. DO NOT OVERINFLATE! One of the best things for the larger beach balls and inflates is a shop vac on the blower side as it provides a large volume of air at low pressure and works great with the larger inflation valves. High pressure air compressors are not recommended as they can easily cause overinflation, premature seam failure and bursting. Leave some wrinkles in the inflate so as to not overstress the seams. Once acclimated a little air can be added by mouth to smooth out most wrinkles in the round beach balls but some wrinkles should remain in odd shaped items like ride-ons, air mats, etc.. Cold temperatures may cause inflatable to become limp, just add a bit more air. Warm temperatures may cause overinflation, just remove some air to avoid seam failure.
4. Can they be repaired if they get punctured or develop a leak?
YES! Most punctures or small seam leaks can easily be repaired with a combo glue & vinyl type patch kit or with a thicker liquid vinyl mendor. The latter is the simplest to use and works great! Some items are provided with a tape type patch kit but those are only temporary fixes and not a permanent solution. The hard part sometimes is to find a very small leak. They may take time and effort but it`s better to find and fix them before they get bigger or you just decide to throw away a perfectly good inflatable toy with a minor flaw. It may sound weird but if you can`t see or hear it you can use your tounge to feel the air escaping pinholes as it`s quite sensitive...
5. Do you ship worldwide?
YES, we have for over eight years!