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Thread: Golf Clubbing

  1. #1
    Titanic Struggles Caveat Emperor's Avatar
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    Golf Clubbing

    Now that I'm out of school and settling into my first full year as a member of working America, I've decided to do what so many in my position before me have done: attempt to take up golf as a hobby.

    I've played off-and-on since I was 15, but never with any real seriousness. Part of the issue was finding decent equipment for a man of my stature -- I know from speaking with pros that I'll be needing extended length clubs (probably 2" additional). I am looking to buy a new set of irons here in the very near future so that I can start playing this spring.

    So -- To the members of RZ who play regularly: whats in your bag? Any good brand recommendations? I'm especially interested in anyone who has had clubs either modified or custom made, as I may be heading down that route myself.

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    Re: Golf Clubbing

    I bought my clubs off of gigagolf.com. I got mine an extra 1" or 1.5" longer than the standard length. You can customize length, grips, shafts, etc. They have been great clubs for me and I bought a discontinued model and got all my irons for about $100 on sale. They are a lot better than my walmart clubs I bought a few years before. They would be great for you just starting out.

  4. #3
    Pre-tty, pre-tty good!! MWM's Avatar
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    Re: Golf Clubbing

    I play Cleveland irons and woods and wedges. I love them.
    Grape works as a soda. Sort of as a gum. I wonder why it doesn't work as a pie. Grape pie? There's no grape pie. - Larry David

  5. #4
    Miami Redhawks Redhook's Avatar
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    Re: Golf Clubbing

    Quote Originally Posted by Caveat Emperor View Post
    I've played off-and-on since I was 15, but never with any real seriousness. Part of the issue was finding decent equipment for a man of my stature -- I know from speaking with pros that I'll be needing extended length clubs (probably 2" additional). I am looking to buy a new set of irons here in the very near future so that I can start playing this spring.

    So -- To the members of RZ who play regularly: whats in your bag? Any good brand recommendations? I'm especially interested in anyone who has had clubs either modified or custom made, as I may be heading down that route myself.

    Shoot away!
    First, you need to decide approximately how much you want to spend. You can probably get a good set of used irons around $250...give or take a bit. To get a new set of good irons you will have to spend $500+, up to $800. However, when you buy a good brand you will be able to resell them 5 years down the road for $200 which you can then put down on a new set. So, first, figure out a budget and go from there.

    Second, you must get fitted. You really need to go to a driving range that has clubs you can demo for fitting. You will need a pro there with you so he can put tape on the clubs and use a plastic hitting mat. The tape and mat will determine what lie you will need for your clubs. Very important! I highly doubt you'll need clubs 2" long. Unless you're Yao Ming, you probably won't need more than a 1/2" for your clubs. Your posture at impact, not necessarily address, is the determining factor for length and lie of clubs.

    Either way, small or big budget, you need to take an hour to get fitted. Getting fitted will give you the confidence knowing you have the proper clubs. And you don't have to buy the clubs from where you got fitted from. You can get the specs and order them from a cheaper place if that's the route you want to go. Or, you can buy a cheaper set and bring them to a local club fitter, and have them match the new set to the specs you need. There are a lot of options, but the common denominator is you need to get fitted.

    I am an assistant pro in Cincinnati. I know that Meadow Links Golf Academy (Winton Woods) has atleast 5 sets to demo from with plenty of pros to fit you. They have Ping, Titleist, Cleveland, Cobra, and Callaway. All great brands. I would recommend Cobra or Callaway for the average player and the other brands better players.

    BTW, I play Cleveland TA1 irons. They're a blade iron which means they're the hardest to hit, but they also give the player the most feel and feedback. I also play Cleveland wedges. Still the best, but others are closing the gap (by copying....lol). Wilson 8802 blade putter. Taylor Made Retro Spoon 3-wood. And a Tommy Armour, don't laugh, driver.

