Connect with us

Accessory Reviews

Review: Sun Mountain ClubGlider Meridian Travel Bag

Published

on

Pros: Sun Mountain’s ClubGlider Meridian is the only golf travel bag that comes equipped with four wheels — one pair with retractable legs — that hold 100 percent of the weight. That provides stability and convenience while transporting clubs through airports, hotels and parking lots.

Cons: With an MSRP of $289, it resides in the higher price range of travel bags.

Bottom Line: The ClubGlider travel bag from Sun Mountain makes traveling easier with a set of added wheels and retractable legs, keeps clubs safe with thick foam padding on the interior and protects against wear with reinforced vinyl on the bottom of the bag. There’s plenty of value here.

The Review

My previous foray into a golf travel bag was a hard-side model reminiscent of X-Cargo pods you see on the roofs of cars. It was clunky, difficult to transport and store, but it did keep the clubs a bit safer (after I wrapped the club heads in towels and cushioned the entire shell with soft goods, that is).

Soft-sided, durable and maneuverable are the way to go these days and for this, I took a look at a recent offering from Sun Mountain, the Club Glider Meridian. The travel bag is lightweight, attractive and trim. Measurements are 52 inches long by 14 inches tall by 12 inches wide. This is spacious without reaching cumbersome. Internal and external straps secure clubs, two external pockets provide light storage and two sets of wheels (one set on retractable legs) unite to belay all weight from the shoulders and arms of the user.

SunMountain3

The top of the club case (where the club heads go) is surrounded with thick foam padding, ensuring that the business end of the clubs enjoy pillowy comfort during the journey and loading/unloading phases. If you’ve seen the bag men at airports toss around your luggage, you know why this matters. The bottom of the bag, where the majority of the wear area occurs, is reinforced with vinyl for extended protection against wear.

For carry and pull, the Meridian comes equipped with a series of handles. One attaches to the padded, club head end of the bag, allowing its owner to tug or lift with greater leverage. A second handle is formed when two, mid-bag, duffle-style straps snap together over the zipper.

SunMountain2

The four wheels of the transportation apparatus work in tandem in pairs. The larger, rear wheels provide stability while the extendable, forward caster wheels rotate 360 degrees and allow the traveler to maneuver through airports, parking lots or hotels. The Meridian comes in three color variations: black and red, black and royal blue and solid black.

One drawback of the ClubGlider is its necessary length from top to bottom, which provides complete protection for our tools of the trade. It doesn’t fit easily into the trunk of a sedan (at least, my sedan), but it does negotiate the width of the back seat. Larger vehicles offer enough trunk or hatch space to situate a full ClubGlider Meridian.

In addition to this model, Sun Mountain also offers three separate models: the Journey, the Pro and the Tour Series. Each offers unique amenities so taking a tour through all four models would be a smart idea before you make a decision to purchase.

Bottom Line

The Sun Mountain ClubGlider travel bags are sure to make golf vacations easier with four sets of wheels that hold all the weight of your golf bag. Added protection, vinyl reinforcement to protect against wear and three color options make this an effective and stylish bag to keep your clubs safe in your travels.

At $289, ClubGlider still provides great value and takes the hassle out of lugging around your golf clubs.

[wrx_buy_now oemlink=”http://www.sunmountain.com/2015-clubglider-meridian-17729-detail.html” oemtext=”Learn more from Sun Mountain” amazonlink=”http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00NK1NQ1G/ref=as_li_qf_sp_asin_il_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=B00NK1NQ1G&linkCode=as2&tag=golfwrxcom-20&linkId=NX3BR7FABNWU6YA6″]

Your Reaction?
  • 11
  • LEGIT3
  • WOW1
  • LOL0
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP0
  • OB1
  • SHANK5

Ronald Montesano writes for GolfWRX.com from western New York. He dabbles in coaching golf and teaching Spanish, in addition to scribbling columns on all aspects of golf, from apparel to architecture, from equipment to travel. Follow Ronald on Twitter at @buffalogolfer.

