Calculating trajectory of ball rolling down slope and off launch ramp
Acro, You stated:
"This would imply that the steel ball would travel 17% farther than the nylon, but we know it's over estimated. Let's say that taking into account for the force lessening as the ball travels, and the fact that the retarding force isn't always fully opposing horizontal travel that the difference in speeds is half as much as above, say 8%. This would mean that, by the rough calcs above, there is a pretty small window between your two extreme cases (steel vs nylon), not to mention the steel/nylon hybrid that would fall between them."
This was exactly my point. There will be a difference, but it will likely be quite small, perhaps too small to exploit. but if the math is saying they will land exactly in the same spot, something has been missed, and that something is drag. Because you are correct, they will be leaving the ramp at the same velocity.