    Hope that helped. Feel free to ask more questions in this thread or even PM me if you'd like to. I'd be glad to help.
    "....the two players I liked watching the most were Barry Larkin and Eric Davis. I was suitably entertained by their effortless skill that I didn't need them crashing into walls like a squirrel on a coke binge." - dsmith421

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  6. #5
    Titanic Struggles Caveat Emperor's Avatar
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    Re: Golf Clubbing

    I've done some reading on the whole fitting process, and it seems to me (and I could definately be wrong) that in-depth fitting really only benefits experienced players because they have a repeatable swing that doesn't really differ from stroke to stroke. Someone like me, without as much time on the course, grips and swings differently with every approach. Would that affect the fitting?

    Also, any feelings on component clubs v. OEM stuff? I'm pretty certain going used isn't going to be too big a savings, given that I'll be likely forced to pay to have the clubs adjusted on top of the cost of just buying them -- probably better off just ordering them to spec new.

    (BTW -- I'm not Yao Ming, but I am 6'10", so he's only got a few inches on me )
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  7. #6
    SERP Emeritus paintmered's Avatar
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    Re: Golf Clubbing

    Quote Originally Posted by Caveat Emperor View Post
    I've done some reading on the whole fitting process, and it seems to me (and I could definately be wrong) that in-depth fitting really only benefits experienced players because they have a repeatable swing that doesn't really differ from stroke to stroke. Someone like me, without as much time on the course, grips and swings differently with every approach. Would that affect the fitting?

    Also, any feelings on component clubs v. OEM stuff? I'm pretty certain going used isn't going to be too big a savings, given that I'll be likely forced to pay to have the clubs adjusted on top of the cost of just buying them -- probably better off just ordering them to spec new.

    (BTW -- I'm not Yao Ming, but I am 6'10", so he's only got a few inches on me )
    I wouldn't recommend getting custom-made clubs unless you are a solid single digit handicap. Also, if you know how your height changes the shaft length and lie angle of the clubs then you can order them straight from the manufacturer. Most club manufacturers have club fitting advice on their website. All you need is a measuring tape to figure out a few key lengths.

    I play Hogan irons and Cleveland wedges. Highly recommend both.
    Last edited by paintmered; 03-12-2007 at 01:40 AM.
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  8. #7
    Smells Like Teen Spirit jmcclain19's Avatar
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    Re: Golf Clubbing

    CE - here's my story/advice about golf clubs. Lets just say I'll echo Paint's advice here.

    I was in your shoes. Tons of money to burn on new clubs, so I spent big for some new Mizunos. I loved the look and feel of them - they were going away my favs when I was shopping and I spent a pretty penny getting custom fit for them. One day I saw my neighbor down the street was having a yard sale - she had a full set of Ping Zing 2's in excellent condition & stunningly - only wanted $50 for the entire 3-SW set. I ran home and grabbed some cash - not with the intent to use them, but I sure as heck knew they were worth more than $50.

    Anyway - long story short- I started hitting and the range with them and loved them. Absolutely loved them. It took a while to make the full switch - I mean we're talking the difference between a set that I paid nearly a grand for against a set I paid $50 for - but once I did I've never looked back. I ended up giving my Mizunos to my younger brother when he was trying to get into golf and he uses them a lot.

    So my end lesson - don't be caught up with prices or labels. I chose - and still stick with despite constant flirtations with other iron sets, a 10 year old set that cost 1/10 what my expensive custom set did. My long time golfing buddy bought the Tour Edge Iron Set. Not the biggest name brand out there but they always fair well I've seen in the Golf Digest Club Wars and he swears by them.

    As for some tweaks - I pulled the 3 & 4 iron and replaced both with Cobra Bafflers - and have found both to be much easier at getting up. I pulled my 8 iron and replaced it with an extra wedge. I have my Ping Zing 2 PW - and a 50 & 58 Deg Callaway Forged Plus Wedges - and a 54 Deg Cleveland 588 Wedge that was a gift. I use the 54 way more than the others just due to comfort & circumstance. Not that I don't hit well w/ my Callaway Wedges, it's just I'm that much more confident and a better striker w/ the Clevelands. When it comes time I'll replace all 3 non Cleveland wedges with Clevelands.