9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. Pingback: Sun Mountain Clubglider Journey

  2. Pingback: Travel Reviews | Travelguide

  3. dot dot

    Jul 30, 2014 at 8:52 pm

    4 1/2 stars again. Really. Just like every product review on GWX

    • Ronald Montesano

      Jul 31, 2014 at 6:42 am

      “some people call me the space cowboy, some people call me the gangster of love…”

      Some readers respond to words, others crunch numbers. We provide both.

      dot dot, it’s not easy being perfect. Just ask the companies with equipment, apparel and gear we have up for review. Ask them if the investments of time, money and resources in research and development allowed them to produce the exact product they envisioned, or if some things had to be sacrificed, altered or discarded along the way.

      As I recall, this bag received a 4.6 for storage, the lowest of the three categories. Why is that? The bag is sleek. If it were bulkier, it would have more room for storage. Is it a suitcase? Shouldn’t be. Could the side pockets be larger and fit more? Perhaps. Then it would be bulkier. See where I’m going?

      In the flexibility of use category, in order to build a flexible base, they had to make it a bit longer, a wee bit clumsy in the loading. That’s meta-storage. Would I have liked a few more tweaks? Yes. That’s where the other .2 came off.

      Protection is the most important attribute of a bag and this one protects. The flexibility needed for storage of the unit causes the unit a bit of weakness in the midsection, but not anywhere near the amount that would place bag or clubs at risk.

      You can’t have it all. Not even God can hit a one-iron. If you have the need for a new travel bag, you can rest at night after purchasing this one. Could you design and build a better one? Perhaps. Maybe a 4.8.

      • dot dot

        Jul 31, 2014 at 8:18 am

        Ya missed the point Ronnie. There is rarely a review less than 4.5 stars. Are these reviews or adds.

        • Ronald Montesano

          Jul 31, 2014 at 11:28 am

          Bear with me, dot dot.

          When I was a younger reviewer, I remember a couple of products that flat-out sucked. I wasn’t with golfwrx at the time. I emailed the manufacturer and told him that I couldn’t in good faith review his product, because it had no market value. I could do that because it was my own, small, no-advertiser site.

          What comes with a site that is not my own, is larger and has advertisers and a large following, is the need to be totally transparent and to evaluate fairly all of the products assigned to me. I’m attempting to do that here, so I don’t mind answering your questions.

          It has been ten years since I have seen a bad product. While every product may not be for everyone, if I give it a 4.7, then it’s a 4.7.

          Believe it or not, I’m tempted to give nearly every product a 5.0. I begin with the assumption that it is perfect, be it a ball, shirt, DVD set, or travel bag. From that tape, I begin to chip away at the perfection until I reach my evaluation point.

          • dot dot

            Jul 31, 2014 at 11:52 am

            As long as that explanation allows you to live with your rational I certainly accept it. You don’t owe me or anyone else an explanation. I have elected at this point not to give any weight to the reviews on this site due to their overwhelming tendency to be far to generous. It just makes sense to me that any pack of dogs will have a runt somewhere. I haven’t seen that “runt” review yet on this website. The news can’t always be good, Suspicious mind? Yep. Advertisements masquerading as reviews, seems like it to me. No offense intended you are a prolific and gifted writer, I wish you only the best in your writing career. That’s my totally transparent opinion.

  4. Ronald Montesano

    Jul 30, 2014 at 5:43 pm

    MJ,

    Feel you! Lightweight and flexible. Hard to find anything substantial to complain about. Thanks for writing. Keep it up!

    RM

  5. MJ

    Jul 30, 2014 at 12:17 pm

    I’ve got one. It is well worth the money!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Accessory Reviews

Top-3 men’s golf polos at the 2018 PGA Fashion Show in Vegas

Published

on

GolfWRX’s fashion expert Jordan Madley picks her top-3 favorite men’s polo shirts from the recent 2018 PGA Fashion Show in Las Vegas. Enjoy the video below!

Your Reaction?
  • 45
  • LEGIT11
  • WOW10
  • LOL3
  • IDHT1
  • FLOP16
  • OB6
  • SHANK68

Continue Reading

Accessory Reviews

I tried the great Golfboarding experiment… here’s how it went

Published

on

Corica Park Golf Course is not exactly the first place you’d expect to find one of the most experimental sports movements sweeping the nation. Sitting on a pristine swath of land along the southern rim of Alameda Island, deep in the heart of the San Francisco Bay, the course’s municipal roots and no-frills clubhouse give it an unpretentious air that seems to fit better with Sam Snead’s style of play than, say, Rickie Fowler’s.

