Urban Velo

Milwaukee Bicycle Co UHMW Bike Polo Mallet Heads and Caps

Up until recently, the material of choice for bike polo mallet heads has been HDPE (high-density polyethylene), aka gas pipe. With a little research and plenty of field testing, Ben’s Cycle has brought upped the ante by bringing UHMW (ultra-high-molecular-weight polyethylene) mallet heads to the masses.

According to Wikipedia, UHMW has “the highest impact strength of any thermoplastic presently made.” And according to Ben’s Cycle, the UHMW heads will outlast HDPE heads and weigh about 10g less on average.

Milwaukee Bicycle Co is taking 2.5″ OD/.25″ thick UHMW and machining it in-house down to .15″ thick, except at the ends. The heads come with pre-drilled starter holes to help you get your shaft lined up perfectly straight.The optional UHMW cap is machined to fit snug inside the end of the UHMW head, and comes with three grub screws to hold it in place.

As far as performance, I can’t say I’ve been happier with any other mallet head. My shots feel solid as ever and the material seems to be wearing slowly, even though this is the only mallet I’ve been using for months. You can see in the photos below, the capped end is still almost perfectly round, indicating very little wear. The non-capped end has deformed over time, but it should be noted that I used a Dremel Tool to chamfer the inside of the open end to make it easier to scoop the ball.

The UHMW head retails for $15.99 and the cap for $4.99. Buy them together and save $1. Visit www.benscycle.net for more info.

About Urban Jeff

I'm about to have a nervous breakdown, my head really hurts. Contact me.

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5 Comments

  1. jimmyJuly 20, 2011 at 10:13 am

    have to say in practice i’ve seen the milwaukee heads don’t last nearly as long as the larger diameter UHMW “space mallet” stuff everyone has been using, present company included. plus it’s way cheaper as there’s no up front production costs to pay out.

  2. MattJuly 20, 2011 at 10:34 am

    You can also just cut the .25″ thicker end off if you want a larger end for easier scoooooopage.

  3. Warden MattJuly 21, 2011 at 11:56 am

    Jimmy – Not too sure why your saying the MKE head doesn’t “last nearly as long” as the larger thinner walled stock UHMW. I’ve used both and never experienced that, if anything the thinner larger ID UHMW has a shorter lifespan simply because it has less material. In other words more material makes for a longer lifespan.

    Another reason MBCo./Ben’s is machining the thicker walled 2.5″ ID UHMW is because it is a superior performer to the larger(“cheater mallet”) without compromising lifespan.

    A player in Japan did a review on the head as well and favored it over anything else, and they play on a very rough surface compared to a tradition tennis/basketball court.

    Milwaukee Bike Polo, GOOGLE IT!

  4. RiJuly 21, 2011 at 9:04 pm

    Something about this reminds me of Thor’s Maul. I hope it’s as useful and sturdy.

    –Ri of changerules(dot)net

  5. LGJuly 27, 2011 at 5:26 am

    I made our club’s first batch of 6 mallets out of UHMWPE over 4 years ago, and every one of those heads is still in circulation on a loaner mallet somewhere in the poloverse. Looks like MKE has figured out the proper balance of strength/durability with the right amount of material machined away… nice to see companies giving access to parts for polo to people who don’t have access to the tech to make their own. Go MKE!

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