    I'm also a putter freak. I've had a Ping Doc 17 for a long time now, but I had a Ping Pal 2 & a Ping Anser I swapped back and forth forever. My putters get clipped down to 32" with Winn Grips replaced every few months for tackiness and are adjusted to just the right lie angle. Everyone always snickers and laughs - the Ping Doc 17 is the biggest putter your allowed with on the golf course, but I have found it to be sound, and once I adjusted to the bounce the ball has off the face my putting increased dramatically.

    I also have a Cobra 460cc F-Speed Driver and a set of Cleveland Sport 15 & 19 Deg woods that I also pack - would recommend both.

    For reference sake - i'm about 5'6 & 195lbs, and a 18ish handicap. All my clubs get clipped down several inches from the factory standard (From the drivers on down).

  9. #8
    Smells Like Teen Spirit jmcclain19's Avatar
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    Re: Golf Clubbing

    Quote Originally Posted by Caveat Emperor View Post
    I've done some reading on the whole fitting process, and it seems to me (and I could definately be wrong) that in-depth fitting really only benefits experienced players because they have a repeatable swing that doesn't really differ from stroke to stroke. Someone like me, without as much time on the course, grips and swings differently with every approach. Would that affect the fitting?

    Also, any feelings on component clubs v. OEM stuff? I'm pretty certain going used isn't going to be too big a savings, given that I'll be likely forced to pay to have the clubs adjusted on top of the cost of just buying them -- probably better off just ordering them to spec new.

    (BTW -- I'm not Yao Ming, but I am 6'10", so he's only got a few inches on me )
    Usually - most big shops include the fitting w/ the cost of buying new clubs.

    Most big makers, like Mizuno, Nike, Ping, Callaway, etc - have huge Kiosk looking racks with dozens of clubs. With some special tape on the bottom & on the face of your club, it won't take long for anyone worth their salt to figure you out (you need x long shafts and x deg lie angle) and you can work from their on each mfg.

    Also CE - Golf Digest did a huge feature a few months back on big golf companies traveling tour vans. Check out several websites and look for when the "fitting van" will be nearby. I know Cleveland always emails me when they are in town since I got my 3&5 wood that way. I went to a course one afternoon and the Cleveland Van was there. The guy was on the range, let me hit a few with some testers - dialed in exactly what I should use & the settings I needed, and bought both on site from the van for half price that day.

  10. #9
    Miami Redhawks Redhook's Avatar
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    Re: Golf Clubbing

    Quote Originally Posted by paintmered View Post
    Most club manufacturers have club fitting advice on their website. All you need is a measuring tape to figure out a few key lengths.
    This is a very inaccurate way of fitting someone's clubs. Yes, it could work, and for an average man it could work well, sometimes. However, with CE, he's very tall, so for him, getting a proper set is not nearly as easy. Here's one analogy that I can think of that would compare to measuring your height, arms, etc. for buying golf clubs.....

    Imagine that you're going to buy a new car. You have the money and you're really excited about it. But, with this car, you cannot test drive it and the seat is locked into it's position. You can't slide the seat back and forth. You can adjust how much it leans up and back (lie angle), but you are hoping the length you ordered will fit you properly. Key word: hoping. So you guess at where the seat should be, but when you get into the car you are too close to the pedal. It's very cramped with now leg room, but you are stuck with that seat position. What do you do?

    If you're going to spend more than a few hundred dollars for a set of clubs, getting a proper fit is imperative. Personally, I couldn't imagine spending $500-$1000 hoping that I guessed correctly in what I was ordering.
    "....the two players I liked watching the most were Barry Larkin and Eric Davis. I was suitably entertained by their effortless skill that I didn't need them crashing into walls like a squirrel on a coke binge." - dsmith421

    www.kylevoska.com - Golfer? Check out my blog for golf tips.

  11. #10
    Miami Redhawks Redhook's Avatar
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    Re: Golf Clubbing

    Quote Originally Posted by Caveat Emperor View Post
    I've done some reading on the whole fitting process, and it seems to me (and I could definately be wrong) that in-depth fitting really only benefits experienced players because they have a repeatable swing that doesn't really differ from stroke to stroke. Someone like me, without as much time on the course, grips and swings differently with every approach. Would that affect the fitting?

