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The Truth Is Out There

Can You Handle It 


     From the very inception of  golf, the quest for hitting the ball further and straighter has been the target for golf manufactures.  Who’s club hits the ball better than the next guy’s and who’s ball flies farther. As most of us know steel shafts were  the greatest improvement for golf clubs  and are still a factor today for mostly irons.  


     The next significant change was the introduction of the graphite shaft around 1972 by Aldila.  The early ones had a breakage problem and most of them were too flexible. With new R&D, graphite shafts are fantastic.  They can make different flex points different tip stiffness and torques. Almost all drivers come with graphite shafts. I will get to the point soon, I am just laying down a foundation for my argument. .


     Club manufacturers want golfers to think these new 460 cc Titanium heads hit the ball farther.  Is the answer yes or no? It is a half truth.  While making the driver length 45” and the shaft being as light as it is, this itself creates a larger arc and greater club head speed.  It has been estimated that  for every 1/2 inch longer you can gain 8 more yards.  Mathematics says 2 incher longer than the old standard of a 43” driver equates to 32 more yards off the tee.   The big problem with persimmon heads, it was difficult for the average golf to hit it at 45”.  So why not make the persimmon 460cc.  Problem, the persimmon is so dense it was just to heavy .  So you think I want to reintroduce the persimmon head.  Wrong.  Although I think the integrity of the game of golf has been forever damaged with the USGA allowing metal woods into play.


    I think the innovation of  Titanium is great, it is light and strong and it makes it easier for the golfer to hit . The large size of the head gives you the feeling of not standing so far away from the ball; (45 inches. )  So now I will cut to the chase.   The driver head has finally hit a technological stand still if you have a 400cc to 460cc size limit and maximum C.O.R.  limit.  The golf companies keep coming out with new hype and snake oil every six months and the golf techies run to the store.  Irons have made no big leap since the Ping Eye 2 was introduced.  Be smarter and keep what you have. 


     Save your money.  You can buy a demo, buy  any top line golf club at a fraction of the cost for a new one and have it refinished.  If you already have one and you have put ball marks, chips and scratches on it .  Have it refinished.  If it is your favorite club, keep it.  There is no reason to buy a complete new club unless you are unhappy with the loft or just would like to have a new club.


      The bottom line is, clubs don’t hit the ball straight and far.   The golf swing does.  A change of  shafts can be beneficial.  I think the most important thing is finding a shaft that feels good and gives you realistic distance and make sure the clubs fit you.   Don’t fret on losing a few yards.  Your swing changes day to day, even with the very best golfer.


     My advise to the senior golfer.  You are all looking for more distance .Super seniors  are the most desperate looking for distance and they are preyed upon by the golf club salesman.  The only thing that will hit the ball farther is club head speed.    Keep fit and flexible during your golden years through exercising,  and using  light clubs.   This will give you the opportunity to play your best.


        I have several older playing partners, and they too, are looking for distance.  They say  “ Doug  I can’t hit the ball far enough to score well.”  I watch them play from the forward tees and they are  near the greens in regulation .  Jim takes a 7 on a par 4 .   He made a poor pitch shot and proceeded to 3 putt. He still to this day doesn't talk about his horrible short game that can be improved.   There are many players like him worrying about how far they hit the ball.  Work on 50 yards on in and golf will be still be fun and you will score better. Just be happy you are still out there.


      Listen to the old saying.   “Stop trying to buy a golf game”

      I hope I will take some of my own advise when I reach the super senior  age.


     My final statement:  I was playing golf just a short time ago and one of the players asked me what I did for a living.  I told him my business was repairing and refinishing golf clubs.  He said he never heard of a business  like mine and said that he thought golfers were suppose to buy new clubs every two years.

I would have to say that  statement floored me.  The manufacturers have just been hood winking the golfing public for years now and with great success I might add.


       Why waste your money buying new when you can make your old look great and still perform as good as something new.  For just a fraction of the cost  of new clubs, yours too can be refurbished.



         Play well,


         Doug Oughton