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GolfWRX new Cameron Tour Rat is in the house!

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I ordered this baby more than six months ago, and was beyond excited when I just got word that the Scotty Cameron Putter Studio had finished it and sent me the photos.

I’m a collector of fine golf equipment, but mostly iron sets. I have what I consider a small collection of five or six Cameron putters — nothing like the real putter collectors who can have rooms of putters that are worth small fortunes.

For those that might not be aware of the Cameron collector community, it is a community of collectors that buy, sell and collect rare “Garage” or one-off Camerons. Click HERE to see an article we did at the PGA Show this year that shows some of the rare, one-of-a-kind putters.

Full disclosure: I worked through Rand Pallis, owner of TheArtofPutters.com, to work with Scotty Cameron and the Cameron Studio to build this one off putter. GolfWRX bought this putter for full price with no discounts.

By the way, if you ever get an opportunity to meet Rand you are in for a treat. He is one of the nicest guys you will every meet — a historian of the game with an infectious passion for golf. He was patient answering all my novice questions, just like he did when I ordered previous putters from him in the last 10 years.

While this process always takes a long time — up to 9 months between the order and receipt — I was happy to wait. The Putter Studio must think a lot of WRX to allow the custom stampings on a machine milled putter. According to Rand, even he hasn’t been allowed to get stamps on a Tour Rat other than initials on the toe.

Click here to see more photos and read the discussion in the forums

scotty cameron tour putters

Above: A photo of my new Cameron putter

Since the putter is machine engraved, Cameron usually prefers not to put any hand stamps on them. We have seen tour players with them, but not a lot on the open market.

I asked for a “W” “R” “X ” in the center of the black bombs, but instead I got “T” “R” “A.” “RA” is my initials, and thought they might look good on the toe bumper on the cavity side. I am wondering what the “T” is for and Rand is asking Scotty now.

Click here to see more photos and read the discussion in the forums

A023912c copy

“WRX” is on the left bumper, and three Circle T’s are on the toe bumper. Nice touch! The “Rat Stamp” (on the face of the putter near the toe) is a tour-only stamping that is very rare.

A023912a

For Cameron collectors, this putter would be completely over the top. But for us gearheads at GolfWRX, it is the art of putters. We love these things! Rare Rat stamps, three circle T’s hand stamped, WRX on the bumper and the TRA on the bombs make this a bomb.

A023912a copy

Special, rare, tour-only products give a tool like this a special place in our bags or collections. It makes us feel as if the tool is special in some way and using it in the game we love adds a bit more vitality or pizazz to the stroke.

Click here to see more photos and read the discussion in the forums

scotty cameron tour rat

I asked for a blacked out, or “murdered” putter for my personal taste. The black “bombs” and paint fill on the putter is what Scotty Cameron calls Jet Setter, and according to Rand Pallis is very popular right now.

Here are pictures of Rocco Mediate’s putter, who Rand says is the only other golfer to received a “Tour Rat” stamping on the toe of a Cameron putter (click the photos below to expand). The “Circle T” on the cavity toe bumper is the same, but mine has the Circle T with the Jet Setter paint fill.

template_black-1template_black

This putter will soon be here and I will follow up with some more photos.

Click here to see more photos and read the discussion in the forums

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Richard Audi is the Founder and President of GolfWRX.com. Along with his responsibilities on GolfWRX he oversees the operations of Roundhouse Network (Digital Media Development Company) and The Oakwood Group (Automotive Innovation Manufacturing Company). He is an avid golfer living in Michigan. In 2005 Founded GolfWRX with a mission is to provide the best un-bias golf news and the ultimate social platform on the web for golfers. Not to just cover equipment buzz but the people in the industry that inspire us. GolfWRX is built to deliver fast, comprehensive news, in-depth feature stories and reviews that bridge the gap between criticism and buying advice. The site is powered by a team of close staff and friends (Reid "pitbull808", Rob, Ben "action jackson", Ryan, Zak, Greg "ironman", Aaron, Johnny, Matt, Steve, Todd, Geo, George, Ryan, Carlo, Jonathan, Scott, Zach the TMag freak, Wyatt, Phil, Joe the Ho) and then over 1.5 million gear-heads every month that share the passion for the best game in the world.

19 Comments

19 Comments

  1. Joe

    Jan 3, 2014 at 1:20 am

    While I love most Titleist stuff, and they obviously command a larger ticket, but none are more overrated than Cameron putters. I’ll be just fine with my Metal X Odyssey, thank you.