    Also, any feelings on component clubs v. OEM stuff? I'm pretty certain going used isn't going to be too big a savings, given that I'll be likely forced to pay to have the clubs adjusted on top of the cost of just buying them -- probably better off just ordering them to spec new.

    (BTW -- I'm not Yao Ming, but I am 6'10", so he's only got a few inches on me )
    Wow, you are tall. Since you are that tall and most of today's golf sets are made for people around 6'0" it is even more important to get fitted. You need to have an idea of how long your clubs need to be, what type of shaft would be best for you, what type of lie your clubs will need, how thick the grip needs to be, swing weight, etc. Just guessing at 2" long will be a waste of money.

    Many driving ranges have fitting carts with tons of clubs in them. Some of these ranges may offer a free fitting or it could cost up to $50, but that is knocked off the price if you order the set from them. Even though your swing doesn't repeat good shots all the time, it will have some consistent elements to it on each swing. Fitting is definitely not just for single handicaps. It can help average golfers immensely. On top of that, the pro will probably give you a couple of tips during the fitting which should help your game.

    The actual club head isn't very important at all. The shaft is almost everything. Some club heads do have a lower center of gravity that help get the ball in the air which definitely benefits some.

    If I was you, I would call a few ranges and see what their fitting program is. Ask them about older models that would be less expensive. Go to an outdoor range too. You'll want to see the difference in ball flights where going to a place like Golf Galaxy would not let you see the real ball flight.

    It all really depends on how much you want to spend. It would be total luck if you just ordered a set and it fit you well. Once you have an idea of what your specs need to be you can spend and order whatever you want. Used clubs can definitely be a great way to go. Some shops can adjust them for you at a discounted price if you buy the used set there. Just have your spec information with you and they can do that.

    Last, get some hybrids. They're fantastic. They're much easier to hit than the long irons. Almost every pro is carrying one, with many carrying 2. With that being said, most amateurs would benefit carrying 2-3 hybrids, if not more.
    "....the two players I liked watching the most were Barry Larkin and Eric Davis. I was suitably entertained by their effortless skill that I didn't need them crashing into walls like a squirrel on a coke binge." - dsmith421

    www.kylevoska.com - Golfer? Check out my blog for golf tips.

  12. #11
    Matt's Dad RANDY IN INDY's Avatar
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    Re: Golf Clubbing

    I play Mizuno MX-23 irons and the Mizuno MP-001 driver and fairway metals. I put a 19 degree hybrid club(Bazooka J-max) in my bag, recently, and I really like the versatility it gives me. Titleist Vokey wedges and Scotty Cameron putter. The MX-23 irons work well for me as I don't play all that often anymore and while they are forged irons, they still give me the "forgiveness" that I need when not playing much. The Mizuno forgings are second to none and feel like "butter" when you hit the ball flush.

    In the past, when I played a lot, I played Titleist blades and then experimented with Callaway X14's a few years back when I started playing less(at that time, a couple of times a year). The Callaways were very forgiving but gave me little feedback as to how I was hitting the golf ball. They were very easy to play.
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  13. #12
    I'm toolsy.
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    Re: Golf Clubbing

    What's in the bag?

    Driver: Nike Sasquatch 10.5 degree Reg Flex - this is new and I'm not real happy with it right now. I think I need to get a stiffer shaft in it. Any recommendations?

    3 Wood: Callaway Steelhead 3, 15 degree

    Hybrid: Taylormade Rescue Dual 19 degree

    Irons: 4-PW Taylormade RAC Oversize. Striaght off the shelf

    Wedges: Titleist Vokey Spin Milled 50 degee, 55 degree (bent from 56), and 60 degree

    Putter: Titleist Scotty Cameron Terrylium 2

    Balls: Titleist Pro V1x or Nike One Black

    I'm 5'10 and I've been playing for about 10 years, but you wouldn't know it from my score. I regularly shoot between 95 - 100.

