MVP Disc Sports came onto the disc golf manufacturing scene with a new approach to discs. They introduced the Gyro Overmold technology which they declared would improve the disc’s linear momentum in flight, making it superior to single-mold discs. The outer rim on the overmold discs is more dense than the plate and thus would increase rotational inertia. A good number of disc enthusiasts jumped onto the MVP overmold train, becoming “gyro-heads”, among other self-fashioned nicknames. A lot of the passionate fandom was also rooted in the attractive nature of discs that inherently came with a black frame around the colored plate, making it an appealing canvass for the company’s 3-colored (3-foil) hot stamping system.
MVP then created its first spin-off sister company called Axiom Discs, which basically used the same overmold technology, but added multi-colored rims and new stamp designs. The artistic appeal of the discs became even more alluring, as the combination of rim and plate color variations were numerous. Yet again, the Gyro Overmold technology remained a key selling point.
With all of the attention that MVP and Axiom generated for overmold discs, it was surprising and unexpected to fans of the manufacturer when it was announced in 2017 that MVP would create yet another spin-off company called Streamline Discs, because discs produced for this new sister company would be traditional single-mold. Some gyro-heads were initially stunned that the unique overmold was seemingly being downplayed by its creator, even if under the guise of a new brand. But soon enough, fans fell in line and accepted that Streamline Discs could still be a strong disc brand, even without the overmold. After all, three color stamping would still be available, and the popular plastic blends of Neutron, Proton, and Electron would still be used on the single mold discs.
The first two disc models released by Streamline were the Trace distance driver and the Pilot putter.
The Trace distance driver fits into a speed range that is not too saturated in the market. With a flight rating similar to that of an Innova Wraith, but with slightly less fade, it certainly has the potential to be a heavily used distance driver for those with moderate to higher arm speed. The Trace flight ratings are 11 (speed), 5 (glide), -1 (turn), 2 (fade). After a few throws, I was impressed and found the Trace to be a very manageable distance driver. Another one of my personal favorite distance drivers is the Discmania DDX, which is like an Innova Destroyer with a less dramatic fade. The Trace is to the Wraith like the DDX is to the Destroyer. If you feel that the fade is too dramatic on a Wraith, then the Trace is a great disc to fill that slot in your bag.
Personally, I prefer the Neutron plastic for the Trace, which is most like Innova Star or Latitude 64 Gold Line plastic. It is durable but has good grip. The translucent, durable Proton plastic on the Trace feels more like Innova Champion or Latitude 64 Opto plastic. Both plastic types fly consistently for a perfect blend of distance and control. I truly feel like the Trace in both Neutron and Proton plastic was a wise choice for Streamline Discs as an introductory driver to break-in the brand.
No matter how you slice it, a putter is a must-have disc mold for any new brand, but it’s also one of the biggest hit-or-miss possibilities when it comes to sales within the disc golf market. There are many, many putters out there, and every brand has at least one, but usually more. Putters are discs made to do one thing– short, accurate throws. They’ve been approached in about every way possible, but really there isn’t a lot of new ground to break. The biggest game changer for any player when it comes to putting is primarily practice, and to a much lesser degree, the disc.
So, the Pilot has the potential to be a huge hit as a putter, winning the hearts of players and becoming one of the top-selling standards, or it could end up like dozens and dozens of other putters that simply fade into the background as “just another putter”. Will the Pilot become the next Gateway Wizard? Innova Aviar? Dynamic Discs Judge? Will it be a go-to putter for thousands of players? After a few throws, I’m still not entirely convinced that it will have lasting appeal or become a classic putter. But I do feel that it is a perfectly serviceable putter that will easily blend into the bags of players of all skill levels.
The Pilot is a dependable putter, flying true for short distances, and though not a wind-fighter, it also works wonderfully for short approaches. It isn’t too overstable or too understable. It felt to me quite a bit like a Latitude 64 Pure, but with the addition of a very small, micro-bead on the rim. For me, the highlight was the feel of the Electron plastic, with my favorite variety being the Electron Soft blend, which is slightly flexible with comfortable, soft grip, but without being too floppy or too chalky. The Electron Soft plastic felt a lot to me like Super Stupid Soft or RFF (Really Freakin’ Flexible) from Gateway Discs, which are popular blends for the Wizard. Ultimately, how the Pilot feels in each individual player’s hand will determine the level of love that the disc will receive.
I’m excited to see what else comes from Streamline Discs in the future to flesh out their line of single-mold discs and become a serious competitor in the disc golf market. I think that the addition of Streamline Discs to the MVP / Axiom family will prove to be a brilliant move. Why not release discs with and without overmolds?