  2. Mike M

    Jan 2, 2014 at 10:39 pm

    i love your putter ! really awesome

  3. Todd

    Dec 31, 2013 at 11:30 am

    No more 3-putts, right? ; ) Nice putter!

  4. JEFF I

    Jun 10, 2013 at 2:03 pm

    I think the T is for TOOL!

  5. Rich

    Jun 7, 2013 at 10:03 am

    Hey, That’s my nickname!

  6. Nelson Feliciano

    Jun 3, 2013 at 1:06 pm

    Considering it is a tour RAT, It would have been cool if they started with your initials RA and then put the circle T on the third bomb which would spell RAT for ya.

    • Jack

      Jun 4, 2013 at 4:35 am

      Now that’s some quick thinking!

    • midtee9

      Jun 6, 2013 at 11:36 am

      I agree….he has to get rid of that proto and get the correct one produced.

  7. Sean

    Jun 3, 2013 at 12:19 am

    I really like it. I think the all black look is terrific, which I’m partial too.

  8. R

    Jun 2, 2013 at 10:29 pm

    I’d take out a life insurance policy in your name for that beauty

  9. Deck

    Jun 2, 2013 at 7:51 pm

    Looks great!!! Let us know what the T means. I was thinking Tour but that isn’t the normal stamp for that is it?

  10. Brian

    Jun 2, 2013 at 9:06 am

    I think it looks cheap! Give me your paypal address and I will take it off your hands for $1000.00 I’ll be waiting… Sweet Putter!

  11. KCCO

    Jun 1, 2013 at 11:45 pm

    Very nice!

  12. SYP

    Jun 1, 2013 at 3:33 pm

    What finish is that?

  13. Mike

    Jun 1, 2013 at 3:06 pm

    Absolutely stunning!

  14. Greg Moore - PGA

    Jun 1, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    The putter looks great Richard!

    • Ben

      Jun 1, 2013 at 2:47 pm

      I believe the “T” on the back left black bomb is a Cameron Circle T. Probably put it in as a place filler so it wasn’t left blank.

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Equipment

Golf club history: woods and irons

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If you’re going to play golf, you’re going to need some clubs. The game dates back to the 1400s in Scotland, so naturally, golf club history does too. We’ve come a long way from wooden clubs and feather-filled balls. For the sake of this piece were going to stick with the modern evolution of the game’s equipment starting off with the invention of the steel shaft in the early 1900s.

Some of the first steel shafts came from a fishing rod producer in Britain by the name of Apollo and we’re developed in the early 1920s. The shafts were much more consistent than the wooden shafts they were attempting to replace but they were still considered inconsistent by many players. Steel shaft also didn’t catch on until a number of years after their conception because until 1924 the USGA considered them nonconforming equipment. It took 5 more years for the R&A to make them legal in 1929.

It was that same year in 1929 when True Temper advanced the steel shaft and developed the process to taper shafts down or create “steps”—something we are all too familiar with now. These steps could be moved around the shaft and change the flex which created more options for golfers to find the right equipment and be fit.

Since that time, the biggest steps (no pun intended) we have seen taken in steel shafts have come from stronger, lighter materials to create more flex and bend profile options for golfers.

If you are curious about graphite shafts, check out my piece “The real firsts of the golf industry” for the history behind their development as well as some other technological firsts.

Here’s a broad survey of the recent history of golf equipment.

Golf club history: woods

best driver 2020

Now to the “big stick.” The term “driver” comes from the idea that the longest club was meant to be driven as far as possible from the teeing area and hence the name stuck. The club heads were made of persimmon, because of the strong dense nature of the wood. To get these wooden heads to where they needed to be for weight, they would be fitted internally with lead weights.

The video below profiles one of the last persimmon wood manufacturers in the world.

With persimmon becoming more expensive and golf growing in popularity, many manufactures shifted from using solid persimmon to laminate—that change also made the clubs more durable. Those companies included Wilson, Spalding, MacGregor, even Ping with the introduction of the Karsten driver and woods.

As technology continued to move forward, other companies used various materials like graphite composites to make woods, and as much as they worked well for increasing durability they never quite caught on.

The next jump came in 1979 when Gary Adams had an idea to make wood a thing of the past. He took out a $24,000 loan against his house to found TaylorMade Golf. The first product to market was a 12-degree metal driver; the very first of it’s kind.