    As far as fitting for you, I have always heard that Ping is is the market leader in club fitting. There is a program on their web page that can do a "quick fit" for you. You just input some measurements and your shot tendancies.

    Good luck and I hope you enjoy the greatest game ever!!

  14. #13
    SERP Emeritus paintmered's Avatar
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    Re: Golf Clubbing

    Quote Originally Posted by Redhook View Post
    This is a very inaccurate way of fitting someone's clubs. Yes, it could work, and for an average man it could work well, sometimes. However, with CE, he's very tall, so for him, getting a proper set is not nearly as easy. Here's one analogy that I can think of that would compare to measuring your height, arms, etc. for buying golf clubs.....

    Imagine that you're going to buy a new car. You have the money and you're really excited about it. But, with this car, you cannot test drive it and the seat is locked into it's position. You can't slide the seat back and forth. You can adjust how much it leans up and back (lie angle), but you are hoping the length you ordered will fit you properly. Key word: hoping. So you guess at where the seat should be, but when you get into the car you are too close to the pedal. It's very cramped with now leg room, but you are stuck with that seat position. What do you do?

    If you're going to spend more than a few hundred dollars for a set of clubs, getting a proper fit is imperative. Personally, I couldn't imagine spending $500-$1000 hoping that I guessed correctly in what I was ordering.
    My thoughts were for him to start out with a $300-$500 set of irons. After his game develops for a few seasons, then the $500-$1000 is a more reasonable option.
    What if this wasn't a rhetorical question?

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  15. #14
    Miami Redhawks Redhook's Avatar
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    Re: Golf Clubbing

    Quote Originally Posted by paintmered View Post
    My thoughts were for him to start out with a $300-$500 set of irons. After his game develops for a few seasons, then the $500-$1000 is a more reasonable option.
    I think that would be a good idea too. But getting his specs first is still highly recommended for two reasons. One, having clubs that fit properly (or atleast in the ballpark) will help CE make his natural swing instead of manipulating the club and body to hit the ball. 2) Having clubs that are too long or too short can really do a number on one's body. You're chances of getting injured increase if you're clubs don't fit you well.

    Like I've said earlier, you can get a set of used clubs, or even a cheaper set somewhere, just make sure they're close to the specs that you need so there won't be long-term effects of playing improper equipment.
    "....the two players I liked watching the most were Barry Larkin and Eric Davis. I was suitably entertained by their effortless skill that I didn't need them crashing into walls like a squirrel on a coke binge." - dsmith421

    www.kylevoska.com - Golfer? Check out my blog for golf tips.

  16. #15
    First Time Caller SunDeck's Avatar
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    Re: Golf Clubbing

    I shoot 95-100 with a set of clubs I got from my brother. They are an old set of Tommy Armour irons, steel shaft. No custom fitting, I actually choke down on them a little because it feels better for me.
    I have a crappy old putter that I got with a $100 set of Knights when I first started golfing and I still use the 3W and 5W from that same set. Under no circumstances will I ever carry a driver- I'd be OB 75% of the time.

    My golf partner shoots about the same as me, usually a couple strokes higher. He owns about $1500 worth of equipment that he inherited from his father when he passed away. He had them refitted for himself because he figured since he'd gotten them for free he should at least custom fit them.

    We joke about this all the time, the fact that we shoot about the same despite the vast difference in the quality of our clubs. I tend to agree with the fact that a custom fitting doesn't make a whole lot of sense for a duffer like me, but I'm also not 6-10".

    There is probably only one higher quality club I could be convinced to go out and buy and that would be a nice hybrid to replace my 3 iron. My brother also has a bazooka 19 degree and I used it when I was visiting him. I ended up using it off the tee several times. Anyway, my feeling is that average golfers put way too much into the clubs they own. All that technology doesn't help if you're hacking away from the outside in. Most of us would be better served by hooking up with a reliable teaching pro.
    Last edited by SunDeck; 03-12-2007 at 05:33 PM.
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