Thursday, July 30, 2009

Golf clubs - brand or clones?

Kvjetaak asks me . . .


I’m in middle of investigation what would be the procedure for my golf future; as my TopFlite clubs are not building my confidence anymore (after I broke 3 clubs) I’m looking around to find my future clubs and there comes the dilemma:


I need to decide whether it would be better to buy me iron set from world known brand or their clones. The clones clubs are using exactly same process of creation the same materials but still using let’s say 2 years old technologies (which is still quite enough I think) this is the Clone brand I thinking about; especially Pinemeadow Excel Mid Launch Plus Irons which are clones of Callaway X-18 or Pinemeadow Command Q Irons clones of Taylor Made R7 CGB Max Irons.


Or should I go for the known brands such as Callaway and such? What do you think?



I used clone clubs for a long time, because I was too cheap to buy name brands.

The quality can vary a great deal . . . and the imperfections can be hidden in ways you will never discover . . . but experience,

if you see what I mean . . .


The shaft is the most important part, and I think the clone club makers save money there.



I never heard of pine meadow clubs (not that that means anything).


Now I will use only name brand (cobra) that I buy used on ebay, or from golfsmith. I have a complete replacement set with me of irons, but not of woods, except for PW, which I broke & lost both, so I am using the PW from my clone set from the 1980s . . . I’m not that in love with it, but it is a survivor . . . 8^D . . .


If you can get the clone clubs made custom for you, by a good club maker, I think they can be fine.

If you are “handy” and can make them yourself, with the attention to the details important to you, then you will be fine.

But I think it is chancy to buy clone clubs that have been mass produced, off the rack.


It is possible that you are tall enough that you need longer clubs, customized.


I read years ago that the good players, the pros, don’t keep “sets” but evaluate each club on its own and wind up with mixed-sets . . . but now with their sponsorship deals, I’m not sure that is the case anymore . . . plus now I think custom sets tuned to the player and to each other (harmonics) are much more common . . . in the 90s I switched from one clone set to another clone set 2 or 3 clubs at a time . . . over 5 or 6 years . . . just as an economy thingy . . . but I could hit the new clubs several yards further than the old clubs, which made club selection tricky at times . . . but it was a kind of training exercise and a very difficult time for me, I could not hit my woods at all, so I used a 1iron off the tee, then a 2 or 3 iron as necessary . . . I got to where I could hit the bejabbers out of the 1,2,3 irons . . . often as far as other’s drivers & 3woods . . .that was an interesting lesson . . .


I also like to play only with balls I find, rather than buying them -- although, winning new balls in a tournaj is very nice also . . .


Because I believe – want to believe – as Mr Science has always said -- that it’s the Indian, not the Arrow.


But then once you have a swing that’s repeatable, it is undeniable that the new technology does make a difference. . . . the new technology helps only a VERY little until you have a repeatable swing and can hit the sweet spot.


When I replaced my lost 7iron out of my last set of Cobra-clones, with an actual cobra, I was amazed how much better it played – not that it was better because it was not a clone, but because it was a newer club, but it hit higher and a little further than my old 7iron, to the point that I went looking for a full set to match the 7iron, then bought 2! . . . 8^D . . . I paid US$150 for the first one, then $US99 for the second . . . I’d paid $us35 for the 7iron alone . . .


I’ve seen so many duffers with great clubs and no game I’ve lost count . . . it’s very common with rich old guys who can buy $700 drivers but can’t hit 200 yds straight in the fairway . . . but I love those guys, because after a while they get discouraged and buy new clubs and trade in the old clubs, then I buy them used – in good shape – for ¼ the cost.


But I have no advice for you . . . 8^D . . .


Good luck!

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