Since then, metal wood technology has continued to move forward leaps and bounds; shifting from steel to titanium, and titanium to multi-material heads featuring aerodynamic designs built for speed. The rules of golf have limited size and spring-like effect of drivers but manufacturers continue to innovate and make drivers faster and more forgiving.

golf club history: Irons

Until Karsten Solheim and Ping arrived on the scene (see Greatest Ping irons of all time), iron design remained mostly the same—thin, forged blades that weren’t very forgiving. It’s not to say that everything was exactly the same, quite the contrary, but from an evolution standpoint, these were just baby steps.

To see the blade evolution here are a couple of great reads:

Then, just like with putters, Karsten Solheim designed an iron that would help reduce the severity of shots hit away from the sweet spot and the modern cavity back was born: the Ping 69. It was then only a few years later in 1982 that the most popular iron of all time, the Ping Eye 2, was set free into the world and this is where iron technology went from baby steps to full-blown Olympic sprinting.

Cavity back irons make the game more enjoyable and easier because their design reduces the severity of mishit shots and get the ball in the air easier, something that benefits all level of golfers, even professionals. Just like drivers, over the last decade, we have seen the introduction of faster, longer more forgiving multi-material designs enter the market. As CAD design and manufacturing techniques go well beyond was would have been imaginable only a decade ago.

Beyond cavity backs

New 2020 PXG Gen 3 Irons

The next leap forward was thin-faced irons so fast they needed to be reinforced with polymer materials to prevent them from caving in. The idea wasn’t new, with the introduction of clubs like the PXG 0311 or Taylormade P790, but they perfected the ability to build ultra-thin faced irons that not only performed but felt good too. The title of the first thin or slot-soled irons belongs to Wilson golf and their Reflex irons.

Conclusion

Technology will continue to push the boundaries of design, and golfers will benefit from these breakthroughs. The question of “how much further can we really go?” is up to engineers and advancements in materials and manufacturing, but however far it is, we should be excited about what they will think of next!

 

 

 

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The most popular golf clubs on Amazon right now (Summer 2020 edition)

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The most popular golf clubs on Amazon right now (Summer 2020 edition)

What are the most popular golf clubs on Amazon right now? From time to time, we like to get out of our little bubble of OEM releases and what’s being played on tour to look at what golf consumers are buying on one of the largest online retail marketplaces: Amazon.

Here are the best-selling golf clubs on Amazon as of July 2020.

1. Callaway Golf Men’s Strata Complete


The best-selling golf club on Amazon is actually a collection of clubs: a starter set from Callaway’s Strata line. 

From the listing: “The Strata 12 piece set is designed for maximum performance right out of the box; The set includes: driver, 3 Wood, 5 Hybrid, 6 to 9 Iron, PW, Putter, stand bag and 2 head covers.

Price: $249.99.

Buy here.

2. Pinemeadow Wedge

The most popular golf clubs on Amazon right now pinemeadow wedge.jpg

A decent-looking wedge for under 30 bucks…plus, it comes in 68 degrees!  

From the listing: “Built standard with high quality Pinemeadow steel from Apollo(R), a 125 gram shaft with a low to mid kick point for the same $19.95 value, perfect for the beginning to average golfer.”

Price: $29.19

Buy here.

3. Wilson Harmonized Wedge

Tidy-looking wedge with a sole grind that affords you some versatility for under $40. 

From the listing: “Blade shape with modified bounce angles for dead stop spin and versatility from the sand, rough, or fairway”

Price: $36.94

Buy here.

4. PreciseGolf Co. Precise X7 Junior

The top-selling junior set on Amazon, here. 

From the listing: “Right handed, designed for age 9-12, Boys, junior set includes: 15 driver, 22 Hybrid, #6/7 iron (1 piece), #9/P iron (1 piece), putter, 2 head covers and stand bag (rain Hood included)”

Price: $128.67

Buy here.

5. Callaway Women’s Strata Complete Golf Set

Just like the men’s version, Callaway’s Women Strata golf set is the most popular golf set in its category on Amazon

From the listing: “The Strata Plus Women’s Package Set is designed with distance and forgiveness technologies for women who want to easily hit accurate shots that go a long way. The complete set includes: Driver, 5 Wood, 5 hybrid, 6-9 Iron, Pitching Wedge & Sand Wedge, Stand Bag and 3 Headcovers.”

Price: $249.99 – $499.99

Buy here.