Yet here I am, one perfectly sunny morning on a recent Saturday in December planning to try something that is about as unconventional as it gets for a 90-year-old golf course.

It’s called Golfboarding, and it’s pretty much exactly what it sounds like: an amalgam of golf and skateboarding, or maybe surfing. The brainchild of surfing legend Laird Hamilton — who can be assumed to have mastered, and has clearly grown bored of, all normal sports — Golfboarding is catching on at courses throughout the country, from local municipal courses like Corica Park to luxury country clubs like Cog Hill and TPC Las Colinas. Since winning Innovation Of the Year at the PGA Merchandising Show in 2014, Golfboards can now be found at 250 courses and have powered nearly a million rounds of golf already. Corica Park currently owns eight of them.

The man in pro shop gets a twinkle in his eyes when our foursome tells him we’d like to take them out. “Have you ridden them before?” he asks. When we admit that we are uninitiated, he grins and tells us we’re in for a treat.

But first, we need to sign a waiver and watch a seven-minute instructional video. A slow, lawyerly voice reads off pedantic warnings like “Stepping on the golfboard should be done slowly and carefully” and “Always hold onto the handlebars when the board is in motion.” When it cautions us to “operate the board a safe distance from all…other golfboarders,” we exchange glances, knowing that one of us will more than likely break this rule later on.

Then we venture outside, where one of the clubhouse attendants shows us the ropes. The controls are pretty simple. One switch sends it forward or in reverse, another toggles between low and high gear. To make it go, there’s a throttle on the thumb of the handle. The attendant explains that the only thing we have to worry about is our clubs banging against our knuckles.

“Don’t be afraid to really lean into the turns,” he offers. “You pretty much can’t roll it over.”

“That sounds like a challenge,” I joke. No one laughs.

On a test spin through the parking lot, the Golfboard feels strong and sturdy, even when I shift around on it. It starts and stops smoothly with only the slightest of jerks. In low gear its top speed is about 5 mph, so even at full throttle it never feels out of control.

The only challenge, as far as I can tell, is getting it to turn. For some reason, I’d expected the handlebar to offer at least some degree of steering, but it is purely for balance. The thing has the Ackerman angle of a Mack Truck, and you really do have to lean into the turns to get it to respond. For someone who is not particularly adept at either surfing or skateboarding, this comes a little unnaturally. I have to do a number of three-point turns in order to get back to where I started and make my way over to the first tee box.

We tee off and climb on. The fairway is flat and wide, and we shift into high gear as we speed off toward our balls. The engine had produced just the faintest of whirrs as it accelerated, but it is practically soundless as the board rolls along at full speed. The motor nevertheless feels surprisingly powerful under my feet (the drivetrain is literally located directly underneath the deck) as the board maintains a smooth, steady pace of 10 mph — about the same as a golf cart. I try making a couple of S curves like I’d seen in the video and realize that high-speed turning will take a little practice for me to get right, but that it doesn’t seem overly difficult.

Indeed, within a few holes I might as well be Laird himself, “surfing the earth” from shot to shot. I am able to hold the handlebar and lean way out, getting the board to turn, if not quite sharply, then at least closer to that of a large moving van than a full-sized semi. I take the hills aggressively (although the automatic speed control on the drivetrain enables it to keep a steady pace both up and down any hills, so this isn’t exactly dangerous), and I speed throughout the course like Mario Andretti on the freeway (the company claims increased pace-of-play as one of the Golfboard’s primary benefits, but on a Saturday in the Bay Area, it is impossible avoid a five-hour round anyway.)

Gliding along, my feet a few inches above the grass, the wind in my face as the fairways unfurl below my feet, it is easy to see Golfboards as the next evolution in mankind’s mastery of wheels; the same instincts to overcome inertia that brought us bicycles, rollerblades, scooters, skateboards, and more recent inventions such as Segways, Hoverboards and Onewheels are clearly manifest in Golfboards as well. They might not offer quite the same thrill as storming down a snowy mountainside or catching a giant wave, but they are definitely more fun than your standard golf cart.