6. Pinemeadow Excel EGI Hybrids

Replace any of your irons with Pinemeadow’s Excel EGI hybrids

From the listing: “3 Hybrid/19°, 4 Hybrid/22°, 5 Hybrid/25°, 6 Hybrid/28°, 7 Hybrid/32°, 8 Hybrid/36°, 9 Hybrid/40° & PW Hybrid/45°. More and more players are trading in their traditional irons and replacing them with hybrids. The EGI hybrids allow you to do this for every iron in your bag. Join the movement and expect an improvement in your game”

Price: $43.26 – $69.63

Buy here.

7. PGX Offset Golf Driver

An affordable driver option with plenty of offset designed to help players hit more fairways

From the listing: “Offset anti-slice Technology. 460Cc clubhead. Headcover included ; The matte black finish and white and green gives the driver a clean and sleek look.  The offset of the driver helps you square the ball at impact.”

Price: $49.31 – $119.20

Buy here.

8. TaylorMade Men’s RBZ Black Driver, Black

TMs RBZ black driver is a great option for those looking for greater launch off the tee and comes in a sleek satin black finish

From the listing: “A large, 460cc Titanium head with an adjustable loft sleeve allows for optimized launch and trajectory. Ultralite Titanium core strategically positions mass for higher launch and trajectory control. Premium matrix White tie 55 shaft for maximum distance and smooth feel. Legendary speed pocket performance for high launch and low spin, resulting in more distance. New satin black finish with elegant detailing to improve alignment”

Price: $199.99

Buy here.

9. Square Strike Wedge

The extra wide sole of the Square Strike Wedge aims to do away with fat shots. The wedge is fully legal for tournament play and costs under $100

From the listing: “The Square Strike Wedge pitching wedge has an extra-wide sole and beveled leading edge prevent digging; No more chunked pitch and chip shots reduces wasted strokes; Heavy, solid feel promotes greater confidence vs thin-faced wedges that dig and rotate; Less rotation with the Square Strike Wedge golf wedge for men and women makes clean contact easier and much more consistent”

Price: $99.00

Buy here.

10. Wilson Golf Profile JGI Junior Set

The perfect set for kids learning the game, with each club in the set offering lots of forgiveness

From the listing: “Engineered with Super Game Improvement technology to enhance new Junior golfer experience. Weight is positioned very low in this oversized junior driver to help launch the ball for a better ball flight off the tee”

Price: $127.88 – $325.99

Buy here.

11. Pinemeadow Golf PGX SL Putter

One of the best-reviewed putters on Amazon. A great plumbers neck option for those on a budget

From the listing: “Perfect Balance. Alignment Tool. Headcover Included”

Price: $42.49

Buy here.

12. Cleveland Golf Men’s RTX 4 Wedge

Cleveland’s RTX 4 Wedge remains a very popular option amongst golfers and comes in several different finishes (Black Satin, Tour Satin, Raw)

From the listing: “4th Generation Rotex Face Technology with our sharpest Tour Zip Grooves yet, the most aggressive face milling we’ve developed, and even more precise laser milling, Rotex 4 generates more spin.”

Price: $99.99

Buy here.

13. Acstar Two Way Junior Golf Putter

A junior putter designed with both right and left-handers in mind

From the listing: “Zinc alloy putter head + 100% carbon putter shaft + anti-slip rubber putter grip construction, shaft flex: regular. Two way putter–Perfect for any golfer,whether you are right-handed, left-handed,advanced or a beginner, this double way putter performs at a high level ”

Price: $28.99

Buy here.

14. C3i Wedge

Featuring a wide auto-glide sole, the high-loft C3i wedge is a popular option for golfers looking for an effective wedge under $100

From the listing: “The C3i lob wedge is extra-wide. Its auto-glide sole cuts through the sand without skipping or digging; This sand wedge is a high loft golf club for men and women that gets the ball up easily to clear the lip and stop it quickly on the green; 12 degrees of bounce make sand wedge for men and women perfect for any type of sand, fluffy to firm; Get out in one more often and reduce wasted strokes; Makes bunker play a breeze with this sand wedge golf club.”

Price: $99.00

Buy here.

15. Odyssey White Hot Pro 2.0 Putter, Black

The evergreen Odyssey White Hot Pro 2.0 Putter remains one of the best-selling putters on Amazon

From the listing: “Designed to meet the meticulous performance demands of the world’s best golfers. Re-engineered White hot insert generates improved sound, feel and overall performance. Laser milling insert cutting process achieves tight tolerances for consistent performance.”