Yet, there are obvious downsides as well. The attendant’s warning notwithstanding, my knuckles are in fact battered and sore by the time we make the turn, and even though I rearrange all my clubs into the front slots of my bag, they still rap my knuckles every time I hit a bump. Speaking of which, the board’s shock absorber system leaves something to be desired, as the ride is so bumpy that near the end I start to feel as if I’ve had my insides rattled. Then there is the unforgivable fact of its missing a cup holder for my beer.

But these are mere design flaws that might easily be fixed in the next generation of Golfboards. (A knuckle shield is a must!) My larger problem with Golfboards is what they do to the game itself. When walking or riding a traditional cart, the moments in between shots are a time to plan your next shot, or to chat about your last shot, or to simply find your zen out there among the trees and the birds and the spaciousness of the course. Instead, my focus is on staying upright.

Down the stretch, I start to fade. The muscles in my core have endured a pretty serious workout, and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to muster the strength for my golf swing. It is no coincidence that my game starts to unravel, and I am on the way to one of my worst rounds in recent memory.

Walking off the 18th green, our foursome agrees that the Golfboards were fun — definitely worth trying — but that we probably wouldn’t ride them again. Call me a purist, but as someone lacking Laird Hamilton’s physical gifts, I’m happy to stick to just one sport at a time.

Your Reaction?
  • 107
  • LEGIT19
  • WOW0
  • LOL9
  • IDHT2
  • FLOP5
  • OB3
  • SHANK24

Continue Reading

Accessory Reviews

Review: The QOD Electric Caddy

Published

on

If you want an electric golf caddy that doesn’t require that you wear a sensor or carry a remote — one that will be reliable and allow you to focus on your game, and not your cart — then the Australian-manufactured QOD is worth checking out.

The QOD (an acronym for Quality of Design and a nod to its four wheels) is powered by a 14.4-volt lithium battery, good for 36 holes or more on a single charge. It has nine different speeds (with the fastest settings moving closer to jogging velocity) so the QOD can handle your ideal pace, whether that be a casual stroll or a more rapid clip around the course.

The QOD is also built to last. Its injection-molded, aircraft-grade aluminum frame has no welded joints. Steel bolts and locking teeth take care of the hinging points. The battery and frame are both guaranteed for three full years. If you need a new battery after the three-year window, the folks at QOD will replace it at cost.

Its front-wheel suspension gives the QOD a smooth ride down the fairway, and the trolley is easy to navigate with a gentle nudge here and there. The QOD is always in free-wheel mode, so it is smooth and easy to maneuver manually in tight spaces and around the green.

The caddy also features three timed interval modes for situations where you might wish to send it up ahead on its own: when helping a friend find a lost ball or when you will be exiting on the far side of the green after putting, for example. The clip below includes a look at the caddy in timed mode.

When folded, the QOD measures a mere 17-inches wide, 15-inches deep and 12-inches tall.

Another area where the QOD excels is in its small size and portability. When folded, it measures a mere 17-inches wide, 15-inches deep and 12-inches tall, making it the smallest electric caddy on the market.

Folks Down Under have been enjoying the QOD for some time, but it wasn’t until a few years ago when Malachi McGlone was looking for a way to continue walking the course without putting undue strain on an injured wrist that the QOD found U.S. fairways. After first becoming a satisfied customer, McGlone convinced CEO Collin Hiss, who developed the product and oversees its production in Australia, to allow him to distribute and service the QOD here in the states.

The QOD has no self-balancing gyroscope, bluetooth sensor or remote control. Bells and whistles just aren’t its thing — though it does have a USB port for cell phone charging that can come in handy. However, if you are looking for a no-fuss workhorse to move your bag down the fairway, the QOD should be on your radar.

The 2018 model has begun shipping and will be on sale at $1,299 for a limited time. It normally retails at $1,499.

Your Reaction?
  • 95
  • LEGIT18
  • WOW8
  • LOL2
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP4
  • OB1
  • SHANK6

Continue Reading

19th Hole

Facebook

Trending