Price: $109.99 – $299.99

Buy here.

16. Wilson Golf Women’s Ultra Package Set

Designed for women picking up the sport, Wilson offers a complete set for just $219.99

From the listing: “Super game improvement design focuses on generating more distance for beginner golfers. Designed for Women’s swing speeds with low center of gravity for improved launch characteristics.”

Price: $219.99

Buy here.

17. TaylorMade Men’s RBZ Rescue, Black

TM’s RBZ Rescue is a massively popular club amongst golfers and it comfortably cracks the top-20 list on Amazon

From the listing: “Legendary speed pocket for high launch and increased carry distance. New satin black finish with elegant detailing to improve alignment. Shallow profile and improved sole geometry for optimized turf interaction.”

Price: $129.99

Buy here.

18. Wilson Golf Profile SGI Men’s Complete Golf Set

The super game improvement characteristics of this set from Wilson makes it one of the most popular sets on Amazon for teenage golfers

From the listing: “Designed for Teen swing characteristics to produce maximum distance and a rewarding experience for beginners. Large 460cc Driver Engineered with Super Game Improvement technology to enhance new golfer experience
Deep, perimeter weighted 431 stainless steel irons with very low center of gravity for improved accuracy and distance.”

Price: $319.95 – $349.99

Buy here.

19. Callaway Golf 2020 Mavrik Max Individual Iron

Loaded with technology designed to take your iron play to the next level, Callaway’s Mavrik iron cracks the top-20 list

From the listing: “With MAVRIK, we’re using Artificial Intelligence for the first time in an iron. Ball speed is further enhanced by our 360 Face Cup that flexes and releases at impact. We’ve created a sophisticated face architecture that’s unique to every loft, so we can create a significant boost in ball speed and increased spin robustness off of every iron.”

Price: $128.58

Buy here.

20. Wilson Golf Ultra Plus Package Set

Another Wilson golf set that has proved popular amongst buyers and offers an entire set including a 360cc forged titanium driver for under $300

From the listing: “Includes 9 clubs: Driver, 3 Wood, 5 Hybrid, 6-PW, Putter. Oversize 460cc forged titanium composite driver features advanced weight distribution to create an enormous sweet spot. Unique driver head design provides stability and improved launch conditions at impact for straighter ball flight for greater distance.”

Price: $299.99

Buy here.

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What GolfWRXers are saying about accuracy vs distance with the driver

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In our forums, our members have been discussing whether accuracy or distance off the tee is more important. WRXer ‘ShortSticks’ poses the scenario:

“Driver A (Accuracy): Hits most fairways and is a very straight hitter just not as long. Usually 10 to 15 yards shorter than Driver B, but not in near as much trouble. Not very workable, but can be coaxed into a slight fade or draw.

Driver B (Distance): Is long but can be wild off the tee. Can hit to places you have never been, but can also put you in some bad spots that make recovery more difficult. Is workable, but at times can get away from you.”

And our members are having their say on which element of the game is more important these days.

Here are a few posts from the thread, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.

  • juststeve: “I would say in general, as long as you can hit in play, longer is better. Keeping it in play means no O.B, no water balls, no balls deep in the woods and having an unobstructed next shot from a reasonable lie.”
  • mattavery727: “For me definitely driver A. I have 118 SS, and sure I can try to step on it and carry it over 300, but I also find trouble way too often. If I take a smooth swing and give up 15-20 but still in a fairway I like my chances at hitting the green or being close. My 7 goes 185 so as long as I am 185 in or less I have a pretty short club in my hand.”
  • gambit: “10-15 yards I’ll take driver A for accuracy. 30 yards and I’ll take my chances of going in the rough and bunkers.”
  • Tasals: “For 10 yards? Driver A. IIRC the tour average is ~30 yards for the benefit of being wild compared to be straight. So a gap wadge from 120 in the rough has equivalent distance from hole stats as a fairway shot from 150. Then you start seeing the major benefits when you hit a fairway or get a first cut lie, the proximity to the hole decreases pretty rapidly. The longer players over a season make more birdies than the shorter hitters, they make more bogeys, but the long guys tend to place better, and win more tournaments as well when they can get away with a few bad shots. I just don’t think the 10 yards is enough of an advantage.”

Entire Thread: “Accuracy vs Distance with the driver”

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